5 Motorhome Myths and Misconceptions We’re Debunking in 2024

When purchasing a motorhome, the rules and regulations can seem a bit overwhelming at first. From licensing requirements to the laws of the road, there are many things you should be aware of as a motorhome owner, but it’s important to distinguish what’s real truth and what’s just hear-say. Fortunately, we’re here to help you out and make your motorhome journey an easy ride by separating the fiction from the facts.

You can walk around a motorhome whilst it’s moving

Some people believe that when a motorhome is on the road, passengers can use it as normal. Perhaps due to the way camper vans, motorhomes and American RVs are shown in film, people think that you can move about, cook and even nap in bed whilst a motorhome is driving, but this is certainly not the case.

In the UK, passengers in a motorhome must wear a seatbelt whilst the vehicle is in transit. Modern motorhomes must have designated travel seats for allocated passengers that have a seatbelt. The rules regarding seating and seat belts differ slightly depending on when the motorhome was manufactured. For example, If the motorhome was manufactured after 2006, all passengers must have a forward-facing seat with a three-point belt. We’ve written a handy guide where you can learn more about motorhome seat belt rules in the UK.

So, whilst it may seem tempting to freely roam around your motorhome or camper whilst on the road, legally (in the UK) all passengers must be sat down and strapped in. Children must also use a child seat or booster seat with three-point seatbelts.

Running a motorhome is too expensive

“Doesn’t it cost a fortune to run?”

If you own a motorhome, you’ve probably been asked this – or something similar – at least once. The truth is that modern motorhomes are far more economical than people think.

In recent years, manufacturers have prioritised fuel-efficiency to make motorhomes more cost-effective and better for the environment. At Erwin Hymer Centre Travelworld, all our vehicles have the Euro-6 chassis: the cleanest chassis available for motorhomes. Committed to sustainability, we also ensure every vehicle part exchanged with us has a Euro-6 chassis, so that all our vehicles are as eco-friendly as possible.

You can pitch up and camp where you like

Having a campervan or motorhome gives you the freedom to travel and explore, but you can’t just pitch up anywhere.

If you’re taking an off-road trip, be aware that many national parks do not allow wild campers of any kind, including sleeping in your motorhome. If you’re found and reported, the police can give you a hefty fine. The good news is that most of these parks have plenty of designated campsites, perfect for parking up your camper and stopping the night.

It’s a good idea to plan your stops before a long trip – or at least have a few places in mind that are suitable for staying. Be wary of local regulation as some places have restrictions against long-term parking. Technically, there is no specific UK law that prevents you from parking and sleeping on a public road, but most local authorities have restrictions in place for public and council-owned areas.

Most public car parks do not allow sleeping overnight and often have a vehicle limit that would prevent large campers and motorhomes from pitching up. At motorway services, you’ll also see signs that prevent overnight stays and site security will be keeping an eye out for any happy campers.

You need a special licence to drive any motorhome

It’s no secret that additional licensing is required to drive certain motorhomes, but it’s not a requirement for every motorhome. In the UK, the licence depends on the Maximum Authorised Mass (MAM) of the vehicle. If the MAM is between 3.5 and 7.5 tonnes, the driver must have a Category C1 licence. If the MAM is above 7.5 tonnes, the driver must have a Category C licence.

If, however, the MAM of the motorhome or campervan is below 3.5 tonnes, no additional licensing is needed. Some people are put off getting a motorhome because of the licence requirements, but if it’s a smaller one, you won’t need to worry about it. If you’re thinking of purchasing a motorhome but are unsure on the MAM or what licence you would require, our expert team can help.

The bigger the motorhome, the better

Speaking of size, it’s often thought that the bigger a motorhome is, the better it will be. Well, we’re here to tell you that contrary to popular belief, size is not everything.

When considering your camper van or motorhome, you need to think about what your priorities are and what you’ll primarily be using it for. For example, a family of four looking for a summer staycation would be well suited to a HYMER B-Spec Masterline. Standing at a huge 789 centimetres, this vehicle sleeps 4-5 people, has ample space and storage, and would be ideal for pitching up at campsites and holiday parks.

If, however, you’re planning on journeying through the wild and exploring the great outdoors, a smaller camper may be your best bet. You need something that is easy to manoeuvre around winding roads and sharp bends and bigger, longer vehicles may struggle down those narrow countryside lanes. Something smaller like the HYMER Grand Canyon would be ideal for this type of trip – especially for couples – and is great for flexibility, fuel-efficiency, and speed.

Even bigger families can still benefit from smaller campers. Models like the HYMER Free S feature a pop-up roof, creating sleeping space for four people despite its compact size of 593 centimetres. So, if you want to take the family on a wanderlust adventure, you don’t have to go for the biggest to get the most bang for your buck.

Surprised by these motorhome myths?

As you’ve seen, it’s quite easy to be misled by motorhome myths and – when you’re purchasing or exchanging one – it can be hard to tell what’s really true without the help of an expert.

At Erwin Hymer Centre Travelworld, our team have over 30 years of experience in the motorhome industry. Our showroom staff are well-equipped to help you find the best vehicle for you, answering all your questions and debunking any myths you’ve heard along the way.

Ready to begin your motorhome journey? Get in touch with our team, give us a call on 01785 508789 or come visit our Stafford showroom, just off M6 J14.

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