A truck camper is a camper that sits in the bed of a particular type of pickup truck. You can think of this as a much smaller version of an RV allowing you to go anywhere and have all sorts of adventures.
We can guide you if you’re a newbie interested in getting a truck camper. We’ve written this article to help you understand the pros and cons of purchasing a camper truck and what tips to look for once you decide to get one.
So let’s dig in.
Why Buy a Truck Camper?
If you’re unsure about buying a truck camper, let us help. This section will look into the pros and cons of owning a truck camper.
Here are a few advantages of owning a truck camper.
Easy to Drive
Since the camper sits on the truck’s bed, you won’t be towing anything along, making it easier to drive. In addition, you don’t have to think twice about making a turn or backing up because of the vehicle’s compact size.
You can go Boondocking
If you want to go camping at a campsite, the bigger RV will take you with no problem. These campsites can accommodate all types of vehicles, and you don’t have to worry about finding enough space.
However, if you want to go boondocking, you may need to purchase a smaller vehicle. Exploring new campsites may be fun, but your big and luxurious RV may not be able to accompany you.
You’ll encounter all sorts of bumpy and rugged landscapes, smaller roads, and sites with almost no camping facilities.
A truck camper may easily take you to such places and help you navigate narrow roads while discovering beautiful sites to camp on.
Bigger vehicles, like RVs, require more attention and maintenance, which may not just be costly but also an inconvenience.
A truck camper won’t bother you with this problem. Due to their compact size, they are easier to maintain therefore saving your precious time and money.
Easy to Store and Park
Going camping in a luxurious RV sounds excellent, but what will you do on days when you’re not on the road? You can store it, but these vehicles require a lot of space which most people can’t have. Renting out storage of this size may also be costly.
A truck camper is small, and you can easily park it in your garage like you would your car. Similarly, you can park your camper anywhere when you’re out without worrying about disturbing others.
You Have a Truck too
Perhaps the best thing about owning a truck camper is separating the truck from the camper and using it for other activities.
The insurance cost for truck campers is minimal. However, the laws differ according to where you live, so you may have to look this up to see how much you’ll have to pay.
Truck campers cost less initially, but they consume very little fuel, thus lowering your fuel costs. RVs are bigger and heavier and therefore consume more energy, whereas the small and compact size of a truck camper makes it economical when it comes to fuel consumption.
Truck campers may have lots of advantages, but they come with a few disadvantages.
Truck campers may be cheap due to their small size, but that means a lack of space. This makes this vehicle suitable for people with smaller families and those who don’t mind spending time sleeping in a small area.
This also means you won’t be able to pack a lot of amenities in your camper. You’ll only have a small sleeping space and a kitchen which aren’t a lot of facilities.
The Camper May be Heavy for Truck
You need to ensure your truck is solid enough to carry your camper. It is possible that the truck may not be able to hold all that weight. Also, a heavier camper will mean more fuel consumption and fuel costs.
Things to Look For When Buying a Truck Camper
If you’re thinking of buying a truck camper but don’t know where to start, we can help. This section will go over the things you must look into when purchasing a truck camper to purchase the best one for you and your family.
Choose Your Camper
There are two types of truck campers; pop-up truck campers and hard-side truck campers.
A pop-up truck camper has a camper that you can “pop-up” when you stop to camp. The camper’s roof can be raised for camping and can be lowered when you hit the road again.
On the other hand, hard side truck campers remain to have a solid roof and walls which erect the whole time whether you’re driving or camping.
Each type comes with its own set of advantages, and you must buy the one that suits you the most.
Hard side truck campers will provide you with better heat and sound insulation and have more storage to offer. They also come with a more significant number of amenities than the pop-up camper.
However, pop-up campers have benefits too. When the roof is down, they have a lower center of gravity, reducing drag and consuming less fuel. This also reduces the wind noise and makes them more suitable for off-road adventures.
That doesn’t mean hard side campers aren’t suited to such travels, but pop-up campers will perform significantly better. For example, if you’re going by a road with lots of low tree branches or common roadway obstacles, the lower pop-up camper will safely take you out of these areas without any collisions.
In addition, pop-up campers are compatible with most trucks, including mini trucks like Chevy Colorado, Nissan Titan, and Toyota Tacoma.
Choose Your Truck Model
Once you have decided which type of camper you’ll be going with, it is now time to pick a truck model. Some models are not compatible with a camper, so you must ensure your truck will be able to carry one.
Figure Out Your Expenses
Truck campers are cost-effective, but they still require you to spend money on them to keep them in good shape. So do your research and look into how much it costs to buy, maintain, modify, and keep a truck camper.
In addition, look into how much you’ll have to spend on purchasing and maintaining the amenities. For example, you’ll be spending money on water and electricity. Therefore you must adjust your budget accordingly.
Research Insurance and Taxes
These details may seem annoying, but they are vital. Insurance for camper trucks is pretty cheap, to begin with, and some states don’t even require insurance. However, we strongly recommend that you get insurance in case of emergencies.
As for taxes, you’ll have to pay when purchasing the vehicle and for transferring the title to the rig.
These costs may not be high but do count towards your total budget to keep that in mind before you decide to purchase a truck camper.
Inspect Storage and Other Features
What good will your truck camper do if it doesn’t contain or can’t hold all the essential things you need to take with you.
Take a good look at how big the camper is and how many items it can store. You need to consider important things like sleeping bags, cooking essentials, toiletries, etc.
See if the camper is equipped with all the necessary facilities. For example, some campers contain a bathroom while others don’t. If you’re okay with using the bathroom on the campsite or during stops, then you may consider buying a camper without a bathroom.
Purchasing a truck camper is exciting, and you’ve got plenty of options to choose from. However, this is also what makes choosing the right truck camper a challenge.
But not to worry! If you’ve done your research and you’re sure of what you want from your truck camper, you’ll be able to make the best decision.