The Greatest Challenges of Motorhome Travel (and How to Overcome Them)
One of the best ways to see a place is to take a cross-country motorhome road trip. But as idyllic as this lifestyle can be, it’s not without its challenges...
We love motorhome travel. We wouldn’t be in this business otherwise. But that’s not to say there aren’t a few challenges to living life on the road in one of these glorious machines. Most folk just have to learn about these pitfalls the hard way, and they do say experience is the best teacher - but who wants to learn from experience when you don’t have to? We’d like to save you a bunch of headaches and hassles with our quick guide to some of the stickiest challenges for motorhome adventurers.
1. Personal space
In short, there’s not a lot of it. How crowded your motorhome feels will depend on the size of the vehicle and how many people are travelling together, but suffice it to say that cabin fever is a relatively common issue. Thankfully it’s also one that can be avoided or at least minimised. Plan ahead to do separate activities on some days - it’s great to spend time with your partner or friends, but if you’re stuck with someone 24/7, it’s going to wear on even the most solid of relationships. It can sometimes be a good idea to bring a tent along, especially when travelling with a bunch of friends, so if someone desperately needs personal space at the end of a long day’s drive it’s not an issue.
Yes, motorhome trips require a fair deal of planning and preparation and there’s nothing wrong with that, but just remember that you have to be ready to set that all aside and adapt to the realities of the road ahead of you. It’s a road trip - it’s never going to go exactly to plan; that’s part of the beauty of it. Make sure to leave enough flexibility in your schedule to account for unexpected detours and delays. If you plan out every hour of every day, you’re just going to end up feeling like you’re trying to frantically check boxes - which is no fun and quickly robs road trips of their spontaneous charm.
This is all too easy. The fact of the matter is that there’s only so much space in any motorhome, no matter how large, and “so much” isn’t that much. So bringing all your home comforts and half your wardrobe just isn’t a viable option. That’s okay though because you don’t need all that stuff. Take a good hard look at your packing list and ask yourself “Do I really need to bring that?” Be ruthless. In the end you’ll realise that all that extra chaff was just holding you back anyway. After all, who wants to spend hours packing and unpacking your motorhome, desperately trying to squeeze in one more “useful” knick-knack? Keep things simple - you won’t regret it.
4. Choosing the right motorhome
This is such a basic detail that many people tend to gloss it over. It’s tempting to just go for the cheapest model, or the biggest, or the one that looks the nicest. But it’s more than worth your time to do a little research when comes to choosing which vehicle you’ll be both living and travelling in for days (at least!). Is there enough space for everyone? Is it suitable for the roads you’ll be travelling? How does it compare with similar offerings from other suppliers? To quickly get a good idea of the pros and cons of different models, head to MotorhomeRepublic.com. Spending a few minutes comparing your options can save you hours or even days of headaches later.
We’re taking a motorhome trip through the South Island of New Zealand this week - if you know of any other challenges we should keep our eyes peeled for, we’d love to hear from you! If you help us out of a sticky situation we’ll even give you a shout out... Share your expertise with us in the comments below and follow our travels using Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and the hashtag #LetsGoMotorhome