Poll reveals popularity of 8 foot wide caravans

Published in Caravan Guard News, Polls on   - 24 Comments

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  1. John says:

    If you don’t have one, you don’t really know what you’re talking about, do you?

  2. Robin Luxton says:

    There have been a number times access to a site is up a narrow road. My 8ft van was no problem. If you meet anything on such roads, the width of the van is irrelavant, you can’t pass without some sort of laybt anyway.

  3. Ron says:

    If all manufacturers are moving to wider vans how does this increase choice?
    If the survey shows that a good majority won’t buy them then where is the second hand market?
    Lovely’vans but I won’t be buying as I have a non-flelible drive!

  4. Anthony Robins says:

    We have just purchased a Buccaneer Barracuda 8ft wide and was a little bit apprehensive on towing as previously had an Elddis Avante. Within the first two hundred yards my apprehension had completely disappeared even when coming to a more narrow part of the main road where a bridge crosses the river. Before we purchased this van we had looked at mobile homes which had the pull out sides and found they were not practical and they would not work on a tourer as previous comments on pitch sizes and pitching an awning would not be possible. When booking pitches for this coming season we have asked if the access would take the extra width and the pitch will take the size and so far out of numerous enquirers we have not had a negative response Looking forward to our new freedom in our eight footer.

  5. Charlie Ward says:

    With 8 foot caravans you would definitely require extended wing mirrors. My concern with driveway widths when exiting a driveway having to turn left or right ensuring you have adequate width on a tight turn would be my main worry i think 7 ft 6 in is more than adequate if the layout is done carefully, again smaller vans with extending sides and height panels like Erica pop ups would be the way to go for lighter powered petrol hybrid cars as for us caravanners who use diesels we will be penalised more in the future in terms of environmental legislation already seeing a bigger difference at the petrol pumps I see a difference of as much as 14p per litre.

  6. Lee says:

    My caravan is 8′ wide x 27′ long, no problem towing with right towing vehicle.
    I use cl sites all time and have had no problems with entrances or pitch space. Did spend time on sessional pitch for a while, that’s where there was a problem with tight sized pitches.
    Don’t judge larger 8′ wide caravans until you have had one.

  7. Chris Read says:

    Like Peter Barnes, I have just bought an 8′ wide caravan (mine is a 2019 Buccaneer Clipper) the main difference as far as I am concerned that extra 6″ gives the designers the opportunity to add width to the beds (gratefully received on single static beds) and (what attracted me most to this model) the fact that they could create a ‘van with toilet (off-side) and shower room (near-side) separated by a corridor mid-ships giving me options to create two distinct and private room areas whilst the sleepers in the front or back could get on. Yes, they are heavier and they are slightly wider (aren’t we all!) The Buccaneer certainly required a good tow car to pull it but should I worry about the extra width and weight, none of us are getting any younger, the facilities this ‘van offers (self leveling stays) are great and should I find it is too much to tow then I’ll pitch it on a season pitch and enjoy it that way. Yes, I recognise season pitches may not be for the touring purest but it’s a way round an issue which as far as I’m concerned gives usability.

    We are not all the same, 7’6″ I’m sure is here to stay I am certainly not saying everything will go 8′(in fact with cars having to be lighter and less powerful I wonder if there is room in the market for a 7’ wide) but please don’t adopt the attitude, “it’s different, burn it” – each to their own I say!

  8. T M Smith says:

    2 meters is about the max that will fit in out drive way. So 8 feet is out. I dont understand why uk caravans and motor homes are not be fitted with pop out sides like American RVs. Then we could have the best of both worlds – narrow sides for traveling and extra width on site.

  9. Paul Upshaw says:

    Our Lunar Clubman is around 7Ft 10inch Approx and is slightly wider than our previous Swift Challenger and is not a problem towing or on any sites we have visited. You have to drive to suit the type of roads and traffic you encounter and we always check the approach route and adhere to any advice given by local site owners so personally I would consider an 8Ft but I have to also consider our driveway requirements as well, anyone who purchases a new car/caravan/camper etc you check whether it is practicable. We are only able to get our caravan on our driveway because we have a motor mover, so we all have different circumstances.

  10. Chris says:

    The trouble with UK vans is they are made for average people, often not wide enough or with beds long enough for those much over six foot. The advent of 8 foot vans therefore I believe will be a great benefit especially as I’m 6’5”.

  11. Gerald Freshwater says:

    Personally I would like a caravan only 2m wide, and with a decent payload. The TripBuddy would be a good candidate, but the design is a little too idiosyncratic. Our Hymer can at least take 300kg+, more than most UK market 4 berths. We want a caravan as accommodation for touring, rather than as a movable country cottage, but that seems to be a vanishing part of the market.

  12. Alan Stansfield says:

    8ft is too wide for me, my gateway is only 8ft wide so my 7ft van is ideal

  13. Wendy Collin says:

    We have just bought an 8 footer. Due to pick up in January. Can’t wait. If people can’t cope with 6 inches I assume they never overtake all those HGVs on the motorway. How sad!

  14. Ken Platt says:

    I have had an 8ft wide TEC for 15 years. Not once in all those years have I had trouble accessing or pitching my van. It’s 1500 Kgs loaded. Far less than many UK built skinny rigs. It’s narrow minded blinkered outlooks that are perhaps scared of something that is outside their norm. Well done to those who have the vision to move forward and try these spacious very mobile tourers.

  15. Norman Bartlett says:

    Well it’s true what they say (Size Makes a Difference)
    I have a Buccaneer Cruiser Twin Axle 8ft Wide and 6″ makes a big difference,to your comfort and i certainly don’t have any problems towing it . So if you have a good Tow Car go for it you will love it and I have not found a site that can’t accommodate my rig and I have been all over the UK and that includes CL 5van sites.

  16. G Freshwater says:

    We would like a 2m wide van, with full facilities and a reasonable payload; our Hymer is just a little too wide for mountain passes, and its 350kg payload barely adequate for use on basic sites. Few UK caravans have even this much payload, even for four berths! By the time you have water and gas on board, plus a couple of bikes, there’s nothing left for food and clothing.
    The TripBuddy would be ideal, if it were a little less idiosyncratic.
    We think of a caravan as providing accommodation whilst touring, not a bit of mobile suburbia, and our holiday plans revolve around outdoor activities rather than watching television, but then, we camped in a two man tent until we reached our mid-sixties.

  17. Michael Griffiths says:

    The good thing about introducing a wider caravan is it gives people choice which is always good thing. Each to their own I say.

  18. Jay forshaw says:

    Most of these comments against 8 ft caravans are from people who have never been ,seen, viewed,or better still tried or tested the bigger size vans. The extra width-ie 3 inched each side of centre- is minimal as far as towing in narrow areas is concerned as how many times have most people had anything like just 3” clearance either side and the idea that 6inches makes any difference on pitch sizes is in 99 times in 100 is silly, the inside extra is where the benefits come in but each to their own, in my opinion if people think that the extra inches are to much to cope with then I think there is a case of are some of them really safe to be towing a caravan anyway.

  19. Christopher Tiller says:

    Interesting results and comments. We prefer CL’s and always check reviews plus Google Street View – there are a number of sites where access would be difficult and cause additional stress. Our 7’6″ wide Schooner is wide enough – we have no need for the additional 6″.

  20. P DAFNIS says:

    As trees and hedges over hang roads we should leave the buses and lorries to keep these trimmed back and not the sides of an 8 foot wide caravan. I have to drive our 7ft 6ins. wide caravan in the middle of some roads now to protect the sides. No mention of this with your survey.

  21. Richard plummer says:

    We bought an 8ft wide caravan July and although at 1st I Was a little nervous with the extra width I soon became comfortable towing. I found it to be very stable. 2 ton limit was around 2 mpg less than my swift which was 1800 max weight but was a single axle. I had paid extra for a 4 wheel motor mover. I’m glad I did but only use it when I really have to. The old van was a doddle to park. I have been to some very tight pitches but not been stuck yet. Just take my time. The interior is amazing such a difference.

  22. Paul Butler says:

    My advante 860 is a great touring van its an elldis 2018 l love it

  23. Peter Barnes says:

    Just brought one waiting on delivery but these wider vans are no wider than the 40′ and 20′ containers on our roads already so I can’t see the issue. Fortunately we do have a large tow vehicle and having driven HGV’s in the past it doesn’t bother me one bit and I think the debate over extra width on sites is a bit of a red herring as the difference is only 6 inches approx unless of course you are talking about small caravans which of course are a lot narrower.

  24. Neil Butleigh-Jones says:

    Completely agree with the comments – 8feet is just to wide for anyone contemplating touring – Mnay certificated sites already struggle with access for the “fixed bed monsters”.
    Bring back the spirit of touring caravanning !

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