Extended European tour

Discussion in 'Full Timing' started by Dans, Nov 7, 2006.

  1. Dans

    Dans New Member

    My wife and I have decided that we are in a position to say "The h*ll with it all!" and take an extended vacation for a couple of years with our young children.

    Us: 37 and 35, the kids 5 years and 22 months. We have started the process of selling off our house and other non-essential possessions with the intent of purchasing an RV (not our first) and having it shipped over to the UK and starting a 24-36 month tour of Europe in the summer of 2007. We have sufficient finances to tide us over for that timeframe with a burn rate of around $150 UDS per day, the RV will be purchased outright.

    The single biggest issue facing us at this point is WHICH RV to purchase? We would like the largest unit possible (32.8' max, 10 meters is allowed in Europe) That would have a separate sleeping area for our two children. Ideally we would like an arrangement that allows the kids to go to bed at 8-9pm and allows us to stay up for another hour or two in the primary living space. They will be 2.5 and 5.5 years old when we start the trip, we have been looking at the 32' class C units with the cab-over beds for the kids to sleep in, but we can't really separate the living space from the sleeping space in that setup.

    None of the 32' class A rigs we've seen have a layout conducive to kids at all, unless were are willing to sacrifice the rear bedroom to the kids and have us sleep in the main area.

    Any thoughts or suggestions? I would really like to find a unit that has bunk beds setup between the main space and the rear bedroom, but except for a couple of rigs from the 80's I haven't been able to find anything like this. Fifth-wheel setups don't work well over there as shipping costs get prohibitive since they are based on total length x width x height.
     
  2. TexasClodhopper

    TexasClodhopper Senior Member

    Re: Extended European tour

    I don't mean to rain on your parade or anything, but I'm wondering if you considered the same tour of the USA? After all, your fortunes were earned here (I don't mean to be presumptuous.), and your kids are going to grow up here, aren't they? I guess I just don't understand ... I guess I'm totally off topic, though.

    An RV bought here would be better suited for use here, wouldn't it? So, why not buy one over there to use over there?

    Old Bazzer ;) will probably chime in here soon. He's lives there and is designing a MH now.
     
  3. DL Rupper

    DL Rupper Senior Member

    RE: Extended European tour

    I'm sure Dans is a good Patriotic American. Maybe just a little misguided. I would think he would want to purchase Lynn Cheny's new history book for children about the 50 States, and take his children on a tour of the good old USA. Just a thought. :laugh:
     
  4. Kirk

    Kirk Senior Member

    Re: Extended European tour

    Having seen several RVs that were built in Europe, I really do think that you would find more of what you are looking for in that market and it would save shipping it over the ocean, two ways. You could always bring it back when you return. My question is, would not the 2.5 year old get a lot more out of this trip if he were 5 or 6? He isn't going to remember much from it, if anything at all.
     
  5. hamiltonrandy

    hamiltonrandy New Member

    Re: Extended European tour

    How much does it cost to ship an RV? I say tour the US and Canada, some really cool places here too, and ALOT LOT easier! Maybe get your feet wet here in an RV fulltime before you do anything that could be disaterous.
     
  6. Dans

    Dans New Member

    Re: Extended European tour

    Thank you all for the feedback and comments! Let me take them on one at a time :)

    Why Europe vs. the USA? Well, both my wife and I have traveled extensively on both continents, however it has been many years since either of us have been back to Europe. Trust me, we spend our fair share of our income here in the USA and all of the associated taxes as well, we won't be hurting anyone by going overseas for a while... all of our investments (and the associated taxes (sigh)) will remain here while we travel.

    Kids - undoubtedly our younger one will have few if any memories of the trip, however the older one will soon be forming long-lasting relationships with friends at school, etc that would be distressing to suddenly break off, hence the timing works well for us now.

    Tour the USA - been there, done that! We will surely do it with the kids several times as they grow up. Europe is more for Mom & Dad, we will likely take the kids back over there (God and finances willing!) when they are in their teens for a more memorable time.

    Costs to ship, approximately $2,000-$3,000 for a 32' rig each way (it is dimensional shipping, measure the outermost dimensions of your rig and then call one of the shipping companies). We will *more* than make up for the shipping costs by saving hotel/resort/housing bills for the duration of the trip.

    Does anyone have any suggestions on sleeping arrangements?

    Many thanks!
    -D
     
  7. TexasClodhopper

    TexasClodhopper Senior Member

    Re: Extended European tour

    We have the over-the-cab arrangement in our Class C with one slide out for the couch and dinette; queen bed in the back. We also have separate shower and toilet areas. Having little ones in the overhead means that they are 'captured' on three sides, at least. I don't think a 2 year old will be climbing a ladder, though.

    Something that might come in handy in Europe's tight roads is the maneuverability of the Class C. Lots better than a Class A. We recently visited the quaint (high priced tourist trap) little town of Nashville, Indiana (that isn't RV friendly) and were able to roam around city streets (because there was no parking for RVs anywhere) and turn around in driveways (to avoid driving 20 miles to the next turn.) You might be doing some of that in Europe.
     
  8. DL Rupper

    DL Rupper Senior Member

    RE: Extended European tour

    Don't recall seeing any Class A's with bunk beds or for that matter any extra beds. A hide-a-bed couch might do since the kids are light weights. Enjoy your adventure.
     
  9. darack

    darack New Member

    Re: Extended European tour

    Hi
    Sorry I can't help you with sleeping arrangements but regarding your trip to Europe totally ignore the previous replies. Europe is a fantastic place to tour with so much variety. As regards buying a vehicle in Europe it would cost you approx double. Some countries are more motorhome friendly, for example France, Germany. Look up in Google, "aires" and "french passion". Also Scotland and Northern Ireland has a very relaxed attitude to motorhomes. One last thing look up Google " magbaz travels" for some excellent information on european travel. By the way we are coming to the USA to buy a motorhome and tour the states.
    Darack
     
  10. JRW

    JRW New Member

  11. Gruffy

    Gruffy New Member

    Re: Extended European tour

    European power is 220 volt 50 hertz.... have you planned how to convert the RV?????

    Our TV is NTSC theirs is PAL..... I assume your gonna trash the TV and VCR and buy new over there....

    The satellites we use for TV here may or may not be useable in Europe.... most likely not ......

    You need an international drivers licence from the Auto Club (AAA) and you need a plate and insurance. If you have to buy a plate over there better find out if the RV is licenceable. For instance some Dodge vans licenceable in the USA do not meet Canadian standards for seat belts and running lights. I suspect you'll run into this overseas as well.
     
  12. Gruffy

    Gruffy New Member

    Re: Extended European tour

    Giving it another 37 seconds or so of thought... European speeds and distance are done in kilometers. The USA is the last country to convert. Perhaps you can get a Canadian speedometer installed... they have both kilometers and miles so you don't have to do conversions on the fly.... then the overheads will be posted in meters not feet.... better know the rig height in meters before you try to drive it off the boat.... :eek:
     
  13. bazzer

    bazzer New Member

    Re: Extended European tour

    Hi! couple of points, first I don't know of any 10 meter max restriction, not in the UK or mainland Europe, the RV's over here are the same as you use over there since that's where their built, people I've spoken to who drive some of the bigger RV's have never been restricted in Europe that is not to say that any of the newer member states don't have limits, seeing that the idea of a unified & standardised europe is what it is about,I can't see that there will be a problem, (to be on the safe side carry a big saw ) :laugh: :laugh: On the electrical side there are transformers and rectifing equipment available to convert to 240v 5ohz so you can use everything as it is & if you want to use any european appliances then it isnt hard to take a 240v supply from infront of the transformer, if you want any advice about touring in Briton e-mail me & I will try to help.
     

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