When my husband and I were trying to decide what we wanted to live in when we chose to be full-timers, we looked at a lot of RV options. We had done a brief (and disastrous) stint in a Class A (if you don’t know our story you can check it out here) and knew we didn’t want that if for no other reason than if the RV broke down we would be out of our home until it was repaired (yes, I know some places allow full-timers to live in the rig while it is being repaired, but how wise is it to relay on that as a universal truth?). We decided that a tow rig was the better option for us.Living Space
We decided that a travel trailer was the way to go for us. We hook up, we go. If our vehicle breaks down we still have our home. It was an easy decision. Now we are looking at our next RV and fifth wheels are looking very attractive.
If you’re torn between a travel trailer and a fifth wheel, this might help you out a bit.
We are currently in a Keystone Vantage 32fls and we love it. There is plenty of room, including storage as well as an impressive number of electrical outlets. However, the other day I was at Camping World and wandered over to a beautiful fifth wheel (I forget the model). It didn’t look as long as my travel trailer, but I was intrigued so I stepped in.
Holy smokes! It was like being in an apartment! The living area seemed massive. Now that could be because of the slide outs and high ceilings, but there was a kitchen island and a very roomy bedroom.I am 6 feet tall and my husband is slightly taller so I am very aware of ceiling height. My head didn’t feel anywhere near the ceiling as I wandered through the rig. And the bathroom! It had a big bathroom with a real person shower! I was impressed.
I love the open kitchen floorplan of an RV but, as much as I love my little travel trailer, my kitchen consists of a couple of feet of counter, a three-burner stove, a tiny RV oven, and my single sink. I like to cook and the limited space makes it hard.
The fifth wheel kitchens I’ve seen still have the open kitchen floorplan, but there is usually a bar or some distinct divider between the living area and the kitchen. And there is plenty of space between them.
Yes, you have to go up a couple of stairs to get to the bedroom, kitchen, or living room, depending on your floor plan, but the feeling of open space and the apartment type layout is a decent tradeoff in my book.Appliances
My travel trailer came with a small RV oven, a microwave, and a small refrigerator. We make it work, but it would be nice to have the extra space of full size appliances. It would also be awesome to have a place for a washer and dryer. I am not crazy about a dishwasher so I can take it or leave it. Getting used to this smaller area and not having certain amenities that I was accustomed to having took some getting used to, but I’ve recovered well. We have a smoker and a grill so if it won’t fit in my over it will certainly fit in one of those.
Fifth wheels on the other hand are brimming with amenities and appliances (did I mention the full-size shower?). Most have a full-size refrigerator and over as well as washer/dryer and dishwasher. If you are moving from an apartment to a fifth wheel, you’ll hardly notice a change.
So, I’m either long winded or there’s a lot to say on this topic. I didn’t want to wear you out so I split it in half. I’m very interested in hearing from travel trailer and fifth wheel owners. What are the pros and cons of your rig? Is the grass greener elsewhere?
Check back soon for Part 2!