Choosing the right RV can be very difficult, and you will change your mind a million times! Let me tell you our story of how we finally decided on the RV of our dreams and what it took to make the right decision for us!
So my husband Josh and I over the past six years have been dreaming of the day that he can retire from the United States Coast Guard and we can go on the road and tour the United States in a camper. Over the course of those six years, we have gone from purchasing a fifth wheel camper all the way to a diesel Class A. We have frequently visited RV dealers up and down the east coast and have stepped into just about every kind of camper you can imagine. This is going to be a post-split up into three sections just because of the amount of information that we want to cover that should help you find the perfect camper for you.
It all started a few years ago when I was trying to get my husband to go camping, he finally buckled and we went camping with some friends, and that night it poured rain on us, and we all woke up soaking wet! He said he would never do it again as that was not the first time that had happened to him and he had a similar experience when he was a kid. I really enjoyed the outdoors and camping despite being soaked and wanted to know what it would take to get him to go again. Josh said, “I actually like camping, but I need a bed and an air conditioner because I cannot sleep when it is hot, or wake up without my Keurig and I need a TV if it rains!” So immediately I thought that maybe we should look at getting a little camper. So fast forward a few months and we started to research what we could tow with our Jeep Wrangler. We found out we had the “tow package” and that we had the right axle ratio of 3.73 to tow up to 5,000 lbs. So we figured we could find something that weighed under 3,000 to afford us the extra 2,000 lbs. for people and our belongings.
Choosing the right RV can be a daunting task, and you will always find a feature in one RV that may not be offered by another manufacturer. I cannot tell you how happy we would be if we could just take everything we love about each model and have it custom built! But by the end, we would just end up with a mansion with a pool on wheels! We first started to look at pop up campers but then realized that they really were kind of expensive for what they are and that many people had reported issues with the seams leaking. So we decided to look at small travel trailers. One of the first travel trailers that piqued our interest was the Forest River R-Pod. It had a queen bed, wet bath, and the dining table could turn into another queen size bed. The RPod became what we compared all other campers to in the $15,000 price range as we decided we wanted to buy new. A few months later we purchased our first camper the RPod 178. We towed it home with our jeep wrangler and while we noticed it was not really hard to tow that we definitely did not have a whole lot of power getting through even some light foothills. Just 3 months later after towing the Rpod for a few trips, the Jeep ended up ruining a transmission. Luckily, we still had warranty coverage and the dealer closest to us performed the repairs with absolutely zero kickback and no money out of our pockets. However, we knew at that time that we were going to need something a little “beefier” for towing. Choosing the right RV often means taking a look at what you intend to do with it and requires knowing the capabilities and limits of what you can tow with what you own right now.
My husband started researching what truck could tow our Rpod with no problems as well as give us the space we needed to haul our family of four and our two Boston Terriers. He finally found a good deal on a RAM 1500 Big Horn at a local dealer that could tow up to near 14,000 lbs. So our little 3,000 lb. Camper was easy to tow, we really couldn’t even tell it was behind us when towing! In my next post, we will go over Choosing the right RV for your needs and some things to take into consideration when choosing! Follow me on my blog for the next update!