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View Full Version : Just retired and ready to buy first MH - Help!



gblroda
18-06-2012, 08:25
Never camped or caravaned before but we really want to get a motorhome this summer; it will be good to see more of the UK and later when we are used to it -Europe but we need to know that we will be able to afford to be away in this country as most of the campsites seem to charge 20 a night. What is the cheapest and easiest way of finding free or reasonable priced overnight stops and campsites. Any advice would be appreciated before we sign the deal!
Yours
Roda

fishy & Nina
18-06-2012, 09:08
Hi Roda,

:welcome:You've certainly started in the right place!

If you join (15 pa only) our excellent community you will be able to download thousands of places (4400 I think at Phil's last count) where we members have stopped, mainly for free.

Also plenty of advice and fun to be had throughout the posts.

Just join - you know it makes sense!:banana:

Seriously, it will be one of the best 15 you have ever spent in the world of motorhoming.

Good luck
ian & nina

mancman
18-06-2012, 09:20
in this country it tends to be a matter of word of mouth and forums like these . abroad ,esp france and germany ,you are spoilt for choice . town and villages actually provide areas to stay aires [france] and stellplatz [germany]. some are free some charge a small fee, [there are usually facilities available even elec sometimes] there are a number of guides showing locations available .remember though that these are not intended to be used as full campsites and are there to be used for one day or night stopovers. perfect if you are touring different areas. im afraid this country is not so welcoming when it comes to motorhomes !

wildman
18-06-2012, 09:27
you have lots of options. I have only paid to stay on a site 4 times in 40 years. apart from that the CL's, CS, MRS, CFL's etc provide small 5 van sites most around 10 a night.

Bigpeetee
18-06-2012, 10:21
I joined the Caravan & Camping Club, who have plenty of small maximum 5 motorhome/caravan sites located all around the UK. Usually in the 5-15 price range.

a, If you are new to motorhoming, these are great as there's no worry about being somewhere. ie there's a destination
b, They often have hookup facilities, this can become useful, if you find on the first trip that your battery doesn't last the night.
c, Failures in the first couple of outings can lead to a hate of motorhoming from the other half at least.
d, Water and waste aren't an issue
e, When you finally take the plunge and start wilding, many of us find it convenient to use such a site to refill/empty water, and if you're not travelling distances, recharge your battery
f, Sometimes it's nice to relax on a farm, where you can put out chairs and have a BBQ, eat in the fresh air etc

But joining this forum is the best 15 you'll ever spend for the poi's

The information and assistance available on here is second to none and is given freely, obviously there are times where there are differences of opinion, then it's up to you to sort the Wheat from the Chaff!!

Where are you based??

MORGANTHEMOON
18-06-2012, 10:41
Welcome to the best forum for motorhomes and campers.
You would not need to spend 20 a night.
Many members on here never pay to stop over, some pay small amounts in car parks etc, others like myself do a combination of free, car parks and sites.
There are temporary holiday sites set up during the summer with the Camping and Caravan site that are also very reasonable.

Viktor
18-06-2012, 11:45
If you have never camped or caravanned before I would suggest you spend a week and browse carefully through the forum for information.

There are your individual needs to be considered and evryone's solutions are different as to overall cost, comfort and affordability especially
when it comes to the actual expence of running the vehicle, driving it (where do you want to go...ie. narrow scenic roads, beaches etc.), fuel
costs, and ferry charges. Do you want a dual purpose camper as your main vehicle or are you going to run a MH as a second vehicle?

All these choices involve thought....me...I went for a camper van conversion based on a small van, petrol (which is also converted to run on
gas at 76p- 80p litre...diesel cannot be converted and with diesel there may be an issue with the Low Emmission Zones)...costs the same as a car to take on a ferry...but is compact in space.

Then there is the old seatbelt challenge with an older MH which while may be capable of berthing 4 or more can actually only transport 2 people
when travelling...(side facing seats and the trap of insecure loads).....

It's all here on the forum to browse...so please do read all about it before you decide what you buy.

Firefox
18-06-2012, 11:59
There are so many choices of layout it would be a good idea to go to a show and go inside vans to see what might suit you. Some may have a bigger lounge, some a bigger kitchen, others a bigger shower, or they may have a garage for bikes or an extra double bed etc.

Probably get an older second hand van for the first one. Then you can hone in on what suits you best, and not lose too much on depreciation should you decide to sell it and get something slightly different.

gblroda
18-06-2012, 19:03
you have lots of options. I have only paid to stay on a site 4 times in 40 years. apart from that the CL's, CS, MRS, CFL's etc provide small 5 van sites most around 10 a night.
what are the CL's, CS, MRS, CFL's etc .....
Roda

gblroda
18-06-2012, 19:19
I joined the Caravan & Camping Club, who have plenty of small maximum 5 motorhome/caravan sites located all around the UK. Usually in the 5-15 price range.

a, If you are new to motorhoming, these are great as there's no worry about being somewhere. ie there's a destination
b, They often have hookup facilities, this can become useful, if you find on the first trip that your battery doesn't last the night.
c, Failures in the first couple of outings can lead to a hate of motorhoming from the other half at least.
d, Water and waste aren't an issue
e, When you finally take the plunge and start wilding, many of us find it convenient to use such a site to refill/empty water, and if you're not travelling distances, recharge your battery
f, Sometimes it's nice to relax on a farm, where you can put out chairs and have a BBQ, eat in the fresh air etc

But joining this forum is the best 15 you'll ever spend for the poi's

The information and assistance available on here is second to none and is given freely, obviously there are times where there are differences of opinion, then it's up to you to sort the Wheat from the Chaff!!

Where are you based??

We are based in Northumberland (Hexham area). Looks like it will be 15 well spent!
Roda

gblroda
18-06-2012, 20:00
Love all the info especially wildman only paying to camp overnight once every 10 years = brilliant!

That's a good point about failures in the first few outings that can lead to the other half hating motorhoming....will have to get it right!

We have checked layouts for a few months now and fancy a drop down bed to save on space. If anyone has any other advice before we take the plunge please hurry!

Roda's other half x





I joined the Caravan & Camping Club, who have plenty of small maximum 5 motorhome/caravan sites located all around the UK. Usually in the 5-15 price range.

a, If you are new to motorhoming, these are great as there's no worry about being somewhere. ie there's a destination
b, They often have hookup facilities, this can become useful, if you find on the first trip that your battery doesn't last the night.
c, Failures in the first couple of outings can lead to a hate of motorhoming from the other half at least.
d, Water and waste aren't an issue
e, When you finally take the plunge and start wilding, many of us find it convenient to use such a site to refill/empty water, and if you're not travelling distances, recharge your battery
f, Sometimes it's nice to relax on a farm, where you can put out chairs and have a BBQ, eat in the fresh air etc

But joining this forum is the best 15 you'll ever spend for the poi's

The information and assistance available on here is second to none and is given freely, obviously there are times where there are differences of opinion, then it's up to you to sort the Wheat from the Chaff!!

Where are you based??

lotty
18-06-2012, 20:36
Welcome to the site :welcome:
why don't you hire one for a week before you buy? Thats what we did. It gives you a good idea of what you like and don't like in the van and also if you like Motorhoming in general.
Some Sales companies will hire one and if you buy off them will knock the price of the hire off the purchase price.

Lotty

Deleted user 21925
18-06-2012, 20:43
Welcome to the site and good luck with your search. I have just found my own MH and I'm really pleased with it, but you have to 'kiss a lot of frogs' as they say!

dodge2transit
19-06-2012, 13:44
i would defantly consider the loo part of a van this is very important. thats my pennies worth lol big bums on small seats dont work ,:ninja:

Bigpeetee
19-06-2012, 14:04
As we're getting older, we chose a fixed bed as we didn't want to make it up every night or sleep on joints in the cushions!!

A separate shower was a must as we hate damp toilet paper from the shower, also treads wet every where.

An oven was important as we enjoy eating proper food, tins are OK for a couple of days, so we needed a fridge as well.

It took a lot of looking around until we found our baby, but it was worth it.

For us, a slightly larger MH is worth it as there's plenty of space and equipment, ours is Left Hand Drive and isn't an issue in the UK, but great in Europe!!

Fitted a Microwave Oven, Large inverter for microwave and wife's hairdryer, larger batteries for inverter, solar panels to keep the batteries charged up.

We nearly had a disastrous start to our motorhoming as we dashed out Europe bound after only 6 weeks, not long enough to shake down all the little niggles, believe me, a wife whose hair looks like nothing on earth, is not a happy bunny, and when the charging circuit failed, the battery went flat, No TV, no hair dryer, couldn't even light the cooker...............

The renting option is good, at least you might decide what you don't want!!

Think about what you want it for, long trips, days out, how many people etc

If you want, call me one evening 07979 508286 Pete

markymo
19-06-2012, 15:03
I agree with bigpeetee if your spending any sort of time in a motorhome on the big side is better than the small side a fixed bed or a A class drop down style of bed is a must for us as well
making a bed up every night can get very tedious as we found out many moons ago
what places you are thinking of going is a big buying factor I live in Cornwall and spend most of my time stand up paddle surfing hard to get to spots so when we brought are first Motorhome a C class over the cab bed style was out of the question much to vulnerable to low tree branches
I rushed in to buying my first one and it was not a good buy just did not tick enough boxes have a list of musts and a list of would likes
sorry if I have gone over some of the same ground as others

dodge2transit
19-06-2012, 15:37
i also agree about the bed, iv only just got the fome sheeting sorted out and befor this it was a case of lifting a seet off the bottom and lifting and twisting it in plase up above the cab then making the bed on top of that, a reel pain this.


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