It can sometimes feel like massive RVs saturate the market in the RV industry. With RVs as long as 45 ft, it can all become overwhelming. If you don’t want a large RV, are there still options out there?
Thankfully, you can find some great options for small campers. Today we’ll look at what a small camper is and make some suggestions to get you started on your search.
What Counts as a Small Camper?
What is small to one person may not be small to another. This may also depend on your family size.
A solo traveler might feel a 25-ft camper is big, while a family of six may feel like 35 ft is small.
Taking away personal circumstances, generally, any camper under 20 ft is considered a small camper.
The Benefits of Small Campers
Small campers have many benefits, including towing it with small trucks and sometimes an SUV. Things can get expensive quickly if you need a heavy-duty truck to pull it. Owning a small camper often allows you to keep the vehicle you already have and still safely tow.
Another large benefit to owning a small camper is its ability to fit almost anywhere. Many national parks and campgrounds restrict the size of RVs, making them inaccessible to larger ones. Having a smaller one allows you to go where you want without worrying about size restrictions.
Due to their size, small campers naturally have a lower weight. This means you’ll get much better gas mileage than those towing massive trailers. Better gas mileage means you can spend less at the pump and more on other parts of your adventures.
The Challenges of Small Campers
Having a small camper has its challenges, too, such as its size. Many won’t work for families as they simply don’t have the space to sleep all of your family members. Depending on the layout, even small families won’t feel comfortable in smaller campers.
Even those who only need one or two sleeping spaces might also feel uncomfortable in the smaller campers. If you have a lot of belongings or simply feel overwhelmed in tight spaces, you might reconsider these rigs. They require good organization and a bit of minimalism.
Don’t let their size deceive you; you can still have difficulty maneuvering them. If you have a single axle camper, you may discover that backing into spots takes extra practice.
7 Best Small Campers in 2022
If a small camper seems like the right choice for you, your next step is to look into what models could work well. Let’s take a look at a few of our favorites.
About: The 2022 Cricket is a lightweight yet rugged, small camper. It is 15’ long and weighs 1,573 lbs. It can sleep up to two adults and two children. Additionally, the Cricket has a 15-gallon fresh tank and a 16-gallon gray tank.
Features: This small camper provides many benefits. It has a separate kid’s bunk area with two kid beds measuring 60″ x 22″ with a weight limit of 130 lbs each. It has quad stabilizer jacks to ensure the least movement possible while walking around inside.
The outdoor hot and cold shower means you can still enjoy a nice shower without it taking up precious interior space. You can get an optional shower tent for those needing full privacy.
This 13’ travel trailer packs in a lot. Weighing only 900 lbs dry, many smaller trucks and SUVs can tow it. The MeerKat sleeps two, making it great for couples. The MeerKat provides all the comforts in a minimalistic way.
Features: When you have such a small space, you need to make use of every available area, and the MeerKat does just that. The dining area provides room to eat and play games by day. By night, it folds down to make a comfortable sleeping space.
It has a pop-up roof to create additional airflow and headspace. Additionally, the portable toilet comes standard.
About: The Casita Spirit is a lightweight travel trailer that is easy to maneuver and easy on the gas mileage. It has two floorplans: the standard and the deluxe.
Both models measure 17’ long. The deluxe model sleeps three people because it features a bath. In contrast, the standard model sleeps five. The weight ranges between 2,210 and 2,480 lbs.
Features: The Casita Spirit features a surprising amount of storage, considering its size. The dining area converts to sleeping space.
While the standard model does not have a shower, it does have two separate sleeping spaces. The deluxe model has less sleeping capacity but does provide a shower.
MSRP: Standard: $24,996, Deluxe: $26,694
HC1 Travel Trailer
About: Most standard vehicles can tow the lightweight HC1 Travel Trailer. At only 1,100 lbs, it’ll also go easy on the gas tank.
The trailer is 13’ long, making it easy to fit almost anywhere, including a single parking space. The camper sleeps up to five.
Features: The HC1 Travel Trailer is incredibly versatile. You can fully customize it to your needs. It has a unique design that allows you to choose the layout with its Adaptiv™ components.
Additionally, its dry flush toilet does not require water or a waste tank. This model features a hatch door on the back, giving you easy access to load and unload.
About: The Timberleaf Classic weighs in at 1,500 lbs and is 14’ long. You can choose between an 11 to 17.5-gallon fresh water tank. This camper sleeps one to two people, making it great for couples or solo travelers.
Features: The Timberleaf works great for those looking to do some off-road camping. This small camper has a high clearance that makes it possible to get off the beaten path and onto the more rugged roads.
The interior features a great sleeping space and even provides some storage. The outdoor kitchen has what you need for making great meals on the road. The kitchen has a sink, two-burner stove, and a 12V cooler.
2023 Scamp 13′ Standard
About: The Scamp 13’ Standard can work well for couples and small families. It is 13’ and weighs around 1,500 lbs depending on the options. It has a 12-gallon freshwater tank. The gray water tank holds 21 gallons for the front bath floor plan and a 9-gallon black tank.
Features: A 13’ standard Scamp has two layout options. You can get a front bath model or a front bunk model. The front bunk option features more sleeping space but no shower.
The front bath model still allows for bunks but in the back with less room to stretch. Even with limited space, this camper still provides ample storage in its overhead and under-bunk storage spaces.
Alto R Series
About: The Alto R Series is a great combination of lightweight, aerodynamics, and durability in an RV. Manufacturers of the Alto R Series wanted an environmentally conscious camper.
They accomplish this by using lightweight and primarily recyclable materials. This design makes them towable by smaller, more fuel-efficient vehicles. Plus, it has lots of windows for a light, airy, and open feel.
Features: It may surprise you, but some models in the R series even have a king-size bed and can sleep up to four people. Despite the small living quarters, you can also find flushable toilets and an interior shower.
You may camp in a small rig, but you don’t have to sacrifice comfort. The Alto R Series has high-quality construction loaded with features that make it easy to travel the country comfortably.
Is a Small Camper the Right Call?
If you can’t imagine spending time inside your camper when you can enjoy the outdoors, a small camper could be right for you. For some, an RV simply provides a comfortable place to sleep and get some rest.
Others want a spacious place to take a break from nature. If you plan on spending quite a bit of time inside, or if you have a large family, a small camper may not be a great choice for you.
Do you see yourself in a small camper? What do you think would be the best parts of having one?
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