Many people have – at one time or another – dreamed of taking to the open road for the freedom, independence and excitement of exploring new destinations it brings. Travelling with a caravan has traditionally been the vision of many with memories of childhood holidays on touring parks around the UK being the seed of this desire. However, the rise in popularity of the motorhome is now challenging this image as more people buy a vehicle which also doubles as their home on wheels.
Over the last year, 16 million people in the UK have taken trips which would be classed as camping or caravanning. Of those, the caravan is still the most popular way to accommodate the family with almost half using this method, a quarter sleeping in a tent and the remaining quarter visiting sites with their motorhome.
Whilst this may seem on the surface that the caravan is still king, the key fact is that motorhome ownership is rising by 23% each year and the traditional image that a motorhome is owned by retired couples is fading with 18% of all motorhomes last year being sold to couples with young families. This is due to a combination of the increase in those who want to live full time in a motorhome due to the rising cost of home ownership as well as more people looking to holiday in the UK rather than face the expense of trying to take a family abroad in the school holidays.
For many, the main benefit of a motorhome is the fact that everything is self-contained. There is no need to own a car capable of towing a caravan and it makes the driving experience that much easier. Motorhomes are now becoming increasingly luxurious and leaving their more basic accommodation cousins behind in build quality.
Other plus points in favour of a motorhome against a caravan include the fact that you don’t have to go outside in bad weather to reach the living accommodation, there’s less need to stop for toilet breaks, many motorhomes have self-levelling jacks so the need for blocks under caravan wheels no longer exists, you can tow a small, economic car for taking out on day trips once you’re at your destination and they are generally easier to move and drive.
Whilst the initial cost of a new motorhome may seem expensive in comparison to a few package trips to European sun spots, these can quickly add up over the years and the second hand motorhome market is very strong with some excellent and spacious models being available for around £10,000.
With predictions that this change in market share is set to continue in favour of the owning of a motorhome as opposed to that of a caravan , those who are currently looking to buy over the coming year are strongly viewing the American RV as the preferred alternative to European models. With this choice based on value for money, manufacturing build and greater amount of available living space, the motorhome is set to go from strength to strength as more and more drive off into the sunset to start new adventures as yet undiscovered.