The majority of RV buyers start shopping for a vehicle online. Online shopping is convenient, efficient and vastly expands your selection. But the No. 1 reason people buy RVs online is price. Buying an RV online is not difficult. Take your time and follow these steps:

  1. Do your homework. There are two types of recreational vehicles: motorhomes and travel trailers. Each type has its own advantages with several different models available that vary in size, amenities and cost. Read RV blogs and magazines. Think about where and how you want to travel and choose the RV best suited to your needs.
  2. Crunch the numbers. Check with an online RV lender to determine how much you can comfortably finance and shop within your price range. If you have champagne tastes but a beer budget, check out used RVs online. You can often find a used RV with the luxury features you want at a price you can afford.
  3. Try it on for size. Photographs and videos can only tell you so much about an RV. To get a true feeling for the elbow room inside a specific RV model, you need to physically step into one and walk around. Visit your local RV dealer or spend a day at an RV show making side-by-side comparisons of the models on your short list.
  4. Go for a test drive. This is where you take off the rose-colored glasses and find out if the RV life is really for you. Rent the type of RV you’re considering buying for a weekend. Drive to an RV campground and experience the RV life up close and personal. After you’ve packed for a trip, driven on different roads, maneuvered a rig into a camping space, cooked a meal, slept in the beds and emptied the septic tank you’ll know if you’re ready to embrace the RV lifestyle.
  5. Strike a deal. Shop the online classified ads on Using the advanced search feature, you can sort RV listings by maker, model, year, price or specific amenities. If you don’t immediately find exactly what you’re looking for, sign up for auto notify to receive an email alert when new ads post that match your search criteria.
  6. Get your ducks in a row. Nail down your financing, arrange for insurance and check with the DMV about licensing, inspection and fees so you’re ready to act.
  7. Kick the tires. When you find your dream RV, arrange for a physical inspection. Closely inspect the vehicle yourself, but also have the mechanics and systems checked at an authorized RV service center to ensure that there are no hidden problems. If everything checks out, you’re ready to take your place in the RV Nation!