Tuesday, February 3, 2009

An RV or a Caravan?

If you are in the market for taking your home with you on holiday, you basically have three choices, the tent (or trailer tent), a caravan or the recreational vehicle or RV. All have their advantages, but what is the best choice?

The Tent

Of the three choices, the tent is undoubtedly the cheapest, and the trailer tent variation can be quite comfy to, especially as much of the living accommodation is off the floor in the body of the trailer. But it is still a tent and as such offers limited luxury and protection from the elements cannot match that of a eurovan or RV.

The advantages of the tent are price, ease of towing not to mention it is easy to store when you are not on holiday!

The Caravan

Caravans come in all shapes and sizes these days and there is one for the smallest car, and the largest, some being veritable double axled paradises on wheels with every comfort you can imagine. Even the smallest is more difficult to tow than the trailer tent though and some people just do not want to tow in the first place (which of course means that they have to go for a basic tent or a RV).

The advantages of the caravan over the tent are obvious in that they offer a better class of accommodation, are more durable and are normally a lot bigger, a far better choice for a family.

The Recreational Vehicle (RV)

The RV has been with us for many years, perhaps the one that sticks in the mind (at least for those over 50) is the VW camper van as used by countless hippies and Australians for there travels across the globe. Today however, the RV is a lot different and in most cases a lot bigger, and has luxuries un-thought of by the first RV users.

The top of the RV tree is occupied (you guessed it) by the American Motor Home, vehicles of such size and luxury that they need an HGV licence before you can drive one, some even having a garage at the back with a Smart Car for those shopping trips etc.

When it comes to luxury, even the top of the range caravan cannot match the biggest RV, with its sliding walls (which extend the living area out each side of the body) higher ceilings and well, just pure luxury. Of course, there are smaller RV's, some smaller than the good old VW Camper Van, with one for every taste.

When it comes to disadvantages the RV however has quite a few, not the least cost, even the smallest being a big purchase, whilst the largest can cost 250,000 quite an investment! Besides the initial cost, there is the running costs and with fuel consumptions in the low 20's mpg (even less with the big ones) and the fact that you need to road tax and MOT them every year (and that can be expensive for the HGV variants) makes them a poor bet for anyone on a budget.

But then, the American Motor Home has never been something for man in the street, they are for those with a high disposable income or those that sell up and decide to live in one instead of owning a house. They offer true luxury and for those that want to live the high life on the open road, the RV is really the only choice.

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