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Is Harvest Hosts Worth It? Let’s Review the Membership Program

Published on June 9th, 2022 by Ray & Tammy Roman
This post was updated on August 1st, 2023

This Harvest Hosts review is for all the RVers who have ever wondered: “Is Harvest Hosts worth it?

Our answer: it can be. This is really true if you crave a new and more social camping style. And, if you want to save money in your travel budget. The best part about this RV club? It offers an exciting alternative to the usual, boring overnight RV parking spots. So instead of Walmart camping, you get to add a dash of novelty into your journeys from place-to-place.

Our real-life Harvest Hosts review aims to answer your questions about whether or not joining Harvest Hosts is worth it. Keep reading to find out if this is an RV membership club that you want to join.

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A Harvest Hosts Review: What is it, Who Can Use it, How Much Does it Cost to Join?

The Harvest Hosts club gives members access to free overnight RV parking spots. Those places consist of network of locations that happily host club members with self-contained RVs. You don’t pay a nightly fee at these locations, but you do need to pay a yearly membership fee. We review Harvest Hosts costs below.

  • Harvest Hosts currently has over 3603 4,654 + Hosts.
  • You will find them at wineries, breweries, farms and attractions in all of the lower 48 US states, Canada, Alaska, and Baja California.
  • And as of 2023, Harvest Hosts is in the United Kingdom too! 

Think of it like a personalized invitation to stay at fun, independent tourism-centric businesses. They are locations of all sizes, doing all kinds of cool things. 

Harvest Hosts locations are overnight parking places you wouldn’t typically associate with camping. And that’s the beauty of it! Members get to park their RVs in these charming spots, meet new people, and create lasting memories. It’s a win-win: you enjoy a novel camping experience while supporting local businesses.

Map of Harvest Hosts Locations
Map of Harvest Hosts Locations

This is what Harvest Host club membership costs (it depends on the plan):

Currently the club’s membership fee depends on what plan level you join. 

  • Harvest Hosts Classic is when you stay at businesses like farms, breweries, wineries.
  • Boondockers Welcome gives you more location. These are places to stay at other members’ private properties, or even in their driveways.
Harvest Host plan options 2023

Whatever your Harvest Hosts plan level, campers can only stay one night (no longer than 24 hours). Additional time is occasionally granted by the host. You must be able to boondock. This is because most hosts do not have water, electricity, or dumping options.

A few hosts have amenities. You might find water and electricity hookups. Usually those will come with a fee if you choose to use those services. 

We are members of Harvest Host and also Boondockers Welcome. We also are not wine drinkers but buying a bottle gives us a gift for when we need one. Also not all HH locations are wineries. We do like BW better but utilize both. It definitely is better than Walmarts, truckstops, rest areas, etc.

@M&MM, iRV2 Forums Member

The listing for each location includes helpful information. You can learn a lot about Harvest Hosts locations ahead of time. For instance, you can find out about a location’s maximum allowed RV length. The location description also shares the amount and size of parking space. Finally, the club directory tells you if the location has any sort of additional amenities, such as water or electricity. A Host can also tell you if pets are welcome (most locations are pet-friendly).

Club memberships are good for one year starting the date of purchase. 

A Harvest Hosts location. (Image: @Cmftblynumb, iRV2 Forums Member)
A Harvest Hosts location. (Image: @Cmftblynumb, iRV2 Forums Member)

We just used Harvest Host for the 2nd time both have been golf courses and could not have asked for more welcoming hosts or quiet setting for a night. I golfed at both for around $30 each. DW says her vote is the next one is a winery.

@Cmftblynumb, iRV2 Forums Member

Is Harvest Hosts a Hassle to Use?

The whole process is pretty simple.  First, purchase your annual membership plan. Then choose a location. You need to give the host at least a 24-hour notice. They will confirm if you can stay. 

Once you arrive onsite, you’ll need proof of your Harvest Host membership. Proof of RV insurance is a condition to join the club. Some hosts may ask for proof of coverage. Hosts are not responsible for damages, theft, injury, or lost items.   

There are a few rules, like no tents or tent-like structures are allowed.  Also, campers cannot sleep in vehicles (cars, trucks, or vans). 

The most important club rule:

Your RV must be self-contained. This means is must have an indoor toilet, holding tanks, and the ability to cook inside the RV.

While not required, Harvest Hosts suggests that when you visit a host you spend a minimum of $20 to support their business.  Most hosts will sell goods such as produce, a wine made on location, gift shop goodies, and other great items.

Many hosts offer one-of-a-kind tourist experiences as part of the stay. For instance, sometimes they give a private tour of the location and samples of products. Other times you can just hang out with hosts, have a conversation and hear stories about the business or their life.  It’s a great way to meet new people and learn about new RV destinations.

We have used HH extensively across the country. Stayed at some amazing sites. I recall one farm in Kentucky that was absolutely immaculate. Most owners are eager to share their stories and provide a tour. Many have really good food/shops onsite. Most places we’ve stayed are very quiet with tons of room. We have not had one bad experience. I’d rather spend the nightly fee on food/wine or just a simple donation.

@TwoHuskies, iRV2 Forums Member

The Positives of Harvest Hosts

Did you know that many cities are creating rules against sleeping in a vehicle on public property?  Yes, even including in your RV.

Harvest Hosts gives you a better alternative to a truck stop or an empty, un-secure big box parking lot.  Locations are safer, more secure, and you’ll probably have a better time staying with a host than in front of a retail store. With Harvest Hosts, you won’t have to worry about chased away by the police at 3 am.

Harvest Hosts membership fee is not inexpensive. But the savings over time are huge. Nightly stays become cheaper than a campground depending on how often you take advantage of the club benefits. Use your Harvest Hosts membership just a few times a year and it pays for itself.

All you’ll be out after that is the strongly suggested but not required $20 purchase from the host.  

The last big pro of a Harvest Hosts membership may not be as evident right away. But the connections you make while visiting these locations add so much more to your RVing experiences. Harvest Hosts gives you’ll the ability to meet new people, have new experiences, and discover fun new destinations. What could be better for RVers like us?

Learn more about Harvest Hosts

The Negatives of Harvest Host

Of course you knew that any Harvest Hosts review will feature at least one downside. The first negative thing about Harvest Hosts has to do with their advertising. We think it can be misleading.  Harvest Hosts advertises that they offer “Unlimited overnight stays at over 4671+ incredible locations (plus 443+ golf courses with a Golf+ upgrade) across North America.”

It’s the word “unlimited” that could be misconstrued. Dig deeper into the sales pitch. You’ll learn that Harvest Hosts says members are only allowed to stay one night, unless the host says otherwise.

The second Harvest Hosts disappointment is that the list of hosts can be wanting in some western states like Nevada, New Mexico, and Texas.

Keep in mind that Harvest Hosts regularly adds new locations. They send a monthly email newsletter to members announcing new hosts. 

Finally, the last Harvest Hosts bummer? Having to boondock can be stressful if you aren’t prepared. That’s not really on Harvest Hosts, however. Anytime you boondock anywhere you need to be prepared! You’ll need to dump your holding tanks and fill up with fresh water before getting onsite. Most hosts don’t want you using a generator for power, either. If you haven’t invested in RV solar and think you will boondock more often because of your Harvest Hosts membership, this might be a good reason to get RV solar power.

I will agree, that the biggest negative to HH is that it generally and somewhat ironically is NOT conducive to a “late arrival / early departure” model. So if using HH as a quick stop on beeline travel days, it can be a challenge. It’s too bad, because IMO that is the best use of a HH type arrangement.

@Jack Klompus, iRV2 Forums Member

Is it a good replacement for RV parks?

I don’t think we can answer that question for you. As you can see from these real Harvest Hosts member reviews, everyone’s needs differ.  It is a great option for a quick one-night stop, as the stay is limited to 24 hours. If you’re looking for a place to relax and spend a few days doing it, Harvest Hosts isn’t going to be the place for that.  

Also, your dry camping comfort level matters.  If you are the kind of RVer that wants air conditioning, electricity, fresh water available, and the option to dump your tanks, you may not find this as exciting as someone who values experience/affordability over comfort.  

Finally, the last thing to consider is how social do you want to be? In many locations, the hosts want to chit-chat, or have loose dogs running around the property. If you or your RVing dog isn’t comfortable engaging with new people and pets, this might not be for you.

But, if you love the idea of meeting someone new and experiencing something different than what a traditional campground can offer, then Harvest Hosts is going to be a great fit. If you just want to relax and be left alone, this may not be the best option for you. 

Meh – some people really like to boondock and the numbers grow every year. Sometimes it’s great and other times it’s just so-so. If you like Walmart parking lots, you’ll love Harvest Host and the other services. We prefer to be in a campground plugged in so we don’t use them now. When I was younger we wouldn’t plug in at a campground until we reached our destination, using truck stops, rest areas and parking lots the whole way. We still occasionally do it, but much prefer a site with other campers around these days.

@dizcom, iRV2 Forums Member
Building connections with friends through Harvest Hosts. (Image: Shutterstock)
Building connections with friends through Harvest Hosts. (Image: Shutterstock)

Harvest Hosts Review Final Thoughts

If you are outgoing, open to new experiences, comfortable with the annual membership fee, willing to spend $20 to support a small business, and not looking to stay longer, we think it’s worth the price.

Hanging out with a Harvest Host doesn’t have to be something you do all the time. But it is a fun overnight camping alternative when you’re looking for adventure and something out of the ordinary!  

Learn more about Harvest Hosts

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