Can't pull the trigger! How much do you use you Pop Up?

Discussion in 'Camper Pre-Purchase Questions' started by rsttoole, Feb 21, 2013.

  1. CamL48

    CamL48 New Member

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    You're asking a bunch of PUP enthusiasts who love PUPs so much that they remain active even in the middle of winter. So, you're getting a skewed answer. We all camp a lot.

    You might start with some personal inventory. What do you do in the summer? Do you have 3 kids in competitive baseball or soccer, e.g.? Why didn't you camp more last year?

    Answering questions like that will help you understand your potential to make a PUP a garage ornament. For example, if you have other competing hobbies, camping may take a back seat. If you didn't camp more last year because you travel for your job a lot in the summer. Not good. But, maybe you didn't camp more because you hate sleeping on the ground.

    I'm an average non-retired guy. I do have travel with my job and have 3 boys that play baseball in the summer. We still get away for 6-7 trips at 2-3 nights per trip. It's great. Our camping had dwindled a bit, but mainly due to tiring of a tent. We'll be over 20 nights this summer. Getting off the ground has been the best thing we've ever done (camping-wise).

    If you shop and get a good deal on a used PUP, you'll likely be able to get your money back out of it. Buy a 2005 model for $5K, try it out. If it's a bust, sell it the next season for $4.8K. No big deal, other than tying up your money for a year or so.

    Good luck.
     
  2. 94-D2

    94-D2 Happy Campin'

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    Ask the owner of an $80,000 ski boat how often the use it. Few times a year? Buying an RV is not a monetary investment that you should expect a monetary return on. What you can expect is a lifetime of memories and experiences that can't be purchased any other way. If you have children, camping in a pup, or anywhere any way will burn the smells, sounds and feelings of camping into their fiber. They, in turn, will transfer those experiences to your grandchildren and will help to shape their character and become part of your family's DNA. That is an investment. One you can certainly take to the bank. If your going to attempt to rationalize spending money on an RV, do it in a way that repays you over and over in so any ways. You can never justify the cost if you have to worry over it.


    Treat yourselves if you can afford it. I realize many returns from my investment.....


    Happy Campin'


    J
     
  3. Boroviewfarm

    Boroviewfarm Farmer marries veterinarian; now raises kids.

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    Last year, we made it out about 10 nights. My DW was major preggo and didn't like sleeping anywhere! I took my son solo a couple of times. This year we already have 10 days planned, and expect to hit the 30 mark by the end of the year.

    This will only be our second year with a pup. It's hard for us all to get away with our family of five ranging from 11 years old down to 9wks. We have a farm too, so someone usually stays behind to care for the place.

    All in all, we have been very happy with our purchase of a used pup. As others have suggested, I might try to rent or borrow before buying one. I certainly would recommend getting a used one until you decide if you want to stick with it.
     
  4. chinolofus

    chinolofus New Member

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    We just got ours at the end of last yr. We camped 5 weekends in 2 months, 2-3 nights per trip. We live about 90 and 70 miles from the places we camp. One thing that helped is that setting up a pup is so much easier at night than a tent is. So we can wait for traffic to die down and not having to worry about making it before sun set. Hell our first time out ever we got there 2 hrs after sunset. I never would have done that if I was tent camping.

    Sent from my Nexus 7 using Tapatalk 2
     
  5. pcfeld

    pcfeld New Member

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    The one thing we have managed to do is take a week every year for our vacation in the PUP. They generally have been longer than we ever took before we had the PUP as they kept the cost down. Naturally work schedules play in on it but we still get out enough to keep us from selling after 9 yrs.
     
  6. Old_Geezer

    Old_Geezer Well-Known Member

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    A pup, or any camper, even used minimally, is a good thing. The problem is the addiction factor. I started going to the state park for weeks at a time and commuting back and forth to work from there. If you can do that you can really stretch out vacation days. Last year our camper was at the State Park for 71 nights from mid April to Mid Oct. It gets a little expensive but leaving work, going straight there and building a fire, is the greatest even not being there all day long.
     
  7. johnsagraves

    johnsagraves New Member

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    I am old retired guy that is in his last year of driving a school bus. Reason I drive school bus is the time off. We pack up as soon as school is out and come home as soon as school starts. From Florida to Michigan on spring break when I take an extra week off and Florida to different locations at Christmas. I bet we camp from 100 to 120 days per year. This year, I plan on retiring in October and then no restraints. Will leave our home in Florida in October and follow the leaf color change to Michigan and then head to L.A. California for the winter. We will rent our sticks our to the Snowbirds while we are gone. We started 6 years ago with a tent. Leaving next week for South Carolina to Ohio and Michigan and be home in a couple weeks. We have seen parts of this country that I would never had the opportunity to enjoy without our PUP. Go for it. We have several old retired friends and they have become our family down here in Florida, just waiting for a reason to go weekend camping. We play tennis, bridge, and involved in church, but camping or traveling is our favorite. Just give me a yell and we are ready to go. John.
     
  8. fritz_monroe

    fritz_monroe New Member

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    It really depends on what you make a priority. If you don't camp much now, then you may or may not use it all that much. But like someone else said, how often does a person that has a ski boat use it? Or a Wave Runner? Probably a lot less than most of the campers here.
     
  9. Blkvoodoo

    Blkvoodoo Member

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    "Using" the camper can be a broad range of meanings.

    You don't have to actually go anywhere to use it.

    We use ours in the driveway, or if its dry enough I'll set it up on the back side of our lot, that's a completely different feel and environment.

    Yeah, it's still "home" but that isn't really a bad thing.

    The draw is we aren't in the house, sleeping outside is sleeping outside, there are only a few instances where that may be a bad thing.

    We do go places, but I think we use it just as much at home as we do at a camp ground or beach.
     
  10. pupateer

    pupateer Native Texan

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    Camping really doesn't have to be an expensive hobby. There are lots of good pups around for $2500 that will keep that value for a long time. If you store the pup in your garage or property, there are no storage fees. If you are busy and can't camp all season, it doesn't really cost you anything. If you like camping, and want to create some good family memories, there are very few ways to do it better, or cheaper than a pup. You can't worry about monetary ROI on any RV, but I bet there is no better return than a 10 year old pup.
     
  11. Zenzilla

    Zenzilla New Member

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    We were put here to enjoy Life and learn so I'd say go for it. I get mine tomorrow
     
  12. willapus

    willapus New Member

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    My parents gave me my first used popup for a 25th birthday present and I've had one for the past 19 years. There were times that I didn't use it for long periods of time, but it didn't matter because it was cheap enough and small enough that it wasn't a burden. I have camped more in the past 3 years than I had in the previous 16 years and love it as do my kids. I have always gotten used ones, so I am more concerned with maintenance than depreciation. For my previous 3 campers, over a 16 year span, I paid $2,700 total and have sold them for $1,500. I still have the $3,400 camper in the garage. So my total cost of owning a popup for the previous 16 years was $1,200 plus maybe 300 in tires. I'll save close to that much on hotel rooms during our spring break trip and have a better time. Get a decent used one (2k-3.5k) and try it. If you don't like it you can sell it probably for near the same price.
     
  13. badgamuss

    badgamuss Member

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    We go out at least once a month for a long weekend. Then we will have a couple of weeklong trips every year. [:D]
     
  14. CamL48

    CamL48 New Member

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    The boat analogy that people are using here simply underscores my earlier point. Certainly, many boat owners end up not using them as much as they thought. There's an old saying that the two best days of owning a boat are the day you bought it and the day you sold it.

    With that said, if you went to a boating/skiing forum and asked the membership if they used their boats very much, you'd get a definitive, "Heck yeah!" Most people active in a forum are active users of that device, technology, or product.

    Same goes here. Lots of people buy RVs and end up not using them. I doubt many are active on RV forums.

    So, you're getting a really skewed answer to your core question. Extrapolating the experiences here to estimate your own potential RV usage is not that accurate, as the experiences here are not average. You really need to evaluate your own life and priorities.

    As I and others have said, though, buying a nice, used PUP is a pretty safe investment. After ~5 years or so, they don't depreciate that much. You could grab one and see what happens. If you use it, great. If you don't, flip it next year for very little loss.

    Good luck.
     
  15. rsttoole

    rsttoole Hello from Boise Idaho

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    Thanks for all the great replies!
     
  16. bondo54

    bondo54 Well-Known Member

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    2 weeks a year would be more but wife can't get time off as easy as I can. (boss loves to get me out of his hair so to speak)
     
  17. bropaul

    bropaul New Member

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    I found a '94 Coleman on eBay that had been used for hunting. It was clean, canvas was good and very solid, no leaks. Bought it for $500 and the owner delivered it to us...n/c. (We needed to get a hitch on our vehicle.) I replaced the ratty curtains (made new ones) and we used it for 5 years, usually two weeks a year. It fit in our garage and the DH's company car parked outside. (Since I rearranged the garage so the camper would fit, MY minivan got to stay inside.) We had tent camped for 20 years but it was getting too hard on my aging bones. We loved that camper but then I found another, again on eBay, an '03 that had a 3 way frig, potty, showers, 2 king beds and a/c... another great deal. We sold the '94 for $750! This will be our 4th year with the '03 and we can't wait for spring. Now that we are retired we camp from April until October.

    Shop smart and take your time. If you have been reading the posts on what to look for in a used pup and what to avoid, you will be on your way to being a happy camper! Good luck, I hope you find the camper of your dreams!

    Diane
     
  18. Unstable_Tripod

    Unstable_Tripod Well, there's your problem!

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    Last year I camped about 70 nights.
     
  19. DragNfly

    DragNfly New Member

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    We bought a 'gently used' PU a few years ago to replace tent camping. We went from 5 or 6 times a year to once a month, which is pretty easy here in South Texas.

    Storing the camper is the main question. If you are paying for off site storage it may be cheaper to rent a PU when you do have the time to camp.

    We do only weekend trips so its easy for us as there is no time off from work. We load the camper Thursday night, hook it to the TV Friday when I get home from work. I drive to where the DH works and pick him up to drive directly to camp.

    Since the camper stays largely pre-packed, we like to say all we have left to do is add liquor and ice.
     
  20. apopkabob

    apopkabob New Member

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    As they say results may vary. My wife agreed to go camping with me after we got the pup now she is the biggest fan and wants to go more often. Worst case is you use it for a year or two and then sell and move on to something else.

    Sent from my SGH-T999 using Tapatalk 2
     

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