You Can Afford to Be a Vandweller: Runaway Trailers–An Ideal Home for Many Nomads

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Could you become a vandweller either part-time or full-time if you could find a trailer that was comfortable, reliable and could easily be towed by any small car? Now you can!

Could you become a vandweller, either part-time or full-time, if you could find a trailer that was comfortable, high-quality and could easily be towed by any small car? Now you can with the $2500 Runaway mini-camper!

I recently leaned about a new, very small and light “Travel Trailer” that I think is perfect for many of the readers of my website because 1) the base model is only $2500; 2) it only weighs 700 pounds; and 3) it’s very low and narrow having little aerodynamic drag (they are 4 feet wide, 4 feet tall, and 8 feet long). That means it can towed by virtually any car and is affordable to most of my readers. I know many of you would love to at least try to dabble in the vandwelling life part-time, but money stands in your way. The bottom line is, whatever car you own now, if you can sell enough things to come up with the cash for a Runaway trailer, you can be a part-time or even a full-time vandweller or “RVer” today!!
I’m so enthused about their potential to change many lives that I couldn’t fit all the pictures and things I wanted to say about them into one post so this is going to be two posts. In this one I’m going to introduce them and hopefully convince you of their merit and then in the next  I’ll go into the details of the different models and options. The 4 x 8 base model is $2500, a very well equipped one with Air Conditioning, a graphics package and luggage racks is $3100. If you have the money, they offer a very well equipped 6 x 8 model with Air Conditioning for $5000.
They have a base modelfor $2500, and then these well equipped and larger models that come with  Air Conditioning , storage racks and Diamondplate rock-guards.

They have a base model for $2500, and these well equipped and larger models that come with Air Conditioning , storage racks and Diamondplate rock-guards.

They make them about 20 miles from where my mom lives in Florida, so while I was visiting her I arranged a tour of the factory. I’m so impressed with them that I’m going to encourage all of you to at least consider if they might fit into your plans. While I was visiting with Stephen, the owner of the company, he agreed to give $50 off the price for anybody who orders one and tells them that Bob from cheaprvliving sent them.
I got to take a tour of the factory and I was very impressed with these trailers.  Thy're made from 3.4 plywood and are very well made. They will be trouble-free for years and serve you very well.

I got to take a tour of the factory and I was very impressed with these trailers. They’re extremely well-made from 3/4 inch plywood and covered with aluminum. They’ll be trouble-free for years and serve you very well.

Your home may be tiny, but your backyard is ENORMOUS!

Your home may be tiny, but your backyard is ENORMOUS!

“It’s too Small!!”

I’m sure many of you are going to have a first response that it’s too small to live in and you need more interior height–you can barely stoop over to put on your pants. While it’s true they are 46 inches high inside, they aren’t designed to be your home, they’re designed to be your bedroom; after all, are you going camping or are you going to stay at a luxury hotel? Essentially, vandwelling is one long extended camping trip so most of us are going to be in National Forests, National Parks, State Parks or BLM desert land and we can spend our day outside and use the trailer as a bedroom. Nature becomes your hotel room and the trailer is the bedroom. The rest of the hotel room is easily carried with you and set-up:

  • You can set-up a table under an awning for a kitchen.
  • A camp chair under mosquito tent makes a great living room.
  • And a potty-shower tent as a bathroom.

All you need is a bedroom that has hard walls to keep out predators, is water-tight and has windows with screens so you can see out and get ventilation. The Runaway is perfect for that. They’re very comfortable to spend your evenings in or to sleep in…which is all you really need. Even during periods of bad weather (high winds, cold or very heavy rain) when you are forced inside you can still be comfortable, and even cook, for a few days or even a week or two. I think a good comparison is living in cars. I know many people who live in cars or SUVs (including several who live in a Prius) and they will all tell  you they live out of them, not in them. This trailer will be far more comfortable to live in than any car or SUV and I think nearly anyone could adapt and be happy in one.

All you need is a pop-up awning to park the trailer under, a portable table, barbecue and potty tent and you have a wonderfully comfortable home-away-from-home.

All you need is a pop-up awning to park the trailer under, a portable table and a potty tent and you have a wonderfully comfortable home-away-from-home.

Why they may be perfect for you:

  • Because they only weigh 700 pounds you can tow it with an economy car and still get great MPG–that will allow you to travel much more and further. Because you don’t have to buy a separate tow vehicle or RV, you can keep the daily driver you’ve been using; after all, you already know, trust and like it so why change it if you don’t have to? Keeping your car means you can get 30-40 MPG instead of 15 MPG in a van or 8 MPG in an RV. Every time you stop for gas you’ll spend much less, letting you travel much more.
  • They only cost $2500. That’s a lot of money for such a small trailer but when you consider the extras they come with it’s very reasonable. Compare that to any Tear Drop or Pop-up trailer and you’ll see it’s less than half as much or even a third what they cost.  Most of us can afford them allowing is to start our new life earlier. I searched and the cheapest Tear Drop trailer I could find was $5000 (most were $6000 and more) and are smaller than the Runaway. It’s a bargain compared to them!
  • You can buy it with an Air Conditioner already installed for $3000. The single biggest problem with living in a van is keeping it comfortably cool in the summer. The CoolCamp model solves that and comes with a built-in 5000 BTU Air Conditioner and power strip to plug it into. All you have to do is plug it in to shore power and turn it on. You can get shore power by staying with a friend or RV park or by carrying a 2000 watt generator.
  • Ongoing maintenance costs will be extremely low because of their light weight and ultra-simplicity. They’re cheaper than buying a good used van or RV and those still might need a lot of hidden work. Instead, you get something that’s brand new and high-quality that won’t need any repairs for many years to come. I can’t tell you how many horror stories I’ve heard from people who bought a used van only to have it break down on them ending their adventure before it even started. Towing this with your current car prevents that.
  • Their small size lets them go deep into the back-country. If you tow it with a AWD or 4×4 car or SUV, you can get very remote and still be very comfortable. That also shows how well they are made that they can handle the rigors of off-road driving
  • Being small and towing with a car gives you the comfort and drive-ability of a car instead of the ponderous size of a van, or even worse, an RV. Because driving doesn’t wear you out, you can travel further and faster. Let me give you an example; you just heard about an event you’d love to go to but it’s 1000 miles away. Hitch up and head out because with one of these you can afford both the time and money and when you return home afterwards you’ll have enjoyed the trip rather than be exhausted by wrestling with a bigger rig.
  • They’re easier to tow because they are very low and narrow. While that does limit their space and make them less comfortable it also drastically reduces their aerodynamic drag which is a big part of why any car can tow them. Being narrow also means that the mirrors on any car will work to see behind the trailer. Until you’ve towed a trailer you won’t know how very important that is.
  • They are made from 3/4 inch plywood which makes them very strong but it also makes it easy for you to attach nearly anything to the walls. If you’re going to spend long periods of time in such a small space, organization is critical and being able to screw things securely into the wall will be priceless.
  • They come ready to move into and are very livable. They come standard with a wide door and two windows with screens which gives you very good ventilation but even better they give you great visibility so you don’t feel claustrophobic in such a small space. All you need to do is throw down a mattress and you’re ready to move in. If you aren’t a handy person, this is a huge advantage!
They are surprisingly open feeling inside mainly because of the two large windows that come standard.

They are surprisingly open feeling inside mainly because of the two large windows that come standard.

To give you an idea of their open-ness I went in and laid down with my head near the back of the trailer and took this picture by holding the camera over my head looking forward.  There is lots of room beside me and in front of me. You can see the 5000 btu that came installed in this one.

To give you an idea of their open-ness I went in and laid down with my head a few inches from the back of the trailer and took this picture by holding the camera over my head looking forward. There’s lots of room beside and in front of me. You can see the 5000 btu Air Conditioner that came installed in this one. 

In my next post we’ll look at other reasons you should seriously consider a Runaway Mini-camper perfect for your new life and give you more details, especially of the many options that make them even more attractive. They are only sold direct so you will have to pick it up from them at Ocala, Florida. Shipping is available and usually will run somewhere between  $500 and $1000 depending on where you are in the country.

You can check out their website and Facebook Page here:

http://www.runawaycampers.com/index.html

https://www.facebook.com/RunawayCampers

To contact them with any questions or find out how to purchase your Runaway:

PHONE: (352) 342-3454
EMAIL: 
LINK@cfaith.com

1338 N. Magnolia Ave.
Ocala, Florida USA 34475

Remember to tell them Bob from cheaprvliving sent you to get a $50 discount!

They are very capable off-road! The roof-rack is an option.

They are very capable off-road! The roof-rack is an option.

You may not want to go anywhere this rough, but it's very comforting to know they are able to handle it so easily!

You may not want to go anywhere this rough, but it’s very comforting to know they are able to handle it so easily!

Here's how one owner makes them work. He has this sleeping pad that sets up as a coach, and then...

Here’s how one owner makes them work. He has this sleeping pad that sets up as a coach, and then…

Here's the coach folded out.

… folds out as a bed.

Even with the bed folded out there is several feet left at the end. They'll install the counter-top or you can build your own. You could easily cook on it during periods of bad weather.

Even with the bed folded out there are several feet left at the front. They’ll install this counter-top for, or you can build your own. You could easily cook on it during periods of bad weather.

You can get an optional back door which makes them very openfeeling and gives you great  ventilation.

You can get an optional back door which makes them very open feeling and gives you great ventilation.

Previous Review Of Williams Camp (and e-Bike update)

88 Comments

  1. Curtis Carper

    What a coincidence… I’m in Florida right now and plan on going there tomorrow to check them out. I’ve been impressed with them for the past couple years.

    • Bob

      I’ll just miss you Curtis, I’m flying out tomorrow! Hope you like them.
      Bob

  2. Al Christensen

    Certainly a lot better use of space than those little vintage teardrop trailers.

    • Bob G

      Al, I think you are comparing them to the wrong thing.
      What they resemble most of all is a very light-weight version of a motorcycle trailer. Only not as useful nor as likely to hold their value.
      I myself bought a utility trailer (lightly used) a couple of years ago for $2000 that was 8×12 and 7 feet tall inside. It didn’t have windows, but it had a front door like these and a back ramp you could ride a motorcycle up on. That utility trailer was just a big empty space like these, but the frame and axles were much more heavy duty. And after a couple of years I was able to sell it for what I had in it. The value of these little cracker boxes is not going anywhere but downhill.
      You can get more for less in almost any large city. Utility trailers come in all sizes and weights, and there’s so damn many of them out there a good deal is easy to come by.
      I’m not saying you couldn’t make do with it, at least for a while. But you can do a lot better for the same money.
      T

      • Offroad

        Bob G – Like your alternative suggestion. Any luck finding a duel axle version you can point to that is lite enough to tow, with a class one hitch? Anyone can knock a hole in it for a window AC unit; and a couple lite weight plexiglass windows.
        My concern is finding either a boondock place, or a campground that would allow generator after hours. Suspect that you need to always to go to a 30A or 50A spot in a standard RV location.

          • Bob

            Offroad, they are all double the weight and NOT towable by econo cars. They don’t have a side door or windows. Totally apples and oranges.
            Bob

        • Bob

          Offroad, carry a generator and you don’t have to stay at campgrounds so no one can tell you what to do. I have to disagree though, I know many people who can’t do their own upgrades. If they can they probably aren’t interested in these.
          Bob

          • Offroad

            Understood about apples to oranges comparison. You are correct that most little cars can not do the bigger trailers at all. And these would work great for that.
            Am looking at the cost to use back east in the woods and such areas, as there are rare boondock areas with open camping. So not much chance to use a generator. what is the cost per night for a 30 amp connection? $30 if lucky (speculation)? So it might set you back $900 a month while running that AC, hooked to street power.

          • Bob

            You’re right about that Offroad but many people will only take trips in them so the cost would be manageable.
            But that criticism is true of every type of vehicle you choose to live in. Car, van, RV, anything, if you can’t run a generator you have to hook up to shore power or do without, and shore power is expensive no matter what you drive. But, because it is so small you can easily cool it with a 5000 btu window AC which can be powered by a little Honda 2000 which will use much less gas and be much quieter.
            That window unit can be powered by 15 amp so it can be run from any outdoor outlet. So if you are parked in the drive way of a frind or family, all you need to do is run a standard extension cord. It’s as flexible as any vehicle air conditioner can be.
            Bob

          • Chip

            I run the 5,000 BTU AC on my Aliner with a 1,200 watt/1,500 watt surge genny, so an EU2000 Honda (actually a 1,600 watt/2,000 watt genny would be more than adequate.
            These units seem much more heavily constructed than my Aliner, making them more rugged for off-road use in places I would never take my camper. Not being able to stand up in one would be a big issue for us though. I think if they made a deluxe model with full 12v wiring, an inverter, water tanks, etc. or at least options to make off-grid living more practical they would attract more people looking for campers with more traditional amenities. A 1500 watt inverter and 4-6 golf cart batteries would probably run that little AC all night (which is when you need it to sleep and most campgrounds prohibit the use of generators) as the compressor wouldn’t be running continually, but would cycle on and off. I’m suggesting campground use because of the camper’s lack or toilet and shower facilities. A little insulation on the inside (especially the ceiling) would help a lot. The roof just begs for solar panels too, providing both power and shade if spaced 3-4 inches off the roof. In short they have a lot of potential for what they are – now they just need to make one with a pop-up roof like a mini Hi-Lo (maybe with gas strut assists to help you lift it) or at least a hinged roof that lifts on one end with soft sides, allowing light and air circulation (that can be closed in foul weather) and it would be perfect. Of course all these things would add weight and complexity. My Aliner went from 995 lbs. for the basic camper to 1,700lbs fully loaded with all the amenities (king bed, kitchen, bath, water tanks, electrics, etc.) and ready to camp. You just need to decide how much you really need and what you are willing to do without if deciding on one of these.
            Chip

          • Bob

            Chip, lots of good ideas there! No doubt they are for someone who want to truly be a minimalist with nothing extra.
            Their is almost unlimited possibilities of ways they could make them better. But they sell all they can make at this basic model and they are selling something that they know 100% is cheap, easy, and very reliable. They found a niche market that was under-served and they made the perfect product for it. I admire their dedication to a quality product at absolute rock bottom price with minimal fluff. It fits our philosophy perfectly!
            Bob

          • velojym

            As one of the biggest benefits of this type of camper is far greater mobility, the practice of following the weather would be cheaper than if you were in a land yacht.
            If traveling with weather in mind, then you can craft your experience so that the a/c and/or heater will only be used occasionally, and for only a short period. For instance, in the evening at a higher elevation, it may be uncomfortably warm for sleeping, but the night will cool off fairly quickly. Some battery capacity and a big enough inverter would be plenty to see you through to the cooler night hours.

      • raz

        idk what your 8x12x7 weighs but i know it is way larger than my sentra. my sentra would fit inside. it would destroy my mpg, if my car would even be able to pull it at highway speeds comfortably.
        runaways are made for my car. plus a whole lot of others. i see your trailers on the road. always behind a pickup. even a dump truck, ones in a while. never behind an econobox.
        ice cream raz

      • Bob

        Bob, I think you missed the point, these can be towed by economy cars and almost no cargo trailers can be. They aren’t for everybody, they’re perfect for some people and a poor choice for others.
        For their target audience, there is nothing better.
        Bob

      • Grunge Luggage Tours

        You make logical valid points if you are going at it from the standpoint that economy is not a concern. As a Prius owner since 2007 I have to say I have grown accustom to getting incredible range out of my 11.9 gallon tank. This car gets 45 mpg if I don’t tow but towing this runaway trailer my interstate mpg 60 mph no wind is 30 mpg. I have a cargo trailer 8×10 best I can get interstate is 20 mpg. These are small cars not designed to tow. But there are benefits to owning a Prius that are illustrated in other post by people that use their prius for camping. That being the car is a hybrid it is a generator on wheels get an inverter and you are in business. You aren’t going to invert power to run an AC but you will easily have fan computer and lights as long as you get LED power. I am typing this from the inside of my runaway camper (in my yard) I am going through trials and seeing what works. It is close quarters but it is what you do to save fuel and have incredible range. Fuel prices are not going to remain low and I want to get it right before the prices rise again.I car camped in the Prius and I wanted to give something larger a try but I don’t want to sacrifice fuel economy. Plus when you tow and get bad mpg you are stressing the drive train I get good mpg I know I am going to have many more stress free miles to go. My way is not right or wrong just my view from another prospective. BTW I got my runaway used and for $2K usually when they come up for sale the get what they paid for them because if you want one odds are you are going to wait for it to be built. They are popular and this will cause a used one to hold it’s value. Time will tell if I did the right thing I was going to get a smaller trailer anyway sure I could have gotten a $200 harbor freight but this one is as near turnkey as I could get and not like I can afford the $2K don’t drink or smoke and pretty much post stuff on the web as a hobby. Hope this helps with prospective happy motoring.

        • Bob

          Of course I 100% agree with you, the Prius is a truly outstanding live-in car, one of the best cars ever sold in America; Toyota got it all right! I’ll be doing a post and a video on them soon.
          I’d be towing one behind my van except for one thing, their ground clearance. That’s a deal breaker for me, I need to be able to go reasonably remote places in my car and while it’s amazing what a good driver can do with one, most of the places I want to go they can’t go.
          I’d give serious thought to the Toyota Highlander hybrid, same basic technology as the Prius but very good ground clearance and an excellent tow rating. BUT!!! they only get 26 MPG, kind of a bummer. The new RAV4 is coming out with Hybrid so when they get older I’d look at them as well.
          Bob

    • Bob

      I agree Al, the extra length is a big improvement and being square gains you a lot of space.
      Bob

  3. tommy helms

    Very clever

    • Bob

      I agree tommy!
      Bob

  4. Jill

    Bob, Thanks for showing yet another alternative. I appreciate the info. 🙂

    • Bob

      You are very welcome Jill!
      Bob

      • Grunge Luggage Tours

        https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GnP7CZFNlvA Nice video people might want to see this lady uses a SUV tent with her Runaway. Uses suction cups to hold it to the skin of the camper. Enjoy I am trying to share all I learn about these to help people that want to camp comfortably but not invest a lot of money.

        • Bob

          Thanks for the link, that’s a good one.
          Bob

  5. Carol B.

    As the owner of a home built (not by me) teardrop camper, I wanted to confirm the great points you made about the Runaway. Like the Runaway, my teardrop is just a sleeper—meaning it doesn’t have the hatch on the back that serves as a kitchen. It is extremely easy to tow without a great loss in MPG, fits in tight spaces, maneuvers along twisty mountain roads or city street with ease. Being lightweight, many times I have picked up the tongue, pulled the camper a short distance to the truck, and dropped the coupler over the ball. Too easy. As a solo traveler, I have a cot in mine and utilize the space beneath the cot as storage. That leaves an open area along the door side for the camp chair, table, cooler, porta potty, whatever. I have claustrophobia and nixed teardrops for that reason, but I saw one advertised for a great price and decided to check it out. I’m so glad I did. Two big windows keep the teardrop from feeling like a coffin. I don’t live in mine, but I have used it often for traveling and camping. I figure my teardrop has paid for itself with the money I’ve saved on gas, rooms, meals, etc. Convenience is priceless.

    • Bob

      Thanks for that feedback Carol, I’m glad you found a trailer that works so well for you! Tear drops are a thing of beauty!
      Bob

  6. DougB

    So, what makes these boxed teardrops better than the small cargo vans you have been hyping up to now? I’m serious. Would you chuck your current cargo trailer for this on an even trade?

    • Bob

      Doug, they are apples and oranges. I have a 1 ton van that gets 13 mpg and I was able to install my own windows so no, I would not trade. But if I didn’t have the money or skill I’m 100% sure I would get one of these instead of stay home and dream. That’s who they are marketed to, part-timers and people on very tight budgets. For that group of people, they are an outstanding choice.
      I would not try to tow my 6×10 cargo trailers with any economy car.
      Bob

  7. Naomi

    Oh my goodness! This is wonderful! I like the fact that it can be towed by anything and that it can be ordered with AC.
    How do these compare in weight and quality to storage trailers?
    Thanks, Bob!
    ~Naomi

    • Bob

      Naomi, the small 5×7 trailers will be about 1000 pounds(300 more) and be taller. The quality is very high but different. Cargo trailers have steel ribs while these are solid plywood walls.
      Bob

      • Naomi

        I like it! Thanks again.

        • Bob

          You’re welcome Naomi.
          Bob

  8. Toes

    Great post, Bob! Thanks for sharing!
    I personally find it really fun to push the limits and find out just how small I can actually go (I’m currently in a minivan).
    I love how lightweight these things are!

    • Bob

      Thanks Toes, they are very light. Many times they stretch the numbers and they really weigh more. But these actually weigh a little less, the base model is about 680. No doubt you have to be a minimalist!
      Bob

    • Calvin R

      Hi, Toes. It’s good to know another minivan minimalist. If you had one of those Runaway trailers, it would feel familiar. The size is just a little smaller than the interiors of my Grand Caravans. It’s 8′ x 4′ x 4′ versus 9′ x 4′ x ~4′.

      • Bob

        Good info, thanks Calvin!
        Bob

  9. Steve

    I have been really racking my brain to try to figure out what I am going to tow with my 2014 Ford Escape. I have had lots of suggestions including the Runaway. It does seem like a good choice except that it is only 4 foot tall, and you have to crawl into it to sleep. Then you would have to crawl around inside to do anything. I can do that. So then I figured I could just maybe use my Escape as a sleeper. It has pretty much inside area with the seats down. Almost as much as the Runaway. So I am working on that for now.
    Here is some ideas I am coming up with. I am planning on putting the 6″ tall clear storage containers from Wal-Mart under the air mattress for a base, That way I won’t waste space. I only have 2 of them for now but I am going to use about 5 to completely cover the bottom. The mattress is light enough to just lift up and get to the storage, or deflate the mattress each day to convert it to a different setup for eating, entertainment, or just lounging in the seats. I am honing it right now to make it work as efficiently as possible.
    This way,I won’t have to worry about towing anything at all which will give me more freedom. And about the same amount of room to sleep, eat etc, as the Runaway…..sort of.
    https://onedrive.live.com/redir?resid=E588842B38BDAF0!11479&authkey=!ANeoaWXoFXRvYME&ithint=folder%2cjpg

    • Dan

      Well from experience I like the idea, I had even built one similar out of 3/4 plywood and added a/c and used rear 2 feet for my generator, I used it to take my dog when working or shopping and once we got to destination I would crank up gen ( eu3000) and a/c and she was happy because she was with me all the time, I used it for several camping trips also, it was adequate but I am now in process of selling my 67 shasta compact just because too much wind drag even behind my gmc safari, I want to travel without care of gas and wear and tear, solution build another but 5 wide 10 long and 5 high, I would say that the runaways are spot on on pricing for what you get, nice quality and fit / finish. mine will definetly look home made lol, sorry so long on post.

      • Bob

        Thanks Dan, I agree totally with everything you said!
        Bob

    • Bob

      Steve, being able to travel in just the Escape is the ultimate in freedom–very driveable, great MPG. But the extremely small space wouldn’t work for me. I would take the trailer but no doubt it’s a tradeoff we all have to work out.
      Bob

  10. skyl4rk

    I have a 4×8 camping trailer similar to the models featured in this blog. It has a foam floor mat and a big camping cot with a 4″ foam mattress on it. You can sit up on the cot. You can change your clothes in it but there is not a lot of room and you have to stand hunched over. There is enough room under the cot to store large bins for storage.
    As far as fuel use while towing, you can expect to get about 2/3rds of the mpg that your car gets without a trailer. I have a Nissan Versa with a 1.6 liter motor, which is not a good tow vehicle, not powerful enough (although it works). I think the ideal tow vehicle would be a Subaru Forester with AWD and a 2.5 liter motor.

    • Bob

      Thanks skyl4rk, I agree the bigger the motor the better. The tiny cars can tow them but they’ll work harder to do it but bigger is better. I also agree the Forester is just about ideal!
      Bob

    • Grunge Luggage Tours

      I am doing great getting 75% of my mpg then Usually get 40-45 mpg towing a runaway I get 30 mpg ideal conditions. I have to say my driving habits are very conservative when towing. 60 mph in a 70 is a decent speed variance as long as the people passing keep moving and don’t park beside you and gawk as if they never saw a Prius tow a tiny camper. I think I will use some lettering that says SPEED LIMIT FOR ME 60 MPH PLEASE GO AWAY !

      • Bob

        Sounds like a great way to go! I like the sign idea as well!!
        Bob

  11. Crazy Sister

    I think this could be a great solution. The price is right and for those of us who are not comfortable towing or backing something large it might be just the right thing. Thanks for sharing. Looking forward to the 2nd post. (And I liked their website.)

    • Bob

      I’m glad it might work out for you Crazy Sister! Let me know if you get one.
      Bob

  12. Gen

    Thanks Bob! I have been eyeballing the 6×8 since I found the link in the forum (which will not allow me to join. Sent an email about that) I will be towing it with my 2010 HHR. I cannot wait for the season to be over here in Montana. I have already discussed my plans with my boss and will be welcomed back every spring. It helps that they live in a park model RV full time although they never move it. I am so eager to start I have already mapped out a place for everything with masking tape on a same sized area rug.
    Gen

    • Bob

      Gen, I hope it works out for you, I think they are really great trailers!
      Bob

  13. Susan

    Wow !! Like , like , like. Might be just the thing for me until I am ready to get an RV.

    • Bob

      Thanks Susan, I hope it works out for you.
      Bob

  14. Lyssa

    I just wish I hadn’t paid $3500 two weeks ago for a van! I LOVE my Lancer, but just couldn’t see ‘living’ in a teardrop (which I thought was about the only thing it could tow). Anyone want to buy a 2002 Dodge Ram 1500???? (High top!)

    • Bob

      Lyssa, it’s all going to work out great! I’m sure the van will serve you very well and it really does have a lot of advantages over a trailer. If you have the money, i think it’s the better choice. Enjoy it!
      Bob

      • Rvnutty

        Keep the van and pull the Runaway 🙂
        Piece of cake.

    • laurie

      Lyssa these campers are quite impressive and if anything goes wrong on your tow vehicle and needs to stay overnight at a mechanics you still have your rig to live in which is a challenge when your van is your home and it breaks down on the highway.
      If you would like to sell your van, Lisa and I are looking to buy a high top this month to tow our 17 foot burro affectionately known as the Casbah at the RTR so feel free to email me at loverise@aol.com
      If anyone knows of a reasonably priced hightop in decent condition we are offering a hundred dollar finders fee to the person who puts us in touch with the seller of the van we purchase.
      So Lyssa in addition to paying you what you paid for your van we would also give you an additional $100 if you are serious about buying the camper.
      Celebrate life…Laurie

      • Bob

        Laurie, I wish you and Lisa the best in your search for a high-top! I’m surprised it’s been this hard to find one.
        Bob

  15. Becky

    Thanks Bob for the great article on these little trailers. You are very nice for sharing so much wonderful info and personal knowledge. I love your blog!
    Thanks again, Becky in Az.

    • Bob

      It’s my pleasure Becky!
      Bob

  16. Jim

    Phoenix Craigslist ‘teardrop size Ranaway Cool Camper – $1800’ posted two days ago.

    • Lyssa

      Thanks Jim…I just emailed the seller!

      • Bob

        Hope it works out Lyssa!
        Bob

      • Becky

        I went and looked at this trailer, if want to know more about it you could email me. redwoods68@yahoo.com
        Becky in Az

        • Bob

          Thanks Becky!
          Bob

    • Bob

      Thanks Jim, perfect for somebody!
      Bob

  17. Opa

    I think this trailers could be a good supplement to carry extra items ( Bicycles, Storage,) or anything else that does not fit in the van.

    • Bob

      Good point Opa, it can be a bedroom or a lightweight cargo trailer. Very versatile!
      Bob

  18. Cae

    Bob, you just keep coming up with great ideas!
    Throw a hammock inside and some solar panels on top and everyone with a commenter car is good to go! simply genius !!

    • Bob

      I agree Cae!
      Bob

  19. Magicwolf

    Bob, I agree these are great trailers. I had seriously considered a Runaway for my HHR (before I found the little Scamp). There is a specific niche for these little campers: My HHR is very limited for towing. (I didn’t have my van yet). I don’t have a workshop or even a garage here to build something in. These give you a super-light, affordable, very customizable shell/shelter that a light-duty vehicle can pull. I didn’t know they came with roof-racks. You could maybe put one of those vehicle roof-storage units on top of it, plus I think you can also mount a storage box on the front as well.

    • Bob

      Magicwolf, the Scamp is a great little trailer with a lot more room than the Runaway. But the tradeoff is they are quite a bit heavier and a lot more expensive. I’m glad you got one!
      Bob

    • Rvnutty

      I am wondering how strong that roof is…but I saw a picture of a canoe on top of one.
      If I had one I would want a rack of some sort, and solar panels too. But then, I want it all.

      • Bob

        Rvnutty, I would climb up there and do a dance, but they are well made and will hold u to any normal use very well. No problem with a solar panel or canoe. It’ll handle that easily.
        Bob

  20. spirituallifetime

    I like the idea of a small trailer that can be towed by almost any vehicle. If your tow vehicle breaks down and you have get another one you don’t have to search for days to find one that will tow this small trailer, almost any will do!

    • Bob

      That’s a very good point spirituallifetime! Plus, if your car needs to go in the shop for service you still have a home and can take cabs. That’s a pretty big advantage.
      Bob

  21. Corky

    Bob,
    Have you seen the Meerkat Trailers? I went and looked at them today, fairly impressive, but over priced. I wonder if the pop-top feature could be added to the Runaways?
    Corky

    • Bob

      Corky, I looked at their site and they do look good. I couldn’t find a price but I’m sure they are very expensive. Thanks for pointing them out.
      Bob

  22. Corky

    Bob,
    The stand-up popup makes a surprising amount of difference in how the units feel!
    I wonder if the concept can be adapted to other units? A popup to dress and shower in would go a long way toward making a small unit far more comfortable.
    Corky

    • Bob

      Corky, it would be worth looking into!
      Bob

  23. Rvnutty

    Thank you so much Bob for pointing the Runaways out to us. There is definitely a niche for those of us that want to start out with an affordable travel-lite way of camping with whatever vehicle we presently own. Being a single, old, retired lady, driving a Class B or pulling a Cargo trailer seems pretty daunting. Heck, I can’t even change a tire let alone figure out how a generator works. I did buy the Earthquake IG800W Model 11613 Portable 800-Watt Inverter Generator with 40cc 4-Cycle OHV Viper Engine (CARB Compliant) on Amazon recently simply because it had such good reviews and many people liked using them while camping. I’ll have to find you though to show me how it works lol. Suanne’s blog about living out of her Prius was inspiring, but now with the Runaway, it affords a little more wiggle room.

    • Bob

      RVNutty, I think the Ruanaway is perfect for many people, but not for everybody. Only you can decide that, but from what you’re saying, it does sound like a good fit to you.
      I agree totally, compared to Suanne in her Prius you get 1000 times more comfort with a Runaway!
      Bob

  24. Rochelle

    I am an owner of a Runaway camping trailer. I got mine June 29, 2014. Before I got it I had joined a Runaway Owners/Runaway Fan Page on Facebook and was a “lurker” for several months, learning so much about its use and how to decorate and furnish it. When I got the money I ordered a custom hybrid to suit myself. Easy to move, hookup and tow. Many owners (including myself) have side tents for dressing/showering/potty. Go to Facebook and start typing Runaway and the groups will display; click on one and start reading what owners and wannabe-owners discuss. The Runaway has opened up a whole new world for me! Solid walls and lockable doors (I have two) make me feel more secure as I camp solo as a widow.

    • Bob

      Thanks for your feedback Rochell. I’m glad it’s working for you!!
      Bob

  25. Brian Wilson

    Bob,
    Thanks for all of your great info all over your website. I applaud you for fighting through the negative comments. Everyone is entitled to an opinion but keep it respectful and realize this is great information for many people. Hope to be on the road seeing the sights soon.

    • Bob

      Thanks Brian, I appreciate your kind words!
      Hang in there, your time will come.
      Bob

  26. Jason Strong

    Its cool that there are so many different types of trailers to choose from. They have some that are huge and need to be pulled by a truck, others are smaller for small cars like this. Its all about finding what your needs are.

    • Bob

      You’re right about that Jason. Everyone’s needs are very different!
      Bob

  27. AG

    Hi Bob,
    Great website! I am doing an analysis for Runaway Campers for school, and I am glad to have found your blog. SO much useful information. Way to go! keep it up.

    • Bob

      Thanks AG!
      Bob

  28. Britt

    Two years later and this is still helpful! I’ve been researching these. The Runaway will be perfect for me to haul myself, two cats and dog back and forth between MN and FL with my Honda Civic. And…. I’ll have a getaway camper to boot! Thanks much for your review and comments, Bob

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