With so many recreational vehicle types and models to choose from, it can be hard to know where to start when looking to buy.
With so much range and variety, the upside is there is a recreational vehicle to suit nearly everyone’s needs and budget. From small tent trailers to motorhomes and everything in between, the key is determining your needs and why you are buying a recreational vehicle.
Clearly defining your ‘why’ is the best way to start your purchasing journey.
- Do you want to tow it or drive it? If you are keen on towing, can your current car safely and legally tow and if so, how much can you tow? Knowing this will enable you to focus in on what type of product you can buy (e.g. caravan or camper trailer). If you just want to jump in and drive, a campervan or motorhome may be the way to go!
- Consider what type of trips you want to take. Are you looking to head off with the family for weekend getaways or are you planning to do a lap of Australia? Do you want to be able to take it off-road? Will you have access to power and water? Do you want to bring along a boat as well?
- Test drive or test tow! Once you have narrowed it down, take some options for a spin and see how they feel! If you’ve never towed a caravan or driven a motorhome/campervan before, you might consider renting one in advance so it’s not an altogether new experience. That way, you can focus more on the product in question, rather than stressing about how to handle a larger rig. It’s important to choose a recreational vehicle you feel safe, confident and comfortable driving or towing – and one that you can see yourself enjoying for years to come.
- Is the business accredited? Make sure you look for the RVMAP Accreditation Key near the entry door of the recreational vehicles as you shop around.
- Before buying, head to an industry-run caravan and camping show. These shows provide the best way to see an incredibly wide range of product all in one place. Recreational Vehicles displayed at industry-run caravan and camping show are subjected to random compliance reviews which provide the consumer a level of confidence in the products they are considering purchasing.
There are numerous industry-run Caravan Shows around the country each year – find one near you!
What to look for when buying your recreational vehicle:
- Look for the RVMAP Key.
- Make sure you’re dealing with a reputable dealer/manufacturer.
- Visit industry run shows.
- Buy a recreational vehicle that’s fit for purpose.
- Make sure your towing vehicle is up to the job.
*This article originally appeared in Caravan Industry Association of Australia’s ‘Reconnect’ magazine, published in conjunction with NewsCorp.