We’ve spent a lot of time talking about options for putting together your RV lifestyle. Most of the that discussion has trended toward smaller and lighter options. Camper design is better and a smaller, lighter camper can be quite spacious these days but what if smaller is not your thing?
If your goal is comfort more than convenience, you can look at the opposite end of the spectrum. Comfort is important to most people opting for the RV lifestyle and today we’re going to look at the big end of the scale. For sheer room and comfort, nothing beats a Class A.
If you can afford the price tag, Class As are designed for luxury, space and comfort. With many models nearly 40 feet long and boasting interior space upwards of 400 square feet, Class As are leather class comfort. In my experience the majority of full timers live in Class As. With amenities like a standard size bedroom with master bath, a full-size refrigerator, dishwasher and big screen TV, a Class A is basically a mobile apartment.
That space comes at a cost; even a base model can run upwards of quarter-million. Many people are basically trading a house nailed to the ground for one on wheels. And the expenses don’t stop when you roll off the lot. Once the warranty is up you’ll have to start paying for repairs and, in a machine as complex and compact as a Class A, there is a lot to go wrong. To push along all that luxury requires a rather substantial diesel engine, some nearly the size of a tractor trailer. Gas mileage is dreadful, I mean seriously bad. Right now it’s less of a problem but just wait until you’re filling that beast up at $5.00 a gallon. Wooo! Labor on engines that size starts at $125/hour and even a simple oil change can cost upwards of $200. So, a Class A is not the choice for anyone on a budget. But, if you’ve got the bling, it’s definitely comfortable.
Getting around in a Class A is definitely the low stress way to travel. Wherever you stop, there you are. If you’re going to be there a while you can run the slides out and relax, otherwise just start up and go.
There are definite downsides to a Class A, besides the expense. There are many campgrounds that are just too small for anything that big. Dirt roads are a no-go and you have to watch both load and height restrictions. You also have to tow a local vehicle if you want a car after you get where you’re going. That means flat towing a handful of cars that are towable with a towbar or dragging it with a dolly or trailer. A fully loaded Class A towing a car down the road is a LOT of weight and a lot of tires. More tires on the road means more flats. You’ll be fixing tires nearly as often as an 18 wheeler driver.
If you’re staying in place a long time or just north and south migration spring and fall, a Class A is a good choice.