Why We RV with Family

With The Wells
A family of four posed for a photo, sitting on the back bumper of their Airsteram.

Katie Wells’ grandfather bought an Airstream in the 70s to travel around the US and share with his family. It quickly became another family member, appearing at family get togethers and holidays. When Grandpa passed, the trailer went to Katie’s dad, and eventually to Katie and Nate. Now, they use it to take their own daughters out into the world to create new memories, have adventures, and continue the family legacy that ties four generations together. 

A middle aged man and his father posed for a photo in front of the family Airstream.

How did you come to own the family Airstream?

My grandfather bought the Airstream in the 70s. He had been in the Air Force, and I think he wanted to continue his adventures and just be able to pack up and leave and go to different locations. When I was a kid, I remember my dad helping make sure it was running right before Grandpa hit the road. And later, when Grandpa got older and couldn’t drive as well, my dad would drive it down for him. When Grandpa passed away, he passed it down to my dad. And my dad got it to pass down to me. That was, I think, my dad's thought process. It wasn't necessarily for him to utilize all the time or to start doing his summer trips, but it was more of a way to pass it down to us and his grandkids. I mean, it's really touching and it's something that I'm thankful for because my kids wouldn't be able to experience anything like this without his generosity and his thought, his foresight to think, "Oh, this will be something that my girls can appreciate and my girls can utilize at the beach” or wherever we go on adventures.

The Wells family posed with the family Airstream in front of rocky hills.

How do you use the RV with your kids?

I remember as a kid, we would do beach camping, just locally. We would just drive down to the beach for the day with the RV and have all our stuff in the trailer. And then just bring it back at night. I was excited to do that with my girls, especially the first few times we took the RV out before we had fixed it up. I just thought, you know, if we have problems, we can just come home. It was less intimidating. 

The Wells family on a hiking trail in rocky mountains.

What is your favorite part about owning the RV?

It's the memories. Grandpa enjoyed traveling in it so much, and we can pass that down to our kids. One cool thing is that they were actually able to go to the RV with my grandpa when he was up in Seal Beach. They got to visit him one time. That's a fun memory for me even though it might not be something they really remember because they were little, but the RV is a symbol of the time they got to spend with their great-grandpa.

Two little girls and their mom and dad sitting at an RV table playing Uno.

What do your girls love about the RV? 

And as for my girls, I think they just love having a home on wheels. They're able to run in there and do their thing, and they have bunk beds. They love getting out of the cold or wind and snuggling in with us to read books and play games. It's something where we've already started those memories, like playing UNO when it's late at night or listening to music together.

A vintage Airstream trailer parked alongside rocky outcroppings.

What would you tell someone who’s thinking about getting an RV?

There are some key benefits to camping in an RV––basic things like just having running water, being able to have a bathroom in the trailer so you don’t have to brave the campground restrooms with your kids in the middle of the night. It simplifies camping as a family, it makes it really comfortable. And we actually come back relaxed now, whereas with tent camping, a lot of times we come back pretty drained and tired. The trailer lets us come home energized because when it’s time to leave, we can just hitch it and drive away.

To learn more about the Wells Family, read Katie's story here and her dad Bill's story here. The Wells travel in a vintage Airstream travel trailer.

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