While they’re one of the most popular ways for American’s to hit the road and escape the rigors of everyday life for a week or two, you don’t need an RV to enjoy the RV lifestyle and all of the benefits that come with it.
Sometimes two wheels are just as good as four, and you don’t need to be the biggest dog in the yard to have the kind of bark, and the sort of bite, that singles you out as a player to watch.
And let’s face it, sometimes budgets, especially in these times of uncertainty and unpredictability just don’t stretch as far as they used to.
So while it’s part and parcel of the American dream, as the RV lay slumbering, secure in its belief that’s its beloved place in the hearts and minds of the public would forever remain unchanged, the travel trailer snuck up and staked its claim to a piece of the camping zeitgeist.
Compact, smaller, and easier to manage than an RV, the travel trailer is the mobile home that you can hitch up to your car or truck and hit the road with in less time than it takes the Patriots to win a Super Bowl.
They don’t need to big, they just need to feel like home. In fact, when you’re towing a travel trailer, the smaller a travel trailer is, the happier you’ll probably be, as you don’t want to be pulling more weight than you need too.
Less, as a wise man once said, is more, and its this advice that campers and trailer devotees seem to have taken to heart, as the compact, lighter travel trailer seems to be flourishing and has finally found its place at the head of the camping table.
Small Can Be Beautiful
Most modern travel trailers, before they’re loaded up with all of the necessities that you’ll need for your camping adventure, weigh in at somewhere close to five and half thousand pounds, which doesn’t exactly make them easy to tow. If you’ve pulled that much weight behind your car, you’ll know exactly what we mean.
Then you’re going to have to factor into your budget all of the extra fuel you’ll need to tow that sort of weight, and nobody’s pocketbook needs that kind of additional stress.
But don’t fret, don’t start running the numbers that an average trailer is going to cost you just yet. There is an alternative. One that’s more sympathetic to, and lighter on, your bank balance than normal travel trailers and offers the same freedom and unlimited camping and road trip possibilities as it’s much larger cousins do.
That alternative we just told you about? It’s all about going bijou.
Small can be beautiful, and much easier on your finances which is why modest travel trailers have become the in-thing, particularly the sub-three thousand-pound models which have carved a surprisingly big slice out of the trailer market for themselves.
With nearly a thousand different trailers that hover around the three thousand pound mark currently available, we thought we’d take a closer look at five of the lightweight home away home’s that are setting the camping world on fire.
Top 5 Travel Trailers Under 3000 Pounds
OUR TOP PICK
With up to eleven different floor-plans and layouts available and a list of options and extras that would make a Ferrari dealer go green with envy, this deceptively spacious travel trailer will capture your imagination in a minute and spend the rest of its life helping you to live out every single one of your camping fantasies.
Able to easily accommodate up to four people, thanks to the unique bunk bed design that Forest River use, the R-Pod is a fully furnished and functional family-friendly travel trailer.
Made from powder-coated steel and gel-coated fiberglass, the R-Pod is made to weather any sort of storm and keep you warm and safe from the elements if your trip turns sour.
It even has a sliding dining table, so all you’ll need to pack to enjoy all of those moments when the sun puts his hat on and you feel the urge to hit the road, is your barbecue.
The R-Pod even comes with its own solar panels, so it’ll do all the work while you put your feet up and enjoy the spoils of its labors and play to your heart’s content. You probably think we’re finished right?
That’s there’s nothing else that the R-Pod could possibly offer, well we hate to burst your bubble, but the R-Pod also comes with a twenty-thousand BTU furnace, so you’ll never be cold again when you’re wrapped up as snug as a bug in a rug in this incredible little travel trailer.
The world of travel trailers prides itself on offering almost infinite diversity and possibility, and Aliner’s range of travel trailers bridges the gap between camping and trailers with ease.
A more robust, comfortable alternative to the traditional, all-too-often romanticized idea of sleeping under the stars, the Aliner gives you all the freedom of camping and all the security of a trailer.
With a towing weight of just under sixteen hundred pounds, this smaller travel trailer comes with a sofa bed, a dinette that converts into a double bed, and a kitchen that has everything you’ll need to head into the wilderness and enjoy all of the home comforts of suburbia.
Aliner travel trailers have been amazing campers for thirty years and they are, arguably, one of the brands that kick-started the small travel trailer craze.
With ten base models to chose from, Aliner prides themselves on the fact that their travel trailer comes with “everything that you need and nothing that you don’t”
From the trailer firm that put travel on the American map, and transformed the humble trailer into a global pin-up, the Airstream RV Sport is a staggeringly beautiful trailer that is far from the cheapest option in our top five but is easily the most well equipped.
Taking a break in the RV is like upping sticks and heading out to the hills in a luxury, five-star hotel room.
Weighing in at just under three thousand pounds, the RV Sport would put most homes to shame.
It doesn’t just have the sort of drop-dead gorgeous looks that would make it the stand out in any New York fashion parade, it also comes fully equipped with a chrome kitchen, air conditioning, and heating, an LG HD ready television, a blue tooth enabled JVC stereo, ultra-leather seating and it’s own solar power system, which means you can go completely off-grid and still have all the benefits of civilization.
The RV Sport isn’t just a compact, lightweight travel trailer it’s the perfect, modern mobile home and Airstream knows it.
Which is why it also comes with a reassuringly expensive price tag.
Let’s come back down to Earth after indulging in a little too much Airstream inspired fantasy and the best way to re-entire the realm of affordable, well-equipped, purpose-designed smaller travel trailers is to dive straight into Jayco Hummingbird.
Featuring no less than five different floorplans (none of which take-up more than twenty feet), the Jayco weighs between sixteen hundred and three thousand pounds and has a list of options that are designed to fit around, with, and accommodate, any budget.
With a rear sofa that easily converts into a queen-size double bed, a front kitchenette, fully tinted security glass, a Bluetooth stereo system and full LED interior lighting, the Hummingbird was made to let you enjoy every aspect of the RV world and camping without having to re-mortgage your home or sell your organs on the black market.
The Jayco Hummingbird may not have the glitz and glamour of the Airstream, but it doesn’t need any of the fancy-schmancy decor and decoration that it’s infinitely more expensive sibling possess to deliver the sort of knock out trailer punch that will leave any would-be trailer fanatic reeling and begging for more.
Founded in Indiana in nineteen seventy-two, on the all-American principles of quality, fairness, courtesy, and integrity, KZ has been making world-beating recreational vehicles and trailers ever since.
The one that we’ve been obsessing over though, is the Escape Travel Trailer.
With a total of eight different available floorplans, there isn’t a single version of the Escape that weighs more than two thousand nine hundred pounds, which puts it squarely in the sights of anyone who wants a lightweight, travel trailer that’ll make their family and friends seethe with jealousy.
The Escape would put most of its full-size competition to shame as it has everything they do and does everything they do, but it does it better. Shower, bathroom, double bed, full kitchenette, LED interior lighting.
The Escape has it all and much more and won’t short change you by scrimping on quality.
The KZ Escape made us go weak at the knees when we saw it, and we don’t mind admitting that we fell a little bit in love with it, as it’s everything that we’ve ever wanted in a travel trailer wrapped up in a gorgeously compact, sub-three thousand-pound bundle.
There’s a reason why KZ has been at the forefront of travel trailer design and manufacture for longer than most of us have been walking the face of the Earth.
It isn’t just because they’re unfailingly polite and believe that quality and reputation are just as important as profitability and success.
They’re still here because they’re absolutely the best at what they do, and the Escape travel trailer proves that beyond any shadow of a doubt. And it weighs less than three thousand pounds.
Which is, quite simply, amazing.
Why Go Small?
We’ve said it before and we’ll say it again, and as uncomfortable as it may be to hear, life is dictated by budget.
Our financial wellbeing is the guide to what we can and can’t do. But while it guides us, it doesn’t have to stop us from enjoying life to the fullest.
You don’t need the biggest travel trailer to fully embrace and relish every aspect and moment of the RV life, you just need to downsize and realize that big isn’t always beautiful.
Because, as Richard and Robert Shearman so famously said, “It’s a Small World After All”.