In the small lightweight travel trailer categories, RVs that weigh less than 3,000 pounds can be considered the “goldilocks” subgroup. They are big enough to hold more than two people and are self-contained units. They are light enough to be easily towed and have sticker prices that are budget-friendly.
The second group in our three-piece series on the best lightweight travel trailers will focus on the lite RVs under 3,000 pounds. If you haven’t read the first one that discusses RVs under 2,000 pounds, we invite you to take a look at it. The next one will go into mid-size lightweight RVs that weigh less than 5,000 pounds.
The Best SUV Tow Vehicles
The table below shows you some of the best SUV examples for towing this weight class. Our third article goes into detail about why having at least 1,000- 3,000 pounds of extra towing capacity is a great strategy. This level of towing power has the capability to tow the RV, your gear and everyone enjoying your trip with you
|Company||Model||Tow Capacity, lb|
|Range Rover||Discovery Sport||4,409|
Best Variety of Travel Trailers Under 3,000 Pounds
Casita 17 Foot Spirit Deluxe
- Dry weight: 2,480 pounds UVW
- Length: 17 feet
- Sleeping: Up to 4 people
- Price: $21,194
Casita’s are a fiberglass eggshell travel trailer under 3,000 pounds that can only be purchased through their dealerships. When you buy one, they are built to order based on your specifications. Each one is unique as the individual owner.
The Spirit is one of their five models. The deluxe versions replace extra storage and bunk beds with a full bathroom. Customers can then choose add-on features when they are purchasing their trailers to make sure they have those important components they want.
For 2020, Casita added some great features to their trailers. Inside the entry door window are blinds that can be opened or closed for privacy. They also installed a keyless entry system, so you don’t have to bring your keys with you when you go to the campground’s beach.
Besides the mini blinds, you can have added privacy with their spring-loaded roller shades for all of your windows. They upgraded their thermostat to a digital pad on the wall that controls both the A/C and furnace. For more decore options, they added wood vinyl flooring and a choice between grey or seafoam green for their cushions.
Gulf Stream Ameri-Lite 16BHC
- Dry weight: 2,590 pounds UVW
- Length: 18.10 feet
- Sleeping: Up to 4 people
- Price: $10,000- $14,000
Gulf Stream is one of the few RV manufacturers that’s still family-owned. They’ve been in business for over 35 years and now make towable travel trailers from ultra-lites under 3,000 pounds to park models. The Ameri-lite 16BHC is a great entry-level lightweight travel trailer that’s SUV-friendly.
This is a bunk bed model, but still has plenty of walkway space without a slideout. They do this by making strategic moves like taking the sink out of the bathroom. While most of the interior storage is overhead, they make up for it by making these real maple cabinets deep and wide.
Gulf Stream keeps this coach reliable by using “old school” techniques that have proven track records. They use aluminum tubes for their frame and corrugated aluminum for the siding. To keep your exterior bay sanitary, the hollow rear bumper is an excellent place to store your black water hose.
Other space savers include, the 30 amp service power cord storing inside the coach through its opening. The four cubic foot refrigerator/freezer gives you enough space to store your food and allows additional cabinets in the kitchen area. The shirt closet under the entertainment center is big enough for your hanging clothes, yet solid enough for the TV arm.
Flagstaff E-Pro E16BH
- Dry weight: 2,993 pounds UVW
- Length: 18.4 feet
- Sleeping: Up to 4 people
- Price: $19,500- $24,000
The Flagstaff E-Pro series was specifically designed to offer the most features possible in a lite travel trailer under a 3,000-pound sub-group. This Forest River subsidiary has more standard and optional amenities than most others in this class. One of which is a standard 100-watt solar panel on the roof with a 1,000-watt inverter.
Flagstaff does a great job balancing sleeping and walking space in this bunk bed floorplan. The front dinette folds down for the master bed. A good portion of the walking space comes from the kitchen slideout on the off-door side.
Like all RVs, the entertainment center comes with a Bluetooth radio and TV pre-wire. What’s unique to the E-Pro series, is the standard WiFi Ranger signal booster that is LTE ready. Even in some of the most remote places, you’ll still be able to get a cell and data signal.
For those that love the remote off-road adventures, the optional package increases the tires and suspension. You can also get the hitch mount bike rack to save the optional roof rack for your kayak or other toys. To save water, the shower has a water miser system.
Airstream Bambi 16RB
- Dry weight: 3,000 pounds UVW
- Length: 15.11 feet
- Sleeps: Up to 4 people
- Price: Starts at $49,600
What’s Airstream and lightweight travel trailers doing in the same sentence? Contrary to popular belief, the Bambi series is actually a light RV. While it does push our category weight to the limit, if you stick to our towing strategy above, you won’t have a problem towing this quality travel trailer under 3,000 pounds.
The 16RB has a queen-size bed in the rear and a dinette against the front wall. In between, you’ll find the kitchen and the wet bath. The storage you see is primarily overhead with roll-up doors, but there’s plenty of storage under the bed and dinette benches too.
Keeping with Airstream’s top quality, the bed mattress is made from memory foam for the best sleeping experience possible. The TV is mounted by the bed and is connected to a JVC audio system. You’ll also find multiple electrical ports throughout. for charging mobile devices and plugging in your electronic appliances.
The exterior has plenty of features as well. A rear storage bay, exterior shower, and full-size awning. The propane storage box protects your bottles from road debris and moisture. Airstream will give you a stable towing experience with its low riding torsion axles.