It has been a year since my wife and I sold our 2013 Itasca 35’ motorhome and its hybrid toad. Previous to its sale we had been RVers since 2009, first with a then new 35’ fifth wheel and diesel pickup combination. We traveled and volunteered for five years and workcamped for one year. It reached a point where we desired to be retired and take an occasional trip via car/plane/hotel.
We have not looked back nor do we miss any of the large expenses incumbent with RV ownership. We have taken several very nice trips with a total cost not even approaching the annual cost of owning/maintaining the RV (payment, storage, insurance and maintenance) while taking similar trips.
I believe the “newbies” have absolutely no idea of the cost of RVing. Most are buying bumper tow trailers of low cost/quality (however, the quality of even the big rigs is now questionable). We bought into the big lie that RVing is much less expensive than “conventional” type travel. We met many full time couples in our eight RVing years, becoming close friends with a few. In every case these people were getting old (not older) and had no exit strategy. They reminded us of nomads that wandered, lost, in the desert. It for sure reinforced our decision from the day in 2009 when we bought the 5th wheel, to not full time.
There is a snake in the RV grass threatening to end the current boom in RVing: the quickly rising cost of oil. Just this past week oil rose $10 a barrel. Here in San Antonio our gas price went from $2.03 to $2.17 a gallon. The so called experts are saying this trend will continue into 2018. If that is the case we should be seeing gas back to $3.50 a gallon by Summer. People purchasing RVs lately were paying $160 to fill their 80 gallon gas tank will suddenly be paying $280, even more should gas prices rise higher. Once again we’ll see RV manufacturers and dealers going belly up. The price of used RV will crash as people try to bail out from under because they will no longer be able to afford even short trips. Of course the same will happen with the trade in value of the expensive SUVs, the current darling of automotive sales.
Of course all the above is just an opinion of a former, content, retired RVer now driving a new mid-size hybrid and enjoying 43 mpg.
San Antonio, TX