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Lighten Up With an Ultra-Lightweight Camper

Lighten Up With an Ultra-Lightweight Camper

Tiny homes have become tremendously popular in the housing market, and that trend is going strong in the Recreational Vehicle market too. In fact, it is a trend that industry experts say will continue into the next year, as RV sales overall have surpassed last year’s totals.

The ultra-lightweight trailers on the market check off many boxes for would-be RVers, especially those who want to experience camping trips or weekend getaways and still have some of the comforts of home. Ultra-lights weigh less than 3,500 pounds, with aerodynamic design. This saves money in fuel costs and lowers wind drag.

It also means that the materials used for construction are lighter weight and may not be suitable in severe weather climates or useable year-round. Some manufacturers offer packages that address climate controls within the trailer, such as built-in roof-top air conditioning units.

These are designed to be towed by the family car, an SUV or a minivan and not by full-size pickup trucks which means the driver can easily adjust to driving to a destination because they are using the vehicle they normally drive. A piece of cautionary advice – make sure to check the towing specifications for your vehicle and whether a hitch can be added. Remember that the weight should be the loaded weight, as it can add many more pounds of towing weight.

The down side is that these lightweight trailers probably won’t make anyone happy for a longer length of time. Think full-time RVing for example. How much space do you need so your travel buddy and you can get along?

Although much smaller and easier to tow than a full-sized RV, the ultra-lights are designed to provide the necessities – a kitchen (of sorts), a bare bones bathroom, and sleeping quarters. You can always upgrade from fewer amenities to deluxe packages that include larger tanks, air conditioning and other convenient options. Units like the teardrop trailer can sleep 2 -3 people comfortably. Other models are much larger and can accommodate up to 8 people.

Depending on the design, there is usually enough headroom inside to comfortably stand. There is no standard on which fixtures are included in the basic bath on the ultra-lights. It is common to find models with a toilet, sink and shower, but not all are so equipped. Shopping around for the right ultra-light is just as important as shopping around for a standard RV; you must find the one that fits your needs.

The ultra-lights are easy to maneuver in campgrounds or in out-of-the-way locations. Set up in camp is quicker and easier than setting up a full-size rig. The convenience of a smaller camper is clear when pulling into parking lots. At an average length of 12 -14 feet, finding a place to park the camper and the towing vehicle is much easier than finding a spot for a standard camper.

For those who are traveling alone, the ultra-lights are a good option because of the ease at which one person can hitch and unhitch, back into place and enjoy a comfortable time away. Less expensive than full-size rigs, ultralights could serve as a first step into the RV lifestyle without the pricey cost that comes with bigger rigs with fancier interiors and heavy-duty towing capacity vehicles.

Like any camper or RV, there are many different sizes and models to choose from. Price can be a factor as is the size of the interior space. Some will be perfectly happy in a cozy ultra-light and others may feel more confined. If you crave more comforts, such as climate control, a more substantial kitchen or bathroom and some storage potential, look for the models that can offer this to you. Other folks may find that the sparce amenities is just what they need to get away from the everyday routine. It’s your choice and there is bound to be a model that fits you to a “T”.

Oct 21st 2021 Lois Tomaszewski

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