Everyone sometimes dreams of spending the holidays traveling in a camper or trailer, free from obligations, with no exact destination, navigating the roads …
How much is an adventure with all of this worth? Are we going to have to save for the entire fiscal year because of a few weeks of enjoyment? Not everyone is sure if they know how to maintain a trailer. Which model to choose, many wonder.
Of course you can buy visually very attractive, richly equipped and high quality new models from different manufacturers, but you have to be ready to spend tens of thousands of dollars. Used vehicles are significantly cheaper, and their price, of course, depends on condition and equipment. Therefore, it may be a good idea to rent before you make the final purchase decision, so make sure that this concept of travel and lifestyle is all right for you at all.
Is it profitable to rent?
If you are planning to rent, it is wise to make a reservation on time, as there is a great demand for RVs. You can also consider renting in the country where you are going to spend your vacation and get there by bus or by car. You should also check if there is a well-developed network where you can stop by and there is a constant supply of electricity, the possibility of emptying the toilet, the connection to the water supply, small repairs and the like.
So, you have to calculate the cost-effectiveness of renting in relation to buying or staying in a hotel or apartment.
Can I buy a used trailer cheaply?
The answer is yes. The market for buying used RVs of this type is as big as buying used cars. The cheapest models, about 30 years old but in good working condition, can be found for as little as 2000 dollars. With the newer cars and better equipment it is only natural that the prices go up. Models from this decade are about ten thousand dollars and up.
As with buying a used car or any other product, check the condition of the trailer, the regularity of the documentation, that all the parts are regularly maintained, etc.
You’ll also need to invest in a used model you buy, but don’t let someone charge you too much, you can do a lot of things yourself, and find ideas from sites like SkoolieLivin.
Still wondering if it’s better to buy a camper or trailer?
The decision is not easy, since many factors influence it, so now we will try various comparisons to help potential future “campers” make the decision easier.
These are two completely different concepts. It could be said that campers are mostly used by those who repeatedly change locations or camps, while those with a trailer are most often people who spend the whole vacation in one camp. If you like going from camp to camp, you can see more places, enjoy more beaches, etc.
The advantage of campers is that they can use the kitchen and toilet while driving, while no one is allowed to stay in the trailer while traveling.
The camper is generally more mobile, but when you leave the RV at the campsite, you have a free car to go somewhere, ie. you go to another beach, a night out, some shopping …
What is faster to travel?
Generally, campers are faster and easier to operate, which means that they reach the final destination sooner. However, this is not the rule, especially when comparing an old ’80s camper with a weak and old engine and some light and relatively compact trailer towed by a new 300 horsepower car.
Also, be aware that some newer cars can be specially prepared for hauling heavy loads (eg a stronger engine cooling system), as well as having electronic systems that cooperate with the ESP to calm the trailer, or ESP itself recognizes that the car is towing a RV and changes its mode accordingly.
However, legal constraints aside, one should not drive faster than safe, and it is the responsibility of every driver to properly assess their driving ability in a particular vehicle, especially if a heavy trailer is attached to it.
The ideal towing vehicle?
The heavier, wider and more powerful, preferably a diesel engine (due to high torque, especially at lower RPM). Since we do not have all the money for a Range Rover, GL, Q7, Grand Cherokee and the like, we manage what we have – “just” needs to be matched by desires and opportunities.
See how heavy a trailer your car can tow
Before purchasing or renting, check with your car’s manual what is the maximum recommended gross trailer weight that it can tow. Of course, it can pull in more mass, but here comes the issue of safety, accelerated wear of various components, and even possible failures.
The camper is practically a type of van, which means that like any other motor vehicle it requires maintenance. For example, you should not just leave it standing for months in the yard or some other place.
There are various components that require regular use, ie. they do not enjoy long periods without driving. After all, if you are already planning to buy a camper, this can be an ideal excuse to go on shorter or longer trips and even day trips, why not?
The advantage of an RVs is that it has no engine and associated components. However, there are other things that need to be maintained and checked that directly affect safety, such as tires and brakes.
New RVs are steadily emerging on the scene, some with game-changing modular systems and others with innovative space utilization solutions. One of the most important and interesting concepts recently appeared at the trade fair in Düsseldorf, Germany, where futuristic caravan models are presented first. French company Green Cat Technologies has introduced sCarbane, a giant self-sustaining camper trailer that raises standards when it comes to green technology. When traveling, the sCarabane is only an eight-meter-long silver box, but while in camp, the trailer transforms into a spacious, 30-square-meters house.
RVs can give you many beautiful moments and excitement, but also problems if you are not ready for a nomadic life or are not skilled enough behind the wheel, so think carefully before buying.