Early this spring I pulled our Airstream out of storage, but this time not to get ready for another camping season. Instead, because we sold our beloved Airstream!
Why would we sell the Airstream that we enjoyed so much, you ask? The reason is so simple it may seem nonsensical to some, however it was important enough to us that we pulled the trigger and the Airstream is gone.
First, we need to get something straight, we mostly loved the Airstream of which we have no regrets about buying or owning. This won’t be an Airstream bashing post, just some thoughts about why we liked it and why we didn’t.
The nostalgic look is one of the first things that drew us to the Airstream. I swear every time we saw our Airstream we gushed over how awesome it looks. We will look back on pictures with fondness.
Quality construction is a hallmark of Airstream and we can vouch that when we were in the market, quality is what brought us back to the Airstream showroom again and again. After pulling our Airstream just under 30,000 miles, it was as tight and solid as the day it was new. The interior fit and finish were also high quality. We had nothing come lose, fall apart, or begin to separate in all the miles we traveled. Try that with some other trailers!
Towing, even a 30′ Airstream, is a delight with the correct vehicle and a good anti-sway hitch. The rounded shape is so aerodynamic that it pulls nice and straight, even in gusty crosswinds. The height of the Airstream is 9’9″ instead of 12-13.5′ for some 5th wheels. The relatively short height adds to the stability.
The shower is a stand alone shower (not wet bath), but the shower is moulded around the wheelwell. This means that half of the shower floor is a bench and there is little room for your feet. Pretty much all you can do it turn in place.
Our Airstream was a 30′ International, which has no slide outs (no Airstream currently made have slide outs). Even though it was 30′ long, extended stays can feel cramped with the entire trailer being 8’4″ wide.
The dinette and the sofa both fold down into a beds. Neither of which is sufficient for an adult, this was a disappointment.
Kitchen counter space is limited and the dinette table usually becomes an extension of the counter when cooking. This isn’t a big deal, but it is a consideration.
The dinette table is fastened to the wall in a way that it squeaks with the slightest movement. This is annoying and my comment to Airstream is, “come on, you can’t find a way to remedy this annoyance that must have been complained about thousands of times?”
The aluminum skin of the Airstream gives it the beautiful nostalgic look. We loved the look, but the dirty little secret is the aluminum skin dents easily. I spent much time while camping wondering, “will there be hail in this thunderstorm that dents our trailer?” or “will this be the trip we catch a rock from a truck somewhere on the front of the trailer?” The only way to really fix dents is to replace the panel, which gets very expensive quickly. In our three years of RVing, I would say we saw at least a dozen Airstreams with considerable hail damage.
None of these dislikes are deal breakers, there is just one complaint we have that ended our three year Airsteam ownership.
There is no comfortable place to sit, that’s the deal breaker. The dinette is a great place to sit and eat, but it’s not a place to sit back and relax. Airstream calls the front seating area a “sofa”, which we believe is a misnomer, it’s really a bench and is about a comfortable as sitting on a park bench, seriously. So many times we came back from hiking, showered, and wanted to sit back with our feet up and relax. Guess what? You can’t, all you can do is sit on a bench. This is the reason we decided to sell our beloved Airstream.
As the sun sets on our Airstream experience, we will certainly miss the good points we liked so much and will be delighted to have recliners in our next RV.
Discuss in our forums here: https://rvthe.us/community/threads/why-we-sold-our-airstream.273/