Disappointment at the RV show

The wife and I have been investigating the possibility of a small camping trailer to take on weekend trips, and avoid the hassle of setting up a tent every time. We don’t own a truck, so weight is an issue. My CR-V can really only pull 1500 lbs. We also have very little desire for something big and elaborate, we just want a nice bed on wheels, with some comfortable cover for rainy days. That’s been leading us in the direction of a small teardrop trailer.

When I saw that the RV show was coming up I decided we should go and see a bunch of the different models in person so we could get a feel for what they all offered. We also decided to turn it into a nice weekend and booked a hotel in downtown Minneapolis, with plans to have a nice dinner and relax. We arrived mid-day Saturday to the convention center and paid our ticket money for the show. There were some nice little trailers in the entry area outside of the arena, but they were all still rather large, so we quickly proceeded inside.

We started wandering around, and soon realized that this was shaping up to be a huge disappointment. As we moved around the arena it because clear that none of the teardrop vendors were actually represented, and every single trailer was well over the weight limit of what we could tow. We went from one end of the arena to the other, and it was filled with beautiful and luxurious apartments on wheels, but nothing anywhere close to what we were looking for.

Eventually, we gave up and went to the center of the arena to check out the various vendors that were selling things like camp food, and promoting their particular campgrounds. That was enjoyable, getting to taste some nice beef jerky and various freeze dried dips, but it certainly wasn’t what we came there for. We did end up spotting two things that were interesting.

The first was the Sylvan Go Camper, which had a neat method of folding out into a big tent. It was close to what we were looking for, but not really the same as an enclosed trailer. Eventually, we did spot local teardrop maker Vistabule, and their latest iterations of their very awesome trailer. We looked around them again (we’ve seen them before), and asked a few questions about what was new. It was cool to see them again, and they may be the model we eventually go with, but not having the chance to compare to other brands was a big disappointment.

Needless to say we were both a bit frustrated that the entire event ended up being targeted towards a crowd that didn’t include us. The funny part is that the Vistabule booth, as well as any of the smaller trailers that were on display, were the most crowded and popular of the show. It feels like all the dealers at the show just wanted to get the high-buck models on display to maximize their profits.

Thankfully, we had a nice evening together, relaxing and enjoying a pleasant dinner. We didn’t make the goal we set out for, but we managed to turn it into a break from regular life anyway.

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