By Trey Copeland
USA – -(Ammoland.com)- When carrying a pistol or handgun with you in your RV, you also carry the responsibility for any actions or decisions with that gun and respecting the laws of the locations you travel through. The decision you make to carry that gun can affect any person or place around you, more than just the person you are traveling with.
What is your intent?
Are you carrying a gun for personal protection against an animal while camping in the woods? Or will you be traveling at night and stopping at truck stops?
Knowing the location and circumstances you will be traveling through helps decide what gun to bring along and why you need it.
What gun should you carry along?
Although, an RV has plenty of room for a long rifle, I would probably just recommend bringing a pistol due to its compact size and ability to store more easily. If you are going on a hunting trip in your RV, then of course you need to bring your long rifle on board. Having it stored in a hard case and under your bed is the ideal solution, along with your handgun and RV parts.
One of my favorites to carry along while on a camping trip is the Springfield XDS 9mm. It’s super small and compact but has the power and all the features of a larger pistol. It’s easy to conceal and can hide in your glove compartment or under the seat, as long as you have your concealed carry license and it applies in the state you are traveling through.
What are the laws?
The laws for traveling with a gun in your RV is just the same as traveling with a firearm in your truck or car. The NRA has a list of guns laws by state that I find very helpful – www.nraila.org/gun-laws.aspx.
Carrying guns on campground premises are a little bit different. Each campground sets their own laws and can deny somebody from staying on site with a firearm in their possession. Campgrounds can pursue criminal complaints against anyone carrying firearms on their private property when they do not allow for it. Before your trip, give the campground a quick call and see if they allow firearms on site or not. This quick call can save you a lot of time and frustration if they do not allow firearms.
Do you have a Concealed Carry License?
To carry a pistol more efficiently and easily in your RV or other vehicle, or on yourself, it is highly recommended to get your concealed carry permit. This allows you to conceal your weapon. Many states also allow you to carry openly without a permit. This means you can have your gun on your side or in your RV as long as it is in plain view and not concealed.
Again, check state laws before your trip so you can plan on how you should carry your firearm. Being uneducated about firearms and gun laws is the worst thing you can possibly do. Do good research before your trip and train yourself appropriately.
Here are some more resources for further reading on Travel with Guns:
- State-by-State Handgun Laws – website with detailed information of interest to travelers
- The Traveler's Guide to the Firearm Laws of the Fifty States – handy printed guide for purchase that you can stow in your vehicle
- Which States Honor Your CCW License? – list showing which states honor your CCW license
- Gun Laws By State : Great reference book. If you own firearms or plan to and want to know you're following the law of each state but don't want to spend weeks trying to figure it out, this book is for you. A great resource to have with you when you travel.
- BATFE's State Laws and Published Ordinances – Firearms, 2010-2011 – nitty gritty details of state laws, not for the faint of heart.