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How To Cook Amazing Food in Your Travel Trailer: 15 Tools and Tips

So you’ve got your new travel trailer. You’ve read all our free material and have found the RV or travel trailer that’s perfect for you.

In all likelihood, you’re going to be spending a lot of time in your new trailer. Maybe you’ll take a vacation with the family for a week in it. Maybe you’ll even go on the road for weeks or months at a time. Or perhaps you bought your trailer to use for weekend road trips. All of these are great ways to use your trailer.

But there’s one thing in common with any trailer lifestyle: you need to make food. Unless you plan on eating out all the time (aka, spending a TON of money on meals), you’re going to need to know how to cook food in your trailer.

If you’ve never done it before, the task can be overwhelming. What can you cook, and not cook, in a trailer? What appliances are available to you?

Not to worry, though: we’ve got you covered. In this article, we’re going to show you exactly what you need to cook amazing food on the road. We’ll also be giving you tips on what you should and shouldn’t do when cooking inside and outside your trailer. Ready? Let’s get started.

There are two main places you’ll be cooking on the road: inside your trailer and outside it.

Indoors vs. Outdoors

You’ll probably want to cook meals indoors and some outdoors. Let’s start by looking at the advantages of each.

Advantages of Cooking Indoors

  • It’s easy. You don’t have to set up a grill or anything – all your appliances are right there inside.
  • It’s accessible. All you have to do is get up and walk to the kitchen area.
  • It’s available no matter the weather. If it’s raining or the weather is bad outside, you probably won’t want to be out there cooking.
Outdoor Picnic

Photo Credit: Benson Kua on Flickr

 

Advantages of Cooking Outdoors

  • If it’s hot outside, you probably won’t want to heat up the inside of your trailer using the stove or oven.
  • Picnicking. It’s fun to cook a meal and eat outsider,  in fresh air.
  • Speaking of air, you can cook whatever you want outside, with no fear of smelling up your trailer. If you happen to burn anything, your trailer won’t end up with the smell.
  • Grilling. Enough said :).

Basically, cooking inside is convenient and quick, but one of the great things about RVing is being able to cook outside your trailer whenever you like. Some people even cook all of their meals outside.

Now let’s explore your tools for making food on the road. As we’ll see, you can make just about any food inside or outside your trailer.

Cooking Inside Your Travel Trailer

The Tools

kitchen

Photo Credit: minnemom on Flickr

1. Your Trailer’s Built-in Stove

This is the center of your trailer’s kitchen area, and you’ll be able to do most of your cooking here. Cooking on the stove is pretty straightforward and similar to cooking on the stove at home. Trailer stoves are usually smaller, though.

You’ll probably want to pick up a few accessories to make your cooking easier. You’ll need a set of pots and pans, but you likely already have some at home that you can use. Getting a grill plate for your stove will allow you to make grilled foods inside if you can’t use a true grill outside.

2. Oven

If your trailer has an oven, by all means use it! If you use your oven at home a lot, you know that ovens are an amazing way to make great food in a relatively easy way. Many trailers don’t have an oven, but if yours does, take advantage of it.

3. Electric Cooktop

This is a neat accessory that will allow you to cook without heating up the stove or oven and using propane. It runs off an electrical outlet and allows you to cook with a pot or pan. The Nuwave is one that many RVers use and love – it uses induction to cook without getting hot.

slow cooker

4. Slow Cooker

I love slow cookers. They make cooking amazing meals easy. Find a good slow cooker recipe, throw the ingredients in at the beginning of the day, and at dinner time, you’ve got a hot meal waiting. This one is the best-selling slow cooker on Amazon.

5. Microwave

Okay, a microwave is not the best solution for your everyday cooking. However, it can be used to make many different things quickly, and it’s useful to have when you don’t feel like cooking a full meal. You may want to consider a smaller microwave to save valuable kitchen space.

Black and Decker

6. Accessories

We’ve found a few accessories for making cooking in your trailer a little bit easier:

  • Toaster – for toasting bagels and bread.
  • Toaster oven – a quick way to cook just about anything.
  • Food processor – if you’re the smoothie type, use this to make them fast and easy.
  • Coffee maker – drink coffee? You’ll want one of these in the kitchen of your trailer.

Tips for Cooking Inside

The main thing you’ll want to keep in mind when cooking inside is controlling the smells when cooking. If you’re using the stove to cook, make sure your stove’s ventilation system works well. If using another appliance to cook, you’ll want to open a few windows to let the air flow. Of course, if you find your stove’s ventilation to be unsatisfactory, you can just open windows.

However, depending on what you’re cooking, you may not want too much ventilation. Some people are known to enjoy the smell of bacon in their trailer!

Either way, before you hit the road, you should make sure you’re able to use the stove ventilation and open the windows to let odors out. Even if you plan on doing most of your cooking outside, there will likely be times when you need to make some food inside.

Speaking of cooking outside, we’ve only explored half of cooking on the road! Things get a lot more interesting (and fun) in this next part…

Cooking Outside Your Travel Trailer

Outdoor Cooking Appliances

Coleman Road Trip Grill LXE

Our Top Pick: Coleman Road Trip Grills

The Coleman Road Trip Grills are a great solution for all types of outdoor cooking. They have a large cooking surface (285 sq. in.). They’re easy to store and transport. They run off propane – you can hook them up to your trailer propane connect (here’s a tutorial) or with a propane can.

There are two different models: the Road Trip Grill LXE and the Road Trip Grill LXX. The LXE is a great value for its price. The LXX is the same grill, but with more cooking power and a built-in thermometer.

But here’s the best part: you can cook just about anything with them. You can use Coleman’s stove grate accessory to turn the grill into a stove. Coleman makes a cast iron griddle accessory too. These two accessories allow you to cook tons of different foods outdoors.

There are other options too. If you don’t do as much grilling, you may want a smaller grill with less power. This Weber Q1000 portable grill is loved by many campers. Weber is one of the best grill brands available.

Also an option is the Coleman Grill Stove. This has a stove burner and a grill. It’s a great option if you need an ultra-portable way to make food outdoors. It runs off propane as well.

Bonus: if you have an electric cooktop like the Nuwave mentioned above, that can be used outside as well.

Cooking Over A Campfire

I highly recommend getting a portable grill for cooking on the road, but sometimes you may have access to a campfire. In this case, you can easily make food with these two nifty tools.

Texsport Grill Plate

1. Texsport Camp Grill Plate

This grill plate makes cooking over a fire super easy. It has a 24×16 inch grill surface to hold a lot of food. If you have access to a fire, you can simply use this instead of using a portable grill. A lot of campers use this and it gets very high ratings on Amazon.

2. Coleman Tripod Grill

This is the same idea as the Texsport – just a grill plate to put over a fire. This one gets it done a little differently. It’s just a tripod with a grate hanging in the center. This one folds down for compact storage.

Also, you can put something like a skillet, pan, or dutch oven on top of either of these grill plates and use the fire to cook that way.

Tips for Cooking Outside

There’s not a lot to say here, as you don’t have to worry about smells and ventilation. Just make sure you’re a responsible camper and don’t leave anything behind!

Summary

As you can see, if you invest in a few basic cooking appliances, you can make just about anything in your trailer. Fortunately, it requires very little investment. Most trailers come with a stove, and many have an oven and microwave. That leaves you with a few options for additional appliances to make sure you can cook whatever you need with ease. For cooking inside, that could be an electric cooktop or a slow cooker.

Grilling

If you plan on making a lot of your food outside, you’ll need an outdoor appliance. We highly recommend a portable grill that runs on propane. You can either hook it up to your trailer’s propane supply, or use cans of propane. There are a few different models and sizes to choose from. The Coleman Grill Stove offers both stove and grill burners. The Coleman Road Trip Grill is a grill that allows you to put a griddle or stove attachment accessory to make food like on a griddle or stove. Finally, if you do a lot of grilling, the Weber Q1000 is an excellent portable grill choice from a great grill company.

Cooking indoors and outdoors both have their advantages. Cooking inside is convenient, as you don’t have to step outside; but if the weather is nice, cooking and eating a meal outside is always fun. Once you’ve been on the road for a while, you’ll develop your own preferences and habits. Most people do a combination of both, but some cook mainly outdoors, and some mainly indoors. Make sure you do some of both at first so you can find what’s easiest and best for you.

After reading this article and looking at a few appliances and grills, you’re well on your way to travel trailer kitchen dominance. With a few basic tools, you can make anything you can make at home.

Here’s to cooking amazing food on the road!

Jayco Toy Hauler

Toy Hauler Travel Trailers: Top 8 Brands (42 Models)

Do you want to hit the road in a travel trailer, but bring along a motorcycle too? Toy hauler travel trailers are a specific type of travel trailer built just for that. If you want to bring along your motorcycle, ATV, go-kart, or other small vehicle, a toy hauler is the perfect option for you.




How is a toy hauler different from regular travel trailers? It simply has a space in the rear of the trailer that will carry your “toy.” Usually the rear of the trailer folds down and acts as a ramp so you can load the vehicle into the trailer. Toy haulers provide the amenities that normal trailer provide – but obviously they trade a little interior space for the toy hauling capability.

If you think a toy hauler is the best option for you, then the next step is to compare different toy haulers. It’s best to research all the brands and models and see which ones you like best. Fortunately, we’ve done the work for you. Here is our list of the best toy hauler manufacturers and the models they offer. Simply look at each and see which ones you like best.

Note: If you’d like to see our complete list of 72 toy hauler models, grab the free bonus here:

toy hauler travel trailers - list of models

 

1. Dutchmen

Dutchmen has a number of brands of toy haulers. Here they are:

Kodiak – Kodiak is Dutchmen’s ultralite travel trailer toy hauler. The floorplans range from 16’ to 31’. Their website mentions the fact that you can use the toy hauler space for anything – extra storage, kids play area, or even another bed. This is true for toy haulers – you don’t have to have a toy to enjoy the extra space.

Razorback – From Dutchmen’s website: “Razorback gives your family a lightweight, simplified RV that’s packed full of features.” Razorback is a travel trailer with floorplans ranging from 24’ to 34’.

Voltage Toy HaulerRubicon – “Rubicon offers full-value, family-friendly camping for everyone.” Like Razorback, it’s a travel trailer style, and its floorplans go from 24’ to 31’.

Voltage – Voltage is Dutchmen’s premier offering in the toy hauler category. They have tons of luxurious features and available options to choose from. They’re large – 35’ to 44’. Voltage has both travel trailer and fifth wheel floorplans available.

2. Forest River




Forest River has a lot of toy hauler models. Some are only travel trailers, some are fifth wheels, and some are available in both styles.

Catalyst is a fifth wheel, by Work and Play. It’s available in three floorplans, 42’ and 43’.

Grey Wolf from Cherokee is a travel trailer style toy hauler. Four floorplans come in 23’ to 33’ options.

XLR Hyper Lite comes in both travel trailer and fifth wheel options. The fifth wheel is 35’; the travel trailer has three floorplan options ranging from 27′ to 33’.

Nitro – The Nitro is available in both travel trailer and fifth wheel – one 35’ fifth wheel floorplan, and five travel trailer floorplans.

Sandstorm is also offered in travel trailer and fifth wheel options. It has three fifth wheel floorplans and five travel trailer floorplans.

Shockwave is another toy hauler from Forest River that’s available in both fifth wheel and travel trailer styles.

Stealth has many different floorplan options. There are three available in the fifth wheel and nine in the travel trailer style.

Vengeance – Also available in fifth wheel and travel trailers. For travel trailers, there are Vengeance “Super Sport” trailers as well as regular Vengeance floorplans. Fifth wheels also have these two options, with a few more floorplans to choose from.

Vengeance Touring Edition – This is another fifth wheel, a variation of the Vengeance model.

XLR Thunderbolt – The XLR Thunderbolt is a toy hauler fifth wheel from Forest River. It has 12 different floor plans to choose from – 5 in the Thunderbolt “AMP” edition, and 7 with the regular Thunderbolt.

Wolf Pack – This one comes in both travel trailer and fifth wheel styles. It has 5 travel trailer floorplans and 2 fifth wheel ones.

Wolf Pup – This is a small travel trailer toy hauler only 20’ 2” in length.

Work and Play – Again, available in both travel trailer and fifth wheel. Work and Play has Ultra Lite travel trailer floorplans for travel trailers, as well as regular ones. The fifth wheel option has 8 normal floorplans that you can choose from.

3. Keystone RV

Carbon is a versatile luxury toy hauler in Keystone’s “select” category of toy haulers. From the website: “Floor plans vary from a 5,000 pound travel trailer up to a triple slide fifth wheel with cargo sizes up to 17 feet.”

Cougar comes in the regular Cougar fifth wheel, XLite fifth wheel, and XLite travel trailer options – all with many different floorplan options.

Impact is an affordable option that comes in both fifth wheel and travel trailer styles with 7 different floorplans to choose from.

Outback – The Outback, the final Select model from Keystone, is a luxurious trailer (both trailer and fifth wheel options).

Fuzion – And finally, we have two “Premium” Keystone toy haulers – the Fuzion and the Raptor. The Fuzion is a fifth wheel with many different floorplans, from 35’ to 43’ lengths.

Raptor – the Raptor is a very luxurious fifth wheel from Keystone with a comfortable, luxury interior. There are floorplans available from 35’ to 42’. 4.

KZ15 MXT

4. KZ-RV

Sportsmen Classic – The Sportsmen Classic is one of four travel-trailer-style toy haulers from KZ. It’s a small one, with only a 17’ length.

Sportsmen Sportster – This one is available in both travel trailer and fifth wheel styles. It’s a normal-size toy hauler with lots of different floorplans to choose from.

Spree Escape – This is another small toy hauler from KZ. It’s only 17’ 4” in length and has a dry weight of just 1990 lbs.

MXT – The MXT is a travel trailer toy hauler available in 24’ – 35’ lengths with 7 different floorplans.

Inferno – The Inferno is a luxurious, spacious fifth wheel. It’s available in 9 floorplans in lengths of 35’ to 44’.

StoneRidge Sportster – This one is another luxurious fifth wheel from KZ, designed with residential furnishings. It’s 42’ long and has a 10’ garage area.

5. Heartland

Cyclone – The Cyclone is a fifth wheel from Heartland. Floorplans range from 30’ to 43’ with 10’, 12’, 14’, 17.5’, and 18’ garage sizes. It’s also available in the TI Titanium Edition.

Road Warrior – The Road Warrior is a fifth wheel toy hauler from Heartland. It has floorplans from 29’ to 43’ with 10’, 12’, 14’, 17.5’, and 18’ garage sizes. Like the Cyclone, the Road Warrior is available in the TI Titanium Edition.

Torque – The Torque is available in fifth wheel and travel trailer models. It has 10 different floorplan options with 10-17’ garages.

6. Jayco

Jayco-Toy-Hauler

Octane ZX Super Lite – This small travel-trailer-style toy hauler weighs only 3765 lbs.

Octane ZX – This is Jayco’s main small toy hauler. It has 3 floorplans to choose from, with lengths of 28’, 30’, and 33’. It’s a travel trailer style toy hauler.

Seismic – The Seismic is Jayco’s premium toy hauler. It’s a fifth wheel, and a luxurious one at that. It sleeps up to 11. It has 6 floorplan options ranging from 37’ to 44’.

7. Gulf Stream

Gulf Stream offers two toy haulers: the Ice Haven and the Track and Trail.

Ice Haven – This is a travel trailer that’s made for ice fishing. It has a powerful furnace and weather insulation. It’s 25’ in length.

Track and Trail – The Track and Trail is a classic travel trailer toy hauler from Gulf Stream. It has 3 floorplans starting at 21’ to 34’.

8. Livin’ Lite

Polaris – This ultra lightweight toy hauler from Livin’ Lite has 3 floorplans ranging from 22’ to 30’ with weights of 4200-5580 lbs.

Quicksilver VRV – These are toy hauler trailers from Livin’ Lite. They’re all aluminum and have a wide range of options. There’s a 15’ basic trailer, a 32’ fifth wheel, and others in between.

Axxess – This is a trailer-style toy hauler. There are 3 floorplan options available.

Summary

So there you have it – 8 of the best manufacturers and all of their toy haulers. So what’s the next step?

You’re probably saying, “James, that’s awesome – but if I’m seriously looking at toy haulers, I need to know EVERY brand, not just 8 of them. I want to know all the options available to me.”

Well, in that case, I have exactly what you need. I compiled a list of all the toy hauler brands I could find – 23 of them, actually. Then I went and listed EVERY single model of toy hauler from each of them. It came out to 72 different models.

I threw in links to each trailer’s website, then I put all of this into a four-page PDF that you can go through real quickly. Download that complete list right here.

Now about buying a toy hauler….

If you see a few here that you like, that’s a great starting point. Now visit the websites of those trailers and check out all the details. Compare the floor plans and think about which might work best for you.




Make sure the trailer doesn’t weigh too much. Check if your tow vehicle can handle the weight of the trailer fully loaded. You want to leave a lot of weight room between the trailer’s weight and what your vehicle can tow. Leave room for the weight of interior accessories and water tanks. Also, you must factor in the weight of your “toy.”

Also, be sure to check out the storage area and make sure it’s big enough for whatever it is you’re hauling.

Finally, the most important step is to go to a dealer and actually check out a few trailers. Step inside and spend some time in them. This will give you a feel for what it’s really like to own and live in a trailer. You can even pretend to do everyday activities – like cooking, sleeping, using the bathroom – to really get a feel for what living in the trailer will be like.

We hope this guide helps you in your search for the perfect toy hauler. Best of luck in finding a great one!

10 Must-Have Travel Trailer Accessories

Whether you’ve been dying to hit the road for the first time, you’re a weekend warrior, or you travel all summer long, here are 10 must-have travel trailer accessories that you should consider. Having them along will make life on the open road a bit easier and provide added comfort. With the right accessories, you can have everyday conveniences, regardless of where you are.

Always Have the Technology That You’re Accustomed To

Technology is a daily part of life and allows everyone to do what they love, watch TV, go online and play games on any device. With these three valuable travel trailer accessories, you’ll always have technology at your side, whether you are on the coastline, deep in the Mojave Desert or on a Rocky Mountain summit.

1. Dish Tailgater Having the programming that you are used to, no matter where you are, is as simple as getting the Dish Tailgater with pay as you go service. With the small tailgater satellite and the dish receiver, you’ll have your dish programming with you, including your local channels. The pay as you go service allows you to turn it on and off according to your travel needs.

2. HughesNet Hughes Net is known for providing internet service to rural locations throughout the United States. In fact, they provide service to many households that otherwise would’ve been left with outdated dial up. Now Hughes Net has stepped it up a notch by providing portable internet with additional equipment designed to provide service from any location.

Solar Panel Kit

3. RV Solar Panel Kit Having an RV solar kit with you allows you to keep those devices charged, no matter where you find yourself. It’s true that parks are set up with power options; however, this shouldn’t automatically be assumed. After all, on occasion, parks are filled to capacity, requiring travel trailers to park in a lot without power. Also, if you have driven to the middle of nowhere to experience true nature, you probably won’t have much access to power. Having a solar kit will allow you to harness the power of the sun and keep those devices charged and usable.

Make Comfort a Part of Traveling While Off the Beaten Path

When traveling, you’re leaving the comfort of home behind; however, doing so doesn’t need to leave you without a decent level of comfort. There are many must-have travel trailer accessories that are designed specifically to provide added comfort. Having a few extras along with you will improve your relaxation at any destination, thereby allowing you to fully enjoy the travel trailer experience.

4. Gila Heat Control Window Film From the west coast to the east coast, you’ll come across several breathtaking locations that would be perfect, if only the heat would die down just slightly. By adding heat control window film to your windows, you can cut down the suns heat by up to 70%. This reduces the amount of time that you have to keep your overhead air conditioner running. This means that you can maintain a comfortable temperature indoors without having to hear a constant buzz from your air conditioner in the background. Installing the window film can be time consuming; however, it’s well worth it in the end.

5. Outdoor Fold Up Tables and Chairs Bringing along your own fold up table and chairs can dramatically improve your level of comfort. Sometimes you might find yourself in locations with picnic tables that have seen better days. Having your own allows you to enjoy an evening outside without having to deal with splinters and general dirt and grime.

6. One Acre Natural Mosquito Trap One drawback of visiting many places while traveling is the constant attack by those little blood suckers. The One Acre natural Mosquito Trap, entices mosquitoes, traps them, and then kills them, all without harmful chemicals. It does cost more than basic propane-run systems, but it’s also better for you and the entire environment.

Little Conveniences That Will Improve Your Camping Adventure

Whether you started in New York and ended in Texas or you left Seattle to discover the Grand Canyon, everyday convenience is something you have at home and something you should have while traveling. These must have travel trailer accessories will ensure that you’ll still enjoy conveniences while on the road. In fact, after giving them a whirl, you may wonder why you don’t use them at home too.

7. Aeropress Coffee and Espresso Maker Wether you’re a coffee lover or not, you still more than likely want the occasional cup of java. With the Aero Press, you get to have a bold, flavorful cup on demand in less than a minute. And as a bonus, it takes up minimal space, it’s made of heavy duty plastic, and it basically reduces the need to worry with a bulky coffee machine.

Hamilton Beach Portable Frozen Drink Maker

8. Hamilton Beach Portable Frozen Drink Maker Regardless of whether you’re sizzling from the heat or you just want a frozen Banana Daiquiri by the campfire, a portable frozen drink maker is the ticket to having what you need, wherever you want it. This must-have trailer accessory is battery operated, and can be bought on a small to large scale. 

9. NuWave Oven Though I’m not usually big on items that debuted as an infomercial, the NuWave Oven is definitely a must-have for any RV. Having one allows you to have delicious meals without having to waste propane in the Magic Chef oven, standard in most travel trailers. Additionally, you’ll have the benefit of less cooking time and less heat, thereby keeping your travel trailer cool and giving you time to do what’s really important, having fun.

10. Outdoor Serving Tray Considering that more often than not, dinners are made half inside and half outside, having an outdoor serving tray can be quite the convenience. Having one allows you to place food, condiments and added utensils on the tray, thereby reducing four or five trips into one or two. Additionally, cleaning will be a breeze.

Summary

Going away from home doesn’t mean you have to give up the luxuries of home. These 10 awesome travel trailer accessories will ensure you’ll be connected and comfortable while on the road. With a little shopping and preparation, you can make your life in a traveling home a little more like home.

pop-up Camper

Best Pop-up Campers: 5 Brands and Why You Should Get One

Pop-up campers are becoming increasingly more common these days. They’re more than a tent, but less than a travel trailer. Many people are finding that pop-up campers are the perfect fit for them. They offer several benefits over both tents and travel trailers.




What is a pop-up camper? Chances are, you’ve probably seen one of these things behind a car before:

pop-up campers: 5 brands and why you should get one

What are some of the benefits to owning a pop-up camper? There are actually quite a few:

  • Smaller – much easier to manage than a full size travel trailer.
  • Cheaper – since they’re smaller, they’re also much cheaper than regular travel trailers.
  • LIGHTER! This is a huge benefit – instead of buying a massive pickup truck to tow your 10,000 lb. travel trailer, you can use your sedan or minivan!
  • Ease of use – Pop-up campers are super-easy to set up and collapse.
  • Storage – pop-up campers don’t take up the space in your driveway that normal travel trailers do.
  • Weather resistance – Unlike a tent, a pop-up camper shields you from rain and other elements.

Setting up a pop-up camper

Check out this video of the setup process for a pop-up camper. This is actually a very informative video showing a lot of the different features/aspects of pop-up campers.

 

 

So thinking about getting one of these? What are the best Here are five great brands of pop-up campers.




Jayco

As you can see, many of these brands are popular travel trailer manufacturers. Jayco is one of them – they make full-size travel trailers too. They offer two lines of pop-up campers: the Jay Series, a fold-out style camper, and the Jay Series Sport, which is an A-frame style camper. The Jay Series Sport offers a lot of space and convenience for its small size. According to their website, this model features bunk ends rated at 1050-lb., as well as dinettes.

The Jay Series, the fold-out-style camper, also packs tons of value into a very small form factor. Features like a swing-level galley for the kitchen and a carry-out stove, the Jay Series has a lot of conveniences that will make camping comfortable.

Forest River

Forest River offers two models of pop-up campers – the Flagstaff and the Rockwood. The Flagstaff has floorplans in both the pop-up and the hard side (A-frame) styles. Like other campers, this model features a kitchen with stove, sink, and other essentials, along with spacious seating and dinette. Going for the high wall (pop-up) style will save you a lot of weight over a hard side trailer.

The Rockwood series also offers hard-side and high-wall styles. One unique feature of Forest River campers is the “Add-a-Room” feature, which is an option on all of their high-wall campers. This feature is basically an awning that attaches to your camper and adds another room to your camper. Screens enclose the entire space. This is a cool feature that will give you an extra room that allows you to enjoy the fresh air while still being sheltered from bugs and weather outside.

Livin Lite

Livin Lite has a big lineup of pop-up campers. They offer six different models, each with unique style and features. First is the QuickSilver Soft-side Truck Automotive tent camper. This little tent camper fits in the back of your truck! It offers a dinette that converts to a bed, along with a cabinet for storing stuff. This one is available in two sizes – one for full-size trucks, and one for smaller trucks. Next in the Livin Lite lineup are the QuickSilver 6.0, 8.0, and 10.0, named for their length in feet, respectively.

The QuickSilver 6.0 is a small, light trailer – it has a dry weight of only 636 lbs. It comes with outside conveniences like propane stove and table. The QuickSilver 8.0 is a bigger model featuring a stove and sink. And of course, the QuickSilver 10.0 is the larger one. The QuickSilver 18SUT is a sport utility trailer plus a pop-up camper in one. The camper is on the back, and the front of the trailer is a platform to tow your toy. And finally, the QuickSilver XLP is the QuickSilver featuring a full LP furnace. Livin Lite makes it clear on their site that their campers are made out of aluminum instead of wood or steel.

Coachmen

clipper

Coachmen has two models of pop-ups: The Clipper and the Viking. Both are standard pop-up campers with extended bunks on each side and dinette, seating, and storage in the middle. Both come with stove, toilet, and shower – a good feature set and a lot of value. Take a 360 virtual tour on their site.

Aliner

Aliner makes A-frame campers exclusively  – and they call themselves the “original A-frame.” They offer six different A-frame models: the Expedition, Classic, Ranger 15, Ranger 12, Ranger 10, and Scout. Looking at their website, Aliners appear to be solidly built to withstand weather and last a long time, but also very lightweight and easy to set up. Their website emphasizes how easy the setup process is. The Expedition is the largest model but still weighs under 2000 lbs. The Classic, their most popular model, is a classic pop-up with microwave, fridge, and lots of storage. The Ranger 15 offers an outside shower and option for a toilet. The Ranger 12 is the middle option, and the Ranger 10 is very small, weighing 1200 lbs. The Scout is the minimal option, “for tent campers who need more than a ten.”




Summary

As you can see, there are many different options if you’re looking for a pop-up camper. These are just five brands – there are many more!

So what should you do if you’re in the market? Visit each of these brands’ websites, and research other brands too. Figure out what type of camper you want – A-frame or pop-up. Then decide what size trailer you want, and what features you’d like to have.

Finally, shop around for the brand and model that offer the best value closest to what you’re looking for. In the end, all of these campers are excellent and will serve you well on the road – you just have to find the best one for you.

You might also want to consider a small travel trailer, rather than a pop-up. Check out this post for an overview of the top brands and models!

Travel Trailer Rentals: 200 Places to Rent a Trailer in America

Travel trailers are expensive to purchase, and if you don’t travel a lot, renting a trailer is often a great alternative to buying one. Travel trailer rentals are popular, and for good reason. Here are a few of the benefits of renting a trailer:

  • Renting allows you to use the trailer for a small amount of time without paying full price to own it. Renting is a great option for people who travel infrequently – renting instead of buying can save you a lot of money if you don’t travel a lot.
  • It allows you to try out the camping lifestyle and see if you like it before you invest a lot of money in buying a trailer.
  • If you’re in the market for a travel trailer, renting allows you to evaluate the trailer before you buy one. You can live in it and decide what you like and dislike. This information is invaluable in the buying process, because it’ll help you know exactly what kind of trailer is best for you.

As you can see, renting is often a great option for people in all different travel situations. So where can you rent a trailer?Travel Trailer Rentals

200 Places to Rent a Trailer in The U.S.

With that, I’d like to introduce the ultimate list of travel trailer rental places. This includes 200 businesses that rent travel trailers, plus links to their websites. It covers all 50 states. Note: Many of these places say “RV rentals” but also rent travel trailers.

Alabama

Alaska

Arizona

Arkansas

California

Colorado

Connecticut

Delaware

Florida

Georgia

Hawaii

41. RV Maui

Idaho

Illinois

48. Arts RV
49. 83 RV

Indiana

Iowa

Kansas

Kentucky

Louisiana

Maine

76. Destinations RV (closed)

Maryland

Massachusetts

Michigan

Minnesota

Mississippi

Missouri

Montana

Nebraska

Nevada

112. Sahara RV

New Hampshire

New Jersey

117. 84 RV

New Mexico

New York

North Carolina

North Dakota

Ohio

Oklahoma

Oregon

145. EZ Camp

Pennsylvania

Rhode Island

South Carolina

South Dakota

157. Dakota RV

Tennessee

Texas

Utah

Vermont

Virginia

178. Ace RV

Washington

183. Tacoma RV

West Virginia

188. PKB RVs

Wisconsin

Wyoming

Nationwide

200. RVShare
Serro Scotty Teardrop Trailer

Best Small Travel Trailers: 5 Great Teardrop Brands

Update: see the new version of this article, with 10 different small travel trailers, here.

Small travel trailers have a lot of advantages over their full-size counterparts.

While they don’t offer as many amenities as the big ones can, small trailers have their own set of benefits. They’re small and light, meaning you don’t need a huge truck to tow them. They’re less expensive too. They provide a place to sleep and eat without the hassle of a big trailer.




If you’re looking for a small travel trailer, look no further. We’ve put together a list of the best small travel trailers out there. These “teardrop” trailers as they’re called are unique, lightweight, and much easier to tow. There’s something for everyone here.

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1. Egg Camper

Egg Camper is a trailer brand that offers a unique egg-shaped design. They only have two trailers – the “Egg Camper” and the Teardropp. The Egg Camper is a 17-ft small travel trailer that comes “nicely equipped” for $18880. It is a premium price for a small trailer, but it’s American-made and has some nice features. The other model, the Teardropp, is Egg Camper’s take on the classic teardrop trailer. The Teardropp, judging from the pictures on the website, looks pretty spacious inside. Its exterior dimensions are 166”x88”x83”. It has a door on one side, window on the other, and also opens from the rear. Available options are heat, air conditioning, and 12v fridge. To learn more, visit Egg Camper’s Teardropp page which has photos, descriptions, and a phone number and email address you can use to contact them.

 

2. iCampiCamp

iCamp also offers just two trailer options: the iCamp Elite and iCamp Lite. The iCamp Lite is a very small, unique trailer that expands with the use of a tent. You can learn more about it on its iCamp website page. But we’ll focus on the iCamp Elite, iCamp’s teardrop trailer offering. The Elite has a very cool design with colored trim – very sleek and good-looking. Its dimensions are 144”x80”x97”. It has a large window on each side, with a door on one side and a smaller 2nd window on the other.

The interior of the iCamp is amazing for a travel trailer. It has a stove, sink, dinette that folds down into a bed, bathroom, and even a shower! Plus, it has available heating and AC. It’s like it has many of the amenities of a full travel trailer but in a near-teardrop size. Made in China, the iCamp has a starting MSRP of $15,600 without options and can be towed by “many mini vans and passenger cars.” Its unloaded weight is 2366 lbs.

If you’re interested in the iCamp, head over to their website to find more info, floor plans, and dealers. This page on Roaming Times is a good source of information and reviews.




3. Serro Scotty

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John Serro founded Serro Scotty in 1957. Scotty offers 3 models: the Hilander, the Sportsman, and the Lite. The Hilander is a full-featured travel trailer with a small size – 15’ 9” in length. The Sportsman is a bit like the iCamp – a larger teardrop, with bit more features. 15’ 2” in length, 1780 lb. dry weight, and comfortably sleeps 3 – good for a teardrop trailer. The headroom is 6’ 1”, very good for a teardrop.

The Scotty Lite is a classic teardrop trailer – modern retro design, and very small and light. It weighs only 960 lbs. and has a 90 lb. hitch weight. It has a nice wooden interior with a couch for two during the day that folds into a bed. It has a sink and storage space too. The Scotty Lite has a large window, door, and medium window.

For more information, visit the Scotty Trailers website – they have lots of information on their trailers, plus dealers and lots of good photos.

4. So-Cal

So-Cal Trailer

So-Cal has a large selection of teardrop models. They actually have three off-road teardrop models as well. So-Cal trailers have a classic look and good design. They offer models starting at $6355 but most are around $10,000. The off-road models are a bit more expensive of course.

So-Cal trailers are small and short, so they’re pretty light – the Rover model weighs in at 920 lbs. The back of the trailer folds up to reveal storage – and a pull-out mini stove! Good thinking So-Cal.

So-Cal offers many different teardrop trailers, so I recommend going and checking out their website to learn about them. They have lots of photos, details on how the trailers are made, and a map showing dealers.

5. Little Guy

Little Guy Trailer

Little Guy is one of the most popular and well-known travel trailer brands out there. Little Guy offers a large selection of teardrops – they’re the maker behind the popular T@b trailers too. The original Little Guy trailers have four variations. The smallest one is the 4 Wide Platform – it weighs only 800 lbs. and starts at $7063. They have tons of different options, like a window on top, sink and stove, and tons of different graphics to choose from.

They have a lot of teardrop options, so we’ll let you head over to their website and have a look. They have a lot of photos, video, specs, and options listed on their site, along with contact info and the option to get a quote from a nearby dealer after selecting your options. Definitely check them out.

Bonus: Knaus Deseo

Knaus Deseo

I told you we’d cover 5 trailer brands, but Knaus is awesome so I had to include it. The Deseo is a small trailer – bigger than a teardrop. It has a great exterior design and an even better interior. Looking around the Knaus website, I saw that they actually have a lot of impressive RVs and trailers. Their design is really, really good. Only problem is, they’re European, and all their dealers are in Europe. So it’d be hard to find one of their trailers over here.

But if you do, or you live in Europe, the Deseo looks to be an excellent small trailer. The photos on their website look very good. Unfortunately I couldn’t find specs listed, but they do have floor plans and details on the equipment and packages. Check out their website.




Summary

So those are 6 great teardrop travel trailer manufacturers. Teardrop trailers can be a great option if you don’t need everything a full-size trailer offers. You can tow them with a lot of smaller trucks and SUVs.

Check out the reviews and websites, and compare your favorites. If you find one you like, see if any local dealers have it. Go see it in person and try it out. Compare others and decide which you like best. All the options here are good choices – it’s just about finding best one for you.

Want to Travel Full-time? Here Are 5 People Who Do It.

If you want to do anything, it usually helps to study people who are currently successfully doing what you want to do. You can pick up tips and advice, get ideas, be aware of certain challenges, and generally learn from other people who are doing what you want to. Full-time traveling is no different. There are many successful full-timers out there who blog about their travels. If you’re interested in one day going full-time – whether this month or years from now – it’s a good idea to read their blogs and see what you can learn. You might find some info you hadn’t considered, or some helpful tips that might apply to your situation.

So here are the blogs of 5 different people who travel full-time and write about it. They’re all unique, and have variations in their style of traveling. But they can all teach us a lot about living in an RV full-time.

Jason and Nikki of GoneWithTheWynns.com

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Jason and Nikki are freelancers who work full-time on the road, running their blog Gone With the Wynns from their RV. Using their media skills, they create a full-time income providing photography and video services to campgrounds and other travel companies. They work virtually from the comfort of their RV. Their creativity in earning a mobile income allows them to travel wherever they want and still make money. They also make a small income from their blog. In their spare time, they make cool videos and teach other people how to travel full-time on their blog. Jason and Nikki are a great example of a couple who took their skills and adapted them in a creative way to allow them to make money anywhere. This is easier for certain people than others, but almost anyone can take skills they have and figure out a way to earn a mobile income from them. The Wynns are a perfect example of the saying, “Where there’s a will there’s a way.”

Ray and Anne of LoveYourRV.com

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Ray and Anne are full-timers who spend their time out west. In the summer, you can find them on Vancouver Island, British Columbia. Their winters are spent in the southern US. Ray used to work as an electrician, and Anna is a photographer. You can look at some of her beautiful photos she’s captured while traveling on her website, AnneMcKinnell.com. They currently run a website designed to help other RV owners: loveyourrv.com. Ray also recently started another site helping RV owners build friendships and learn from each other: RVhappyhour.com. They fund their travels by running their website.

Marianne and Randy of Frugal-RV-Travel.com

randyandIatbryce2

Marianne and Randy are another travel blogger couple who’ve been on the road since 1999. At first, they just wanted to travel for a while – but then they realized that the traveling lifestyle was no more expensive than staying at home. They’ve got keeping costs down while traveling down to a science – their last trip cost them less than $1400 per month. Their friends would all ask, “How do they do it?” So Marianne decided to create guides for people who wanted to travel like them. Her boondocking guides are very helpful and enjoy popularity among RVers today. They also have a very helpful website, Frugal-RV-Travel.com. Running the website and selling the guides helps Marianne and Randy afford their trips, which are inexpensive anyway. Marianne actually keeps track of all their expenses and shares them [link] so you can see exactly how possible and affordable this lifestyle can be.

Chris and Cherie of technomadia.com

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Chris and Cherie are another full-timing couple who run a blog about their traveling, but with a twist: their blog focuses on traveling with a high-tech lifestyle. They use the term “technomad” in describing their lifestyle. On their blog, they teach us the ins and outs of traveling the high-tech way. What kind of internet coverage is available for RVers, what gadgets are most useful while traveling, and what apps will make your life on the road easier, are just a few of the things you’ll learn reading their blog. If you’re a geek who wants to go full-time, we definitely recommend checking out the Technomadia blog.

Tony and Karen of RollingInARV-WheelChairTraveling.Blogspot.com

Kodak Pix 12-10-10 Disney 2 174a

Tony and Karen have been fulltiming since 1993, which is amazing in itself. However, Karen has been in a wheelchair since 1994! Their RV is a custom class C made for wheelchair access. They’ve blogged about their travels since 2010. Their blog has a lot of helpful links and info on full-timing, info on locations and attractions, and where to stay and sleep. They have a lot of experience full-timing, so their blog has a lot to teach you if you’re interested in full-timing as well.

So there you go, 5 families who travel in an RV full-time. Each one has unique backgrounds and experiences that aspiring full-timers can learn from. So if you’re the least bit interested in going full-time in the future, definitely check out these 5 blogs. Even if you don’t plan on full-timing, they have some great stories and info that everybody can learn from. So head on over and check them out!

Teardrop Trailers: Review, Pros, and Cons

The teardrop trailer. It’s a category of its own. Can it even be called a travel trailer? I would say yes, because it’s a trailer with a bed and storage in it – a trailer that lets you travel.

little-guy-trailer

If you are open to the idea of a very small, light trailer with little room other than a bed, you may want to consider one of these instead of a full-size or ultralight trailer. These teardrops have a lot of advantages, not the least of which is the minimal weight. Many are right around 1000 lbs. – capable of being towed by small vehicles. (Most heavy trailers require a large SUV or truck.) With just a bed and storage, these are an excellent option for those with a small car who want to travel light. You can go pretty much anywhere and have a nice bed to sleep in at night. You can also take a lot of your things with you, without having to pack your car full. It’s also much easier to find parking at this size.

Teardrop trailers can be perfect for one or two people who want to travel light without spending a boatload of money on an expensive trailer. Of course, they have their negatives too.

They don’t feature a lot of the amenities that normal trailers do – no bathroom, only one bed. Some have a small kitchen, but probably not what you could get in a full-size trailer. They aren’t roomy… no floor space, no furniture. But this could be a good thing: since it doesn’t have much, it’s super-lightweight, and you can take it anywhere, with pretty much any car.

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So should you consider a teardrop trailer? It depends on who you are, your travel style, and what you want in a trailer. Are you someone who is constantly traveling? Do you want a complete home on the road? If you want luxury and convenience, a full-size trailer like a Dutchmen or a Jayco is probably better for you. However, if you’re the weekend-adventurer type, the lightweight traveler, or if you only own a small car, you may want to consider a teardrop trailer. They’re perfect if you don’t travel a lot or if you like to take quick road trips without taking everything with you. A few common brands are Little Guy and r-pod.

In summary, teardrop trailers offer a fresh, minimalist approach to the travel trailer. They don’t have a lot of luxuries, usually with simply a bed, storage, and perhaps a small kitchen or other accessory. This means they’re extremely lightweight and easy to tow, even with small cars. If you like to take short road trips and go on adventures where you don’t spend a lot of time in your trailer, a teardrop might be perfect for you. If you prefer the luxurious “home away from home” that a full-size travel trailer offers, you may want to opt for that. However, teardrop trailers are an excellent option for many travelers, depending on travel style.