Big family rving!

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New member
Jul 15, 2018
Hi, we are considering buying an RV, and of course, something to pull it.  We have 5 kiddos, and Grandpa may come along as well.  We'd like to do this as reasonably frugally as possible, although, we know this cost money.  How old a trailer would you recomend?  Can we get away with an old 1970's trailer, which we can get cheap, and just add AC?  I think we can get away with a 22 ft trailer, of some of us use a tent.  Or are we going to need to buy something more like only 20 years old? How much can we expect to have to pay?  Also, what do you recomend for pulling?  We're thinking Suburban? Thoughts, pretty new to this, have owned a trailer, but it was parked for business, so I never had to worry about the actual moving parts before. :)


Well-known member
Apr 21, 2014
Welcome to the forum!

Camping is a great activity for multiple generations to enjoy together. We grew up as a family of six kids that traveled all over the country in a pop-up towed by a Country Squire station wagon. We were frequently joined by grandparents, aunts, uncles and cousins in their own trailers and tents.

Of my generation, I'm the only one still camping. My sister just sold her fifth wheel, but has tentative plans on a motorhome in a few years. Her two daughters camp with their families, and my son is occasionally seen in a tent. Camping has been a big part of my life for 51 years, and I always get a kick out of hearing about a new family joining in.

As to the camper itself, I would consider a pop-up or hybrid that can safely be towed by a vehicle large enough to carry your family. Others will say that you need at 45 foot Class A Diesel Pusher bunk house with private bedrooms for all, but I don't think so.


Well-known member
Aug 7, 2016
Montgomery Co,MD
Will people sleep/stay in the tent when it rains?  When it's hot?  22 ft is too small,in my opinion.

How well was this 70s trailer maintained?  Never any leaks or water damage? When was the last time it was used?  How old are the tires? 

As to tow vehicle,we really need more specific information.  Towing numbers for the actual Vehicle you want to use and for the trailer.  Not the dry weight.  Are you all riding in the Suburban?  What about all the tents,clothes,food,etc,etc.  all that weight adds up and must be figured in.

What kind of budget are you working with?  I understand wanting to save money but you don't want to buy a money pit either.

Welcome and feel free to ask any questions.


Well-known member
Jul 20, 2014
Cedar Falls, IA
I am with HappyWanderer about recommending a pop up. Putting 7 people in any tow vehicle will reduce the towing capacity significantly. Pop ups have two king sized beds, a big dinette, cooking facilities, and room to breathe with a big family. Many have air conditioning plus a propane heater too. I had four children and we frequently took one of their friends on vacation with us. We camped all over the country, and a pop up is much easier to put everyone in when the weather is bad. Even if the kids slept in a tent (something they preferred to do), we still needed some place to be together when it rained. Used pop ups are pretty cheap. Just check the canvas doesn?t smell or have holes in it.

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