After a two year infatuation with the possibility of motorhome ownership I find myself firmly back in the camp of travel trailer owners. I still think that I will eventually find myself behind the wheel of a Class A or Class C, but I am fairly certain that day is decades away. So why the change of heart? Is it just an economic reality? Does a motorhome simply not fit into our current budget? Or is it a matter of taste? Do I actually like travel trailers better?
It’s actually a combination of both.
When I look at the price of the Class C’s that would work for our family ($75,000 give or take) I can’t help but thinking that I could get a new truck and a new trailer for that same price. That thought gets me an awful lot more excited than the thought of just getting a motorhome. Two purchases are always better than one in my book. I can look forward to purchasing a new truck, and then look forward to purchasing a new trailer at a later date. This is also more financially sound for me as opposed to spending all of that money at once on a new motorhome.
My truck is 8 years old and has over 120,000 miles on it. She’s still running strong, but I can’t help but think she won’t last forever. Plus–the new F-150’s and Silverado’s are light years better than their older brothers and sisters. Just ask our Utah correspondent Brett Neilson. He bought a shiny new aluminum F-150 last fall and he hasn’t stopped smiling since. Come to think of it, he bought a new travel trailer a few months later. Great minds think alike, right Brett? Our White Hawk travel trailer is a 2012 and it’s in great shape. We don’t need to trade it in but we definitely want more floor space. We purchased our rig when we had two small children. Now the boys are getting big and we have young Master Wesley and Sweet Maggie. Our RV is going to feel pretty crowded this season.
RVFTA will be a travel trailer family for a long time to come, and it looks like we won’t be alone. According to wholesale numbers provided by the RVIA for 2015, sales of travel trailers are dominating the industry. A total of 374,246 RV’s were sold in 2015. Of those 239,255 were travel trailers, 21,948 were Class A’s, and 22,068 were Class C’s. That means that almost 64 percent of RV’s sold were travel trailers. When the average American imagines an RV they may picture a motorhome, but when it comes time to buy one they purchase a travel trailer.
So why are we a travel trailer nation?
Because we can afford to be.
Travel trailers are simply the best value in the RV marketplace. A family with kids can purchase something super comfortable, and at least somewhat durable, for less than the price of the family car. On occasion I have seen nice new 20 foot travel trailers for under $10,000–which is a pretty incredible value. If you are willing to spend over $20,000, then things start to get really nice, really fast.
A 12 year payment on a $20,000 travel trailer could easily end up costing less than your monthly cable and internet bill. Which do you think is going to bring more fun and joy to your family? If you’re reading this article I’m pretty sure you know the right answer to that question.
We look forward to seeing you at the campground in 2016, and we look forward to many happy years to come as travel trailer owners. How about you? Are you a member of travel trailer nation? Or do you own, or want to own a motorhome? Drop us a comment below and let us know!