Starting Motorhoming ?

Gixer

Full Member
I have asked a few questions here and received some useful advice, my query now is whether to proceed at all with buying a MH, I read this site a lot and there are so many negative comments now about the future of MH'ing due to theft, full sites, poor etiquette, diesel'gate and more, please can people reassure me that I'm making the right choice. I want to travel, spend winters in the warm and see more of Europe but don't want to spend too long trying to find places to stop, worry about the van etc.
Thanks
 

Flostravels

Full Member
We've spent nearly 3 of the last 5 years on the road in Europe - mostly wild camping.
Best thing we ever did - can't wait till Sept for our next 6 month trip.
 

GMJ

Free Member
Simply the best thing myself and my wife have ever done. We usually have Jan-Mar in Spain; May or June in the SoF; and September in northern Europe somewhere. In between we have shorter trips in the UK.

Theft: alarm/tracker a must. Then I add extra Fiamma locks to my external lockers. You can also use steering wheel locks or extra external wheel locks. I also have a safe installed inside the MH so we dont have to carry everything everywhere. Make yours harder to break into then the others around you.

Full sites: Plan and book early or use aires/Stelplatz. In the UK use CLs or CSs. Go wilding?

Poor etiquette: Not sure what you mean here but 99.9% of folks are great on sites and around the place. We have seldom if ever had an issue when on any site tbh...

Diesel-gate: No issue for me. Chances are I'll not be around when/if they ban diesel so I really wouldn't worry about it.

I plan our trips abroad diligently to make sure that we have somewhere to stay each night. It's a job I really enjoy and whiles away rainy days at home in between trips. For trips down to Spain in the winter most sites en route do not require booking and our experience is that there is planty of room. If you then plan to spend a week or two on sites when on the Spanish coast then I would certainly make sure that you book them. If you plan to do most of your travelling outside of peak seasons then sign up for the ACSI book/app and card which not only saves you loads but is a great resource when travelling around. Similarly get an 'All the Aires' or 'Camperstop' book as well - great for aires/Stepplatz etc abroad.

If you havent tried it before maybe try renting first. When you rent make a list of 'Must Haves' and 'Like to Haves' for when you look for your MoHo.

Graham
 

Millie Master

Full Member
I used to own 2 luxury caravan sites in France and as I was still a "tugger" (caravanner), I had always poopooed the idea of owning a motorhome, but then we had several self built campervans come along and along with my own observations of hundreds of professionally built vans, I thought to myself, if I can't do far better than that myself etc. etc.

Some 4 years after I finished my conversion, we have toured very extensively around France and the UK and have loved every single minute of it, most especially as our LWB panel van conversion is so easy to drive almost everywhere, unlike so many professionally built vans that are simply far too big to drive!

As for the diesel scares, don't worry about it, there is so much smoke being put up........... what are they going to do, suddenly ban all HGV movements as well and as for your concerns about sites, join one of the big clubs, my own choice being the Caravan & Motorhome Club and stop on one of their truly brilliant CL sites in the UK and when it comes to going to France or Europe, make use of the truly excellent Aires where our 6 week long tour of France last year was all at Aires where our choice was made for us by selecting those that didn't levy any charges at all.

This is the inside of my self built 'Millie', oh and by the way, behind the big door is the loo/shower and the sofa makes up into a full sized bed in less than a minute. 5 of us sleep in her, that is me and my most beloved SWMBO + 3 spaniels.

Millie interior.JPG
 
Last edited:

oppy

Full Member
We have a 20 plus year old van ( more of a motorised shed really) but we love it to bits. The joy of this van is that no self respecting scrote would want to be seen dead nicking it. In our 50+ years of marriage we have always camped, starting with a 19 gn frame tent from Exchange and Mart (came with 2 beds, 2 sleeping bags, a grasshopper single burner stove and a full set of plastic cutlery too) then followed by several ancient caravans. Then, due to health problems, just a few years ago we moved to the dark side and bought a motorhome . We've been all over Portugal, Spain, France and the UK and its been fantastic. There's been problems and catastrophes along the way, but heck, thats life, and as such you will, on occasions come across some odd folks and some even stranger ones (mostly from here or more likely WC!), Here and on our sister site there is a wealth of experience that we are all happy to share with new members, but if you really want to travel, the old tin tent is the way to go
 

EJB

Free Member
You will never read about the experiences of 99% of motorhomers because they never have a problem and therefore never have cause to write about it.
Take care and take sensible precautions...…... but isn't that the same with every aspect of life?;)
 

Topmast

Full Member
Great advice about renting for a trial run especially if you are unsure.ask lots of questions , there is a huge amount of knowledge on this forum ,don’t be put off by doom and gloom merchants.If you can go to one of the rallies (I can’t as I live abroad) you will meet a lot of fascinating people with a great deal of interesting tales and imformation.
 

MJVW

Full Member
Best thing we have ever done, love camping spent many years touring and camping on my trusty v twin other half said let's buy a Motorhome looked around and luckily Shirley found us, we now have the height camping luxury in our little holdsworth.
 

Haaamster

Full Member
You can go on a booked holiday and sit on a beach where the worst thing that happen to you is sunburn or the ice cream man running out or a crab nibbles your toes or you can go off for however long you like having more fun than you imagined, thems the choices.
 

Millie Master

Full Member
I was a tugger for something like 30 years and I always thought those who bought a motorhome must be mad having to pack everything away every day before going for a drive, but just as soon as we had decided not to buy a large moho with a fixed bed and we designed and built our own in a van that doesn't take up any more room on the road than a car.................. we love it and every time we arrive home from one trip, we immediately have the maps and books out planning the next one away.

Mind you when we see some couples driving down the road, just the two of them, in something almost as big as a bus along with a small car on tow behind, we both look at each other and say why oh why, they must be bonkers? Surely wouldn't they be better saving quite a lot of money and buy a decent car and a nice big twin axled caravan instead?
 

GMJ

Free Member
Ours is "something almost as big as a bus..." and we looked into the whole 'toad' thing and decided against it. We just plan our stops/sites carefully if we want to be in/near towns etc or near a bus stop. If not we make sure we have food etc on board.

If/when we are on a site in Spain and we feel like it we hire a car for a couple of days if we want to get off the beaten track and explore the area away from bus routes etc.

Graham
 

Carrerasax

Full Member
You will NOT regret it, all the positives far our weigh those insignificant negatives ( less positives) trust me.
Lots of sites and places visited are amazing memories. 😀😀
And Jan/Feb sunshine!!!!!
Go 4 it!!
 

Gixer

Full Member
Thanks for all the comments, I am far more reassured and will see how the October NEC show goes, then definitely looking for my ideal MH, or at least my first !!
 

jagmanx

Full Member
Ignore the "doom & gloom".
Europe is great France and Germany best.
Free or cheap stopovers loads more space.
Despite the great wc poi's on this site abroad is better.
 

grath

Full Member
My own perspective is that some of the free and easy motor homing days are behind us, more pay aires and more motorhomes chasing for the nice locations.
BUT
It is still a great hobby, a good way to see Europe, and we can not think of a better way.
If we could we would do that!
Just go over to mainland Europe when ever you can, and I am sure you will not regret buying a M/H
 

Minisorella

Moderator
As you can see from the responses so far, motorhomers who regret ever buying one are rarer than hen's teeth! I wouldn't part with my 13-year-old pile of tin for the world and that's coming from a solo female who knows nothing about the devil's work that are mechanics and electrickery and is suspicious of every noise a vehicle makes! That's why God gave us AA men though ;) Oddly enough, I've never worried about any of the things on your list in the opening post!

Most of my camping is in the UK, so I keep up membership of the Caravan and Motorhome Club for their good network of small CL sites for when I need to 'top-up and empty' but Wildcamping.co.uk and Britstops POIs are brilliant for most overnight stops. Since my husband died I won't park alone in a layby but most car park POIs and pub stops are fine. As for Europe, a motorhome is so easy to live with over there. My first trip to Europe with the motorhome was last year (with another one since and another one planned!) and finding places to stay was honestly a breeze. Only once did our little group feel we had to time our arrival just right at a very popular stellplatz in Germany. The motorhome stopovers and campsites in Europe are amazing and prolific - you can spend as little or as much on them as you wish but the concensus is don't use the ones alongside motorways for overnight stops.

If you know you're the sort of person who worries about things then 'try before you buy' as suggested by hiring a motorhome. Alternatively, buy something you like that's much older but still sound, so that you can become old hands before investing in a newer vehicle. You can always re-sell the old one in eg a year or so, by when you'll be experienced, better informed and your views about your forever motorhome might be a little clearer. Most of us will tell you how we bought so much stuff at first, thinking they'd be vital, only to leave them gathering cobwebs at home after one or two uses. With experience, you'll know exactly what you want of a motorhome and which bits of kit you really need.

Just do it... you won't regret it. Good luck :)
 

Clunegapyears

Full Member
So much good advice and sense in this thread.

There are always things in life that make you gulp. Ours was over 4 years ago when we let the house out for a year to go full time. But the gulp / reservations / hesitation is nearly always as it is a big decision / life change. But Oh SO WORTH IT. No risk, no gain.

There are a lot of meets advertised on here. Why not attend one for a day ... just let the organiser know and I’m sure they’ll put you in touch with some one who can talK you through lots of how tos, what not to do etc ...
 

Users who viewed this discussion (Total:155)

VWann, Edina, 2cv, GMJ, Edward B, Flostravels, Millie Master, Obanboy666, Trek, mark61, Allen, TJBi, Mark B, oppy, Ian1950, Barge1914, Beemer, neckender, grath, EJB, linkshouse, Snuffy, silverweed, Wully, Charity, Steveandjulie, Biggarmac, 47643, toasty, rugbyken, Silver sprinter, YOLO BUS, wildebus, tapfitter, wesaaron, GreggBear, Geraldine, Topmast, Haaamster, rab126, Full Member, roadromer, ozzy1955, LANDS43, jeffmossy, Telstar, 76zedfour, TeamRienza, Bigshug, The laird, RoadTrek Boy, nabsim, RV2MAX, Exwindsurfer, trevskoda, Clunegapyears, royh28, Markd, yorkslass, Puddlejumper, MJVW, eurajohn, Taurian, HurricaneSmith, Carrerasax, Stonedaddy, UFO, Dell, Linda, s4x4c, Vanterrier, Phase3begins, clarkpeacock, witzend, Forcesixwindy, Kenno, jagmanx, Scampi30, helmit, Jeanette, V1nny, PeteS, Mike-p, Annabella, abmnw, SquirrellCook, Val54, Hope174, Grouchy, Minisorella, CardMaker, SimonM, andyjanet, gerrevelyn, profiterole, GeoffL, BOTCANU, Niki, davidb, vanda, painter01, Winks, cowanhouse, St3v3, tonybvi, WillyO, Ellendale, Lee, Bfcpete, johndoris, Redcroftet, alun100, carmel thornton, Yorkscol, Nicknack, Bouydog, Trompete, hairydog, Tuppence, Di1234, Mobilvetta, Raymondo, smycker, Andy Flav, Four Oaks Man, charlie356, Tommyg, Big H, Adriandp, Porridge140, Alan01704, Digger Dog, Growlie69, runnach, RoaminRog, highlandron, tugboat, pagey, Paulajc77, Jenrai, ruzze77, Bounce, marymary, Chrisb1701, jim and pat dalton, Trotter, Stevox5, Forest1, Phantom, nickvanbitz, Rockburner, keith777, Carrotts, andromeda, Caravan Palace,
Top