Teardrops as Cheap Hotel Rooms

This summer we have gone to a few special dinners or events up at Lake Tahoe. While Tahoe is close to us, some of these events go into the evening and include wine and cocktails or physical activities that make us too tired to drive the 1 1/2 hours home.

We could book a hotel room, but during the busy summer season at the lake, this could cost us around $150 a night. A camping spot for the teardrop only runs between $25 and $40. A heckuva deal!

So what do you have to know about using your trailer as a cheap hotel room? Nothing much, but I find these tips have helped other campers who want to have fun in their own local area without paying out the nose.

  1. Get your campsite early. As soon as we find out about each event, we book a nearby campsite. You can also look around for a nearby Walmart that allows camping or even a friend's driveway
  2. We sometimes don't bring food. Just for these quick nights out, we won't even bring our cooler and will instead have dinner at our event and a quick breakfast at a local diner.
  3. Make sure it's worth it. If your special event is less than an hour from your home and you won't be imbibing, then leave the trailer at home. The cost of a campsite or the gas for towing may make your mobile overnight accommodations too pricey.

Photo: I took the Sunflower to the Wanderlust festival as a place to take a nap during the day.


  1. Hi Christina, thanks for your blog. You inspired us to get a teardrop trailer and we've been enjoying ours for the last 18 months going on 10 trips. We saw your review of the Nest Egg and decided to purchase that for its ultra low weight and are getting 20 to 21 miles per gallon towing. I was wondering if you are getting equally good mileage with your unit?? We love our teardrop, only challenge is high winds with our easy up canopy. We tie that down, but, on a trip to Death Valley earlier this year, the winds got so wild it broke the structure of the unit even though it stated in place. Any suggestions for how to remedy or reduce that from happening again? We bought a new canopy with a vent in the top. Hopefully, that will make a difference, we'll see. Let me know about your best mileage. It was more important to us to be able to take more trips than fret about the insane cost of fuel getting there. I see a lot of people who never or rarely go anywhere with their large trailers because of fuel.

    1. How wonderful! Thanks Mark. I would love to do an interview with you on your new trailer and your experiences.

      My 2008 Kia Sportage normally gets about 30 miles to the gallon and about 26-28 while towing. It also depends on the terrain since we tend to camp in the mountains.

      Ah yes...the winds of Death Valley. Been there, done that... Yes, a vent will help. We have seen some E-Z Up canopies at Burning Man completely implode during a windstorm. If you are expecting bad winds, I would try to camp behind some rocks or trees and if you can, lower down your canopy if you leave your camp unattended.