Campervan V Caravan - discuss!

Did you find a way to circumnavigate the French CT requirements? I have heard they are v difficult for self conversions. So much so that friend made sure that he could quickly reverse engineer before the insoection.

I wouldn’t have a Camper-van if you like to visit rural areas (especially in France or for the the tiny roads of South Devon for example.) I can’t imagine having found somewhere to park down a narrow street that you have to up sticks to go to the boulangerie, etc. and hopefully find somewhere to park when you get back.
A caravan can be physically smaller but give much more room as you don’t need driver and passenger seats and when you are not using it in the winter it just sits there where a camper van will need running, servicing, MOT etc.
But both give that extra freedom that villas, gites, flats, etc. cannot match

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I like that.

There were two motorhomes parked horizontally taking up 3 spaces each in Aldi today.
It made life quite difficult for other drivers.

Wow very cool! My sis and her hubby spent 12 months going around Oz in a 4WD with a ‘off road’ pop up carava

One of my main issues with them! And the cost - owwwwww! I think a caravan will be the right thing for us. Anyone have one for sale :rofl: :rofl:

Yes I’ve heard this as well!

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I am surprised at that, mine is uk registered so do not have any problems, saying that though, if you commission a good high standard of workmanship equivalent to what is produced by the manufacturers there cannot be any problem, French ct’s tend to be less fraught than uk equivalent, I suspect that it is down to the individual tester, so just go there and ask!

No it is a massive issue and has been for years here, people trying to rereg them here from UK often can’t and people wanting to do it themselves end up not doing it or, as Jane said, making it all removable for CT time! Nothing like the UK!


Carry an electric bike!

That’s fine if you’re a UK resident

[quote=“seaeagle, post:26, topic:35280”]
French ct’s tend to be less fraught than uk equivalent

Might have been the case in the past, certainly not now. The main issue is likely to be an acceptable certificate of conformity

well I am very sorry to hear that, I know my local ct centre would be pretty pragmatic about my camper and judge it on its merits, the problem might be when you try to reregister . I expect the same will happen in the UK eventually, not surprising really, the amount of terrible conversions I have come across making vehichles unsafe makes it the usual scenario, where idiots spoil it for the rest of us. making removeable units is the way obviously, but glad I dont have to do that! Just as an aside, there is a real snobbishnesh against self conversions, its seen as the bottom of the ladder and viewed with suspicion by the gin palace fraternatity, which I find quite useful, being on my own and not having to wave at every passing camper is liberating! The other lot hate anything to do with caravanning or motorhomes, and prefer hotels etc forgetting that each room has probably had at least 100 occupants in the last year, uck, just imagine what they leave behind! This is a discussion about caravans versus motorhomes, so please keep to this, expressing views about whether you find it acceptable isnt the issue here, and obviously irrelevant.

yes, but with some, ie Renault, the conformity certificate is on the base vehicle

I dont’ think you understand, it is next to impossible to get them registered here, I don’t think your CT centre would be pragmatic about it as they are not allowed! If you are living there then you shouldn’t have a UK reg camper anyway but if you do attempt to rereg it you will find that you can’t.

It is nothing about what I find acceptable or not, it is just the way it is in France and I can’t see why it is irrelevant to the conversation at all.

I believe the fitting needs to have a CoC type thing as well which a self fitted doesn’t have, hence the problem.

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Lots of towns in Italy ban them and I think that will increase.

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Lots of French tourist centres do not like them either, its to do with maximising profit for campsite owners (and therefore probably reps on the local council or its equivalent), and camper van owners do not particularly wish to spend lots of cash staying in a campsite! Banning is an emotive word, but its the future sadly. Not really sure why there is a focus on this website about importing converted vehicles from the UK, surely if you are French resident then you would wish to buy a lhd vehicle here ? or import an uncoverted vehicle? Probably to do with purchase price, french prices are about double the UK equivalent, why? because france sends a lot of lhd vehicles to its former colonies! Major change with French regs re self conversions in 2018 google it! kind regards, Sam

I thought self conversions were the coolest thing, not something that is looked down on!

I think we are focusing on the CT as you have somehow given the impression you are a french resident…and have a UK reg vehicle.

Really, do you speak from experience?
Currently touring in our camping car and I can assure you that local councils that you refer to almost without exception provide municipal camp sites uniquely for camping cars with all required facilities. With a give or take cost of 10 euros per night it is impossible for them to recoup the outlay in providing such facilities from that alone but that isnt the thinking in France, it is the bigger picture.
It keeps communes alive and brings the tourists pocket money to thier area.
In fact many sites provided by communes are free, why would they do that if it wasnt for the indirect revenue it brings to the area?
Camping cars in France is a massive business and your suggestion of banning is a joke unless you are referring to banning home made conversations which is already a no no in France.
Research tells me that the average overnight stay in the UK for a camping car is around £30 being triple of the same stay here in France and your suggestion that camping cars are more expensive in France than in the UK is wrong.
Many camping cars sold in the UK are from French manufacturers but I wonder how many who buy them realise that?
Not unlike all those who use that british company called EDF who supplies electricity to thier home🤣
I look forward to being informed of how sympathetic your CT centre is when testing your 'conversion ’ .
When we first moved to France we brought with us our touring caravan not knowing what we were about to face.
After re registering our car we quickly realized that we could no longer pull our caravan unless it too was registered here. That was 12 years ago and the hoops we had to jump through to get what was then a 2 year old UK caravan registered here in France was shall we say a challenge, but we did it eventually.
Happy travels to wherever the day takes you.

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Where from? I want one please. Thank you :heavy_heart_exclamation:

A major issue with conversions is that a van is classed as a CTTE & the CT will note that. A camper is classed as a VASP so if the carte grise shows it as a CTTE but the CT tester is looking at a camper it will fail the test.

If anyone is thinking about doing or registering a campervan here, this might help.


Not exactly on thread and out of season, but, just out of interest, how the other half lives…

Browsing thru smartphone photos I found this pic I took in my local supermarket car park in 2019. I thought this had to belong to USA holiday makers….but shopping in SuperU?

Just browsed ‘Airsteam 350 LE’, and found the exact Airstream – same number plate/built in 1990 – owned by a motor dealer, I think, somewhere in France!

This surely costs around 50,000 euros? I can’t reverse my tiny trailer so unfortunately must let this lovely Airstream pass to someone else!


Fabulous machine… but while I’m enjoying the video, I’m asking myself… “how many seats/places are registered on the carte grise?” as it only seems to have 2 … :roll_eyes: :roll_eyes:

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