Getting a portable home for your future holidays is an exciting prospect. But having to choose a camper or caravan isn’t an easy decision. Each have their pros and cons, so we asked our outdoors experts to put together the crucial camper trailer vs. caravan factors.
They reckon it all boils down to:
- Comfort – Things you can’t travel without
- Handling – Which manoeuvres better on Aussie roads
- Freedom – What kind of adventures you’re going on
- Cost – Initial and long-term.
Let’s take a scenic drive through all these topics to help you make the right decision for your next outdoors adventure.
It’s no secret that caravans generally provide a higher level of comfort. From inbuilt air conditioners to running toilets, you could choose to drive around in a small apartment. With more space to offer and a sturdier design, you’ll be able to indulge in more home comforts and rest easy with reliable weather protection.
The comfort is also in your set-up time. Caravans will have most of the gear you need inside, so you don’t always need to set up an outdoor kitchen or shower. Camper trailers, on the other hand, usually need their rooves popped up, awnings secured, and outdoor appliances set up.
Well, where are you going? If you’re driving up coastal roads and staying at quality RV parks, a caravan is a cruisy option. But if you want to get off the beaten track and into the bush or onto the beach, camper trailers give you that versatility. As a camper trailer weighs less – and your full weight is distributed between the trailer and your 4x4 – manoeuvring it through dirt tracks is a lot easier.
And if you’re in it for the long haul, campers have a few more benefits. As they have a smaller profile when packed up, they have less wind resistance when you’re driving, making it much more fuel efficient. This also makes them much easier to handle on the road and store on your property.
When you buy a caravan, you’re also purchasing an engine. And if you already have a 4x4, that’ll be a big new cost. With a higher price tag, ongoing maintenance costs and more insurance forms to fill out, caravans are financial commitments you do need to be prepared for.
In the camper trailer vs. caravan debate, it’s important to work out which suits your long-term budget. Maybe you don’t need a 4x4 and can invest in an all-in-one adventure machine (a caravan). Or maybe you’d rather have a more affordable option so you can spend more on off-roading equipment.
If you’re still tossing up between a camper or caravan, it comes down to how far you’re going, how much you need your creature comforts, what you can afford, and what kind of lifestyle you want to live while you’re away from home. If you can get clear on those factors, you’ll be able to work out what you need.
Need some more inspiration to make your decision? Check out our huge range of caravan and RV equipment.