Towable Versus Motorhome — Which RV is Right for You

Buying an RV can be an exciting and intimidating investment. The ability to travel freely without being concerned with what you’re bringing along can feel pretty free, but you have to start by picking the correct RV. There are so many options, from full-sized to compact, so the easiest way to get started on your search is to start with the basics like if you want to drive the RV or tow it behind.

Towable RV

There are a lot of benefits for owners who are looking at a towable RV. They are smaller than your average motorhome, and some can even be compact enough to drive comfortably or store at your house. If you ever need to take off while you’re on the road, you can always leave the RV behind at the campsite and take your towing vehicle off to the store.

The downside of having a towable RV is that you have to have a vehicle that is capable of towing it. That might seem easy, but just because your SUV or pickup truck can tow a trailer doesn’t necessarily mean you have the towing capacity to haul a trailer. Even more importantly, just because your vehicle can tow doesn’t mean you’ll enjoy it, so it’s important to verify that towing your new RV won’t compromise your ride quality.

An Audi crossover towing an Airstream Basecamp trailer | Airstream

A true motorhome

Having a towable RV might be nice, but having a motorhome with its own engine can prove to be convenient as well. Like towable RV homes, motorhomes come in a variety of sizes, from compact to full-sized. These are a great option if you intend to travel long distances and don’t want to put the mileage on your SUV or truck. It’s also good if you don’t want to spend the extra money to buy a vehicle with a high enough towing capacity.

RVs parked along the side of a building
Recreational vehicles are photographed along a building | Aric Crabb/Digital First Media/Bay Area News via Getty Images

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The decision is yours

Both options are the right or wrong option depending on what you are looking to get out of your RV experience. With so many differences in style and size, it’s best to start with the basics of figuring out if you want an RV that drives or gets towed along. A motorhome can range in prices from a small car to a small house, and for such a high cost you should take the time to make sure you are getting the option that works best for you.

A man pets his dog inside a motorhome RV in a public parking in Castellon
Man in front of his motorhome RV | JOSE JORDAN/STR/AFP via Getty Images

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