Help with motorhome size (1 Viewer)

Wingover

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Jun 4, 2019
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My wife and I have been full time since 2010 in North America. We are Canadians and spent winters down south in the US and summers in Canada. We own a 45' class A right now.

We decided to give Europe a try and looking to buy a motorhome. We are down to a few brands like Concorde, Morelo and Phoenix, all in the 8.5-9M just because my wife is a chef and cooks a lot in the motorhome. Really need a kitchen counter space and these were the only models we could find (if you know of other smaller units with counter space please let us know)

We would like to get feedback on the size please. Looking at motorhome campgrounds and parking we see that a lot of the places we would like to visit accept up to 9m units. We are wondering about driving around EU in general. We are not concerned with the fuel cost or toll roads but more with access.

We see a lot of motorhomes in that size for sale so wondering what all these people do with them if its not feasible to use them? For us its about Summers in central Europe or Scandinavian countries and winters in Spain and Portugal.

Thanks!
 
Jul 5, 2013
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Welcome to the Fun.

Europe does not have anywhere near the same number of wide straight roads that you have in abundance in the USA and Canada. And our campsites and other stopping areas are not built for the size of vehicle you are looking at. Of course there are some motorhomes of that size on European roads, but the vast majority are smaller. My guess is the average is something like 7 to 7.5m in length. That is not to say you won't be able to use them, but you may be restricted in some places and if you take a wrong turning and get into some of our old medieval towns and cities you may find yourselves literally stuck.

However, there are plenty of people on this forum that drive these larger Motorhomes as well as American built RVs and I am sure some will be along soon to give you some good advice.
 
Sep 17, 2017
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If you intend to travel to a site and stay there a week, maybe with a scooter in the garage, longer motorhomes are fine. If you are a continuous hopper, moving every day and stopping via the local supermarket or village patisserie, then shorter vans give much more flexibility.

Europeans have lots more choice of motorhomes that the UK does. Although you do see some monsters, I think that on average their motorhomes are smaller than in the UK. And there are lots of sites where being longer than 7.5m is tough or means limited spaces. I know I've got in to several 'complete' sites because of our dinky van.
 
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Wingover

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Thanks for the feedback. We tend to stay from 1 week to 1 month or so in one place. We do stay at free parking while traveling from point A to B.
 

hilldweller

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If you want a stress free life keep to 7.5m.

Next problem, many vans don't even have an oven.

You may need to adjust to Europe.

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funflair

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Dec 11, 2013
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Hi Wingover

We are using a 8.5 metre van and travel around Europe without a problem, we have also travelled in convoy with friends in 9.2 metre Concorde and that does take a little more planning but is still workable, but much longer and I think you would be doing your homework and booking ahead to make sure there was space, if you want to be that organised OK but we don't book anything.

There are a few vans with very good kitchens but certainly it would be fair to say that not all large vans have large kitchens and it depends what you want in the rest of the layout, Concorde make a 890RRL which has a cracking kitchen with loads of space but it also has a rear lounge which is a nice area but takes space away from the garage which is a No No for me, Phoenix make some nice vans and decent kitchen area but you won't find them in the UK so for sure the best place to buy will be Germany, Morelo have decent kitchen space in the Palace range and the smallest new palace now starts at 8.69 or 8.99metres depending on the lounge size.

The other point to bear in mind is that most European van will be 2.35 to 2.4 wide which you might find quite tight moving from your RV but you will see some, again Concorde, Morelo Phoenix, Vario etc that are 2.5 wide which makes quite a difference inside but also can make it a bit tight manoeuvring and narrow streets.

If you are thinking of buying new Dusseldorf show is the place to go in early September and look at all the models but for a customer orders there can be up to 12 months wait so that might not suite you, even still it is a great venue to see what is available and chat to dealers who might have used or ex demo stock.

Martin
 
Nov 17, 2012
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I would add N&B to your list of options.
Very good kitchens and modern styling.
You will notice a difference in design for European motorhomes as now mostly much lighter interiors than either in Canada or the States.
Over 8.4m in length does provide some additional challenges in terms of not only what sites can take them but also the location within a campsite. We have seen on a number of occasions Concord’s having to park next to the toilet facilities as that is where there is the most space.
 

funflair

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I would add N&B to your list of options.
Very good kitchens and modern styling.
You will notice a difference in design for European motorhomes as now mostly much lighter interiors than either in Canada or the States.
Over 8.4m in length does provide some additional challenges in terms of not only what sites can take them but also the location within a campsite. We have seen on a number of occasions Concord’s having to park next to the toilet facilities as that is where there is the most space.
Indeed, I should have included N+B as we have one but I would say that only the latest 88EK or 92EK have a decent kitchen and I was thinking what has a better kitchen than ours and as good as ours is there is not a lot of space for a dedicated Chef.

Martin
 

funflair

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Thanks for the feedback. We tend to stay from 1 week to 1 month or so in one place. We do stay at free parking while traveling from point A to B.
So just remember you spend a lot more time living in the van than you do driving it, so if there is to be a compromise I would go for more living space over the ability to squeeze into the last spot in a camp site.

Martin

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grumps147

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While you are getting some useful information here, Motorhome Fun has a sister site dedicated to RV’s, and you may get more information asking the same question there .... https://www.rvoc.co.uk/forum/
 

DBK

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My wife and I have been full time since 2010 in North America. We are Canadians and spent winters down south in the US and summers in Canada. We own a 45' class A right now.

We decided to give Europe a try and looking to buy a motorhome. We are down to a few brands like Concorde, Morelo and Phoenix, all in the 8.5-9M just because my wife is a chef and cooks a lot in the motorhome. Really need a kitchen counter space and these were the only models we could find (if you know of other smaller units with counter space please let us know)

We would like to get feedback on the size please. Looking at motorhome campgrounds and parking we see that a lot of the places we would like to visit accept up to 9m units. We are wondering about driving around EU in general. We are not concerned with the fuel cost or toll roads but more with access.

We see a lot of motorhomes in that size for sale so wondering what all these people do with them if its not feasible to use them? For us its about Summers in central Europe or Scandinavian countries and winters in Spain and Portugal.

Thanks!
Check the visa situation for yourselves. I think you will only be allowed to spend three months at a time in the EU, which from your point of view is all the bits of Europe you want to visit. :(
 
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Wingover

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Guys, Thank you all for the good info!

Martin - I actually looked at the RRL models with the L shape counter. We want to see one in real life. Thanks for sharing your experience with a 8.5m. Makes me feel better.

M-J - I looked at that model and while it does have counter space, it lacks the fridge and living space for us.

DBK - We have the option to get an EU passport and also from my work we can get a long stay visa.

Cheers!
 

funflair

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I like this one, Broken Link Removed

Plated at 7495kg but will be a bit short of payload at that.

Martin
 
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Wingover

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Jul 29, 2007
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We have a 30' Winnebago with two slides this gives us a good comprise between drivability and livability. We find most sites can fit us in somewhere, and the wife gets loads of hanging space.
On a recent holiday in Spain and Portugal the biggest problem was low trees on pitches, not the pitch size or access.
 
Oct 2, 2008
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I had a Ultrasport 12mtr RV with a m/cycle carrier on rear , and traveled about UK /Europe , without any real problems , you can go anywhere there is a normal bus route . From pov of stops then it gets a bit trickier, and requires a bit more preplanning . I would say as @funflair 8.5 or 9mtr shouldn't get you into having so much preplanning . With a US RV the real worry is width especially over the mirrors :) . I would raise one factor and that is driving licence category . This is weight based in UK and Europe , and over 7.5 ton needs a Large Goods Vehicle licence . I dont know how the system in Canada works . or how your licence might translate to driving a non canadian registered vehicle ?
 
Feb 22, 2008
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American RVs are available in UK and from my experience having owned and toured in UK and Europe as do many others , well worth considering.
Our last RV was 30ft and we had no problems travelling or on sites and the size advantage with slide outs you are well aware of.

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Jul 29, 2007
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This maybe a problem, it's from DVLA site

If you’ve got a bus or lorry licence you can only drive buses or lorries that are registered outside Great Britain if you’ve actually driven the vehicle into Great Britain yourself.

Which I think means you will be restricted to under 3.5 tons.
 
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