Electra's picture
24 September 2013

Motorhome vs caravan - how to choose?

Images used with permission

After a 1000km whirlwind trip to Auckland for the Motorhome & Caravan Supershow, our drive home was filled with various discussions of what we had seen.

The major and somewhat obvious realisation was that we needed to 'start with the end in mind'.

We already knew that our plans to live full-time on the road for 9-12 months as a family were rare; and the show confirmed that.

Vendor after vendor stated that they don't bring in anything for 6 - it's a couples or the average[1] 2-children-family market.

The plethora of motorhomes and caravans are absolutely perfect for the target market, which we learned was 55 - 75 year olds.

Additionally there were no buses at the show.

Prior to the show we were pitting a converted bus against a motorhome (or two), with the bus winning out on many counts.

The very first stand we visited, gave us an alternative idea though, suggesting we could pair a motorhome and caravan together which bore consideration; and later we saw our first caravan with slide-outs.

For those who are playing along at home here is the dichotomy we discovered:  

  • Freedom camping vs Camping ground
  • Long-term vs Short-term (weekend)
  • Year-round vs Summer (inside vs outside)
  • 7 people vs 2-4 people 
  • Solar (12V) + Gas vs 240V + Gas
  • 1 year <-> adult vs 55 - 75 years
  • Working | Schooling | Exploring vs Relaxing | Staying stationary

Those average couples or average families who want to stay the weekend in a camping ground or somewhere with basic facilities (ie electricity and water) during summer will be fine with a standard motorhome or small caravan.

The rest of us are stuck for choice in New Zealand.


Join us as we explore the considerations above in our series 'How to choose a mobile home.'

[1] www.stats.govt.nz/browse_for_stats/population/births/BirthsAndDeaths_HOTPYeDec12.aspx

Be encouraged that you are among the few who want a different life badly enough you will achieve it.

Electra's picture
13 September 2013

The Motorhome & Caravan Outdoor Supershow is one of the two annual motorhome shows in New Zealand, the other being the New Zealand Motorhome and Caravan Show.

As luck has it, the former is coming up in Auckland in a couple of weeks and we are going to make the pilgrimage one way or another.  I'm not sure how the children will handle traipsing in and out of displays and vehicles but hopefully we can keep them somewhat happy in the knowledge that we are doing it for a purpose that will benefit them too (otherwise perhaps nanna and poppa will oblige childcare for an hour or so especially while baby sleeps).

Realistically we'll need to get adult multi-day passes, to do justice to the process of researching and exploring but we may as well spend the time and money while we have the opportunity to see 'everything' in one place.

What I hope we will come away with is knowing which living and travelling solution would suit us, and if a vehicle really does exist for 7 full-timers (with permanent beds?).  At the very least it will be fuel for our dreams, and another step in the right direction.

What is your 'next step' in the direction of your dream ?

Electra's picture
09 September 2013

Whilst we were away last week Vega noticed an advertisement for a 'competition' that Cadbury are running.  We both saw it as the perfect opportunity to get our family adventure off the ground, although I can appreciate there will probably be tens of thousands of entries.

Here's what I submitted:

Cadbury Dreams

It's also great momentum to get this site at least functional and live, as was my intention in the next couple of weeks anyway.

Fingers and toes crossed this is our big break.

I don't know if it helps but you get to <3 your favourite dreams on the site.  Perhaps the people's choice sways the judges decisions?



Update: April 2015 - the Cadbury Dreams website has been taken down.

Do you have a long-term dream that seems too huge to become real?