When many people think of campervans and motorhomes, it's a potato, potato situation. If you're like this and you can't tell the difference between a campervan and a motorhome, then this article is for you. And if you can tell the difference but you don't know which "home on the road" vehicle is better, then this article is also for you.
Are Campervans and Motorhomes the same thing?
The short answer is a gigantic NO and we'll get to the long one in a minute. But first, you have to know that campervans and motorhomes are two very different vehicles. While they share some similarities, they also have distinct differences that make each of them unique.
Differences between Campervans and Motorhomes
Differentiating between a campervan and a motorhome is not as hard as it seems. All you need to do is keep an eye out for the following differences;
1. Motorhomes are bigger than Campervans
This is perhaps the most notable difference between the two vehicles. The size and shape of a campervan differ from that of a motorhome. In most cases, a campervan is a former van that was transformed into a mini-home, allowing you to sleep, cook, and drive in a single vehicle. A motorhome on the other hand was built for one singular purpose: to be a home-from-home. This vehicle was originally designed to meet the needs of anyone who wants to live on the road. Because of this, motorhomes are typically bigger than campervans. Motorhomes usually have a longer wheelbase and this will make them a lot bigger than a regular van. Motorhomes were designed this way so that the living area is separate from the driving area. However, in a campervan, the vehicle is typically a part of the living area. For example, folding the back seats to form a bed.
2. Motorhomes make life on the road a lot easier
Thanks to the design of a motorhome, living on the road is a lot easier. With the driving and living areas separate, passengers can feel like they are truly at home even when they're on the road. When you own or rent a motorhome you can move seamlessly between driving and sleeping. Motorhomes have ready-made beds that allow you to go to sleep whenever you want. You can simply park the car and hop in bed like you would do if you were at home. But this luxury is not available on a campervan.
A campervan still needs to be converted into a living room. You can't simply hop in bed because you have to make your bed. This usually involves turning the seats, folding out the table, and a bunch of other tasks before your campervan turns into a home. So imagine you've been on the road for hours and really want to get some sleep but you can't just fall in bed because you need to set up your bed from scratch. Yeah, not fun. For some people, this stress is what the campervan life is all about but for others, it just isn't worth it.
3. Campervans make driving a lot easier
In the battle of campervans vs. motorhomes, the smaller size of the campervan gives it an edge on the road. Motorhomes are great because their size makes living on the road a lot better. But when it comes to driving, this size is a bit of a disadvantage. For example, the UK requires anyone driving a motorhome or any vehicle that weighs over 3.5 tonnes to own a special driving license for that vehicle. This is why some people would rather buy or hire a campervan. Motorhomes are also more expensive to maintain than campervans because of their size. They tend to use up more fuel than a campervan, making them more costly. And finally, there's the obvious advantage of manoeuvrability. Campervans are easier to manoeuvre because of their size. It's easy to fit a campervan into parking spaces and other right spots.
4. Campervans typically don't have toilets
Motorhomes were designed to be a home on wheels which means that the manufacturers took everything into consideration when building them including adding a toilet. However, a campervan is a convertible home which means that it often does not have a toilet. Most motorhomes have small bathrooms with a shower and a toilet but it's extremely rare to see a campervan with a toilet. This means that when you are in a campervan you have to make a stop every time you want to use the bathroom which can be very annoying, especially on a long road trip.
Thankfully, there are a few exceptions to this. As new campervan models are created, new features are being added to improve the life of campervan lovers. Some campervans come with portable toilets and detachable shower heads so you can do everything you need to do without leaving your vehicle.
5. Campsites prefer campervans
The size of a campervan offers more than just manoeuvrability and affordability, it is also more acceptable on campsites. Many large campsites accept motorhomes. However, small campsites usually only accept campervans because of their size. Most campsites are too small to contain a motorhome because they would take up too much space. This would leave many other campers with no room for their vehicles. For this reason, small campsites typically do not accept motorhomes on their site. With a campervan, you know that you will be accepted into most, if not all, campsites.
Which is Better?
The answer to this question depends solely on the person or people who will be using the vehicle. If you value convenience and comfort over manoeuvrability and affordability then motorhomes are best for you. But if you place style, manoeuvrability, and affordability above all else then a campervan is the vehicle for you. Whatever your preference is you can find it right here on Compare And Choose. We have a wide selection of rental campervans and motorhomes.