How Much Does A RV Cost? (20 RV Prices Considered)

Something has brought you to a point in life where you are interested in knowing about the prices of RVs. This is significant. RVs offer a way to live life that is different to the norm.

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It gives you the option to have the amenities of life at your fingertips on your terms and under your control as you travel. It saves you having to follow the protocols of more conventional living arrangements while travelling. It offers independence.

How Much Does A RV Cost? (20 RV Prices Considered)

RVs can cost from $10,000 to $500,000. It all depends on the type of RV you opt for and whether you buy the RV brand new or pre-owned. There are so many different types of RVs on offer and within the types of RVs there are many different models.

Added on to that you have the issues of addons and customization. The point is that these wonderful vehicles are offering you a lifestyle that allows you to travel with your home travelling with you.

The thing that is going to determine how much you pay is how much mo0ney you have to spend on an RV and what you want from it. If you want that simple life then you will opt for a simple design and a basic floorplan and find yourself spending surprisingly little.

If, however, you want all the luxuries and amenities then you will play a whole lot more.

There’s much planning and researching that needs to be done to ensure you understand the RV lifestyle, know the different types of RVs and models within those types and how the different RVs could meet your particular needs.

There are also a range of other costs you need to take into account. Towable RVs require tow vehicles. You may need to pay for a new tow vehicle.

Keep in mind though, that once you have your RV you won’t be needing hotels, motels, Air B and Bs and so on. You’ll be a free agent. For some, this is priceless.

Before You Invest In A RV

Lifestyle

Before you even consider purchasing an RV, ensure that you understand the expectations of the lifestyle. You will need to make practical adaptations. For example, only things you are going to use should be allowed to take up the limited space in your RV.

You need to find out if your driving license will require any endorsements to allow you to tow or drive your RV. Campsites need to book well in advance. State rules as to where you can and cannot set up camp need to be considered.

Where will you keep your RV when it’s not in use? Things like this will affect your costing and pricing.

There’ll also need to be psychological adaptations. Lack of privacy due to less personal space, and living in close proximity with others can be psychologically demanding.

The lifestyle is rather like that of a hermit crab, in that you are moving around with your home and it’s nomadic. If you don’t like driving then the RV lifestyle may not be as idyllic as you imagine.

Driving And Other Regulations

You may require special driving license endorsements for some RVs and these may differ between states. Also, check state rules about where RVs can be parked and sited.

Use And Location

What do you want to use your RV for? You’ll need a different RV to roam around Alaska than one to visit Hawaii. Camping in a remote area is different to a day trip to a lake. Different vehicles suit different purposes.

Travelling Companions 

Not only does number of people affect psychological preparation, but there are more mundane things to take into account, such as sleeping area and bedding, storage.

Regularity Of Use

If you are only going to travel now and then you might consider renting rather than owning an RV.

Parking Your RV When It’s Not In Use

It can be costly if you can’t park your RV outside your home.

Manufacturer

Different manufacturers offer different price ranges, often linked to reputation and brand. More well-known manufacturers will have a wider range of RVs available and more dealerships supporting the range. Specialist companies may have higher priced options.

Age Of The RV

The younger the RV the more modern it is and the more costly it’s likely to be. RVs produced between 2014 and 2017 will be much cheaper than more recent models.

Availability

If you buy from a limited manufacturer, such as one that only sells a particular RV or only sells in a particular country or territory, you’re likely to pay more. The rarer the product the higher the price.

Floorplan

The more complex the floorplan the more the price, generally speaking.

Floorplans cover aspects such as general layout, how many people can sleep in the RV, the size of the kitchen, bathrooms and living area, whether there is a bathroom and what type of bathroom. RVs can have wet or dry bathrooms.

Floorplan will also tell you if there are slide outs and room for media and appliances. The more there is and the better the quality the more you’ll pay.

Extra Features

Customizable extra features cost. It’s often possible to customize the décor, the flooring, materials used, interior and exterior color choices; but at a price.

Then you have the customizable technology and equipment, such as built-in TVs and kitchen appliances that can really surge the price upwards.   

Budget

It’s not just the cost of the RV.

There are other costs to take into account, such as insurance, any customization you may want done, the need for a vehicle to tow your RV if you opt for a towable RV, camping site costs, fuel costs, kitting your RV out, reserve funds for eventualities, entertainment and outings and so on.

Also, you need to decide whether you want luxury addons or not. Talk to other RV owners about which addons are good and worth the cash. 

Mechanical Know How

Are you able to change a tyre? If your RV breaks down at the side of a remote road, do you have the skills and wherewithal to deal with the situation?

You need to think about this and ensure you have the cover you need for emergencies and the back up you may require. If you’re travelling alone this really could be a crucial factor.

New Or Pre-Owned

A new RV will be more expensive than a pre-owned RV of the same type. Decide if you want a new one or whether you want to go for a better type at a pre-owned price range.

If you are going for a pre-owned RV, always see before you buy and use reputable dealers. Private sales can work but they can also go horribly wrong.

Things to look for in pre-owned RVs are mold, water leakage, rot, rust and corrosion. Also check the awning because awnings are expensive to replace. Make sure the walls, roof and floor are in good condition. You really do need to inspect a pre-owned RV.

It would be a good idea to ask the owner if you can have a test drive. The thing with pre-owned is you never know why the owner is selling. If there’s a problem pending better to recognize that before you buy then a few miles down the road.

Types Of RVs

The two main types of RVs are towable RVs and motorized RVs. The towable RVs require you to think about the towing vehicle and ensure the towing vehicle is up to towing the RV. The type of driving involved will be different to what you’re used to in a standard car.

Towing means you can unhitch the towing vehicle and use it one you have set up camp.

Motorized RVs mean the driving and living are interdependent. Your vehicle is your home. Some motorhomes are enormous and others the size of a van so obviously that’s going to affect price.

It’s also going to affect the driving experience, where you can drive and where you can set up camp. Running costs, wear and tear, repairs and maintenance all come into the equation you need to run through your head as you make your decisions.

Towable RVs

Towable RVs, or trailers, are pulled by another vehicle so you have to think about the extra cost of the towing vehicle.

If you already have a vehicle that you want to tow your RV then that narrows your choice down to RVs that have specifications which make them towable by the vehicle you have in mind.

If you’re going to have to purchase a vehicle to tow the RV then obviously that really affects your level of spending. Factor in wear and tear on the towing vehicle. The bigger and heavier the trailer the stronger the pulling vehicle will have to be.

The trailer can be detached from the pulling vehicle and then used to take you out and about, which might be what you prefer.

There are five types of towable RVs:

Fifth wheels
Travel trailers
Toy haulers
Pop-up trailers
Truck campers  

Fifth Wheels

Fifth Wheels

Fifth wheels range in price from $35 000 – $90 000

The fifth wheel is the largest towable RV, weighing over 7000 lbs and 20-40 ft long. Most hitch to a full-size, one-ton truck by a fifth wheel hitch, located in the truck’s bed.

They have a ‘gooseneck’, which is front overhang which rests on the bed of the truck, containing the bedroom or living room area. You can use the tow vehicle to drive around in once you’ve found your site.

The multilevel floorplans of fifth-wheel Trailers can sleep 4-8 people and offer spacious living space. A high ceiling gives a sense of space. The many slide-outs can increase living area by 3 feet or more.

Picture windows, lots of storage space, entertainment options, and all sorts of features make these motorhomes as close to standard homes as you’re going to get on the road.

Even though fifth wheels often have similar features to motorhomes, you can find that a special driver’s license endorsement is not required in some states. They can be parked up as a home base, which you can’t do so easily with motorhomes.

Don’t forget that buying a fifth-wheel hitch is an added cost. Some fifth-wheel trailers weigh less and are compatible with vehicles of a smaller size, but many are 40 ft of heaviness, requiring a powerful tow vehicle.

If you want your home on the road to be fully equipped with the sort of creature comforts you have in your stationary home but you want a towable RV, rather than a motorhome, then fifth wheels may be the way to go.

Crossroads Volante: $29000 – $46000

The Crossroads Volante is made with premium quality material and having a myriad of features; power stabilizer jacks, Secure Stance steps, Keyed-A-Like lock system, outdoor speakers with LED accents, power awning with LED lights, LED lights in interior, a fireplace, residential furniture, an outdoor shower, an air conditioning system and a completely enclosed and forced air heated underbelly.

The Crossroads Volante can be found used or new (here)

Crossroads Volante Travel Trailer Specs and Review – rvcrown.com

Dutchmen Astoria 2513RLF Fifth-Wheel Camper: Average Cost: $31000 – $50000

You need a truck of full size to tow this fifth wheel RV and it’ll have to have a gooseneck. The In-Command remote operating system has a touchscreen. Features also include a generator, slide outs, exterior and interior lights and tank levels.

See prices at rvtrader

Northwood Arctic Fox 28-5C Fifth-Wheel: $80000 – $90000

Spacious. A pickup truck of half-ton to one-ton required for towing. Lots of pull outs and a king size bed, bathroom, sofa, bathroom, and kitchen. Better suited to couples than families.

Travel Trailers

Travel trailers range in price from $15 000 – $40 000

Travel trailers, or pull-behinds, are towed by means of a bumper hitch in front of the unit. 

These RVs offer the space of a larger travel trailer but the hard sides give more security. If you intend travelling with valuable items, then the security factor might sway you.

The door is often larger than other RVs and the design, which is quite angular, means there can be more windows.

They vary in size and weight, from 8-40 ft and 1000-10000 lbs. Size and weight determine what type of vehicle does the towing: trucks, crossovers, SUVs, or motorcycles.

Travel trailers are self-contained units with a living area, kitchen, bedroom and bathroom. They can be built with slide outs to increase the living area. There’s sleeping capacity of 2-8.

Hybrid models have expandable, fold out, sections made of durable fabric, rather than hard-sided slide outs. 

Travel trailers, and especially small travel trailers, are generally easier to tow and are usually affordable. As travel trailers are usually less than 25 feet in length with a dry weight of fewer than 5,000 pounds, they can be towed by a wide variety of vehicles. 

In addition, well-equipped travel trailers with full kitchens, dry baths, and heating and cooling are usually priced very reasonably.  

Watch out for trailer sway. A full-size SUV is better as the tow vehicle or a half-ton pickup truck.

Inspect the wheel bearings if you buy a used one.

Coachmen Viking Saga 17SBH: $18000 – $22000

A very affordable option, the Coachmen Viking Saga 17SBH offers a fully functioning kitchen, a dry bath, and rear bunk beds. 20 feet 4 inches and weighing less than 3,000 pounds means it’s easy to tow by a variety of small trucks and SUVs.

See price range at rtv.com

KZ Sportsmen Classic: $19000 – $28000

Very lightweight and easy to haul with truck or SUV.  16 ft, so easy to manoeuvre. Simple to park in even the tightest campsite. There’s a corner bathroom, a sofa and 9′ Awning. Sleeps two.

KZ SPORTSMEN CLASSIC

See prices at rvtrader

KZ Sportsmen Classic Travel Trailer Review: 3 Easy-to-Tow Options – Scenic View RV Blog

Palomino PaloMini 177BH: $17000 – $28000

It needs a pickup that’s light duty or something larger to tow it. Queen size bed and bunk beds. Basic bathroom and kitchenette. There’s a fairly modest media station.

See prices at rvtrader

Toy Haulers

Toy haulers, or sport utility RVs, are actually a subcategory of Fifth Wheelers and Travel Trailers. They are built with a garage for carrying cargo. They can haul motorcycles, ATVs, kayaks, golf carts, and snowmobiles for your outdoor activities.

The back flips down, transforming into a ramp. The cargo area can also be converted into living or bedroom space. These sport utility vehicles can be 18-40 ft, and weigh 3000-10000 lbs. They can sleep 4-8 people.

Given the size of these vehicles and the adaptability of the space on offer, it’s not surprising that these RVs tends to be more expensive. You can really be inventive with how you use the space.

If you like to have real adventures in the outback that require other vehicles like motorbikes or kayaks then these really are the RV type for you.

Thor Motor Coach Outlaw 29J Class C: $115000 – $154000

A motorhome that is also a toy hauler. Very adaptable in terms of usage with great storage space.

See price range at rvtrader

Pop-Up Trailers

Pop-Up Trailers

Pop up camper RVs range in price from $9 000 – $25 000

Pop-up trailers, also known as fold-out campers, have a base resembling a utility cargo trailer with a top made of strong canvas. They fold up into a 4 ft compact space and are relatively easy to tow. 

Hybrid models can have hard wall sides which makes for better insulation. You use a manual crank or a powered system to raise them up. 8-20 ft and 1000-4000 lbs.

Pop up Campers are the smallest RVs and the most affordable. They aren’t luxurious by any means, have canvas walls and many do not come equipped with a bathroom, but they do come equipped with a kitchenette, dinette, electricity, running water, and queen size bed. 

They lack the internal amenities and systems of other RVs. They may lack a bathroom.  Windows or screens give ventilation and reduce mold. A large retractable tent, often made of durable canvas.

They can sleep 4-8. Some models have a bathroom that has a shower/toilet combination.

As lightweight travel trailers they can be towed by an SUV or a rear-wheel-drive sedan.

Prone to cracks, tears, and discoloration with age.

Security is often a concern.

These RVs are most suited to those who are used to tent camping and want a tad more comfort.

Jayco Jay Sport Camping Trailer: $15000 – $22000

A popular choice for affordability, range of designs and quality.

It won Trailer Life Readers’ Choice Awards Bronze Award in 2016. The guarantee is two-year restricted and three-year primary. The Climate Shield gives you four-season setting up camp insurance.

Jayco Jay Sport Camping Trailer

See prices at rvtrader

Aliner Scout Lite: $16000 – $18000

The Aliner Scout Lite pop up camper has noise reduction capacity and sturdiness of a hard-sided trailer.  

It’s easy to tow and fits comfortably in any campsite. The simple design means it’s easy to maintain. 

See prices at rvtrader

Truck Campers

A truck camper fits into the truck bed and has an overhang extending over the cab. There may be slide outs or canvas fold outs. The truck must be rated to carry the weight and this can sometimes require heavy-duty trucks.

They can be called cab-overs or slide-ins. 6-12 ft and 1000-3000 lbs.

Truck campers can sleep 2-4 and will have a bathroom, dining area and kitchen.

Versatile and compact.

Hard-sided models generally need ton or half ton trucks, maximized for heavy payloads. Some models need mid-sized trucks.

Hybrid or Expandable Trailer Truck Campers can extend your living space without compromising the insulation offered by hard sides. They tend to require smaller vehicles to tow them.

Arctic Fox 811: $30000 – $51000

This truck camper has kitchen amenities, queen size bed, exterior and internal LED lighting and lots of storage. A slide out storage tray is very useful. There are many features.

See prices at rvtrader

Arctic Fox 811

Lance 650: $19 000 – $44 000

The Lance 650 was created using computer designs and modern materials so as to reduce weight. It’s an affordable and ultra-modern alternative for the beginner to RVs. Spacious, with smart storage and a sizable bathroom.

See prices at rvtrader

Motorized RVs

Motorized RVs, or motorhomes, have engines. The cockpit and living space are under the same roof.

The Department of Transportation and the Department of Motor Vehicles categorise Motorhomes into classes A, B, and C.

Motorized RVs don’t require a tow vehicle. The size of the motorized RV may or may not pose the need for license endorsements.

It would be a good idea to rent one of these and experience the driving of them to get an idea of whether you can see yourself driving in and living in one comfortably.

Class A Motorhomes

Class A motorhomes range in price from $110 000 – $500 000

A Class A motorhome can use a gas engine or a diesel engine. Class A RVs are not fuel-efficient or maneuverable. People often tow a small vehicle from the RV to get about in.  They can double up as a Toy Hauler. Length 25-45 ft. The motorhome’s engine can be installed in the rear of the RV or up front.  

What people buy these RVs for is the floorplan and the features. These are the most luxurious of motorhomes, offering an outstanding array of features and customizable options. Interior furnishing can be luxurious and they sleep 6-8. 

Elevated cockpit and large front windshield offer wonderful views which can enhance the driving experience. 

Tall ceilings mean that you need not feel cramped and will certainly work for the taller among us.

Plenty of storage space, some retractable or hidden.

Full kitchen, with refrigerator, freezer, oven, stovetop, and microwave. Full bathroom.

Great windows throughout the vehicle for both viewing the landscape and keeping the interior well ventilated.

These are the most expensive RVs because they offer the most luxury.

Winnebago Intent 28Y: $105000 – $140000

The Winnebago Intent 28Y is a short Class A. Premium features. There are four floorplans to choose from. There are slide outs extend the living area. They sleep 6 – 8 people and have split baths and bunk beds. Fully equipped kitchens, luxury flooring and cabinets.

The works really!  

See prices at rvtrader

Thor Motor Coach A.C.E. 32.3: $140000 – $184000

The Thor Motor Coach A.C.E. 32.3 ACE refers to Class A/Class C/Evolution. A hybrid with the body of Class A and layout of Class C. 33 feet 5 inches long. A motorhome that has a mudroom. That says it all really.

There are heated/remote exterior mirrors with integrated side view cameras. There’s a Pet-Link multi-Purpose Tie-Down, solar charging pre-wiring, a pull-out Kibble Station that’s FDA approved with a pet bowl liner and on and on. 

See prices at rvtrader

Forest River Inc. Berkshire XLT Diesel 45A: $400 000 – $534 000

This large Class A RV has a set of bunk beds, each having own 22″ LED TV, as well as a sleeping area for adults. There is a myriad of comforts. In fact, one look at the floorplan and interior photos and you feel like you’d be whiling away your time in a luxury hotel.

You may need a special license endorsement.

See prices for new and used at rvtrader

Class B Motorhomes

Class B Motorhomes

Class B motorhomes range in price from $70 000 – $ 130 000

Class B motorhomes, or camper vans, are built on a van chassis. They are the smallest motorhomes at 20- 26ft, and the most fuel-efficient, and manoeuvrable. Gas or diesel engine models are available. They are functional and versatile. 

Seats fold out into beds for 1-4. Could have queen-sized or king-sized bed. Storage makes use of every crevice. Wet bath in a corner. There’s usually insufficient room for bunk beds. Less storage space and fewer windows. The kitchen will be smaller.

Some Class B Motorhomes have slide outs to increase living space.

Check the electrical system. Some have a 30 Amp system. A few have 50 Amp systems.

Class B Motorhomes can vary in price depending on the features.

Thor Motor Coach Sequence 20A: $102 000 – $140 000

The Thor Motor Coach Sequence 20A is actually one of the cheapest Class B RVs you can buy. It’s also equipped with a pop-top, allowing this compact Class B RV the ability to sleep four at a time.

With a length of just under 21 feet and a total weight of 9,350 pounds, this class B RV is very easy to handle and maneuver. It rides on a RAM Pro Master chassis.

See prices at rvtrader

Winnebago Travato 59G: $97 000 – $144 000

The Winnebago Travato 59G, has a large rear corner wet bath as well as a good-sized fixed bed so you can leave the bed; which is not usually the case with campervans.

The Winnebago Travato rides on the RAM ProMaster chassis which is one of the most popular van chassis in Class B RVs. The chassis is affordable with lots of safety features.

Its small and compact size, easy drivability and the fact it can fit into any RV campsite make this an excellent choice for beginners. 

See prices at rvtrader

Class B+

Class B+ RVs are a cross between Class B and Class C, with advantages from both.

A Class B+ RV utilizes a van chassis like the Class B, but uses a cutaway body, similar to Class C, rather than building the RV inside the van body. Class B+ has a better amount of interior space and flexibility.

This is perfect for beginners to RV because it keeps the overall size of the RV to a minimum while still providing plenty of interior space.

Coachmen Cross Trek 21XG: $91 000 – $131 000

Coachmen Cross Trek 21XG, has wonderful storage capacity. It has a rear exterior door and this, along with the flip-up Murphy bed, means the space is optimized. Outdoor gear, bikes, even kayaks can be transported. For beginners who love outdoor sports, this is the one.

These RVs are generally quite simple to handle. The Ford Transit chassis and engine give this RV a lot of power with good braking. 

See prices at rvtrader

Class C Motorhomes

Class C motorhomes range in price from $70 000 – $ 135 000

Class Cs have a cab-over and can function as a toy hauler. Super C is bulkier. Built on a truck chassis. Gas or diesel engine. Not as large as Class A. Self-contained unit with room for sleeping for 4-8, dining and cooking, living area, bathroom. 22-35 ft.

Tend to be more costly than a travel trailer or a Class B motorhome, but cheaper than Class A.

Decent storage, a couple of windows.

You may lack some kitchen amenities.

Some class C motorhomes are on par with small fifth-wheel campers regarding amenities. A few of the higher-end units have slide outs and electric awnings.

A Class C Motorhome is best for small families or perhaps retired couples.

They don’t need a special driver’s license endorsement.

Most class C RVs cost $50,000 to $100,000, but they can get up to $150,000.

Thor Four Winds 22E: $75 000 – $99 000

The Thor Four Winds 22E is a well-equipped motorhome that’s affordable. Built on a chassis that’s either Ford E Series or Chevy Express, the RV feels dependable. Interior space is maximized. At 25 ft it’s easier to drive than larger Class C and A motorhomes.

See prices at rvtrader

Winnebago Minnie Winnie 31K: $71 000 – $154 000

The Winnebago Minnie Winnie 31K is large but more manageable than others in the class. It has all the features you’d expect for its price range.

See prices at rvtrader

Conclusion

As I’m sure you can conclude, there are many models of RV out there and a range of styles to suit individual tastes. You need to think about why you want a RV?

Do you want a home from home or do you want to rough it? Are you planning on spending your time in the RV or out in the wilds, only coming back to the RV to sleep?

You and only you know your needs. Once you narrow it down to towable or motorized you are on your way to a decision. Decide on the model and then try it out. You definitely need to follow all due diligence before you make a purchase.

A large number of RV dealerships and rental companies rent out RVs. This is a perfect way to actually try out the real deal. It may look great in photos and sound ideal in marketing speak but you need to see it, touch it, feel how you feel in it before you make a decision.

Decide if you want one new or used. If used you may need to renovate it. You can see your local inventory of RVs by clicking here.

Remember to consider things like the age of the RV, its manufacturer, condition of the vehicle, additional features and the general aesthetics of the vehicle. Materials and structure are also absolutely essential. Understand how it works. Get a real feel for it.  

Visit some RV social media groups and message boards, to ask those questions you need answered by people who have actually lived the lifestyle.

You could also visit sites like Outdoorsy and RVShare to find RV owners renting out their RVs.

Think about thins like tank capacities. You’re going to have black, grey and freshwater tanks and these tanks require maintenance and emptying. Get used to the idea of having to empty your effluents.

Ensure you have necessary things like light bulbs, connectors, a four-way wrench, jumper cables, nuts and bolts, fuses, spare tyres and similar.

You need to know about thing like the need to always keep your RV level. If an RV is parked off-level this can be very hard on the refrigerator. It can also mean that the tanks give you a false reading. 

Never overlook the RV manual. It gives the GTW to prevent excess gas consumption and dangerous driving and tells you what needs to be checked off to ensure your RV is road ready. It’ll give you the physical checks you need to do to ensure your RV stays operational on the road.

Even things like domicile requirements in different states ought to be considered. Domicile is absolutely essential because it affects taxes, bank account licenses, vehicle inspections, voting and a myriad of other things involved in the system of life.

Insurance is clearly very important

Yes, there are many practical things to think about. Over-riding it all, though, is the adventure. The joy of doing something unknown and escaping the mundane. This, after all, is why you started looking at RV prices in the first place!

Madeline Cooper
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