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5th wheel vs a motor home


kfeusse
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Someday in the future my husband and I plan to trade our bunk house in for a different camper.  We are wondering what some of the differences are between a 5th wheel and motor home...(besides the obvious).....is one easier to tow or park?  Space wise which is preferred?  What we might want to look for when the time comes?  We are open to everything you guys can share with us about either vehicle...and if you have had the opportunity to own or camp in both, your comparison will be most appreciated.  

Thanks. 

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By motor home, do you mean a Class A or a Class C? 

My parents have a 5th wheel. We camp with them 2-3x/year in it. It has a bunk room, a separate bedroom, and 1.5 baths. (Though that half bath is tiiiiight.)

I would assume a 5th wheel is easier to park because of the pivot point (though I guess that's tricky, too). But you have the downside of needing a hefty truck to tow it. 

Either way, the most recent RV my parents have (their 4th or 5th -- they keep upgrading ;) ) has an outdoor kitchen and that has been nice. Especially having the little fridge outside. 😛 

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You'll have the most usable room in a fifth wheel, and the most privacy if you travel with kids or guests.

A motor home gives you the convenience of being able to stop for lunch, a bathroom break, etc. and not have to exit the vehicle. That's a bit of an added safety factor, too. If you're already inside the vehicle you can just drive away at any sign of trouble.

With a fifth wheel you need a good sized truck to pull it. With a motor home you might want a car to pull behind for easy transportation at your destination.

A motor home means another engine to maintain, whereas a fifth wheel doesn't if you already own a truck.

I'd consider how you use it. If you want to do a lot of road trips a motor home is nice, especially if it has automatic leveling jacks. If you're more the type to drive to a destination, set up and stay for awhile, then a fifth wheel might make the most sense.

Edited by Pawz4me
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You will have a lot more actual living space in a fifth wheel.  But of course you have to tow it, and set it up, etc.   A fifth wheel allows you to have a transportation vehicle without having to tow one.

You really have to decide if you’re willing to tow.

Anne

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My parents bought a class c (or maybe a b+) last year.   They already regret not getting a pull behind or 5th wheel.   They tow they're Jeep  behind it, but for them, it's not the same as being able to park it and go.   My mom likes the idea of having two separate spaces-- a driving space and a living space.   

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My husband and I are also looking in to a Class C or 5th Wheel. We owned a 5th wheel with bunk beds for many years, but we sold that when our kids grew up. For the last five or so years, we've been renting on vrbo.com or staying in hotels for vacations, but we want to start traveling by ourselves and with our granddaughter on occasion. Our old 5th wheel was a 28 footer, and we towed it with a Ford 350 diesel. The truck is still going strong, so we know we can get another pull along. However, as we age, my husband's eye sight is a factor, so I end up driving on our vacations a lot of the time, and I know that I cannot pull one of those big rigs. We went shopping yesterday in fact, and it seems that 28 foot is considered small! We looked at 30 5th wheels and just straight pull alongs. Most were 32 feet or more. And they are beautiful! And pricey. The two Class C's we looked at were much smaller in living space, but I could drive a Class C with no problem. Class A I cannot drive.

We are torn about what to buy. My husband wants a 5th wheel. I want a pull along because it has no stairs inside. And I want something I can drive or tow. I know we will end up being that old couple in the slow lane pissing off everyone on the highway because we are going so slow. Chances are we will get a 5th wheel, but hopefully about 24 foot. We have the truck already, and the Class C's are about $95,000. The one 5th wheel that I liked that was 28 foot long was about $27,000 new. You get more living space within a 5th wheel with slide outs. I just am really afraid of driving those big rigs in traffic. My husband is really good at driving them and even backing up into tight spaces. 

Our decision will probably come down to the price too. Class C's are very expensive. 

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We rented a Class A and I didn't like it--and would never get one unless I was going to tow a car.  Every time you have to go somewhere--like the grocery store--you have to batten down the hatches, etc.  It was annoying.  Class As are expensive, and adding in another vehicle to tow makes it even pricier.

I didn't know the 5th wheels were so spacious.  (A reclusive family member lives in one, on mountain property. I feel better knowing that this has more room in it than I thought.) That makes them more interesting to me.  Maybe someday...  

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5th wheel all the way. Larger, less expensive, trucks are far more reliable. We have lived in ours full-time since 2016 and have had no serious issues. Bought both the truck and 5th wheel new.

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