You’ve probably seen some huge Class A motorhomes speed down the interstate. These units tend to max out around 45 feet in length, and that’s a lot of square footage moving at 65 miles per hour. But have you ever seen a 45-foot travel trailer? Probably not. But there are travel trailers that measure over 40 feet in length. Do you want to know more about the largest travel trailer options on the market today?
Let’s dive in!
What Is a Travel Trailer?
Travel trailers, also called bumper pulls, are the most common type of RV. A vehicle with a ball and hitch tows them. This is in contrast to fifth wheels, which are also towable RVs but are towed with a special king pin or gooseneck hitch that attaches to the bed of a truck.
You’ll find different travel trailers, such as pop-ups, teardrops, and destination trailers. You’ll also find different layouts. Popular floor plans for families include rear bunk rooms while singles or couples enjoy a rear living and kitchen space.
Some units come with outdoor kitchens, slide rooms, and other amenities like an electric fireplace, a kitchen island, or a king bed. But the standard feature of any type of travel trailer is the way it tows behind a vehicle with a ball and hitch.
Travel Trailers vs. Destination Trailers
A destination trailer is a subtype of travel trailer. These models tend to be larger than standard travel trailers. Certain models feature an upstairs loft, a sliding glass door, or large front windows.
The purpose of destination trailers (also called park models) is to remain stationary at a campground long-term, and this is primarily why they can be longer. You can think of these units kind of like tiny houses. They’re not really designed for you to tow them all over the country. Here in this article, we’re focusing on conventional travel trailers and not destination trailers.
How Long Are Travel Trailers?
Because there are various subtypes of travel trailers, like pop-ups, teardrops, and standard travel trailers, their lengths vary. A small teardrop trailer like a NuCamp TAG may only be about 13 feet to 14 feet long, whereas a pop-up like a Rockwood Roo can expand to almost 25 feet.
Then a Coachmen Freedom Express travel trailer will be anywhere from 28-35 feet in length. In general, most standard travel trailers are under 35 feet long.
What’s the Legal Maximum Length a Trailer Can Be?
Your state DOT generally limits how big your RV travel trailer can be. Most states generally restrict RV travel trailer length to 40 feet, although some states allow for a couple of additional feet, with a maximum of 43′ 6″. This doesn’t include the tow vehicle. In most states, the maximum combined length is usually between 50 feet to 65 feet.
Look up your vehicle’s registration state on Fifthwheelst.com’s RV Size Limits list to find out your limit.
Width and height fluctuate less from state to state. Width is limited to 8 feet to 9 feet, and the height is usually less than 14 feet. This is because the width of roads and height of overpasses and bridges generally remain the same from state to state. However, it’s vitally important to know your travel trailer’s height personally to know whether you can safely clear a 13-foot bridge as you exit the interstate.
The Longer, The Heavier: RV Weight Limits with Large Travel Trailers
Remember that the largest travel trailers also tend to be the heaviest. This matters when choosing a hitch and tow vehicle. First, you must choose a hitch that exceeds your travel trailer’s gross vehicle weight rating (GVWR). The hitch must be able to safely transport your trailer from place to place, so this is extremely important. You can’t get a hitch rated for 5,000 pounds when your travel trailer weighs over 10,000 pounds.
Second, your tow vehicle has a maximum towing capacity. This is why you’ll see dually trucks or even semi-truck cabs towing large fifth wheels. The engine, brake system, and transmission have all been designed to handle heavier loads. If you don’t want to buy a large truck, you’ll have to stay under 10,000 pounds. And the largest travel trailers will be well over this limit.
Pro Tip: We took a closer look at what GVWR means. Find out all you need to know about Gross Vehicle Weight Ratings for Trucks & Towing.
How Big Are The Largest Travel Trailers?
The longest travel trailer used to be the Jayco 340DROK, but it’s no longer in production. It had a GVWR of 12,825 pounds, which means you’d need at least a three-quarter-ton truck to tow it safely. The dry hitch weight was 1,480 pounds. This is the amount of weight put on the ball of the tow vehicle.
The current longest travel trailer is the Jayco 38BHDS which is 40’6″ long. Take a closer look at the three of the largest travel trailers currently in production.
1. Jayco Flight 38BHDS
Length: 40 feet 6 inches
The Jayco Flight 38BHDS is a unique travel trailer floorplan with two separate bedrooms, one in the rear and one in the front. Both feature queen beds with closet storage. However, there’s also the option to change out the front bedroom for a bunk room and the rear queen bed for a king bed.
The split bathroom is similar to what you find in a motorhome, with the shower on one side of the hall and the sink and toilet on the other. A jack-knife sofa and U-shaped dinette complete the living space.
The Jayco Flight 38BHDS has a GVWR of 10,750 pounds, a cargo carrying capacity of 2,600 pounds, and a dry hitch weight of 1,045 pounds.
2. Cherokee 324TS
Length: 40 feet 5 inches
With a GVWR of 11,365 pounds and a hitch weight of 1,165 pounds, the Cherokee 324TS requires a heavy-duty truck to tow it. For families who travel full-time, this unit has a huge cargo-carrying capacity of 2,762 pounds.
The floorplan features a rear bunk room with a cube sofa, a U-shaped dinette and sofa in the living space with an entertainment center and electric fireplace, and a front bedroom with a queen bed. There’s an outdoor TV mount as well as an outdoor kitchen.
3. Jayco Eagle 30RSTS and 332CBOK
Both of these models have a GVWR of over 10,600 pounds. The 30RSTS sleeps up to six, while the 332CBOK sleeps up to four. The 30RSTS has an extra pull-out sofa in the living space.
They both feature a kitchen island, an entertainment center with an electric fireplace, a king bed in the primary bedroom, a 21-cubic-foot residential refrigerator, and washer and dryer hook-ups in the bedroom wardrobe. These floor plans are very similar to fifth-wheel floorplans.
Honorable Mention: KZ Sportsmen Destination 364BH
Although this model by KZ is considered a “destination trailer,” it looks more similar to a standard travel trailer than most destination trailers. It measures 41’2” in length with a GVWR of 10,460 pounds and a dry hitch weight of 1,810 pounds. However, the cargo carrying capacity is very limited at 1,060 pounds.
Uniquely designed, this model features a rear primary bedroom with a king bed and a bunk room in the center of the unit. The large front living space features a tri-fold spade and theater seating, a free-standing dinette, and a peninsula countertop in the kitchen.
Pros and Cons of Big Travel Trailers
The best pro to owning a large travel trailer is the amount of living space. The longer the trailer, the more interior space. This means more room for the kids’ toys, working remotely, and entertaining.
There can be a separate room for older teenagers or a separate office space for travelers who have to work while traveling. Even though it’s still a small space compared to a sticks-and-bricks house, there is more space for privacy among family members.
But with more space comes a heavier load to tow. This can strain vehicles that are maxed out on towing capacity and make it dangerous to drive for both you and others on the road. Owners usually have to invest in a larger tow vehicle, which means more out-of-pocket money spent.
Another downside to owning a large travel trailer is the size limitations at various campgrounds. Some locations don’t permit RVs over 40 feet in length because the campsites aren’t large enough. National park campgrounds have even smaller sites, so the chances of getting into Watchman Campground in Zion or Bass Harbor Campground in Acadia are very slim.
Finally, the larger the rig, the more difficult it can be to tow. Sway increases the longer the trailer, which means less control in windy conditions. Even with a heavy-duty truck, you can still feel the pull as a semi-truck passes by on the interstate. Turning is more difficult with a longer rig, so driving along backcountry roads or through city streets can be much more stressful.
Know Before You Go: We uncovered Everything You Need to Know About Travel Trailers before you buy.
Is the Largest Travel Trailer Worth It?
If you have a large family and need the space to keep fights to a minimum and accommodate sleeping arrangements, then the biggest travel trailer may be a good fit. But if you don’t need the added space, it’s more convenient to purchase something smaller. You’ll have more options for overnight stays and less stress while towing.
Do you think these large travel trailers are worth it? Tell us your thoughts in the comments!
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