Do people only choose Pop Ups because they have no other choice?

z.saw

Member
Aug 23, 2022
71
Hi,

Just looking to hear if anyone chooses to use Pop Ups despite being able to get a travel trailer if they wanted. Not everyone has the money and capable tow vehicle to haul a travel trailer, but for those that could if they wanted to, why do you still choose a pop up?

I have never had a camper, either as a kid or adult, and am looking into getting something for our family of 4 and this is something I’ve been wondering.
 

Hilldweller

Super Active Member
Mar 2, 2021
1,063
Hog Waller, GA
I bought an Aliner because I wanted a hard-sided camper with a residential-sized mattress that a 6'5" person could stand up in that fits in a standard garage. I don't have the sort of yard that I can park a travel trailer in and I don't like the idea of storing a trailer off-site.

Previous trailers were a South African military trailer with a RTT on it and a teardrop. Looking forward to a big-boy trailer when I retire.

070-Copy_zpsdb365943.jpg 0703201050_Film4.jpg 20210703_100316.jpg
 

jmkay1

2004 Fleetwood/Coleman Utah
Oct 10, 2013
7,877
Northern Virginia
Truth be told I love my popup. Yes, someday I do see myself upgrading in the future. However right now for me there are more pos than cons in owning a popup. However the cons list is growing As I want to camp way more but weekend trips are beginning to feel more like a chore than a joy. I love the 360 degree view you get in the popup when all the windows are open. I love the breezes that come through on a beautiful day. Towing a popup is easier on the tow vehicle so long as you did your homework right not to mention you get way better gas mileage. Having a low profile camper makes going around really tight bends in the mountains less scary and parking at a campsite you don’t have to worry about hitting tree limbs as much as a hard sided camper. Downside, canvas is a very lousy insulator so your furnace and AC are working extremely hard and at times you will find cannot keep up And that’s with reflectix and PUGS in the windows and over the bunks. Setting up can be a pain and setting up in the rain just plain sucks. Lack of storage inside means your moving things around a lot. if you were tent campers before you ususully have a leg up because you are already familiar with the downsides. Good luck with whatever you decide.
 

Sjm9911

Super Active Member
May 31, 2018
12,458
Nj
For some your are corect, others not so much. Some like the tent and openness, others like better gas millage. And others like that they can tow it to places hardsiders cant go. But it all depends on, your camping style, what you like, money, and your tv. Its like buying a house, diffrent things appeal to diffrent people.
 

TSQ

Active Member
Mar 28, 2021
377
Niagara Region, ON
Neither my wife nor I have any interest in driving a truck or large SUV as a daily driver. So that kind of limits us to ~2500 lbs and a small frontal area.

Plus the fuel economy is great, but I guess that ties back into the economic factor as well. For us it as much of an environmental choice as well.

Interesting question though. We are just wrapping up a cross country trip and I think some people definitely see it as a financial limitation.
 

1380ken

Super Active Member
Nov 7, 2013
2,990
Mass
Hi,

Just looking to hear if anyone chooses to use Pop Ups despite being able to get a travel trailer if they wanted. Not everyone has the money and capable tow vehicle to haul a travel trailer, but for those that could if they wanted to, why do you still choose a pop up?

I have never had a camper, either as a kid or adult, and am looking into getting something for our family of 4 and this is something I’ve been wondering.
Most people have Pop ups because they can't afford anything else? Nice second post.
 

LilRed

Super Active Member
Jan 9, 2021
1,204
Long Island NY
As SJM and others wrote - I budgeted accordingly when shopping so I had no issues with the cost aspect. I actually started looking at TT's coming from tenting. When it came down to it, I chose to go with a more expensive Highwall PUP than the TT's I had found, as I loved the open tenting feel vs being in a walled room on wheels. Sometimes it's just about personal preference vs "wish I had".
 
Jul 13, 2022
20
if i had the money, i'd buy both.
popup for spring summer fall
full blown TT for winters
PP - easier to tow, less fatigue on my end by the time I make it to my destination, less fuel (whatever that may be: gas, diesel or electric), less risks (sway, side winds, sudden brakes, etc), way more connected to nature which is the whole purpose of going where we go
TT - quieter overall in a busy camp, holds heat much better, safer from the animals (not a worry on my end as in Ontario we only have black bears)

in my eyes, probably the best of both worlds would be an A liner expedition with the permanent bed
 

kitphantom

Super Active Member
Platinum Supporting Member
Dec 26, 2009
13,946
Albuquerque, NM
Personal preference in many cases, I would bet, although I'm sure that tow vehicles and budgets have an effect too.
We never thought that we'd be people in a travel trailer. We stated out in tents, andfully expected to be the old people in tents later on. We really bought the first popup, after around 10 years of ground tenting, to have an alternative when we went to wetter climates. After a memorable trip to Glacier NP, where out tent got so wet we dried it on the rocks at Canyonlands on the way home, using our smaller, back-up tent to camp in, we started looking for a small pop-up, for an anticipated trip to the PNW. (still haven't got there.) Fast forward to 2010, when we did an extensive renovation on that first, tiny popup, which h ad been idle for a few years after the tenting disintegrated. We enjoyed it and after 2 seasons up-sized to an 8' pup. Two years later, my deteriorating back was fast becoming an issue. I couldn't put up a popup solo reliably (nor a tent, for that matter, although I can handle the shade structures we've had in recent years) and finding a comfortable place to sit inside in bad weather was also an issue. We were on a trip when we found I couldn't do the tasks I did while my husband did others. I sat inside and literally cried about the whole thing while he finished putting up camp. He came inside and said that maybe it was time to consider a travel trailer. I was floored, since he'd never really seemed interested in one, even the popups were more my thing, although he certainly enjoyed them. He still gets tent time, since he backpacks, which I can't do anymore.
We never stored either popup inside the garage, and the TT lives in our driveway. If we ever change, the next TT has to fit there too, I don't like the idea of storing it off-site, for a number of reasons. (Our vehicles are parked outside too. The garage is workshop and storage, and without replacing the doors, we can't fit either vehicle in it anyway..)
Since we didn't sell out popup until spring, after buying the TT in the fall, we had time to consider keeping both, so we ahd a choice for each trip, just as we still have front country tent supplies. However, the idea of sticking both and maintaining them seemed too much, and we decided to sell the popup to someone who would enjoy it.
 
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z.saw

Member
Aug 23, 2022
71
Most people have Pop ups because they can't afford anything else? Nice second post.
I would say I’m in that group! I don’t have a TV that can tow anything bigger and right now with my young family I can’t afford a 30-40k TT. So I was looking to see if other people actually prefer a popup to a TT and why. I have to admit I was a bit leery of a pop up I initially but after reading on this forum I’m starting to see some of the advantages.
 

Raycfe

Waterford Ct.
Oct 3, 2007
18,445
Waterford, Ct
I would say I’m in that group! I don’t have a TV that can tow anything bigger and right now with my young family I can’t afford a 30-40k TT. So I was looking to see if other people actually prefer a popup to a TT and why. I have to admit I was a bit leery of a pop up I initially but after reading on this forum I’m starting to see some of the advantages.
A popup is a great starting point
 

Hilldweller

Super Active Member
Mar 2, 2021
1,063
Hog Waller, GA
I think so! I think for us the most important thing is having large comfortable beds which it seems popups actually are better for. I don’t have much experience with campers though.
TTs have a huge spread when it comes to comfort, convenience, features, durability.

Some trailers rattle apart on the way home from the dealer's lot.
Some will be fought over by your grandchildren when you die.




My criteria for my big-boy trailer will include 4-season capability, nice kitchen, residential sized bed, etc.
Jayco makes an Eagle line that seems good on paper. But they're not always built to high standards...
 

Sjm9911

Super Active Member
May 31, 2018
12,458
Nj
A popup is a great starting point
This also, I got the pop up because it was an easy cheaper way to enter the camping world. As I didn't know if I would like it or not, I didnt want to sink a ton of money on something I maybe would only do once or twice. After that I got a TT. Used, but good for my buget. I can afford a new class a if I wanted it, but I like the TT and I am cheap, lol. Spending money just to have things is good if your rich. I am not, but you can find reasonable priced things in the hobby you like. Yes, camping to me is a hobby, relaxing, and fun.
 




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