How To Choose The Best Small Camping Trailer?

Looking through all the small camping trailers out there can feel like a lot at first. But don’t worry! With a bit of digging and knowing exactly what you need, you’ll spot your dream trailer in no time. These little trailers are awesome because they’re easy to move around, won’t break the bank, and still let you enjoy all the comforts you wouldn’t want to leave behind.

Before you say “yes” to a trailer, it’s smart to get the lowdown on what’s out there. You’ve got to think about more than just the price tag. It’s all about the quality, how long it’ll last, and what it comes with. We’ll walk you through how to pick a trailer that feels like it was made just for you and your adventures. Let’s find that perfect camping trailer!

Family camping in small hybrid pop-up camping trailer

Table of Contents

Understanding Small Camping Trailers

Getting to know small camping trailers is like finding a new best friend for your outdoor trips. Imagine having a cozy little space that goes wherever you do, making sure you’ve got a comfy place to snooze, cook up a storm, and kick back after a day of exploring. Sounds great, right?

These trailers are super handy. They’re light enough to lift most cars, even the smaller ones, so you can take off on an adventure whenever the mood strikes. Before you pick one, think about what you really need. How big should it be? What kind of sleeping space are you looking for? Do you need a place to cook? Or is a bathroom a must-have for you? It’s all about matching the trailer to your style of camping and the activities you love.

You’ll also want to check out how well the trailer is made. A good one should be able to handle the rough and tumble of outdoor life. Take a look at different brands and see which ones are known for being tough and reliable.

Lastly, think about the cost and how much looking after it will need. Some trailers are a bargain to buy but might need more care and fixing up. Others might cost more upfront but are easier to look after and last longer. It’s about finding the right balance for your budget and how much you’re planning to use it.

In short, picking the right small camping trailer is all about figuring out what you need, finding something that’s built to last, and making sure it fits your budget. With a little bit of searching, you’ll find the perfect one for your outdoor adventures.

Small Toyhauler camper with family in woods

Pros And Cons Of Small Camping Trailers

Let’s break down the good stuff and the not-so-good stuff to help you figure out if a small camping trailer is the right fit for you.


  • Towability: Small camping trailers are typically lightweight, often making it possible to tow with your current vehicle. This is a huge savings if you don’t need to invest in a larger tow vehicle.
  • Maneuverability: Smaller trailers are easier to navigate through tight spaces, parks, and backup. This can be especially helpful in crowded campgrounds when venturing off the beaten path or for those new to towing.
  • Fuel efficiency: With their lightweight design, small campers typically offer better fuel efficiency than towing larger travel trailers or fifth-wheel RVs. This means you’ll save money on gas during your trips.
  • Affordability: Smaller trailers often come at a lower price point than larger models. Additionally, their smaller size may allow you to save on maintenance and storage costs.


  • Limited space: One of the downsides to a small camping trailer is the limited interior space. This can make it difficult to pack all of your belongings and comfortably fit everyone for longer trips.
  • Fewer amenities: Due to their size, small trailers may not have all the standard features found in larger trailers, such as full kitchens or bathrooms. This could mean sacrificing some comfort during your camping excursions.
  • Lower weight capacity: The gross vehicle weight rating for small trailers is generally lower than that of larger models. This means you’ll need to be mindful of how much weight you’re adding to your trailer, including gear and cargo.
  • Potential for less durability: Some lightweight travel trailers utilize lighter materials for construction. This can result in a less durable build compared to heavier models. A tip for increased durability is to choose an off-road camping trailer.

So, wrapping up, small camping trailers are fantastic for ease of use, saving cash, and not needing a monster truck to tow. But, you’ll have to be okay with less space and maybe ditching some extras. Thinking about what’s a deal-breaker for you and what you can live without will help you decide if a small trailer is your ticket to outdoor fun.

Types Of Small Camping Trailers

When choosing a small camping trailer, consider the different types available. Each type has its advantages and is best for a certain camping style. Keep reading to find your best match.

Pop-Up Small Camping Trailers 

These are like magic boxes that grow! They’re small and light when you’re on the move, but pop open to give you more room when you’re set up at camp. They’re awesome for beginners or anyone looking for an easy, budget-friendly way to get into camping.

Teardrop Campers

These little guys are super cute, with a sleek, rounded design that’s not just for looks – it helps them glide behind your car. Teardrop Campers are perfect for quick getaways, with just enough room for sleeping and a mini kitchen out back for your morning coffee or a simple meal under the stars.

Hybrid Trailers

Imagine if a pop-up and a regular trailer had a baby – that’s your hybrid trailer. They have solid walls for a bit more “home” feel but still unfold or expand to give you extra space. It’s a great middle ground if you want a bit of both worlds.

Small Toy Hauler Campers 

Got a bike, kayak, or some other big toy you can’t leave behind? Toy haulers have a special spot to pack your gear, and once you’re unloaded, you can use that space for extra sleeping quarters or a living area. They’re the go-to for adventurous folks with gear.

Off-Road Camping Trailers

For the wild at heart, off-road trailers are built tough to follow you wherever you dare to explore. With special tires and suspension designed for the rough stuff, these trailers let you take the comforts of home into the wilderness.

Each type has its own cool features, so think about what kind of camping trips you’re dreaming of. Whether it’s weekend escapes, adventures with gear, or exploring off the beaten path, there’s a small camping trailer that’s just waiting to be your home away from home.

Toy hauler small camping trailer with awning and ramp

Identifying Key Features To Look For In A Small Camping Trailer

When choosing that perfect small camping trailer, there are a few key things you’ll want to keep an eye out for to make sure your camping trips are as awesome as possible. Let’s break down what’s important:

Light and Easy

You’ll want something that’s a breeze to tow and doesn’t make driving a hassle. Check out the trailer’s size and weight to make sure your car can handle it, and think about how easy it’ll be to park and get around with it hitched up.

Cozy Quarters

Good sleep is crucial, so look for a trailer that offers comfy sleeping spots that fit everyone. And don’t forget about living space – you’ll need room to stash your gear and chill out.

Kitchen Corner

Being able to whip up meals saves you cash and keeps you fueled. A handy little kitchen with the basics – like a sink, some counter space, and a stove – is a must. Bonus points for outdoor kitchens that let you cook in the fresh air!

Bathroom Break

Depending on how rugged you like your camping, bathroom setups in trailers can be a simple wet bath or a more separate affair. Pick what’ll make you comfortable and check that the size suits you.

Let There Be Light (and Air)

Windows aren’t just for views – they help keep the air fresh and the interior bright. And for those hotter trips, having air conditioning can be a lifesaver.

Extra Room

Some trailers come with slide-outs to give you more space when you’re parked. They’re great for feeling a bit less compressed, so consider if that’s something you’d like.

Picking the right trailer is all about balancing what you need with what you can tow. Keep these features in mind, and you’ll be set to choose a trailer that makes camping easy, comfortable, and fun.

Technical Specifications

When picking out your small camping trailer, checking the tech specs isn’t just smart; it’s crucial for making sure you end up with a trailer that’s a perfect match for your vehicle and camping style. Here’s how to make sense of all those numbers and details:

1. How Much Can You Tow?

Start by checking your vehicle’s towing capacity in the owner’s manual. This is the max weight you can safely tow. You’ll want to make sure the trailer you fancy doesn’t push this limit. Better to have room to spare, especially if you’re heading uphill or into the mountains.

2. Trailer Weight:

Look at the trailer’s “dry weight,” which is what it weighs without your stuff, water, or gas bottles inside. This helps you figure out how much more weight you can pack on. Lightweight trailers, like those cool teardrop or pop-up ones, are often easier to tow, thanks to materials like aluminum.

3. Hitch Weight:

This is about how much pressure the trailer puts on your car’s hitch. Too much, and you could have trouble. You want to make sure your car’s hitch can handle the load without any fuss.

4. What Else Does It Have?

Think about the extras you need. A trailer with a pop-up roof might give you more breathing room and a cool, airy vibe. Also, consider how much water and gas you can carry – crucial if you’re planning to camp off the grid.

Understanding these specs helps you pick a trailer that’s just right, avoiding any nasty surprises when it’s time to hit the road. Always double-check your vehicle and trailer manuals for the most accurate info to ensure a safe, happy camping trip.

Family camping with awning out in small camper

Assessing Quality and Durability

When selecting the best small camping trailer for your adventures, evaluate both its quality and durability. These factors will ensure that your investment is reliable and long-lasting, allowing you to focus on enjoying your outdoor experiences.

The materials used in the trailer’s construction are your first clue about its quality. Aluminum or fiberglass are great choices because they’re tough against the elements, won’t weigh your vehicle down too much, and generally mean your trailer won’t need as much upkeep. Plus, they tend to last longer, giving you more bang for your buck.

Next, take a close look at how the trailer is built. Good, strong welds; tight, secure fasteners; and everything fitting just right are signs of a well-made trailer. Check out the cabinets, doors, and windows too – they should feel solid and work smoothly. These details matter because they add up to a trailer that’s going to hold up better over time.

The brand’s reputation can tell you a lot. Do some digging to see what other campers think about the trailers you’re considering. Look for reviews, testimonials, and any chatter on forums or social media. You’re looking for a track record of reliability and happy customers. If there are common complaints or issues, it’s better to know now.

Finally, think about what you really need your trailer for. If you’re planning to hit rough, off-road trails, you’ll need something built for that. If comfort is your top priority, look for a trailer that offers a bit more living space. Your adventures are unique, so your trailer should be a good fit for them.

Evaluating Cost and Affordability

We all look for budget-friendly and high-quality products. To find a budget-friendly small camping trailer, you should set a specific price range in mind before starting your search. This will help you narrow down your options and ensure you’re focusing on trailers within your budget.

Prices for these cozy getaways on wheels can swing from about $12,000 to over $46,000, depending on how fancy you wanna get. More cash usually means more room, cooler features, and sturdier build. But, remember, every extra like solar panels or a deluxe kitchenette will bump up that price. It’s all about finding the right balance between the goodies you want and what you can pay.

Don’t forget to factor in the long-term costs too. Things like upkeep, insurance, and where you’re going to store your trailer can add up. If you can park it in your driveway, you’re saving cash already by not paying someone else to store it.

Think about what you need from your trailer. Is there enough room? Does it have the kitchen and bathroom setup you want? What about space for all your gear? It’s not just about the price tag; it’s about how well it fits your camping lifestyle.

And, if dropping a bunch of cash upfront feels heavy, see what financing options are out there. A lot of places offer loans for trailers, and with some smart negotiating, you could score a sweet deal.

In the end, by taking a good look at what you’re getting versus what you’re spending, you’ll find a trailer that doesn’t just fit your budget but also packs in all you need for your adventures.

Inside of small camping trailer

Maximizing Storage and Space

Getting smart with the space in your small camping trailer can turn a cozy nook into a mini palace on wheels. Here’s how you can pack big dreams into a small space without feeling cramped:

Start with a trailer layout that’s a storage ninja. Look for ones with clever nooks and crannies – overhead cabinets, spaces under the bed, and anywhere else you can stash your stuff. Some trailers are designed with this in mind and are real champs at keeping things tidy and out of the way.

In the kitchen area, every inch counts. Hunt for designs that give you the most counter space without eating up room. Space-saving gadgets like a microwave that doubles as an oven, or a fridge that fits under the counter, can make meal prep a breeze without crowding your space.

Furniture that multitasks is your best friend. A table that turns into a bed? Yes, please. This kind of versatility means you can switch from day mode to night mode in a snap, all while keeping your living area spacious and functional.

When it comes to beds, bigger isn’t always better. A double-sized mattress can offer a comfy night’s sleep for two without hogging floor space. It’s all about finding the right fit for your sleep needs and your trailer’s layout.

If your trailer comes with an external storage spot or a garage area, make the most of it. It’s perfect for the bulky items you need but don’t want cluttering up your living space, like bikes, camping chairs, or outdoor gear.

Assessing Comfort and Convenience

Choosing the right small camping trailer is a lot like picking a tiny, rolling home-away-from-home. You want it to be cozy and convenient, so your adventures feel more like a treat than a chore. Here’s how to ensure your trailer ticks all the comfort boxes:

First up, where you’re going to catch those Zs is super important. Look for trailers with smart sleeping setups – maybe a dinette that transforms into a bed or a fold-down option. The goal is a comfy spot that fits you and your buddies without feeling like you’re squishing into a sardine can.

Next, let’s talk bathrooms. They can range from compact wet baths inside the trailer to more minimal setups like an indoor toilet paired with an outdoor shower. Depending on your comfort level and where you plan to camp, the right bathroom setup can be a game-changer. And if there’s no bathroom onboard, check if there’s a way to fit a portable option.

Whether you’re chilling in a desert’s heat or cozying up in a mountain chill, having control over the inside temperature is key. Make sure your trailer has a solid air conditioning and heating system. It’s all about staying comfy, no matter what Mother Nature throws your way.

Understanding Safety and Customer Service

When you’re in the market for a small camping trailer, making sure you’re set for a safe and supported adventure is crucial. Here’s how to make sure your future travels are smooth sailing:

Look for trailers made from strong materials that can take on bad weather without blinking. Safety gadgets like anti-sway devices, electric brakes, and reliable hitch systems are big pluses—they keep you safe on the road by making towing smoother and more secure.

Don’t forget to check out the trailer’s lighting and wiring. Good lights are super important for making sure other drivers can see you, especially when you’re on the move at night or in poor weather.

Knowing how much your trailer weighs and making sure your car can handle the load is key to preventing any towing troubles. Always double-check your vehicle’s max towing capacity—it’s better to have room to spare than to push its limits.

A trailer might tick all your boxes, but if the company behind it doesn’t have your back, think twice. Check what other buyers have to say about their customer service. You want a team that’s ready to help out, whether it’s answering questions before you buy or offering support once you’re out camping.

Inside of small camping trailer with pop up roof and bunk

Considering Your Lifestyle and Adventures

Here’s how to pick a trailer that matches your adventure vibes:

Do you stick to the beaten path, or are you all about discovering hidden gems off-road? Some trailers are built tough for the wild trails, while others are more suited for the comfort of established campgrounds. Match your trailer to your favorite spots to ensure it can handle the terrain you love.

If you can’t imagine a trip without your bike, kayak, or ATV, you’ll want a trailer that can carry all your toys. Some trailers come with extra storage or even special racks, making them perfect for action-packed getaways.

For those who prefer a more laid-back camping experience, look for a trailer that focuses on comfort. A nice bed, a handy kitchenette, and maybe an outdoor cooking space can make your camping trip feel like a luxury escape in the great outdoors.

If you’re just starting to dip your toes into camping, a pop-up trailer or a tent camper might be your best bet. They’re easy to manage and a great intro to trailer camping, letting you get a feel for what you really want on your adventures.

Why Consider Choosing Ecocampor For Your Small Camping Trailer

If you’re on the hunt for a small camping trailer that’s rugged enough for off-road adventures but still packed with comfort, Ecocampor could be just what you need. They’ve been in the game for over a decade, carving out a reputation for building high-quality trailers that don’t just follow the trends—they set them. Here’s why Ecocampor stands out:

Customization Galore

Imagine having a trailer that feels like it was made just for you. That’s the kind of personal touch Ecocampor offers. With their wide range of custom options, you can tailor your trailer to fit your exact needs and style, ensuring every camping trip is as comfortable as it is memorable.

Smart Design

Space in a small trailer is precious, and Ecocampor’s hybrid models are designed to maximize it. These trailers offer the best of both worlds—compact enough to handle tight spots with ease but spacious inside, so you don’t feel cramped.

Top-notch Quality

With the latest tech in their manufacturing facility and a laser focus on quality control, Ecocampor ensures every trailer that rolls out is built to last. They pay attention to the smallest details, resulting in trailers that are reliable, durable, and ready for years of adventures.

Affordable Adventure

Getting your hands on a high-quality camping trailer doesn’t have to drain your bank account. Ecocampor’s pricing hits that sweet spot of affordability without compromising on the quality or features you want in a home away from home.

Ecocampor Teardrop Camper Trailer Benefits And Features

The Ecocampor Teardrop Camper Trailer shines as a standout choice for campers who love to hit the road without lugging around a heavyweight. This little dynamo packs a punch with features that make camping not just easier, but more enjoyable. Here’s why it’s catching the eyes of outdoor enthusiasts:

Room to Stretch

Its clever design includes an expandable roof tent, transforming the space to comfortably sleep 2-6 people. It’s the perfect setup for cozy couples’ getaways or fun trips with a few buddies, ensuring everyone has a spot to snooze under the stars.

Just the Right Size

At a neat 16.17 feet long, this trailer is a breeze to tow, making your journey to the campsite as smooth as the stay. It’s the ideal balance of providing enough room to live and relax without the hassle of maneuvering a bulky trailer through tight spots.

Light as a Feather

Weighing in at just 2,094 pounds, it’s light enough to be towed by a variety of vehicles, meaning you don’t need a heavy-duty truck to bring your home-on-wheels along for the adventure.

Ecocampor Toy Hauler 12ft Off Road Caravan Benefits And Features

The Ecocampor Toy Hauler 12ft Off Road Caravan is a dream come true for adventurers who love to pack their gear and hit the road. This caravan is all about bringing the comfort of home to the rugged outdoors, without leaving your favorite toys behind. Here’s what makes it a great pick:

Bring Your Toys Along

The real game-changer is its capacity to tote an ATV or a couple of motorcycles. No need to choose between comfort and adventure—you can have both. This feature ensures your outdoor thrills are just a ride away, wherever you set up camp.

Sleep Like a Log

With a queen-size bed and an additional bunk, it comfortably sleeps up to three people, making it a cozy retreat after a day of exploring. It’s designed to be your snug sanctuary, a place where you can recharge and get ready for the next day’s adventures.

Handy Features

It doesn’t cut corners on convenience, either. An integrated toolbox means your tools and equipment are always within reach, neatly organized, and securely stored. This thoughtful addition makes it easy to keep your adventure essentials in check.

Home Comforts

Despite its rugged exterior, the inside is all about comfort. The inclusion of an indoor bathroom with a toilet adds a level of convenience and privacy that elevates your camping experience from basic to blissful.

Light and Agile

At 4,453 pounds, it’s lightweight enough to tow with ease, yet sturdy enough to tackle off-road trails. This balance of lightness and durability means you can venture further off the beaten path with confidence.

Ecocampor Hybrid 13ft Off Road Caravan Benefits And Features

The Ecocampor Hybrid 13ft Off Road Caravan is a dream come true for those who want to blend the thrill of off-road adventures with the comforts of home. This compact yet feature-rich camper is designed to cater to the needs of solo adventurers, couples, and small groups looking for an unforgettable outdoor experience. Here’s why it’s worth considering:

Room for Everyone

Thanks to its clever loft bunk design, you can comfortably accommodate extra guests without feeling squeezed in. The pop-up hybrid feature expands living space, ensuring you and your crew have room to relax without stepping on each other’s toes.

Smart Storage Solutions

The inclusion of a large toolbox storage area is a game-changer for keeping your tools and essentials organized and within easy reach. This thoughtful design means you can bring along everything you need without cluttering your living space.

Al Fresco Cooking

The slide-out outdoor kitchen is a highlight for those who love to cook under the open sky. It’s perfect for whipping up delicious meals while soaking in the surrounding nature, making every meal a memorable part of your adventure.

Compact Comfort

Despite its nimble footprint, this 13-foot caravan can sleep up to four people, making it an excellent choice for small groups or families. And at just 3,748 pounds, it combines lightweight convenience with the durability needed for off-road escapades.

All in One

The Ecocampor Hybrid 13ft Off Road Caravan packs a powerful punch of features, comfort, and functionality into a compact, towable package. It’s equipped to handle rugged adventures while providing all the comforts and conveniences that make camping enjoyable.

Ecocampor 22ft Off Road Caravan Benefits And Features

The Ecocampor 22ft Off Road Caravan is a rolling oasis of comfort and durability, designed for the adventurous family or group of friends who don’t want to compromise on comfort while exploring the great outdoors. This caravan is a blend of rugged capability and home-like luxury, ensuring you can venture far and wide without leaving the comforts of home behind. Here’s a closer look at what makes it stand out:

Smooth Sailing on Rough Roads

Thanks to its independent suspension and dual axles, this caravan offers a smooth ride even on challenging terrains. It’s built to take you wherever your heart desires, without the bumps and shakes of off-grid travels.

Space for Everyone

With the capacity to sleep up to six people comfortably, this caravan is a dream for families or groups. It features a cozy queen bed for a restful night’s sleep, bunk beds for the kids or guests, and an L-shaped dinette that’s perfect for gathering around for a meal or a game.

Kitchen and Bath Comforts

The interior doesn’t end on the necessities. A fully equipped kitchen with a refrigerator, stove, and ample storage means you can prepare meals just like at home. Plus, the convenience of an inside dry bathroom adds a layer of privacy and comfort that’s much appreciated in the wild.

Climate Controlled

No matter the weather outside, the air conditioning and hot water system inside ensure you stay comfortable at all times. It’s like bringing a slice of home comfort into the wilderness.

Outdoor Living Enhanced

The spacious awning provides a perfect spot to relax and enjoy the scenery, extending your living space into the outdoors. It’s the ideal setting for enjoying a morning coffee or an evening under the stars.

Frequently Asked Questions

What should I consider when choosing a small camping trailer?

When selecting a small camping trailer, consider your camping style, the terrain you’ll explore, and the number of people using it. Key factors include the trailer’s weight, size, durability, and the amenities it offers, such as kitchen facilities, sleeping arrangements, and bathroom options. It’s also important to ensure the trailer is compatible with your towing vehicle.

What are the advantages and disadvantages of small camping trailers?

Pros include easy towability with smaller vehicles, better fuel efficiency, and lower costs for both purchase and maintenance. Cons can involve limited interior space, fewer amenities compared to larger trailers, a lower weight capacity for gear and cargo, and potentially less durability if not chosen carefully.

How do I maximize space in a small camping trailer?

Maximizing space involves choosing a layout with smart storage solutions like overhead cabinets and under-bed storage, opting for multifunctional furniture, and utilizing outdoor kitchens and external storage compartments for bulky items. Look for trailers with innovative designs that offer expandable living spaces.

Why is it important to understand the technical specifications of a camping trailer?

Understanding the technical specifications, such as towing capacity, dry weight, hitch weight, and the dimensions of the trailer, ensures that you select a trailer that your vehicle can safely tow. It also helps prevent overloading and contributes to a safer and more enjoyable camping experience.

Why might Ecocampor be a good choice for a small camping trailer?

Ecocampor is known for producing high-quality, durable off-road camping trailers with customizable options to suit individual preferences. They offer innovative designs that maximize space and comfort, with features like expandable roof tents and slide-out kitchens. Their trailers are built to handle rough terrain, providing a reliable option for adventurers at competitive prices.

Final Words 

Selecting the ideal small camping trailer is more than a practical decision; it’s the first step towards unforgettable adventures in the great outdoors. Whether you’re drawn to the simplicity of a teardrop camper, the versatility of a toy hauler, or the ruggedness of an off-road caravan, the key lies in matching the trailer to your lifestyle, travel aspirations, and the nature of your stunt.

By considering factors like towability, space optimization, and the balance between comfort and functionality, you can find a reliable, cozy base camp that turns every outdoor stay into a cherished memory. With manufacturers like Ecocampor offering customizable, quality options, your perfect camping trailer is out there, waiting to be the cornerstone of many adventures to come.

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About Author

Scott, his wife Van, and their 13-year-old daughter have traveled full-time in their RV for 8 years. They have worked and homeschooled on the road through 42 states so far. They blog about RVing tips, travel destinations, jobs for RVing, and the full-time RV lifestyle on their blogs and They are also RV content creators @theadventuredetour on Instagram, TikTok, Facebook, and YouTube. They love connecting with RVers, so be sure to reach out to them and say hi!

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