Eight Trending RV Features for 2021

By Jeremy and Sephanie Puglisi of GoRving.com

When it comes to advances in technology, luxury, and off-the-grid capability, the RV industry has been innovating at a blistering pace–and in our humble opinion, there has never been a better time to be an RV owner. If you want an RV that is tricked out with high-tech gadgets and dozens of features that are controllable from an app, then that RV is out there waiting for you. If you want an RV that has all of the comforts of home and the fit and finish of a high-end luxury apartment, then that RV is waiting for you too. Or if you want to get off grid and camp underneath the stars and #roamoutside, then you will also find plenty of suitable RVs that are ready for your next rugged adventure.

Solar Goes Mainstream

Adding a solar system to your RV used to be complex, cumbersome, and expensive for the average RV owner. But that is simply no longer the case. In the last few years solar has gone mainstream. This is because many of the solar companies are now partnering with manufacturers to make the process of adding solar significantly simpler and more affordable, especially for RV owners that may be less handy. Now many rigs come prepped or “pre-wired” for solar and the panels, batteries, and inverters can be easily added by the manufacturer, the dealer, or the consumer. This is such good news for RV owners because having a solar set up is absolutely awesome for dry camping, boondocking, and driveway surfing. Campgrounds are great, but having the power to camp anywhere is practical and on trend for 2021.

Going Big With Outdoor Kitchens

Outdoor kitchens have been around for many years now, but they are on trend for 2021 because they are becoming more impressive and “blinged out” for today’s luxury loving campers. Yesterday’s camp kitchens had a fridge and a sink with running water if you were lucky. Today’s camp kitchens have flat screen TV’s, USB chargers and speakers, microwaves, spice racks, built in grills and griddles, and much more. Many of the RV owners that we know use their outdoor kitchens more than they use their indoor kitchens—and that’s a testament to how well-equipped so many of them are these days.

Luxurious Features in Affordable RV’s

Over the past few years a number of features that are typically associated with higher end RV’s have become common in budget priced RV’s. Five years ago, If you wanted heated theater seats in your new RV you would have to buy a luxury fifth wheel or motorhome. Now you can find features like this as options in travel trailers that cost significantly less. Luxurious “grounded” steps with strut assist and handrails also used to largely be available on high end RV’s, now they can be seen on a variety of rigs at affordable price points. We all deserve a little luxury when we Go RV’ing, right?

Lighter Interiors and Stripped-Down Graphics

Many RV consumers have been asking for lighter interior decor options and more stripped- down exterior graphics. Manufacturers have responded to consumer demand in both of these cases. More earthy interiors are still available, and so are elaborate graphics packages, but now consumers have more choice. More choice means that your new RV can be more personalized and more distinct—and what’s not to love about that?

TPMS Systems for Safety

Tire safety can make or break your RV’ing experience. Routine tire maintenance, proper inflation, and correct weight distribution will eliminate most of the emergency tire issues that happen on the road. However, no matter how diligent you are, you can’t control everything, including nails and other random road debris. Investing in a Tire Pressure Monitoring System (TPMS) can help you avoid getting a blowout to begin with. More and more RV manufacturers are including these types of systems as standard equipment—and we applaud them for doing so. But they are also widely available in the aftermarket and easy to install.

Off-Grid Capabilities

This might be the most exciting RV trend for 2021. As mentioned earlier, more and more manufacturers are offering solar options that can be added at the factory, making off-grid camping more comfortable than ever before. We are also seeing off-road tires, raised axles, and larger holding tank capacity that will make boondocking and dry camping more comfortable for longer periods of time. With these kinds of amenities, you can be ready to roam wherever your sense of adventure leads.

Smart RV Capabilities

RVs have been getting smarter every year, but 2021 RVs have more tech features than ever before. Many models now offer shoppers the ability to control RV systems straight from a smartphone or tablet. Simply download an app and you can dim the lights, extend the slides and awning, and check your tank levels while never leaving the recliner. RVers will appreciate being able to check on the interior temperature of the rig, even when they are away from the campground. Imagine opening your slide outs with an app while standing outside so you can check for obstacles like trees that may get in the way and do damage. Smart, practical, and convenient, right?

Pet-Friendly Features

More than half of all RV’ers travel with their furry family members, and manufacturers are taking note. Many 2021 RVs come with features like leash latches on the exterior, and hidden dog bowl drawers that can be extended during feeding times and tucked away for the rest of the day. Some RV models came with dedicated doggie bed and kennel space. One manufacturer has removed all carpeting from their pet-friendly rigs and also moved heating vents from the floor to the walls. Clearly, today’s RV’s have become more comfortable and convenient for pets and their people.

 

 

Chances are, you WILL go RV’ing in 2021

Understanding the popularity of RV’ing in 2020 can be traced to several factors. Let’s look at 7 Reasons Why You Will Go RV’ing in 2021.

1. Everyone wanted to go RV’ing already
Why did the world go RV’ing in 2020? RV’ing in general was already on the upswing, enjoying a huge rise in popularity that last few years. The convergence of great mobile technology and a generation of folks unwilling to be tied to a desk helped fuel a growth that saw the annual sale of units eclipse a half-million in 2017.

The COVID situation only exacerbated that trend. The RV industry has enjoyed a stretch of good years and was counting on a few more. When COVID hit, the industry “Uh Oh’s” could be heard all the way from Elkhart. Little did we know that 2020 would become the Summer of the RV.

2. RV’ing is a safe activity
When viewed from the perspective of a COVID world, RVing is about as safe as you can be. When you go RVing, you are in charge of your transportation, your meals, and your accommodations. You are in control of everything you and your family sees, touches, eats, and sleeps in.

With the pandemic, we were told that our homes are the safest place to be. No one said those homes couldn’t be on wheels, which is essentially what an RV is. All of the safety measures we used to keep safe in our own homes, with our loved ones, translated to those homes on wheels.

3. We all crave the open road
Deep down we all crave the open road. American pioneers hit the road, such as it was, in the Westward Expansion of the 19th century. Many of our own parents or grandparents desired to explore Eisenhower’s new Interstate Highway System in the ’60s & ’70s. Although the world around us seemed to shut down in 2020, the roads were still open for the most part, and RVers have flocked to them.

4. We go RV’ing because we have time
2020 has changed how we think about time and working remotely. Suddenly that office you absolutely had to be in every day is unnecessary. Spending an hour or more in traffic, sometimes each way now seems absurd.

Like cubs straying from the lion’s den for brief periods, we realized we could work from the living room instead of the home office. Then we moved to the backyard, and after that the RV. We began to realize that home is where you park it, wherever that may be.
We figured out that we now had time to hit the road and could be away from the office for days or even weeks. Kids no longer had rigid school schedules to adhere to. No more soccer practice, dance lessons, or marching band. Even when school resumed, it was with remote learning. Who’s to know (or care) if your kid is at home on Redwood Drive or in a Redwood forest?

5. We go RV’ing because we value our freedom
As Americans, we aren’t used to being told we can’t do something. Even though we want to eat out, we can still cook at home. We love getting together for live sports and concerts, but we can always watch at home.
Vacation is another matter. If all the vacation opportunities are shut down, that leaves us stuck at home. Vacation time is when most of us do everything we can to get away from home. Because we have that desire to get away and feel the need and freedom to do so, many have turned to RV’ing.

6. There is so much to see
One of the best reasons to go RV’ing is because there really is so much to see. Obviously well-known destinations like Yellowstone, the Grand Canyon, and Mount Rushmore should be on your list.

But there is so much amazing scenery just getting to and from those attractions. Simply driving through Monument Valley is fantastic, you don’t even have to stop. The fall colors of the Northeast, the beaches of the Southeast, and the mountains in the West should all be experienced at least once. Even with the current COVID restrictions, you can get into or near enough to most of the popular destinations to enjoy them.

7. There are no guarantees for 2021
If we assume that restrictions and closures will come and go like they have this year, then an RV makes perfect sense. You’ll still want a way to travel safely, and an RV does that for you.

If conditions dramatically improve in 2021, then your RV will be that much more versatile. You can still use your RV for road trips, getting to family gatherings, and even as a spare office if you find your company has realized the full potential of remote work and shut the corporate location down.

RV’ing is here to stay. Improvements in mobile internet speeds, remote connectivity, and campground WiFi enabled more people than ever to work remotely. Roadschooling is a new alternative to Homeschooling. RV technology and variety are greater than ever, too. There is an RV for every style and every budget. Get ready to go RV’ing in 2021.