camper vans + 2 young kids + bikes…what size?

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  • camper vans + 2 young kids + bikes…what size?
  • meeeee
    Member

    i know theres a few on here with camper vans and kids so what size have you got that you can use comfortably for a couple of weeks with wife 2 kids and bikes?

    pics would be good to give me an idea of what i should start looking for!

    Also anyone use them for skiing in winter as i know theres a few places in the alps that are open for campers in the skiing season?

    cheers

    My parents have this. Wouldn’t have wanted smaller when we were wains off on holiday.

    2 weeks = a lot of stuff!

    Stoner
    Member

    VW T4, SWB, popup reimo roof for the boys (5 & 8yrs old), Rock’n’roll bed downstairs for Mrs Stoner & I.

    100sq ft pop up tent to leave at the campsite when we are staying somewhere more than a night. Otherwise, we’re quite comfortable staying together in the van if wee need to.



    bikes on the back

    5+wks at a time, and not much stuff, travel light. leave space to bring home wine 😉

    Premier Icon pictonroad
    Subscriber

    I have a T4 and 2 young kids, (7 months & 3.5yrs) I wouldn’t dream of doing more than a couple of days. Something with at minimum an over cab bunk so you can put them to bed and still have somewhere to actually relax.

    But, if they were a bit older like Stoner’s kids and could entertain themselves for more than seven bloody seconds maybe, just maybe I’d consider something smaller.

    Stoner
    Member

    When elder boy was younger, we would put him to sleep on the deck behind the rock and roll bed. We’ve been travelling with both boys since each was born.

    willard
    Member

    Mate had a T5 hi-top 4 berth camper for him, his wife and two daughters but has recently changed it for something properly four berth and much bigger now that the girls have got older.

    You’d have to be very organised to want to take a T4/T5 away with four people for any length of time.

    Moses
    Member

    Look for a 6m van conversion, something like a Ducato or Pug Boxer. Look at the Autocruise or WildAxe conversions if you want some ideas.

    Premier Icon GavinB
    Subscriber

    We actually had a T5 when we found out MrsB was expecting twins, and sold it, as although it is possible to use it as a converted camper, it’s pretty hard work once you add in bikes, skis etc. I’m also basing this on several friends/family owning campers of various sizes, and the smaller ones are fine to live ‘out of’ in good weather, but if its in the middle of winter, or raining or clouds of midges they are less than optimal. If you can live ‘in it’ then that makes it more useable, especially if you plan to go skiing with it.

    After a lot of checking around, we ended up getting a ma-hoosive motorhome, an Autoroller 746, based on a Ducato chassis. It’s a 6-berth, but that means we have a sleeping area for the boys at the front, we can chill out in the back, and the table area in the middle can stay in place, meaning you can just get up and go, without having to pack everything away. Having a working toilet is a massive bonus when you factor in wild camping can be pretty compromised without one. 4-bike rack on the back and a ‘garage’ type boot which swallows skis in the winter. Webasto diesel heating system keeps things really toasty, even if its <-10c. Perfect!

    ianpv
    Member

    I’ve got a high top SWB T4 – It’s fine for 4 if you are going to a single site and can put the awning up, but if you want to move on every couple of days, wild camp, or even take advantage of aires etc in France it isn’t really big enough. We did two weeks in it last summer and it was fine but bigger would have been better. GavinBs ‘live out’ of v ‘live in’ is a really good way of putting it. Great for weekends in the UK, or for two people, but I’d go for something bigger if I were to get another. That said, the kids love it and would go away in it every weekend if they could. Ducato/Sprinter/Crafter size for me. Not necessarily coachbuilt though – Mike’s conversion on the site looks perfect.

    mikewsmith
    Member

    Been in some t4/t5 vans and they feel cramped for 1, biggest you can find really.

    Premier Icon steveh
    Subscriber

    I’d say 6 berth coach built to be comfortable. If you get one with a rear garage for the bikes you could have kids together in the double over the rear garage and then you have the one over the cab for yourselves.

    towzer
    Member

    fyi – for a small ‘full motorhome’ have a look at Nuevo ES. (Also Elddis 130/145 I think it is) – they’re 6M/ambulance size with overcabs.

    oh edit

    – read up on winterisation (insulation level, insualted/inboard water tanks/waste tasks and thermostats and heaters)
    – read up on road toll/ferry charges (*if appropriate) re length/width
    – also note that a even 6m mhome probably cannot do 3.5 ton bridges
    – ditto roof height for cheeky car parking

    Premier Icon molgrips
    Subscriber

    I’d say 6 berth coach built to be comfortable.

    Looked at a couple of those on the way past into the caravan spares shop to buy a part for my toilet.. only £95k!

    I’d go for the biggest you can afford and store.

    Premier Icon jerseychaz
    Subscriber

    FWIW we’ve got an Elddis Autoquest 180 – 6 berths, 6 travelling seats, shower etc for just the missus, me and the dog. However, we do tend to use it for 5 to 6 weeks at a stretch. I’d be loathe to have anything smaller, the overcab is not particularly practical for full size people so use the rear double made from the settee – left made up as a bed most of the time. With small people, the central dining table conversion isn’t really practical as a bed – access to the fridge/cooker is compromised. We have a 4 bike rack on the back with a big cable to the chassis for security and a cover. The bikes live in the awning when we are stopped. Rear garages take up a lot of space internally and can compromise the layout. All our storage is accessed internally – secure but a bit of a faf! Best tip is trawl round a load of dealers and imagine yourselves in some.

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