Travel Trailer or Motels? - Rubicon Owners Forum
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post #1 of 16 (permalink) Old 10-02-2019, 05:22 PM Thread Starter
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Travel Trailer or Motels?

My wife and I have been kicking around the thought of doing more traveling and have considered a trailer. Our JKUR is rated to pull 3500 pounds, not a whole lot. There are some lite-weight single axle trailers that would work, but performance on the highway would be not so good. Probably would require regearing, then since the Jeep is lifted, stability pulling a trailer at highway speeds would be a consideration. Then there is the cost of ownership, repairs, maintenance, storage and comfort. The more we look at it, the more it seems like motels are just an easier and cheaper alternative. It seems like a trailer, whether you pay cash or finance, would cost in the range of 5 to 6 thousand per year. At 150 per night in a decent motel, that works out to 40 nights per year which is probably more nights than what we would use a trailer for. I know there are those that are quite happy with their trailers and all that is associated with them out there, any thoughts?
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post #2 of 16 (permalink) Old 10-02-2019, 07:05 PM
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Wow, so very much depends on your intended use, budget, and personal factors.

We pull the Jeep with an RV rather than the other way around. It works for us because of traveling with a dog is easier, and being able to just get up and use the bathroom or fix lunch while rolling is pretty nice. Obviously the driver doesn’t get to do that while driving, but at a rest area it is still convenient to be self contained.

Even used, that approach is more expensive. At 6’5” and 74 years I am not comfortable in the real small trailers, so for forty nights or less I would opt for the hotel. A possible drawback is availability of motels in some wheeling areas, but most of the places I have been lately have been adequately served in that way.

Another factor for me is how far I travel to get to wheeling areas. I go west once a year from Florida, so the means of getting there is a big factor since it is a week each way.
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post #3 of 16 (permalink) Old 10-02-2019, 09:57 PM
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We have talked about trailers for years and some day we will get one but for now we rent.


A few years ago when we decided to start travelling with our Dog we started renting Condo's. We just search the area we want to stay and usually pay about $100 a night.
It works for us because we can unload all our stuff into the spare bedroom (most are 2bed/bath) without having to trek down long hallways. We always stay a few days and if the weather turns bad you don't mind hanging out at home. You can cook and most will have laundry.


If you buy a trailer will it be big enough so you and the Wife can get along? You don't want RV'ing to turn into a divorce?


For other people, what do campsites cost now?
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post #4 of 16 (permalink) Old 10-03-2019, 12:32 AM
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Wife and I also spoke about it, and minimum requirements were laid out: queen bed, kitchen, bath, and under 3000 lbs, I was surprised to find quite a bit of options that meet this criteria, then we started looking at prices, everything we liked was hovering around 15K, give or take a couple thousand. Realistically speaking we would use it two or three weeks out of the year, even at an average of 200 per night that money would pay for 3.5 to 5 years of hotel stays, so we discarded the idea. Maybe when we retire and can travel for several months out of the year we will get a nice class A to tow the Jeep with and travel the country.
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post #5 of 16 (permalink) Old 10-03-2019, 01:35 AM
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For me I never stay in hotels unless I absolutely have to. People/general public are largely pretty dirty and more than a little disease ridden. I know, I see patients daily. That said, with a trailer there is never a check in/out time. No pesky bed bugs. You can usually find a beautiful place to park and enjoy spectacular views. You have a kitchen and pantry full of things you like. You can pack a lot more stuff, it's obviously dog friendly. If you ever have more guests than your house will hold you can toss a few in the trailer. Oh and definitely get one with at least two slide outs. Just a thought, and it really all depends on how active you will be, the area's you will frequent and how often it will actually get used. Plus, don't forget its not dead loss, take care of it and you can always resell it if you don't like it. You wont get any of that hotel money back LOL.
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post #6 of 16 (permalink) Old 10-03-2019, 09:44 AM
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We stopped running around in our motorhome a couple of years ago after 12 years and 117k miles. Campground prices are all over the place, paying nightly is the most expensive and a nondescript non-resort RV park by an Interstate highway can be $25-$35 a night (or more.) Weekly and monthly rates are significantly cheaper, I think we paid $350 a month in Montrose, Colorado plus electricity.

RV camping in Moab can be expensive and scarce in the peak season. We wheeled with some people that were staying in a Moab hotel, that's not at all unusual.

We enjoyed travel in the motorhome with our pets and our stuff, motels and the noise drives me crazy and I hate to stay in them.
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post #7 of 16 (permalink) Old 10-03-2019, 01:08 PM
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My wife and I rented a small trailer for a week long vaca last spring. It was an R-POD and was simply too small. I'm with you, $6K buys a lot of hotel rooms. That's not including maintenance, wear and tear, decreased fuel mileage, etc.

And like John said, RV sites can be expensive. I stayed in P-cola, Fl for $15/night (score!) but paid $100/night in Nashville. A hotel wasn't much more expensive.
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post #8 of 16 (permalink) Old 10-04-2019, 12:40 AM Thread Starter
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You all mentioned most, if not all, the pros and cons we have talked about. One of the factors we face is that we would also have to pay for a place to store a trailer when we weren't using it. I think that is the final nail in the coffin for the idea....for us. Thank you for all your input.
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post #9 of 16 (permalink) Old 10-04-2019, 11:39 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by WayWestJeep View Post
For me I never stay in hotels unless I absolutely have to. People/general public are largely pretty dirty and more than a little disease ridden. I know, I see patients daily. That said, with a trailer there is never a check in/out time. No pesky bed bugs. You can usually find a beautiful place to park and enjoy spectacular views. You have a kitchen and pantry full of things you like. You can pack a lot more stuff, it's obviously dog friendly. If you ever have more guests than your house will hold you can toss a few in the trailer. Oh and definitely get one with at least two slide outs. Just a thought, and it really all depends on how active you will be, the area's you will frequent and how often it will actually get used. Plus, don't forget its not dead loss, take care of it and you can always resell it if you don't like it. You wont get any of that hotel money back LOL.

All I do is ride my bike and know most people are filthy, disease carrying slugs! LOL It's why I do not eat out. You do not know who is cooking your food. I've stayed in nice hotels and gotten woken up by a bed bug on my leg. It really puts me off of things.
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post #10 of 16 (permalink) Old 10-10-2019, 03:24 PM
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Your own analysis is focused upon costs. That being said, you would be hard pressed to be dollars ahead with any type of comfortable camper. We travel with a motorhome and jeep on a trailer. It is far from the cost effective means of travel for us. We made this selection anyway.
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