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When to trade in/or consider buying new


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We bought our Bailey Unicorn Valencia in September from some friends.  It is a 2015 model and in very good condition.  What has made you trade yours in or consider buying a new one?  At the moment the only minor downside is the side bed.....having to crawl out the bottom or over hubby to get out!! I know, if money was no object, there are some amazing new models but just wondered how others have come to the decision?

 

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I'm only on my second caravan and third season. So relatively new at it all. The first was a little 2012 2 birth, I thought it would be satisfactory plus needed a light caravan for the car we had at the time. We found out we loved caravanning.

We then upgrade the car and the thought of a bigger caravan popped in to my head plus I didn't like not having anywhere to sit while my wife was in bed so got a 2017 fixed side bed like yours.

 

I would love a large caravan with island bed but it comes down to money, space to store it and what the car can tow so will be several years before that is on the cards for myself.

 

 

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If it ain't broke, don't fix it - our two replacement caravans were only bought because their predecessors leaked, after 17 and 12 years respectively.

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2015 VW Touareg 3. 0 V6 TDI + 2013 Lunar Clubman ES

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We’ve been caravaning since 98 and we’re on our 4th van . The first one was a second hand ranger which we kept until 2002 then it’s been a new van every 8ish years .

its a horses for courses, if it works for you that’s all it matters.

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We had a 1974 model 15 ft van for 5 yrs ,loved it but was scared the body might fall of the chassis so got a 2006 Senator Virginia with the Island bed , loved it even more but I was worried about wood frame. So decided we had to have Alutec model so brought a 2014 Pegasus Rimini with the rear bathroom. This really suits us plenty of room to walk around, no squeezing around end of a bed etc. Don't mind the single beds at all . Only minus no front locker but otherwise good to go.

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We had owned motorhomes for many years and decided it was time to change to a caravan. So moved from a fairly large MH (7.5m)  to a (used) caravan of a similar size a few years ago now. We took a fairly long time deciding on what we did, and more importantly what we did not, want/need in a caravan.  We ended up with a 7.4m caravan with a French bed (Bailey Olympus)  

 

Having used it pretty extensively for 3 years, often for extended continental trips of 6-10 weeks at a time we “sort of” came to the conclusion that the French bed (the same as yours) was becoming a bit of a pain at night for the very reason(s) you have alluded to. However we were more than happy with the rest of the van so carried on with it adopting the attitude that one day we will change it for an island bed model.

 

In October 2018 we decided to take a trip to the NEC show, primarily to buy a replacement Kampa porch awning as our current (second hand) one was starting to show its age a bit. Whilst at the show, having looked at all of the various porch awnings on display, we actually plumped for a Sunncamp Air awning (we were both impressed with the quality of the material and the thought that had gone into its design)

 

A little later on I foolishly let Mrs P out of my sight, on trying to find her I was suddenly hauled, by Mrs P, into a display caravan. Turns out it was a dealer special based on the Bailey Phoenix. The layout was a front to rear island bed with a centre bathroom. Ah thinks me, this is rather nice but I bet it’s silly money. Well it wasn’t silly money at all, and as it ticked ALL of our boxes, so  we bought one! 

 

So to answer your original question there was no real planning on our part in respect of changing/upgrading as we hadn’t really considered doing so. 

 

It was, for the want of a better expression pretty much an “impulse buy” brought about by a combination of

1. This is a rather nice caravan

2. The layout was just what we had “sort of” decided would suit us better than our current (at the time) end bathroom French bed caravan.

3. The price was, to our minds, VERY good indeed (especially with all the “extras” added) 

4. We were offered a very good PX on our existing van

5. And probably most importantly of all, we could afford to change, so we did. 

 

Having now used it for about 10 months we are convinced that we WERE right in respect of an island bed being much more suited to US.

 

I think the biggest single factor in changing caravans was the fact that we could afford to do so. Closely followed by the appeal of seeing a caravan that ticked ALL of the right boxes for us. (Layout, price, value for money weight, etc) 

 

The purchase of a (new) caravan probably ranks third in the list of people’s most expensive purchases behind a house followed by a car. So it’s not something that can be done on a whim! So says the man (couple?) who did EXACTLY that :blink:

 

Andy

 

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Experience is an awful teacher who ends up sending you simply horrifying bills

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We treat a caravan as a hobby that brings us as a family together and as such we treat it as a significant hobby. From the start (over 20 years ago) we have had a caravan savings account which allowed us to update to a new caravan every two years. With a growing child this also allowed us to change layouts to something better suited.

 

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2018 Volvo V90 and 2018 Swift Sprite Quattro EB

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Changed ours because it had got into it's 11 th. year and we did not want things to start to go wrong in the future so got this present one, wanted a 3 or 4 year old but nothing suitable so got new.

Regards, David
Ford Kuga ST line 2ltr. Diesel 2017,  Bailey Pursuit 11 400/2 2018, Emove em303 motor mover, Hyundai 1000i Generator.

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Size matters!

Changed from a Lunar Clubman with fixed beds to an Eccles 480 without!  

Apart from the facility to carry bikes,  the construction material, the "extra" cupboard space and the tall fridge the overriding reason for the change was simply size.  The upgraded plate providing a truly excellent payload (238kg) was also a major benefit.

This maybe makes us different from many others on the forum.  We do not look for a twin axle with "home from home" facilities.  European touring is our love but we are perfectly content with the comfort and practicality of the Eccles , including the non fixed beds.

Many will shudder at the notion of changing to non fixed beds - we thought long and hard since we both loved having them in the Lunar - but on balance, having weighed up the pros and cons made our decision. 

Single axle manoeuvrability (that includes simple quick siting of the van), a Caravanstore canopy with front/end  panels rarely used, the space to carry aqua-roll. waste-master, two cylinders, spare wheel, toilet fluids, jack and other bits and bobs in the front locker a massive plus too.  

If your holiday is staying for long periods on a site, then the time to actually pitch, erect awnings, fill your two aqua-rolls, organise security for your twin axle van and the rest is warranted.   We rarely stay more than 5 days and often only 2 or 3 so for us the simplicity counts highly.  Pitched with canopy out and ready to roll in around an hour.

Unlikely now to need to unhitch simply to get round some corners on sites - many will know exactly what that means especially when bikes etc are secured against the tree narrowing the roadway even further! 

Short enough to fit in any direction on most sites (yes, we HATE the serried ranks in Club sites in the UK and almost exclusively use CLs).

The absolute certainly that we can travel on most roads, including the hairpins in the Alps, without holding anyone up is reassuring too.  We use motorways if appropriate but often head out into the "country" too.  

Clearly we all have our ideas of the perfect holiday and thankfully, they differ. 

We changed our van to better support the lifestyle we love - simply that.  

And we are certainly not disappointed. 

 

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We came back to caravaning after 15 years out and bought a Lunar Clubman TI in 2015.

We enjoyed the lifestyle and the caravan very much but living in Spain needed aircon - which the low payload precluded.

So we changed to a TA  Delta with a 300kg payload.  We loved the TI layout and that suited the location of the underbunk aircon and duct runs (concealed in wardrobes and behind overhead lockers).

We also had longer front seats/beds for sitting with feet up either looking inwards for TV or outwards for the view,  the tall fridge. and an onboard water tank.  Also, of course the benefit (as far as I am concerned) of the twin axles.

We have no plans to change this almost 4 yr old caravan - I've made many, many modifications and I dont really want to start all over again!

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We went against a lot of advice when we bought our first van in early 2016, brand new. The advice was buy used, cheap and change after a year or so when we’ve decided exactly what layout and features would suit us best. 

 

So so glad we ignored that advice. We thought long and hard about what we wanted, bought it, and 4 years of use has proven that we got it right first time. So much so that, although we can afford to change it if we want to, we plan on keeping the caravan for years to come. There isn’t a caravan on the market that would offer us anything better suited to us. 

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We've always expected to keep our vans for a long time, averaging around 10years. Bought a new Coachman in 2016 to replace our 2006 Coachman then this September popped into our dealer to have a look at the new models and both of us fell in love with the new Acadia.

Just had a few details that we really felt tidied up from our current Pastiche so went for it!

 

Hoping to pick it up in just over a weeks time.

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WE changed the last one after the second leak as we had lost confidence in it. We have had to change once because an extra child meant an extra berth was needed but generally once we get past five years we do start to look around.

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We bought our 'tow car' before we even thought about owning a caravan-therefore we felt it always limited our choice of van re weight. Consequently when it was time to change that SWMBO wanted a vehicle that would 'tow anything'. After she had got a good deal on that, (Nissan Navara) I made the mistake of saying-'well we really can tow anything.' With that she was looking but we still wouldn't have changed had it not been for the unbelievable price she negotiated 'out of interest' at the Lawns show this Sept! (Bucanneer Cruiser) and some great advice from some long time Buc owners we met there.  Long story short we'll keeping this outfit for some time I hope!

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This will be different ;)

 

Bought my first caravan in January 1995 after many years tenting as a family all over western Europe.

...... a brand new Swift Challenger. 

Bought all the kit new to go with it and had change from £10K.

Kept the caravan until September 2018 when I personally broke it up and sold all the usable parts on that well known auction site.

Could not find a buyer for the whole caravan and I needed the storage space for it's replacement.

The rolling chassis went to an engineer who wanted it to make a boat trailer.

The aluminium sides and roof went to a scrap metal dealer.

The caravan travelled 85000 miles in 23 years.... travelled north as far as Narvik in Norway and south as far as Gibraltar.

All the servicing was done by me.......the caravan never saw a dealer through out it's life and never ever let us down.

Needless to say it's replacement last year was another Swift Challenger 2012   .......this time second-hand with all the kit............everything in immaculate condition.

This one will see us out and looks set to give us as much enjoyment as the last one :)

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Keep active ....be happy...stay safe.

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We bought our first caravan at the beginning of 1977, had our first trip in the Easter of that year, with our new baby born in the February!  It was an ancient Fairholme, bought for £250 and sold a year later for £350.  Went from the Isle of Skye to Somerset in that first year, and various places in between, and loved it.

 

Was  looking around for a replacement and had settled on a used Cavalier, when suddenly A-Line Crowns popped up, and discovered that we could buy a new one for not much more than the used Cavalier, so bought one.  3 years later, we bought a new Deanline Crown, followed 3 years later by a new Abbey twin-axle.  We have changed caravans every 3 years, had various Elddis Crusaders, a Bailey Senator, an Ace, and Swift Conquerors, up until about 2008 when my wife sadly decided that she had got "past the caravanning stage". 

 

Having gone self-employed in 1983, I have used the caravans instead of hotels as I travelled throughout Scotland and latterly Northern Ireland as well, as I have done to this day.  I bought the current caravan, a 2012 Conqueror 645 in late 2011, and am loathe to change it with all the horror stories of leaky caravans and general lack of quality control at the factories.   I've had 3 damp repairs in recent years, all covered under the 10 year warranty,

but other than that it's been a pretty trouble free caravan.

 

I'd love to change and downsize, but I don't know if I can justify it, having just past my 70th birthday, and still happily working!!

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David.

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Only ever had new caravans and change every 3 years.  

Never understood why anyone would want to sit in a white box in field looking at other white boxes.

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On a hand me down 17 year old van from the rents which is still pretty pristine for the year however iv got my eye out just in case the wife actually gets into it. Start of next year will be the teller!

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On 30/11/2019 at 07:18, GaryB1969 said:

We treat a caravan as a hobby that brings us as a family together and as such we treat it as a significant hobby. From the start (over 20 years ago) we have had a caravan savings account which allowed us to update to a new caravan every two years. With a growing child this also allowed us to change layouts to something better suited.

 

WOW - I know that some people change their car every two or three years but I never thought that anyone would change their caravan every two years! That makes it a VERY expensive hobby. I wonder what had changed so dramatically in two years that a new caravan was required. 

We have a 2006 caravan which we have had for five years. I thought about changing it a couple of months ago but found that would cost a few thousand pounds. OK we have the money but would that make caravaning for us any better ????

After some though we decided not so we will stick with what we have.

Alan

 

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We're all different with different priorities,  different interests and different circumstances. 

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2018 Volvo V90 and 2018 Swift Sprite Quattro EB

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As above each to their own-some people use their vans heavily, want the newest stuff, like to try different makes/layouts or simply don't want to run out of warranty and in to issues whether perceived or not-good job we are all different! if you have the money you do what you want! Life is too short!

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17 minutes ago, Jezzerb said:

As above each to their own-some people use their vans heavily, want the newest stuff, like to try different makes/layouts or simply don't want to run out of warranty and in to issues whether perceived or not-good job we are all different! if you have the money you do what you want! Life is too short!

 

Exactly, we changed because we could and we wanted to.  What I choose to do with my money really is down to me and no-one else.  My motto has always been that SPARE money is for spending, not for looking at.

2018 Volvo V90 and 2018 Swift Sprite Quattro EB

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