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Old 02-23-2020, 02:55 PM   #1
Airstream FT?
Currently Looking...
hemet , California
Join Date: Feb 2020
Posts: 1
Considering FT living...

I am considering living full time in an Airstream.

I am single and would like pros and cons to FT living. What size (recently watched youtube videos-length of trailer impacts some aspects of living, where the trailer is allowed, etc.), what model, go new or used, how used lol?

What typical issues might I face with a new or used trailer (leaks, upkeep, etc)?

I am mechanically inclined and can fix about anything.

I would like to consider all the things I should know before actually doing this.

Any helpful tips would be greatly appreciated. ALL ASPECTS like; inverters, compost toilet vs. regular flush, storage, upkeep, fees for parking, where to park if I am working my regular job and this is my home, towing issues, what truck is best to tow, solar, AC, additional devices to have onboard (meter to show how much power I am drawing, etc.), pigtails, how to use various sources of power, etc...

I have ideas but they can quickly turn into nightmares if I am not prepared, so PLEASE HELP!!!

My choice would be the following; buy a newer Toyota Tundra (5.7L) maybe 4x4, classic 30-33 ft Airstream...most likely used due to cost.

Also, where is the best place to find a quality unit for the best price....I need the needle in the haystack.

Thank you in advance....Shane
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Old 02-23-2020, 03:42 PM   #2
3 Rivet Member
2001 30' Excella
Full-time traveling , Hmmmm. what day of the week is it?
Join Date: Mar 2015
Posts: 168
Blog Entries: 41
We have been traveling full-time since July 2016 in our 2001 30’ Airstream trailer. 38,000+ miles, 250+ campgrounds and 50 states/provinces so far. We have no plans to ever stop this amazing lifestyle. We write about the good and bad, pros and cons, tips, ideas, suggestions, locations and travel philosophy at https://livinginbeauty.net/
2001 Excella 30' (Beauty)
2014 Ram 2500 Diesel 4x4 (The Beast)
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Old 02-23-2020, 03:47 PM   #3
Half a Rivet Short
2017 30' Classic
Carlisle , Pennsylvania
Join Date: May 2017
Posts: 9,119

Let's back up a bit - Why go to full time in an AS? If cost is the driver, there are cheaper ways to live. If following a job around is the "why" then the trailer needs to work where the job is. If this is retirement and you are off to see the world, that has it's impact as well.

Once that gets sorted, next question is about home base. For some, "full time" includes a location that they go back to on a regular basis. They don't have a bedroom there, but they do have a lot of "support" there. Swapping everything in and out of storage four times a year is one part of this.

All this leads up to - where do you plan to park the trailer while you are living in it? Off grid / back woods / BLM land is cheap but lacks a lot of "support features" (that cost to get back into the mix). Campgrounds have a lot of support, but there is a cost and (often) a need to move regularly.

Moving the trailer at will to "avoid" the climate is a Wonderful idea. It may or may not work within your constraints. If you are stuck on the Gulf Coast in August, or Fairbanks in February, that very much gets into how well this all goes with this or that trailer.

So - what are you planning to do?

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Old 02-24-2020, 02:06 AM   #4
Rivet Master
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2012 25' FB Eddie Bauer
Vintage Kin Owner
Virginia Beach , Virginia
Join Date: Sep 2004
Posts: 7,361
Saving money?
You probably won't.
Food costs the same, health care doesn't go down. Automobile/truck costs goes up significantly. Maintenance costs for the trailer can be as high as for a house or condo, and wherever you park, you will pay to get power, water and dispose of sewage. And then there is legal stuff like driver's license, taxes, voting, etc.

It is less expensive to live in a 600 sq. ft. House on a 50 x 50 lot than to live in 2500 sq. ft. on 2 acres. If you want to travel a LOT get a trailer or moho. If travel means 2 or 3 trips a year, RENT an RV.
Today is a gift, that's why they call it the present.
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Old 02-24-2020, 05:10 AM   #5
Rivet Master
2014 20' Flying Cloud
Long Island , New York
Join Date: Jun 2015
Posts: 15,217
Welcome to the forum, Shane!

FYI there is a Full-timing etc. forum, and a FT sub-forum:


Also, when using a computer on the main desktop version of this site [not the App on a tablet/phone -- IMO], the search function in the blue box above works great to find, for instance, needles in haystacks in the various forums here:


Good luck,


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Old 02-24-2020, 06:20 AM   #6
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2019 26' Flying Cloud
Morristown , Tennessee
Join Date: Dec 2016
Posts: 684
Too many questions, but I can help with the first one. If I lived in Hemet, California, I would to to Airstream of San Diego and sit in all of their models until one speaks to you. I definitely wanted a 27...until I stepped into a 26.
Then, before I bought, I would pay a visit to AtoZ Motors in northern California...at the very least, review their website and talk on the phone.
2015 Chevrolet Silverado 2500
2019 Airstream Flying Cloud 26RBQ
WBCCI #6679
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Old 02-24-2020, 10:20 AM   #7
Half a Rivet Short
2017 30' Classic
Carlisle , Pennsylvania
Join Date: May 2017
Posts: 9,119

Before you dig into the "what to buy" figure out the details of "why do this". Next step after "why" is a deep dive into "how to do this". Only after you have worked those two out does it make sense to start into the selection / shopping part of it.

This is in no way to suggest that you do not go the full time route. The only point is that the decisions in one step very much form the basis for the decisions in the next step. If you haven't worked one part of it out, the next part will likely not go well.

In our case, we spent 40 years going around and round on all this. Ultimately when the situation (why and how) made sense, we headed into the shopping part of it. We bought a 30' Classic. It made sense for us and our plans. It has worked out very well for us.

We run into a lot of full timers in much smaller trailers. Some singles seem to be quite happy in < 20' models. For others, anything under 30' just will not work. They each have specific (and in some cases unique) "drivers" that combine to make this or that the "right choice".

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