When I first chose my travel setup, I felt torn between the simplicity of a rooftop tent and the comforts of a travel trailer. Ultimately, I decided that a travel trailer was more practical for working remotely. Yet, I installed an RTT on my FJ Cruiser a year later. This allows me to enjoy the best of both worlds: RVing and Overlanding.
TAXA Outdoors makes it easy to get that same flexibility. It’s as simple as adding a rooftop tent to your Habitat. So, should you choose this option or just use your regular ground tent?
Why You Should Ditch the Ground Tent for a Roof Setup
The RTT vs. ground tent debate can quickly become heated in the outdoor community. While you can purchase a premium ground tent for hundreds of dollars, a good rooftop tent could cost thousands. Ground tents can offer standing room, and the pop-up versions are as easy to set up as a premium, hardtop RTT. So, why choose a rooftop tent instead?
I like my Gazelle ground tent, but it’s no match for my RTT. Here are some reasons I still opted for the rooftop upgrade:
- Rattlesnakes are highly unlikely to slither up to the rooftop to get me, and coyotes can’t climb up there to get my cat!
- When I camp outside of designated areas, and it rains, the rooftop tent is the only way to guarantee I’ll be dry all night.
- When camping solo in unknown areas, I naturally feel safer up high because I can see all around me.
- The tent is securely mounted outside, so I don’t need to make room to store it inside. That leaves space for my paddleboard, my bike—and grandma!
- Even with pop-up technology, I can set up and pack down my rooftop tent much faster than my ground tent.
- I feel warmer in my rooftop tent in sub-freezing temperatures than in my ground tent in 50-degree weather.
- My rooftop tent has easily weathered all-day, high-wind conditions that took down my ground tent before nightfall.
4 Benefits of Adding a Rooftop Tent to Your TAXA Habitat
Hopefully, you’re now sold on the benefits of a rooftop tent over a ground tent. But, unless you’re the proud owner of a TAXA Woolly Bear, you might be wondering: why bother? You have a perfectly good bed inside the trailer, don’t you? Here are four good reasons to get the rooftop tent anyway.
1. You Can Sleep More People
My travel trailer sleeps three people, but I enjoy my space and privacy more than most. Consequently, when my mom and grandma visit me this spring, I plan to sleep in my rooftop tent. My grandma tends to go to bed early, so my RTT gives me the freedom to stay up as late as I like without disturbing her. She can then get up as early as she wants without disturbing me!
The rooftop tent is an excellent solution if you also need to sleep a few extra people on your trip. It feels very much like the treehouse you always wanted as a child. So, you might find yourself tossing a coin with the kids or your friends to see who gets to live it up on the roof for the night.
2. You Can Escape Living Quarter Conversions
If I’m being totally honest, the conversion process is one of the main reasons I have no desire to share the trailer. Turning the dinette into a bed might look easy enough on YouTube, but it loses its novelty fast. I prefer to leave my living space as-is and climb up into the rooftop tent at night.
You might share this sentiment if you have a TAXA TigerMoth or already maxed out the bunkroom capacity in your TAXA Mantis. Both floorplans include the option to convert dinettes into beds. So, even if you don’t opt out of the living-room-to-bedroom conversion every night, you’ll be glad you have the choice.
3. Star Gazing Is So Much Better on the Roof
TAXA Habitats provide one of the best open-air experiences you could ever hope for in an RV. Still, no trailer quite compares to the views you get from the elevation of a rooftop tent. Even if you don’t have an enormous panoramic view through the roof of the tent, the oversized windows and doors can quickly resolve this.
When I sleep in my RTT, I leave the “back door” open. I have done this even in freezing temperatures. Why? Because you just can’t beat watching the stars at night, especially in Dark Sky country. I have screens on all my windows and doors, so I don’t need to worry about pesky critters getting in.
4. You Get Better Flexibility for Your Adventures
I chose to purchase a rooftop tent and a travel trailer because of the flexibility. Sometimes, I have no desire to tow a trailer, especially when traveling long distances over a short period. I have, for instance, left the trailer in Mexico and gone to Las Vegas for a weekend.
Sure, most people never remove their rooftop tents from their TAXA Habitats. But, if you choose to, you can leave the trailer at home and take your rooftop tent with you. This flexibility is especially tempting with gas prices on the rise.
How To Choose the Right Rooftop Tent for Your Needs
When you order your TAXA Habitat, you have the option of adding a 3-person TEPUI® THULE® rooftop tent. This is one of the best RTT brands on the market. If you would like to shop around before making a decision, consider the following criteria:
- Cost: Set a realistic budget and shop around for other high-quality tents. Then, compare this to the quote received from TAXA Outdoors and decide.
- Size: You might want an even bigger tent, but check with TAXA to ensure the tent you have in mind can mount safely to the roof of your rig.
- Weight: Each TAXA Habitat has roof weight maximums. Use its guide to narrow down a good match.
- Soft vs. Hard: Soft tents weigh less and offer more room, but they take longer to set up than hardtop tents. Hardtop tents tend to need more mounting surface area.
If you have not yet chosen your TAXA Habitat and feel confident you want a rooftop tent upgrade, keep in mind that the pitch of the TAXA Cricket makes an RTT installation impossible. My travel trailer has a similar problem, so you can do as I did: get the rooftop tent anyway and install it on your tow vehicle.
Adding a rooftop tent to my travel setup is one of the best decisions I ever made. If you also enjoy travel flexibility, star gazing, and treehouses, you—or your kids—will love it as much as I do!