Motorhome or travel trailer? If you are venturing out to buy your first RV, or maybe just an upgrade, you have probably already asked yourself that question. There are many advantages and some disadvantages to both. Mostly you need to decide what you want to use your RV to do and where to go and your decision should not be a difficult one.
A motorhome can offer you a little more mobility than a travel trailer. If you travel extensively or are a full-timer a motorhome has more of what you are looking for. In a motorhome you will always be in your home even if traveling down the highway. Passengers always have full access to beds, kitchen, bathroom, and couch. However, 5th wheelers, when parked, have a much larger living space because of their slide-outs. Most travel trailers and 5th wheelers have slide-outs that almost touch when in travel mode. They open to allow a large and comfortable living space when parked. Motorhomes that have slide-outs are a bit confining when on the road.
External storage room is another important decision factor. 5th wheelers and Class A motorhomes generally have large external storage compartments but other trailers and Class C motorhomes generally lack such large storage areas. Maintenance of your RV is going to be less with travel trailers and 5th wheelers. Motorhomes have a few more systems, which means more things that could malfunction. Also, if you have engine trouble with a motorhome, your whole home is stranded. With travel trailers the towing vehicle can be exchanged or replaced. Another small, yet important, contrast is height of motorhomes vs. travel trailers. Trailers are closer to the ground, only 1 to 2 stairs, whereas motorhomes are about 3 to 5 steps above the ground.
The comfort levels of motorhomes and travel trailers are tied if comparing them while both parked. However, while in-motion and during travel a motorhome takes the cake. Travelers can use all the amenities of the motorhome while in motion. A travel trailer with slide-outs may not even be accessible while in travel mode.
Price, which is one of the most persuasive decision factors, is not as easily generalized to motorhomes vs. travel trailers. An average motorhome is generally going to cost more than an average travel trailer but there are many exceptions. There are so many different amenities, luxury levels, and sizes to both categories that price is always circumstantial. Of course, the larger the travel trailer you get the larger the towing vehicle will have to be, a crucial factor to keep in mind.
Last, but not least; safety factors of motorhomes vs. travel trailers. Due to the fact that drivers and passengers are protected by the steel frame of a truck around them, travel trailers are ranked higher in crash protection. However, it is also true that travel trailers are more likely to be involved in crashes. It is fairly common for travel trailers to jack-knife in the road or become overturned. Motorhomes are not too often involved in crashes except sometimes problems with their vehicle in tow.