Before buying a Toy Hauler, RV, Motorhome, Fifth Wheel or Travel Trailer you should know the Pros and Cons of each, find out what best suits your needs.
Before Buying a Toy Hauler, RV or Camper…You should ask yourself the following questions:
- Will you be using it for weekend outings or full-time RVing?
- How many people will it need to accommodate?
- How accessible is your camping location? Will you be going on off-road excursions, boondocking/dry camping or State Parks with full hookups?
- Do you want to get luxurious accommodation or just basic easy camping?
- A major factor- what is your Budget?
- The weather will also play a part in deciding what type of RV you should be investing in, do you intend staying in a warmer climate, colder, both?
- Now, what do you intend to use your RV for – hauling dirt bikes or ATV’s, accommodate a large family, maybe you need office space for working on the road or something smaller for just sightseeing and travel?
Buying a new or used RV or Toy Hauler is not something you do on a whim.
You will need to do a lot of research before settling on a particular RV. There are so many options, take your time, hopefully, this checklist will help you find the one that suits your lifestyle and budget.
To help you narrow down your search, we are going to look at the pros and cons, of Motorhomes to Travel Trailers and a few unique options you might not have considered.
Each and every RV has a variety of advantages and disadvantages. A camper’s goals and expectations are mostly what inspires them to choose the perfect toy hauler, motorhome, travel trailer or tent! Your budget also dictates what direction you should choose.
Camping can be very exciting but it’s important to note that all campers do not have the same goals or aspirations. It’s very vital that each camper looks for a toy hauler that meets their demands and it’s within their budget.
You will notice that motorhomes have several advantages over travel trailers. There are three classes of motorhomes. To help you make an informed decision, we are going to look at the pros and cons of the three types of motorhomes. The following are the three basic motorhomes available for camping:
These are the most expensive and largest motorhomes available. Most dedicated and experienced campers prefer this type of RV. They include purpose-built motorhomes and converted buses.
They can be set up as pushers or pullers and they are powered by gasoline and diesel engines. You don’t require a special CDL license to legally operate them even though most of them are more than 45 feet long.
Class A type of motorhomes will offer you a lot of interior space.
Some are even equipped with slide-out sections which can be expanded out to living areas. They also have a separate master bedroom.
Some of the desirable features of class A motorhomes include the following:
- Washing machine,
- Shower and full bath facilities
- Ice makers,
- Home entertainment systems.
- Ample cargo storage in the basement.
These are quick weekend getaways and full-time camping haulers. They might be a bit intimidating to some campers because of their size.
It might also be difficult to access narrow homes using this type of motorhome. You will also find it quite cumbersome to maneuver in twisted mountain passages.
Once you have set up camp, it’s also difficult to run errands using a motorhome because of its size. Most campers prefer to tow smaller vehicles for such. Its initial purchase is on the higher side, so is the maintenance and repair costs.
- These types of motorhomes have plenty of interior space.
- You can carry lots of supplies and cargo in the basement storage space.
- It has very many options for luxury amenities on board.
- Some campers find driving this type of motorhome intimidating. This is because they are quite long.
- You might have to consider towing a smaller car if you intend to take several day excursions to explore.
If your budget doesn’t allow it, don’t purchase class A motorhome. This is because the initial cost to purchase them is high.
They are mostly referred to camper vans and they include smaller vehicles that barely qualify as motorhomes. They are typically standard chassis vans that have been converted into motorhomes. The roof is raised to facilitate upright walking.
They run on either gasoline or engine just like class A motorhomes They are comfortable enough to sleep in and they offer basic life necessities. They are easy to maneuver and store due to their small size.
It is possible to run quick errands on them or take short trips using this type of motorhome. They can comfortably accommodate two campers and they are self-contained. You will be able to enjoy hot showers, heating, and air conditioning, refrigeration, sinks, hot water. Just like class A motorhomes, their initial purchasing cost is on the high side.
However, class B motorhomes are cheaper to maintain and repair.
The interior space is a bit limited so when two users use it, they might find the space a little cramped. Also, the size of the appliances is smaller than what most people are used to. Space is limited for luxurious facilities like home entertainment or laundry services. Also, these are not motorhomes you can carry a lot of luggage in since it has limited storage space.
- It is easy to drive, maneuver and park these motorhomes since they aren’t too large.
- There are very easy to set up once you get to your camping site.
- Their fuelling and maintenance are on the lower side and affordable.
- These are convenient motorhomes to take short trips in or just run errands.
- They do not offer a variety of amenities as compared to class A motorhomes.
- Class B motorhomes don’t have a lot of space and even accommodating two people can be tricky.
- Also, you are not able to carry a lot of supplies or luggage since they don’t have ample storage space.
- It is not convenient for more than two campers.
Class C types of motorhomes are middle-sized RVs which range between 20-33 feet. Mostly they are built on top of van chassis or existing trucks. There are mostly ideal for larger groups of campers or family outings who want to camp on a budget. They compare mostly with class A motorhomes but at a cheaper cost.
They have more living space compared to class B motorhomes. Like class A motorhomes, they have a toilet, ample kitchen space, shower and bath facilities, etc.
Some of the larger class C motorhomes have a master bedroom suite. For more sleeping space, tables and couches can be converted into sleeping areas. It is also designed in a way that users can gain access using side doors.
Just like class A motorhomes, they can be difficult to drive and maneuver around. It’s advisable that campers should tow smaller vehicles for excursions and running errands. The fueling and maintenance cost of class C motorhomes is cheaper compared to class A motorhomes.
- They are large enough to accommodate a large family or a group of campers.
- Class C motorhomes have extra storage or sleeping space above the driver’s cab.
- They are fully self-contained with basic amenities to make camping enjoyable and comfortable.
- Class C motorhomes are way cheaper compared to class A motorhomes. The initial purchasing cost, fuelling, and maintenance are also affordable.
- Compared to class B motorhomes, they are still expensive to purchase and maintain.
- Some users might find driving this type of motorhomes quite challenging.
- You will need to tow smaller vehicles along to run errands.
- It does not have all the amenities that you require.
Motorhomes are convenient for families or groups working on a budget. Most motorhomes offer the fundamentals of camping and traveling enjoyed by most enthusiasts.
Towable RVs offer a number of advantages compared to motorhomes. However, it’s important to find a balance when it comes to capabilities and costs. Their initial purchasing cost is affordable. They are more reliable and they offer users the convenience of a detachable vehicle that can be used to run errands or exploration. There are a variety of towable RVs vehicles that enthusiasts can choose from:
Travel trailers have the convenience of a home and living space. They are mostly constructed on top of a trailer frame. Travel trailers are equipped with a variety of amenities. You can decide to have your travel trailer basic and simple or fit it with all imaginable luxuries that you can think of.
They can also have their own water supply, small refrigeration, kitchens, and bathrooms. The size of a travel trailer can vary and there are some which are even fitted with extra space. What makes travel trailers attractive is that a tow vehicle can be used. They can be connected with a standard-sized ball hitch receiver.
They can also be pulled by almost every type of vehicle, so there is no need to buy a separate towing vehicle. However, like most trailers, they can be a bit cumbersome to maneuver. Also, it may be almost impossible to reverse when it’s attached. Trailers also need to be level. The removal and set up the tow vehicle might be also hard for some people.
- Travel trailers can be towed using a variety of vehicles; hence users don’t need to purchase a separate towing vehicle.
- They are cheaper compared to most full-sized motorhomes.
- The towing vehicle can be used to run errands.
- It may be practically impossible to drive in reverse.
- The driver needs to be extremely careful of an excessive tail swing.
- Some users find it difficult to maneuver travel trailers in restricted areas or rough terrains.
Travel trailers can be perfect for small families who are camping on a tight budget. The flexibility, reliability, and affordability of travel trailers, make them popular with most campers.
Fifth Wheel Trailers
Fifth-wheel trailers are very similar to travel trailers. However, there is one major difference. They have a gooseneck connection which is attached to the towing vehicle.
Fifth-wheel trailers have a number of advantages as well as limitations. There are easy to tow because it has better leverage from the truck’s Centre which makes it easy to maneuver them.
The sections that overhang the trailer adds more interior space compared to the standard travel trailers.
What makes fifth-wheel trailers not very desirable is the fact that a special towing vehicle is required. They must be towed using a truck with a flat and open bed.
These towing vehicles may not be very practical for exploring compared to other types of vehicles like SUVs.
- The gooseneck connection is stronger compared to most connections of travel trailers.
- The overhanging section of this trailer offers additional living and storage space.
- Fifth-wheel trailers are fitted with many luxurious and basic amenities for the sake of convenience and comfort.
- Fifth-wheel trailers also offer a stable driving experience.
- The slideouts can be used to create extra sleeping space.
- The choice of towing vehicles is limited.
- It has less space for passengers while on the trip. This is because it’s illegal to carry passengers on the trailer.
Fifth wheel trailers are very popular with most enthusiasts this is because they are affordable, reliable and flexible. The Top 3 Rated Toy Hauler/Fifth Wheels (by Lifestyle Magazine)
- Heartland Cyclone
- Keystone Fuzion
- Keystone Raptor
Tent and Pop-up Campers (Budget-Friendly)
This is the most common camping RV most people first set foot in. These are some of the smallest travel trailers available. Since they are collapsible, they require little storage space when not in use. Some of them are made using collapsible durable tent canvas while others are made using hard composite walls that a fold down. They are great for that occasional camping adventure.
They are mostly light and easy to maneuver. Most of the vehicle types can be used to tow these trailers. Small trucks, full-size sedans and station wagons can be used to tow this type of trailer. They offer the most basic essentials which make camping comfortable.
However, it’s not possible to store anything on them due to the nature of their design. Supplies and personal luggage must be separately carried. Setting up a tent or folding trailer is quite fast and easy. It requires less hustle compared to most camping RVs.
- They are lightweight and easy to maneuver.
- A wide range of towing vehicles can be used to tow them.
- They are affordable to purchase and maintain.
- Little storage is needed when not in use.
- Tent trailers are easy to set up and dismantle.
- They have limited interior space.
- There is practically no storage space and a separate arrangement must be made to carry supplies.
- Users get more exposed to adverse weather conditions in this type of trailer.
For beginners, they are excellent and affordable.
Toy hauler/sports utility RV-Trailers
These trailers combine the features of a sports utility trailer and travel trailer. They are a perfect choice for most campers who would wish to go camping with their dirt bikes and ATVs.
The dirt bikes and sports vehicles can be stored in the rear compartment of toy haulers. The forward compartment is set up with the living areas for the campers.
It’s the most convenient travel trailer for a sports enthusiast. Campers prefer them since they have storage space for their gears, tools and small vehicles. However, there is limited interior space inside which doesn’t sit very well with most campers.
While a full-sized trailer is necessary, only a small portion of the space is beneficial to the campers. Most campers might not also enjoy the proximity of motorized accessories. Engine oils, fuels, and chemicals may be hazardous to the environment and they may also produce awful odors.
- These are dual-purpose trailers.
- It is possible to fit them with all the required facilities and amenities.
- Possible Office Space for working on the road.
- Hauling large toys, ATV’s, dirt bikes, motorcycles.
- Large family, bunk beds
- Extra storage
- The close proximity to the garage area exposes users to hazardous material.
- It has less usable space inside compared to equal sized travel trailers.
A sports utility RV trailer is a sports enthusiast answered prayer. They also offer campers the comfort needed during the adventurous camping experience.
- The Top 3 Rated Toy Hauler (by Lifestyle Magazine)
- Lance Camper TH 2612
- Forest River Fury 2912x
- Evergreen RV Tesla T3950
Pickup Truck Campers
Pickup truck campers have a long history. They have been used for a long time and they were basically used by people who used them to go either hunting or fishing. Modern truck campers have features that are common to most RVs. You will find out that some are even equipped with showers, slide-outs, kitchens, and toilets. They have several advantages compared to most RVs.
- They are relatively affordable compared to most RVs.
- Pickup truck campers can be used as vehicles without any hitches.
- Using them, campers can access even the most remote camping sites.
- Driving them is easy so is maneuvering or reversing them.
- They don’t require a trailer to tow not unless you want to tow a fishing boat.
- Pickup truck campers come in a variety of attractive colors and shapes.
- The newer models have slide-outs.
- Since the camper is detachable, they can be used as regular work trucks.
- These campers can fit in driveways.
- Unfortunately, they have limited living and interior space.
- They will require a suitable truck to fit the camper.
- To enter the camper, you have to leave the cab and walk outside.
You might need to make clearance space since the overall height is bound to increase.
These aren’t your typical camping RVs. They aren’t designed to be moved around. Mostly they are found in holiday destinations. They have virtually everything you’d require in your house. Also, they require a special towing vehicle. Park campers can accommodate close to ten people sleeping comfortably.
When you have the proper hookups, park campers are ideal for people who are holidaying in resorts for a longer period. Park campers are not meant to be moved away regularly so if you go for a holiday once a year, then you can consider investing in them.
- Most park campers are very spacious. They can measure up to 400 sq. feet. This feature is what makes park campers different from the standard RVs. They can be fitted with amenities that wouldn’t fit in a standard RV.
- It is possible to rent park campers hustle free. Campers can choose between buying them and leasing. This depends on an individual’s traveling habits. It wouldn’t make economic sense to hire a camping RV if you camp frequently.
However, it makes sense to rent a park camp. This eliminates the need for you to maintain the camper when not in use. Someone else is responsible for maintaining and repairing the park camper.
- Park campers are not very mobile. This is not your standard RV which you will use to go sightseeing. They are meant to act as temporal homes. This is because a park camper lacks the mobility of a standard RV.
- Renting or buying a park camper can be quite on the higher side. This is because they are very spacious and are fitted with a number of luxurious facilities.
Park campers are ideal for campers who want to avoid harsh weather conditions or people who want to camp for longer. However, they are not a perfect choice for campers who prefer to be on the move constantly. Again, they are costly so before settling on one particular park camper, do thorough research. This will help you get value for your money and enjoy your camping experience.
Toy haulers come in many designs and types. There are a number of factors to consider before settling on any particular trailer. Individual camping goals and needs dictate what a camper should settle for. Campers can opt for a travel trailer, park campers or motorhomes depending on what they want to experience.
From affordability to space, all toy haulers have a number of pros and cons. The decision lies with individual campers. The weather and terrain in the camping site should also be considered before buying that toy hauler. How many people the trailer can accommodate is another important factor to consider since you don’t want to be all cramped in a little space.
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