Large RVs vs. Small RVs

Large RVs vs. Small RVs

Whether you’re an experienced RVer or a total novice, it can be tough to determine which vehicle will suit your unique lifestyle. After all, there’s an endless number of RV models available for purchase, and each has unique features and drawbacks that need to be considered. Which ones fit within your budget? Which ones have enough free storage space to hold all of your traveling items? And which ones are light enough to tow around with your other vehicles? At RecPro, we pride ourselves in providing prospective RV owners with all of the knowledge and advice they need to find the right vehicle for their specific needs and constraints. And while we can’t examine the detailed benefits and drawbacks of each and every type and brand of recreational vehicle within the span of one blog post, we can help you narrow down your options by comparing large RVs with small RVs. Let’s hop right in by discussing the key differences between these two styles.

Pricing and Weight

There are many different types of RVs, but the three main towable classes include the following:

Travel Trailers (Size Varies):

Large portable containers that are filled with living spaces. These are usually constructed on standard trailer frames and usually come with kitchens, bathrooms, small refrigerators and other amenities. They’re typically measured at 18 to 25 feet and generally weigh around 3,000 to 5,000 pounds. In most cases, these can be pulled by compact pickup trucks and SUVs. Travel trailers can range anywhere between $8,000 to $65,000, but they average at around $15,000 to $30,000.

Fifth-Wheel Trailers (Large Size):

Massive containers that offer exceptional storage and living space. They usually come with full-sized kitchen areas and multiple slide-outs to expand living space even further. Fifth-wheel trailers are usually 21 to 40 feet long and weigh around 8,000 to 15,000 pounds when fully loaded. These are some of the most spacious and luxurious RV rides around, and they can only be towed by powerful vehicles equipped with special in-box hitches (called fifth-wheel couplings). Depending on their size and brand, fifth-wheelers can cost anywhere between $13,000 and $100,000.

Tent Trailers (Small Size):

Compact containers that offer reasonable storage and living space. These variants usually come with beds, mini-refrigerators and cooking appliances. Tent trailers are one of the smallest towable RVs, so they’re generally only 8 to 18 feet long and can be towed by just about any pickup truck or SUV. Moreover, their small size makes them very inexpensive. Basic tent trailer models will only cost around $3,000 to $7,000 dollars.

Living Space

Of course, by investing in a larger RV, you’ll receive access to substantially more living space. This feature can be a massive boon if you’re traveling with a large group of friends or loved ones. It’s also a handy trait if you plan on filling your vehicle with large items and amenities, including RV furniture, entertainment devices or a fireplace. There’s nothing quite like plopping down into a high-quality recliner to watch your favorite films or grab a quick gaming session on a large TV from the comfort of your RV. However, not all RVers enjoy living inside of massive spaces, particularly if they’re part of a small traveling group. A mammoth RV might seem like a great idea for a party of two, but a large chunk of its living space is often ignored or wasted in these situations.

While group size should certainly be a factor that you consider, ideal living space is ultimately a matter of personal taste. If you’re traveling with a big group and/or value having a bunch of spare room, then we suggest favoring RVs on the larger end of the spectrum. Otherwise, you’re probably better off saving money on a smaller variant. And remember, there’s nothing wrong with smaller living spaces. In fact, we find that they can feel cozier than massive ones when properly organized and decorated.

Storage Space

Storage space is one of the most important and valuable facets of your RV, particularly if you purchase a smaller model. At minimum, you need to have enough storage space for essential supplies, including food, water, toilet paper and so on. Beyond that, you might not have pressing need for more. It’s worth noting that many RVers purposely forgo huge storage spaces because they enjoy living simply and not relying too heavily on a bunch of material items. Regardless, larger RVs (like Class A motorhomes) will almost always feature more storage space than their smaller cousins, making them an ideal choice if you’re interested in bringing a large stock of supplies, gadgets and toys with you in storage. However, bear in mind that smaller RVs can grant you a respectable portion of storage space, too, especially with the help of an RV bumper box (large storage containers that you can mount to the back of your vehicle) or RV furniture that doubles as storage space. For example, the RecPro™ Charles Gaming Ottoman is a contemporary piece that features a sizeable storage area underneath its seat that’s perfect for storing remotes, controllers and other small items. With the right gear and a touch of creativity, you can gain massive storage space out of even the smallest RVs.

Dec 28th 2017

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