The Ultimate Beginner Campervanning Guide!

So you've just bought your first campervan, or you're looking to buy your first campervan... But where do you begin?

Let's take a look at the types of campervans you can purchase first! You have a fair few choices when it comes to the types of campervans, you have pop-top campervans, high top campervans, classic campervans, long wheel base, medium wheel base, short wheel base.

Pop-top Campervans

Pop-top campervans are the perfect vans for beginners as well as being the most popular type of campervan! These campervans feature a retractable roof which you can't get with high top campervans. These vans are great for everyday use due to the size of them, but they also maintain the feel of driving a car.

The mechanism of the pop top roof is usually made of metal on the sides and a canvas material on top. The pop top roof allows extra ventilation and can be the perfect place for little ones to sleep. Your pop top roof can be made to open at the front, back or side, however if you are purchasing a van that already has this feature it will depend on how this is already designed to open.

The only negatives of owning a pop-top campervan is that there is restricted headroom and the material and ventilation points of a pop-top roof can also cause heat loss inside the campervan.

High top Campervans

High top campervans are a great van if you are downsizing from a motorhome or caravan! The high top campervans have a lot more space within them compared to other types of vans. They are perfect for family camping especially if you have older children. This type of van could also be perfect for you to live in with the amount of space available. 

The disadvantages of a high top campervan is that height restrictions may affect your journey and these vans are usually a lot longer than a car, so they will need more petrol and can take a bit of getting used to driving for campervan beginners.

If you want to convert your van then just click here to view a list of all of the OLPRO approved campervan converters: 

Classic Campervans

Classic campervans are the most widely recognised style of campervans and have been around for more than 50 years! These campervans are very popular and are still being produced today. With classic campervans there is a wide range of choice for designs and features you want in your camper, as styles for these vehicles are constantly expanding. 

Classic Campervans, although iconic and retro, are only really useful for shorter trips and they wouldn't be any use for taking the whole family on holiday without a reliable awning. The classic campervan can only comfortably sleep two people. 

The downsides to a classic campervan is that this can be a more expensive route to go down as these campervans have high running costs and are in increasingly high demand.

Next let's talk about awning rails, these are so important when making the final decision on your awning.

The first thing you will need to do before even thinking about the awning you want is measure the height from the floor to your awning rail (or above your door if you don't have an awning rail). If you don't have an awning rail, don't worry as all OLPRO awnings come with throw over straps to go over your van and can be pegged down to make them secure. If you wanted to make sure your awning was even more secure on your van, OLPRO also sells a magnetic driveaway kit which will simply connect to your van and you can also use the throw over straps too. Next, you will want to check out the following page on the OLPRO site which will give you all the information you need to know on whether your awning will fit or not and how to attach your awning tunnel to your van: Will this Awning Fit My Campervan? (

Will my wheel base affect which awning I can purchase?

This will usually not make a difference to which awning you can purchase, however if you have a long wheel base you may want to measure the length of some awnings if they go from the side around to the back of your van, for example like the OLPRO Wrap Campervan Awning (pictured below).

Which Awning is best for me?

Now onto the important stuff! When deciding on which awning you want to buy, you will need to consider whether you will be sleeping in the awning or not, how many people are going with you, how long you are going for and how much stuff you need to store in the awning too!

At OLPRO we have a whole range of drive away campervan, motorhome and caravan awnings for you to view on the OLPRO website. Drive away awnings are when you can connect and disconnect the tunnel of the awning from the van at any time, this is so that you can use your van to drive and explore places without having to take the whole awning down! To take a look at the OLPRO website, just click here.

The OLPRO Team have also put together an amazing product finder quiz which recommends the best product for you every time! To view this, just click here!

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