How Do I Buy A Trailer At An RV Show?

Click here for your discount coupon for the MARVAC February RV Show 2014

Click here for your discount coupon for the MARVAC February RV Show 2014

With the big February RV show right around the corner, I thought it would be a good idea to give some advice to anyone who is planning to shop for or purchase their next trailer at the show.  Instead of me giving advice, I decided to ask some folks on the inter-webs who have bought trailers at RV shows before, “What Advice would you give to someone about shopping or buying at an RV show?”

Here are a few examples of advice that people who have done this before give to the first timer:

“Do your homework before going anywhere near an RV show, dealer’s showroom, etc so you understand thoroughly the issues involved in towing and just what you can & can’t tow with the vehicle you intend to use as a tow vehicle, at what % of it’s various ratings, and what all that means to you.  Bottom line, if you can’t safely tow that dream camper there’s little point in wasting time worrying about floor plans and decor.”

“Think about how you will use your new purchase. Short trips long term trips or just weekends, then focus on those models that suit your purpose and are equipped with the options you want. You should be as comfortable in your RV as you are at home.”

“Make sure everyone involved agrees ahead of time on the purpose of the trip.  Are you planning on buying or just looking?   “Impulse shopping” at the RV show can be expensive!”

” Don’t fall for the high pressure salespeople, stop and listen to the ones who really want to help you find what you want. You’ll be much happier when you have a camper you love and a great dealer who takes care of you after the sale. Who knows, you might even end up with a friend out of the deal too. “

“Wear comfortable shoes and be prepared to get plenty of exercise going up and down many stairs” (This one is super important, so I am highlighting it.)

“There is so much to see if your browsing they should plan on being there at least 3 hours easily. If they are looking seriously and think they found “the one” sit down and spend a little time in it as well as poking around.”

“Doing homework first as already said is the biggest thing, some salespeople would tell you you can tow more than you should or could.  Knowing your limitations will save many headaches.”

“Many show deals include packages of options to show you what a great deal you’re getting.   If these options are not things you’re interested in, see if you can trade for things you are interested in.” 

“Buying at an RV show almost certainly means buying new, so yes, absolutely the dealer makes a difference.  If I have problems, that’s who I need to deal with.  The dealer needs to be someone I can trust.  Can I talk to the owner?  If his name ends in “LLC” in a corporate office in another state, I’m not so interested.  If the salesman has worked for him for 10 years and the owner is always in the office and available to talk to customers, I’m more interested in doing business with them.”

“I’m not looking for the rock bottom price that beats anyone else’s by 25%.   If it sounds like too good of a deal to be true, there’s something missing.   A good deal is fair to both sides.  Homework again…” 

“Any dealer that gives away the farm is eventually going to suffer the consequences and won’t be around later when you as a customer may need him most.  Do yourself a favor and strike a fair deal, not necessarily the lowest cost deal.” 

I want to thank everyone who gave me insight, and I am sorry I couldn’t get ALL the advice into the article.  These bits of advice and more can be seen on our Facebook page, or on the forum.