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Comments for RV buying dilemma — Couple can’t agree on type to purchase

  • We are motorhome people, but to let any passenger “get up and move around ” while you are driving is dangerous and illegal almost everywhere.

    “Maybe” once in a great while on a straight stretch with very little traffic get up long enough to use the bathroom, then immediately return and buckle up.

  • The most important point?? It is illegal and dangerous to be up moving around while driving!! Ever heard of seatbelt laws? If that is her sole reason for a motorhome, get the 5th wheel.

  • I own a truck and fifth wheel but I deliver class A motorhomes to dealerships. I would prefer traveling in a motorhome over a fifth wheel and pickup from my experience. Living space is not much different between the two if they are the same length.

  • The convenience factor of traveling in a motorhome cannot be overlooked. When the weather is nasty, pull in and park, turn on the generator and heater/ac, and wait it out. You are however adding another engine that must be maintained and repaired…an added expense over the fifth wheel setup.

  • The pros and cons would be different for different people. We enjoy our Class A motor home but due to its size, we tow a Jeep. Our first motor home, a Class C at 24 ft. didn’t require a tow vehicle as we could park it easily almost anywhere. With a truck and 5th wheel, you can unhitch and use the truck for exploring. One vehicle to maintain. Trying to walk around in a moving motor home is dangerous and illegal. Usually there is a place to pull over and park for a few mins.

  • You can rent many types of motorhomes to give them a try. Not so much for 5th wheels and travel trailers (but some). There are several commercial companies that are available but with limited choices. You can also try some of the private companies (like http://www.privatemotorhomerental.com) that have a greater choice of units for rent.

  • Getting up and moving around is a calculated risk. It may or may not be illegal, I think most seat belt laws only apply to front seat passengers and children. Yes, it is better to be seated and belted in, but like on a boat or a Greyhound you can move around and do most anything you want if you are careful and aware and ready for sudden movement. Oh, and the driver shouldn’t do it in any event 🙂

  • We’ve had them all – TT, 5th, MH. For traveling I prefer the MH. You can see better, have the basement storage, have an economical car to drive around. Yes, I am one to get up while my husband was driving. I don’t know of any state that will ticket you. It was better than having him pull into every rest area to use the bathroom. I could get us drinks easily. Always something left not locked or a drawer that comes open you can get up and close – usually find out before even getting out of the park. You don’t know that in a TT or 5th.
    Neg: if hearing your dishes and pans rattling bother you, then no MH. I got use to all the ‘regular’ noises so knew when it was something different.
    Now that we are parked due to my husband’s illness living in a MH is not so great. Still have to ‘exercise it’ which can be a pain when you are settled in one place.

    Overall the MH was great when we were workamping and I loved the better view. Just keep in mind where you plan to go when thinking of how big a rig you are going to get. Anything with a slide in the livingroom – TT, 5th or MH – mandatory for FT.

  • If you are going to full-time it. The one option everyone forgets, if your vehicle breaks down (so it can not move itself), being in a 5th wheel your house will be still livable while the shop is fixing the truck. In a MH your house is in the shop as well and then you have to figure out where to stay if it is in the shop over the weekend.

  • I have had 3 pickup campers, 3 travel trailers, and 3 5th wheels over 40 years of camping. The 5th wheels are my choice easy to tow. Have truck to use when you get to where you are going. 2007 Dodge diesel gets 20 solo driving, pulling 12.5 to 15 MPG depending on your towing conditions. Live ability is the best.

  • Rent or borrow; ask others why they made the choices that they did, and what they would do differently. Figure out how much storage you need and why. Do you cook a lot or a little. How big of a fridge do you really need, and do you want it do be able to run on LP? In the heat of summer, and parks that are having difficulty with their power, we’ve put the fridge on LP to help keep the AC running.
    Do you want a washer/dryer? Is the shower big enough?
    Is the pantry big enough? Do you use your slow cooker and is there room to store it?
    We don’t pass up too many rest areas – but both of us need to get out and stretch our legs.

  • We have had many RV’s since 1977 and it seems that we have figured out that any unit with wood is a nightmare including of late our “Travel Lite truck camper” thus we are heading for the “all aluminum Livin Lite trailer” next including floors, walls, cabinets and NO WOOD to rot or mold ever again for us and overall considering maintenance and depreciation we are TT travelers and loving it..Being retired Navy we use military base Fam-Camp RV parks and feel really safe so onward for us. Glad to get my feet on the ground versus flying for 30 years..

  • We have had motorhomes only, three class Bs, two class Cs and one class A. I like the option to get up and get a quick bite or drink or close up something that is not latched properly. But, please let the wife know, it is not safe, does not feel safe, and I always take care of the business as quickly as possible and get back in my seatbelt. As far as using the bathroom underway, uh uh. I don’t want to go out as the lady with her pants down in an accident.

  • We have a 5th wheel that my husband drives. My question to the wife is “why is it important that you be able to get up and walk around while he drives?” He needs to move around also. Pull into a rest area or truck stop and you can both move around. My assumption is that you are retired, so speed and time should not be an issue…..We drive about 2 hours, pull off somewhere, use the facilities, get coffee, get a snack or just walk around and smell the outdoors. It is good for your joints, prevents blood clots and is just good for the soul to be outdoors….

  • Nope, Darrel. Thats what I used to think! We were on a straight stretch of freeway, no one around, EXCEPT a driver of a passenger car who claimed she bent down to pick something up off the floor (maybe she was really using cell phone). She looked back up and in trying to correct herself she plowed right into the side of us. It felt like a locomotive hit us! Our Sprinter motorhome left the road sailing through a field, tires hitting soft dirt causing us to roll over. Motorhome was demolished. Picture a flatbed with only the couch still attached. Cabover gone. If I had been up for even a second when this happened I would be dead!!! I suffered little physical damage, but my husband now suffers from a brain injury and PTSD which has completely changed our lives!

  • Motorhomes provide little crash protection to its occupants seat belted or not, whereas a pickup truck pulling a travel trailer / 5th wheel is designed to provide some crash protection (crush zones, air bags).

  • We have a lovely fifth wheel and it is great to live in and pulls like a dream. I agree with those who advised renting a few different types of rigs before making a big investment. Everyone has their own comfort levels, that’s why there are so many types available. Just remember this isn’t a Lucy movie, all travellers should be seated and belted in (where there are belts) while on the road because anything can happen at anytime. Be safe and have fun.

  • If you are gonna run the worn out roads in this country a lot,get a motorhome,not any kind of trailer unless you want to constantly fix loose parts and replace suspension parts.America’s highways are wearing out fast due to lack of maintenance over the years,and travel trailers or fifth wheels take a beating while most modern motorhomes can stand more banging around and those bomb craters in the driving lanes. On the other hand..if you are gonna live in an RV full time and not move often,then a fifth wheel is better. They just don’t make em like they used to.

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