RV costs run the gamut from fairly inexpensive for those who are just getting started to custom one-of-kind motor homes that cost upwards of one million dollars. When it comes to which type of RV there are plenty of styles and models to choose from. Whether you want a simple teardrop trailer or a 44-foot motorhome you can find one. What you ultimately end up with will depend on your budget and the cost of the RV.
RVs cost on average anywhere from $5,000 used to over $500,000 for a brand new motor home. A nicely equipped travel trailer averages about $25,000, a fifth-wheel around $50,000, and motorhomes $150,000 and up.
It’s apparent that RVs can be purchased at just about any price point. It just depends on the features and amenities you want and whether you want to buy used or new. Once you have narrowed down the type of RV than you need to research manufacturers to see if they have the type of RV and floorplan you like.
One thing to keep in mind is that buying used is not a bad thing. You just need to make sure you inspect the camper really well. You might even consider hiring an RV service tech for several hours so he or she can inspect the RV for you. There are many folks who buy used and then renovate their unit. If you are interested in knowing how much on average it cost to renovate an RV check out this article I wrote on RV renovation costs.
In order to give you an idea of what RV costs are going to be, I have research RV prices on 25 models across 7 different classes of RVs using RV Trader as my main source of information. The RV classes include: pop up campers, travel trailers (pull-behind), fifth-wheels, toy haulers, Class A, Class B, and Class C. Let get started.
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RV Costs for Pop Up Campers
- Coachmen Viking Express: $6,977
- Forest River Rockwood Hard-Sided: $14,995
- Aliner Classic: $24,499
- Opus Outback Off-Road: $27,181
- Forest River Rockwood Soft-Sided: $17,878
Pop Up Camper Pros and Cons
Pop Up Campers have several advantages that you should consider. For started they are very light and chances are you will be able to tow it with your SUV or light truck. They are not tall like a typical camper so you may be able to store it in your garage and avoid having to pay RV storage fees.
Pop Up Campers are easy to maneuver at your campground so you can position it for the best views and best privacy. For those who like tent camping with a few more amenities, a pop up might be right for you. Most pop-ups are soft-sided but several manufacturers make hard-sided pop-up campers.
They do however have some drawbacks. Once you arrive at your destination setting them up takes a bit of time. Compared to typical travel trailers living space and storage space is limited. Most pop up campers do not come with bathrooms so that can be an issue for some folks.
Travel Trailer RV Costs
- Riverside Intrepid: $24,977
- Grand Design Transcend: $34,022
- K-Z Connect Platinum: $39, 8997
- Forest River Surveyor: $25,363
- Heartland North Trail: $28,898
Travel Trailer Pros and Cons
Travel trailers also know as pull-behinds have lots of advantages over pop-up campers. These RVs are available in many styles, lengths, and floorplans. They include plenty of interior living space and lots of storage space both inside and outside. Most travel trailers include bedrooms, kitchens, and standard bathrooms which can either dry or wet baths.
Many models of travel trailers include an outdoor kitchen which is very convenient and fresh waters, black and grey tanks that are generally larger. Setting up a travel trailer is super-easy as many come with electric stabilizers.
The biggest drawback to pull-behinds is that they require a truck with sufficient towing power to pull them. The GVWR (Groos Vehicle Weight Rating) varies quite a bit from one travel trailer to another. Some weight 2,000 lbs or less while the larger ones can weigh as much as 10,000 lbs.
You might not already have a truck that can pull that camper you want so it might mean another expense. Also, the larger travel trailers might be limited to the campground they will fit in. They are also harder to maneuver in tight spaces. Another factor to consider is you will be your gas mileage. It will tend to be lower due to the weight of the RV and wind resistance. To combat wind resistance and avoid sway consider these weight distribution hitches.
- K-Z RV Durango Half-Ton: $36,033
- Crossroads RV Volante: $31,959
- Keystone RV Cougar: $49,995
- Prime Time Crusader: $37,884
- Winnebago Minnie Plus: $38,995
Fifth (5TH) Wheel Pros and Cons
When it comes to living space and storage it’s hard to beat the 5th wheel. There are hundreds of models and floorplans so you are very likely to find the one that best fits your budget and RV lifestyle. Many include an outdoor kitchen, huge big-screen TVs both inside and out, some even have patios that extend out from the side of the fifth wheel.
Amenities and features that are available in fifth wheels range from basic to the luxury interior. A fifth wheel due to its size and amenities feels almost like living in a home.
But in spite of all the great things about a fifth wheel they do have some drawbacks. First off, they are large. They are long, tall, and weigh quite a bit. Their large size prevents them from having access to some campground. Forget about boondocking in one of these they are too difficult to maneuver in tight spaces. In addition, your truck bed will be fairly useless for storage since you will need a gooseneck hitch like the one below for a Dodge Ram truck.
- Fits: 2003-2009 Dodge 3/4 and 1 Ton Long and Short Bed Gas or Diesel Trucks
- Fits: 2010-2012 RAM 3/4 and 1 Ton Long and Short Bed Gas or Diesel Trucks
Last update on 2021-01-20 / Paid Affiliate Link / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API
Size 5th wheel will not fit in a residential garage and most homeowners subdivisions don’t want them parked in your driveway you will need an RV storage place.
Toy Hauler Costs
- Cruiser RV Stryker STG 212: $49,996
- Pacific Coachworks Hauler: $25,999
- Winnebago Spyder 23FB: $36,900
- Dutchman Voltage: $79, 987
- Keystone Carbon: $59,997
Toy Hauler Pros and Cons
Toy haulers have the advantage of allowing you to take your toy along with you. The rear opens up a ramp that allows you to load an ATV, motorcycle, golf cart, or any other toy you may have, unto the “garage” of the toy hauler. The garage converts to additional sleeping space when needed. On some models, the ramp can be converted into a patio, which is very cool to have. Toy haulers are available as travel trailers, 5th wheels, and some manufacturers are making Class C toy haulers as well.
The major drawback of a toy hauler is the weight. They tend to be built much sturdier than a travel trailer that adds weight and so do the ramp and your toys. Tammy and I consider this a minor drawback when you think about the added fun you’ll have bringing your ATV.
Interested in ATVs, check out this article I wrote 10 Popular ATV Brands.
- Fleetwood Discovery LXE: $245,587
- Thor Motor Coach Tuscany: $347,299
- Winnebago Vista: $104,996
- Newmar London Aire: $741,685
- Entegra Coach Cornerstone: $568,592
Class A Pros and Cons
Class A motorhomes are the “Big Daddy” of the RV world. Class A RVs offer picturesque windshields that give you an expansive view of the road and landscape ahead. You have excellent visibility around you since they sit up very high. They are available may different floor plans with many features and amenities. Class A motorcoaches typically have an auto-leveling jack making them easy to set-up. Many models come with generators such as the Onan-Cummins RV generator set. You will find some need 50-amp service while others can operate with just a 30-amp service. You can easily tow a vehicle behind you Class A such as a small car, Jeep, or small SUV.
The cons of having a Class A RV include very poor gas mileage due to the weight and resistance. The most expensive of the RV classes and due to their size are limited to campgrounds that have the proper sized access and camping area. You will have to pay for storage since these don’t fit in a standard garage and many homeowner associations prohibit you from parking them in your driveway.
Class B RV Costs
- Winnebago Travato: $88,995
- Coachmen Galleria: $138,999
- Thor Motorcoach Tellaro: $96,999
- American Coach Patriot: $137,999
- Nexus Viper: $132,859
Class B RV Pros and Cons
One of the main pros of Class B RVs is that they are similar in size to commercial vans so they fit in just about any campground. Driving a Class B is like driving a van. Inside you’ll find a small kitchen area, bathroom, and bedroom. They are available either gas or diesel-powered. Due to the small interior, Class B RVs are suitable for 1 or 2 people. You can easily park them in your driveway so it saves on RV storage fees.
The major drawback to Class B RVs is they have very limited living space and storage space. All tanks have small capacities and you usually only have a wet bath. For the small size, they can get very expensive.
- Jayco Redhawk: $71,999
- Winnebago Outlook: $67,117
- Coachmen Leprechaun: $88,999
- Forest River Forester: $87,999
- Thor Motorcoach Four Winds: $59,999
Class C Pros and Cons
Class C RVs come in many different lengths and floorplans so chances are you are going to find one that fits your needs. Because you rind in them like a motorcoach you have easy access to the bathroom and kitchen. A Class C is much easier to set up than a pull-behind or 5th wheel. Many are rated to tow a small car or boat and due to their low height and ease to get in and out of. Most come equipped with a generator making them very suitable for boondocking.
Class C RVs have several drawbacks. They are very limited in storage space so you have to make sure you don’t exceed weight limits by accidentally overloading them with your gear and supplies. They ride low so you need to be careful with dips in the road or anything protruding above the ground (rocks etc) that may scrape the chassis.
As you can see from the 35 RV cost examples above price can vary tremendously depending on RV type, features, and amenities. Being used may save you anywhere from 20% to 50% or more depending on the year, model, options installed, brand, and demand for that particular RV. Your best bet is to first determine your needs, your budget, and whether you want new or used. Once you have that you are in a better position to estimate your RV costs. Also, include maintenance in your RV cost to be on the safe side. Good luck with finding your perfect RV.