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Can You Camp in an RV in Costco Parking Lots?

Published on March 13th, 2019 by Camper Report
This post was updated on March 25th, 2019

Costco is a wholesale store based on membership. They have a wide variety of what you can purchase including gas, RV supplies, camping gear, groceries, and even clothes. You can prepare for your camping adventure by making a trip to Costco alone.

So, can you park your RV in a Costco parking lot overnight? Most Costco locations allow for RVs to be parked overnight, however, some do not. If overnight RV parking is permitted at the Costco location, the manager of the store will usually have an overnight RV parking area that is well lit.

Keep in mind that every Costco location is different, and some may not allow RV parking overnight. It depends on many factors the manager’s need to consider as well as local laws.

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Because every Costco location differs, it would be most beneficial to call ahead and speak to the manager and see if that location allows for overnight RV parking.

Do I Need a Costco Membership to Park My RV Overnight?

Costco memberships come in handy when needing to buy supplies or fill up on gas, but it is not needed to park your RV overnight. Costco offers great discounts on everything they carry, which would be extremely beneficial for your camping trip.

The gas prices are very hard to beat, they offer food to buy in bulk which could be a great resource for a camping vacation.

Which Costco Locations Allow For Overnight RV Parking?

Finding Costco locations that allow overnight RV parking can be done in a few ways. You can look online to find a list of all Costco locations. This can help you decide where you want to stay.

There is no information on the Costco website about RV overnight parking. Once you have a Costco location you would like to park at overnight, call the store. Speak to the manager at that location and ask what their rules are for overnight RV parking.

This is a sure way to know if you are able to park your RV overnight as well as any rules that the specific location has.

Another option is to use an app called Overnight RV parking. This app allows you to search locations to park your RV overnight across all of the United States, as well as Canada.

This app contains around 14,000 RV parking locations, as well as “no parking” locations. This can be a great resource for free or convenient overnight parking locations.

If you are not able to park at the Costco closest to you, there are other options to park overnight for free. Specific rules apply to each place listed below, so do not just assume you can park there overnight for free.

  1. Cabela’s
  2. Bass Pro Shop
  3. Walmart
  4. Camping World
  5. Cracker Barrel
  6. Sam’s Club

Call ahead to any location to make sure you are aware of the rules that apply to overnight RV campers.

Are RV Hookups Available at Costco?

That would be nice, but there are no RV hookups offered in Costco parking lots. If this is a worry for you, plan to only stay for one night and prepare accordingly.

You will need to be self-sufficient during the time you stay in a Costco parking lot overnight.

What is it Like to Park Overnight at Costco?

The parking lots at Costco usually stay well lit for security and safety purposes, which is a plus to you. Parking overnight with an RV will either be beside or behind the Costco location.

Costco stores close at 9 pm, but they often have overnight deliveries, so don’t expect complete silence through the night.

Costco is a free place to park your RV, but not a free place to full-on camp. Do not expect to bring out lounging chairs, play music, or roast s’mores in the parking lot.

This is more of a place to park at night and be on your way the next morning. It is not a campground or long-term parking.

Are There Overnight Parking Rules?

Calling the manager of the specific Costco location would be the most beneficial way to know what is expected with an overnight RV stay.

Ask the right questions while talking to the manager so that misunderstandings can be avoided. Asking questions like, Is it okay to run your generator? Can you put your leveling jacks down? Can you extend your slide outs?

Asking specific questions will give you a better idea of what is expected of you, and what you should expect when staying overnight at Costco.

Because this is a free place to stay at your convenience, be respectful. There are some unwritten rules that would be smart to follow to make your stay as problem free as possible.

  • Do not be too noisy
  • Don’t blast music (even if you are inside your RV and you think no one can hear you)
  • One of the reasons they allow RVers to stay is to earn our business, so if you have a Costco Membership, buy something as a way to show your appreciation for the free overnight RV stay.
  • Only stay for one night and be on your way in the morning
  • Clean up your trash
  • If you are traveling with pets, clean up after them
  • Only turn your generator on if the manager has given permission to do so
  • Be courteous and polite at all times, even if you are told that RVs are not permitted to stay the night.

Is it Safe to Park My RV at Costco Overnight?

Costco is very well lit which is comforting to some, but it is up to your discretion whether you think it is safe or not. Though Costco closes at 9 p.m. usually, employees will work through the night to stock shelves and bring product inside.

You will most likely be by yourself in the parking lot unless there are other campers too.

Remember, you are staying in a parking lot through the night, so play it as safe as you can. Trust your instinct and you don’t feel safe, there are other options.

Take any extra precautions to ensure safety. Lock your RV and stay inside. Do not come out for any reason. If you hear or experience anything suspicious, stay inside your RV and call the police.

Overall, Costco can be a great option if you are looking for an easily accessible, free place to park your RV for the night.

As long as you call the store, get permission and follow the unwritten (now written) rules, you should have a hassle-free stay. You could even go enjoy some of Costco’s finest samples while you are there!

Related Questions

Can I park my RV somewhere nicer overnight for free? If parking in a Walmart or Costco parking lot is not your groove, there are other options. Small town venues such as fairgrounds, city parks, and country parks are all great options. Some are extremely nice and provide RV hookups, bathrooms, and running water.

Can I park my RV in a casino overnight? There are many casinos that allow overnight parking, some even include RV hookup campsites and have 24/7 security. You are able to stay overnight at most casinos if permission is asked ahead of time, and spending money at the casino is not required to stay.

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