Many travelers are out there searching for their “happy place.” If you find yourself returning to the same destination over and over again, a destination trailer may be a good idea for you. But what is a destination trailer?
A destination trailer is a great way to get the benefits of having a second home with the flexibility of a travel trailer. Destination trailers allow you to stay in one place for an extended amount of time. They also feature upgrades, amenities, and features that are often lacking in traditional travel trailers. These small details make extended vacations more comfortable and enjoyable.
Destination trailers also provide you with the flexibility to move from place to place that is so important for RVers. You may find that buying a destination trailer is a cost-effective way to have the second home of your dreams.
A destination trailer is a travel trailer that is designed to stay in one place for more extended periods. Destination trailers have features and amenities similar to a house. High ceilings, residential-style kitchens, large showers, solid wood construction, multiple bedrooms, and baths are all typical features in a destination trailer.
Because of the higher quality construction and extra features, destination trailers are heavier than traditional travel trailers. Despite this excess weight, destination trailers are still towable by non-commercial vehicles. Most destination trailers weigh around 10,000 pounds, so you will need a well-equipped one-ton truck to tow them.
Destination trailers are the perfect choice for anyone who wants to stay for an extended amount of time in one location while maintaining the ability to move the trailer quickly if needed. Most owners use destination trailers seasonally and move them back home after the stay is completed.
Unlike park model trailers, which are designed to stay in one location permanently, destination trailers do not require a commercial vehicle to tow them to each site. Destination trailers are also self-contained with freshwater and waste holding tanks, just like a travel trailer.
Can You Move a Destination Trailer?
Many destination trailers weigh as much as 10,000 pounds. Despite this heavyweight, destination trailers are designed to move without using a commercial vehicle. Destination trailers are bumper-towed, just the same as a traditional travel trailer. You will need a heavy-duty truck to haul this large load. If you have a one-ton truck, you should be able to move a destination trailer.
While destination trailers can be moved, they are best enjoyed when in one location for an extended time, such as several months or a season. Because of their larger weight and size, you should not move a destination trailer frequently or over very long distances.
It is important to note that destination trailers do not have the lighter, aerodynamic design of travel trailers. Even if you are experienced towing a fifth wheel or another type of travel trailer, you may find it a bit more challenging to tow a destination trailer.
As with any new travel trailer, you will want to make sure to practice turning, parking, braking, and reversing before setting out with your destination trailer. Designating someone to serve as a spotter when you are backing up, or parking is a good idea.
How is a Destination Trailer Different from a Travel Trailer?
While destination trailers can be towed just like a traditional travel trailer, destination trailers feature many special features and amenities that are not found in travel trailers. Destination trailers are built for comfort and convenience, as opposed to travel trailers, which are made with a lightweight design in mind.
Think of a destination trailer as a home on wheels. These homes away from home, have residential styles and features that you would expect to find in a “stick and bricks” home. The extra weight of most destination trailers is what allows them to have all of these additional, residential-style features.
One of the most significant differences between a destination trailer and a travel trailer is the ceiling height. With ceiling heights of 82 inches, destination trailers feel more spacious.
Another common feature of destination trailers is multiple slides. Slides serve to open up the space inside the trailer and give it a more home-like feel. Having so much extra space allows owners to feel comfortable during extended trips and vacations.
Destination trailers have fantastic amenities that are usually not found in travel trailers. Destination trailers feature everything from sliding glass doors, full-size appliances, hardwood cabinets, to large, spacious showers and bathrooms.
Another fantastic feature of destination trailers is lots of windows. Most floor plans offer many more windows than you would find in a travel trailer, allowing natural light to pour into your space. Some destination trailers even have bay windows, floor to ceiling windows, or even French doors.
In the kitchen, destination trailers really shine. Hardwood cabinets, deep sinks, solid surface countertops, and freestanding refrigerators make it easy to cook and prepare meals. These luxurious features make a big difference when you are living in your trailer for an extended amount of time.
Other common amenities in destination trailers include electric fireplaces, central vacuum systems, and even extra bedrooms and baths.
Can You Live in a Destination Trailer Year-Round?
Destination trailers are designed for four seasons living. While most people use destination trailers to get away from cold weather during the winter months, it is possible to live in a destination trailer even in colder weather.
With features like propane heating and even onboard fireplaces, destination trailers offer many of the comforts and conveniences you would expect to find in a traditional stick and bricks home. These features make it easy to live in a destination trailer year-round.
How Much Do Destination Trailers Cost?
As with any travel trailer or RV, the specifics of your destination trailer will impact the price. The size, make, and model will all affect the cost of the destination trailer.
The average cost of a destination trailer is about the same as similarly sized traditional travel trailers. They are also considerably less than purchasing a park model or second home, even though you will have many of the same benefits.
New destination trailers start at around $30,000 and can go up to $50,000 or more. A used destination trailer will cost considerably less than a new model.
How Long Do Destination Trailers Last?
Because of their higher quality design, destination trailers last longer than your average travel trailer. Most travel trailers and RVs can last up to 25 years. With a destination trailer, you will likely be able to use the trailer for even longer, making them a good investment. As with any RV or travel trailer, the main factor as to how long your destination trailer will last is how well you take care of it.
What are the Top Destination Trailer Brands?
Destination trailers are relative newcomers to the RV scene. You will find that they are manufactured by many of the same leading manufacturers in the traditional travel trailer market.
While there are many great destination trailer manufacturers out there, we recommend a few great companies to check out. These manufacturers have been producing quality products for many years, and you are sure to find a model and floor plan that will meet your needs.
Forest River, Palomino, and Keystone are all top destination trailer manufacturers. Each of these companies offers destination trailers in various floor plans and styles. We recommend taking a look at these options when beginning your search for the perfect destination trailer.
If you are ready to trade the long miles of hauling your travel trailer from place to place for settling in at one location, a destination trailer may be the right choice for you.
We love that you can move destination trailers yourself, which gives you more flexibility than a park model. They also offer more features and comforts than a traditional travel trailer.
Before moving forward with a destination trailer, consider your vehicle. If you already have a one-ton truck, a destination trailer will be fine for you. However, if you are going to need to upgrade your vehicle to tow the destination trailer, you will want to keep that in mind when creating your budget.