What you need to know when considering buying a caravan

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For lots of people, choosing a caravan can be a very difficult task.  What size caravan is best? What’s your budget? Should you buy new or second hand? What accessories are needed? The following may help when choosing the perfect caravan for your needs.

Buying second hand

Buying a used caravan can be an excellent way of saving money, but you must be very careful and check for problems with it.  Expect a User’s Handbook to be supplied with a used touring caravan. Check for any signs of wear and tear that may need to be looked at including bodywork. Ensure it’s been regularly serviced.  Key areas to check are signs of damp, gas pipes and condition of the chassis itself. Try and bring a professional with you who can check these items for you. Gas cooking appliances contained within the used touring caravan should be accompanied with a certificate of compliance.

New or used

The truth is, there is no right or wrong choice between a new or used touring caravan. Used touring caravans present pros such as a wide range of models from down the years, as well as lower price points. Meanwhile, new touring caravans can offer all the latest specs and innovations in aerodynamics, as well as the advantage of zero mileage.

Different types of caravan

There are many types of caravan. One of the most popular choices is the single axle caravan.  These are around 3 to 6 metres in length.  Most can sleep up to anywhere from two to six people. Most modern caravans today also feature many modern comforts that we have in our homes.  There is normally a kitchen and a toilet.  Always go to see the caravan in person to get a good feel of space and check what’s on offer.  Some caravans that are available are those with two axles.  Generally these are much bigger and usually kept on site.

Choose your number of berths

The number of beds which you need in your touring caravan is an important part of the decision making process. To help you decide, consider these questions;  Will you entertain friends? Will your family get bigger in the future?

Can your car pull the caravan

The full weight of your loaded touring caravan should not exceed 85 per cent of the kerb weight of your car. The kerb weight is the total weight of the car excluding passengers and cargo, but including oil and fuel.

Towing license

Always check to see if you require a towing license. If you passed your driving prior to January 1st 1997 then you will automatically be allowed to tow a heavier caravan, although you will need to check the car and caravan weight combination.  However, if you passed your test after this date, then the load you will be towing comes into account which will also include the weight of your car.  Check your driving license and read up on the regulations.