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Which RV is Right for Me?

So you think this RVing thing sounds like the lifestyle for you and your family, you buy tickets and come to the Seattle RV Show. Upon entering you freeze like a deer in the headlights! Wow, so many different kinds of RVs, which type is right for me and my family?

All Types of RVs at the Show

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Ask yourself some of the following questions before attending the show and you should have a much better idea of which RV type is right for you.

How will I use my RV?
Will I use it for: family vacations, weekend camp-outs, a spare bedroom in the driveway for guests, on the road office, antique buying road trips, going to my favorite off road park, fun in the snow, etc? Will I always go to full service RV parks or will I dry camp out in the rough most of the time? Will the kids friends or other guests come camping with us? Will I need to take other recreation toys with me? What type of RV will allow me to do so?

Other things to consider:

- Size:
Will I regularly travel on ferries where the fare is calculated on overall length?
Will it be too long to park in the campsites at state or national parks? Will it fit in my garage? Will it fit in a conventional parking space when I visit urban areas during my travels? What size am I or my spouse comfortable driving? How will I get around once I set my RV in a campground?

- Existing vehicle: Do I own a vehicle capable of pulling / carrying a trailer or truck camper?

- Budget: How much can I invest in a RV?

Motorized or Towable RV?

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Types of RVs:
Reviewing the type of RVs will help you narrow down your choices.
The RV world is generally divided into two broad categories: Motorized RVs (Motorhomes) and towable RVs (Trailers and truck campers).

- Towables:

Travel Trailers:
Basically a travel trailer is a RV built upon a flat bed trailer.

Some advantages to travel trailers:
- Most families already own a SUV or truck that can tow a travel trailer
- Travel trailers leave the bed of a truck open to carry other gear and / or big toys
- One of the less expensive RVs available
- Easily unhooked so you can use your tow vehicle to explore your surroundings

Disadvantage:
- Travel Trailers don’t offer as much floor space and storage of pay load as other types
of RVs.

Fifth Wheels:
Easily identified by the raised neck section, 5th wheels have a split-level floor plan.

Some advantages to 5th wheel trailers:
- They are more stable when towing
- A shorter overall towing length when compared to the same length travel trailer & truck
- Tight turning radius
- Available in very spacious floor plans
- Towable by most medium duty trucks

Disadvantage:
- Limited to what can be carried in the back of the truck

Truck Campers:
A truck camper slides in the bed of a pick up truck and is secured with a tie down system.

Advantages:
- Short overall length allows more parking options
- Can pull a boat or other trailered toys behind
- Can go almost anywhere the truck carrying it can go
- Small interior space is easier to heat in winter

Disadvantage:
- Not as easy to remove from truck as a trailer or 5th wheel

Folding Trailers:
Folding trailers unfold from a compact towing package to a roomy, family friendly space using canvas or hinged side walls.

Advantages:
- Lightweight
- Fits in most garages
- Can be towed by most vehicles
- Typically the most affordable of all RV types

Disadvantage:
- Set up and take down takes more time than other types of RVs

Toy Haulers:
Toy haulers are typically a 5th wheel or travel trailer with a large ramp permitting access to a large storage area in the RV.

Advantages:
- Great for taking motorized toys with you camping
- Ideal for traveling salespeople to store and transport their inventory
- Storage bays provide large play areas for children once the toys are off-loaded
- Many contain an onboard fuel station for your motorized toys

Disadvantage:
- The garage space takes away storage and livability from other areas of the RV

- Motorized

Class A Motorhomes:
This is a home on wheels built on a gas or diesel motorized chassis. The cab or cockpit of the unit is designed and built by the RV manufacturer.

Advantages:
- One of the roomiest RVs available
- Lots of interior and exterior storage
- Great for tailgating
- Diesel units have certain advantages, such as, more torque for climbing hills, better braking and airbag suspension and can pull more weight
- Can pull a boat or other trailered toy behind

Disadvantage:
- Low ground clearance and length limit the areas where it can go or be parked

Class C Motorhomes:
Similar to a class A motorhome, but the unit is built on a cut away van chassis so the cab is that of a conventional vehicle.

Advantages:
- Drives and operates like a large van
- Typically has an overhead cab bunk which provides more sleeping space
- Can pull a boat or other trailered toy behind
- Extra passenger seating in the RV portion of the unit

Disadvantage:
- You are without transportation once it is set up in a campground

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