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5 Key Things You Need To Know Before Buying a Caravan

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If you’re like most people, you probably have been thinking about purchasing a caravan to start travelling at home. It’s no secret that Aussies love to travel and with international travel off the cards for some time, local holidays are the answer. What’s even better, here in South Australia our travel restrictions have already been lifted, meaning travel is back on.

So you have decided to buy an RV, where do you go from here? With so many brands and options available, the process can feel somewhat overwhelming and naturally you may feel anxious.  Buying an RV is no small investment and not one to be taken lightly. The really good news though is when equipped with the right information and knowledge you can feel confident and excited to make the best choice for you. 

Get started today with Caravan Sales Adelaide: 5 Key Things You Need To Know Before Buying an RV.

Understand your vehicle’s towing capacity

First off, if you are keeping your current vehicle for towing you need to research its towing capacity, as this dictates the size of van you can purchase. Manufacturers set the towing weights and limits based on the vehicle’s design and how they are built, which means it’s critical to not exceed these limits for safety. Did you know that it’s your legal responsibility to ensure you don’t exceed your vehicle’s towing capacity and these laws are in place to keep us all safe on the roads.  

Know your vehicle’s towing weight and ball weight before you set off looking for a van. Once you have this information an experienced sales consultant will be able to help you choose the right van.

Consider your budget & Financing

Let’s be honest we all wish we had an unlimited budget to purchase our dream van, unfortunately that’s most likely not the case. It’s essential to set your budget in advance so you are clear on what is affordable for your family. Of course you could always choose to pay for the van through finance, provided that is within your means. Caravan finance can be sourced through your own contacts or often dealerships have preferred finance companies they can recommend.

Questions to ask yourself

To begin it’s important to understand why you want the caravan. Ask yourself questions like how will you be using the van and what kind of places will you be travelling to?  You may not have all the answers at the start and that’s okay. Naturally, everyone has different reasons for buying an RV and taking the time to discover how you’ll be using the van will help you choose the right one.  

Get the ball rolling with these questions:

  • How many people will the van need to sleep? Do you need a family caravan?
  • How often will we be travelling in our van and for how long?
  • Where will we be taking our van? Will it need to be off road capable?
  • What can my current vehicle tow? Will I need to upgrade my car?
  • Where will the RV be stored?
  • Will I be free camping or mostly staying in caravan parks?

In addition to these questions, sit down and make a list of features that are important to you. You see there are stacks of features that can be included but making a list of what’s important to you will also help with choosing the right van. For some people an ensuite is essential and for others they are happy to go without. Once again, the features that you want will be dependent on how you intend to use your van.

You probably already know some caravanners, so another suggestion is to chat with them for ideas and experiences. You may not have all the answers at the start, but taking the time to get an understanding of your needs will inevitably help you choose the right size, layout and type of van.

Begin your research – knowledge is power

Research is inevitable when buying an RV. In fact it’s one of the most important parts of the buying cycle. With the internet at our fingertips, we are lucky as this takes the hard work out of researching new products. Before you set off to some dealerships, we suggest you spend some time researching  different brands and types of RV’s currently on the market. You might be quite surprised how many have popped up over the last few years. A good place to start is Google reviews. Get a feel for the brand and their products through these reviews. However remember that there are always going to be some people who like to complain, so try not to focus on the one or two bad reviews in a sea of good.

Once you have a shortlist of local dealerships, make a day to go out and visit them to see what they have on offer.

Buy from a reputable brand & dealer

It’s a fact of life,  like with all industries, there are some brands and dealers that let industry down. You’ve probably heard negative stories about people buying lemons and it’s true this can happen. This makes buying from a reputable brand and dealership even more important. You’ll benefit from choosing a brand that has many years experience in the industry and employ knowledgeable staff. To make your selection easier we recommend buying from a dealer accredited from the Caravan Industry Association of Australia.  This means the vans are manufactured to comply with Australian design rules, standards and safety regulations.

Most importantly remember to enjoy the experience of purchasing either your first caravan or upgrading to a new one. This is an exciting time ahead and new adventures are about to begin.  


The Golf Tourer caravans are our impressive selection of lightweight adventure caravans.