Why Are Airstreams So Expensive

An Airstream trailer is a retro camping trailer with a distinctive shape. They also are the country’s oldest travel trailer RV manufacturer from Wally Byam, the company’s founder, founded in the 1920s.

You may ask what is an Airstream, yet once you see one, you’ll never forget it. Airstream trailers are a classic American icon without a doubt, as these travel trailers exude freedom and adventure while still having a seductive look.

Their allure is because of their style and seeing one down the road makes everyone want to go exploring.

Airstream RV Design and Durability

The interiors are also a big bonus, not just the outside. Their interiors are light years ahead of most drab, unappealing travel trailers and motorhomes you find.

The question is, why are airstreams so expensive? In this guide, you can learn a bit more about these trailers, and by the end, you’ll have an insight into why Airstream RVs are the prices they are. (Learn How to Unclog a RV Toilet Holding Tank)

Are Airstreams Worth the Money?

We all know an Airstream trailer can be hugely expensive, yet many people often ask if they are worth the money.

The value and quality strand for a lot are two of the key elements you get from ani airstream trailer. The first Airstream trailer was made by Wally Bynum in the 1920s, not long before the company was purchased by Thor Industries in 1931.

If you wonder where are Airstreams made, the Airstream trailers and RVs are manufactured in Jackson Center, Ohio.

Many say that over 65% of the original Airstream models from 1931 are still traveling today. So, if you care for an Airstream trailer, and it fits your needs, it could be the only travel trailer purchase you ever need.

Quality and value are in abundance, and you could even pass your trailer down to younger family members.

Aluminum and being light in weight are other qualities, which makes an Airstream trailer great value. While aluminum can be seen as a flimsy material, it more than stands up to the rigors of travel and camping, and Airstreams are known for being solid.

The aluminum exterior makes them very aerodynamic, lighter to tow, and easy to care for. The company boasts they are made from aircraft-grade aluminum that is riveted to a sturdy steel frame.

Why Do Airstream Cost So Much?

The major reason an Airstream RV is so expensive is the aluminum body construction, they have a legendary reputation, and they are built from high-quality components.

Here is a full rundown where you can find why are Airstream trailers so expensive.

The Design

Founder Wally Byam, the company’s founder, set out to persuade his wife that camping could be fun in 1929. He built a teardrop-shaped shelter he could tow on his Model T Ford since his wife didn’t appreciate tents. Since this original concept, it has been the basis for the classic Airstream look.

You’ll find an Airstream easier to tow as it is aerodynamic and will reduce drag, thus cutting down gas costs. The shell is a double aluminum skin wrapped around a steel frame. You also find a low center of gravity as most of the trailer weight is below the floor. (Learn How to Clean an RV Awning)

The Construction

The high cost of Airstream trailers is because of the meticulous construction, and the amount of aluminum needed for each trailer contributes to the high cost of Airstreams.

Insulation is fitted once the first aluminum outer shell is in place, and the inner aluminum shell is riveted from the inside.

Every rivet on an Airstream trailer is manually fitted, preventing the frame from being damaged and making sure there is a watertight seal.

Once the skins are fitted, all the appliances are installed by hand. The entire manufacturing process is labor-intensive, yet it pays rewards in the high quality of all Silver Bullet travel trailer models.


Airstream offers a massive lifespan of its trailers. After the aluminum construction, the only plywood used in a new airstream construction is the subfloor.

You’ll find this is necessary as you need somewhere to anchor the finished floor and appliances. Even in this area, the maintenance is low as the double-frame design encases the plywood subfloor. It is easy to see why so many Airstream trailers are still on the road today. (Read Painting RV Exterior Aluminum)

Thanks to the durable design and construction, Airstream’s maintenance costs, on average, are far less than other RVs that are on the road.

Reputation And Resale Value

Airstream trailers hold their value far better than others. Typically, RVs and travel trailers depreciate 20% in value in the first year alone. However, Airstreams have some of the highest resale values amongst RV brands, thanks to quality materials and craftsmanship.

Such reasons are they are made even more popular as they are stars of many TV and movie productions.

Jurassic World: Fallen Kingdom is one and a vintage airstream in Armageddon with Bruce Willis another. Airstreams have a rock-solid reputation, and this also leads to why trailers cost the extra money.

Airstream Trailers value for money

How Much Should I Pay For An Airstream?

Here you can find a rough guide to the price tag of each model. However, the prices may be off as they are based on a 2020 Airstream. However, unlike other trailer brands, these airstreams cost much the same year in year out.

ModelStarting PriceLengthSleeps (Capacity)
Airstream Classic$157,40030’ – 33 feetUp to 5
Airstream Globetrotter$96,40023’ – 30 feetUp to 6
Airstream International/
International Serenity
$91,90023’ – 30 feetUp to 6
Flying Cloud$78,90023’ – 30 feetUp to 8
Airstream Caravel$62,20016’ – 22 feetUp to 4
Airstream Bambi$49,90016’ – 22 feetUp to 4
Airstream Nest $42,90016 feet2
Airstream Basecamp$37,90016 feet2

Why You Shouldn’t Buy an Airstream?

When it’s time to buy an RV or trailer, there are tons of choices. You have fifth wheels to Airstreams RV trailers. Each brand will have advantages and disadvantages, and Airstream is no different.

While Airstreams are popular, you can find challenges of ownership.


Shiny aluminum bodies are clean-looking, yet you pay for the look. Over the past few years, campers face an increase in Airstream travel trailer prices.

The smallest Airstream Basecamp costs roughly $38,000 base MSRP; then you work your way up past the Airstream Bambi at $50k up to the most expensive, the Classic Airstream, nearly $160,000 MSRP.

You can discover that small vintage Airstreams cost more than larger units.

Airstreams are Narrow

Airstreams are pretty narrow and tend not to have any interior slide-outs. Because of this, you’ll find Airstreams are expensive per square footage the more you climb up in trailer length.

Besides this, you can’t sleep as many people efficiently, like with a trailer with slides or 5th wheel though lack of space.

Big Windows

Airstreams have lots of windows, and while you can have a magnificent view, it makes it hard to control temperatures.

When looking to buy, you need to make sure you are not caught up in the brand name and your trailer purchase meets all your needs. (Find the Best Deep Cycle Battery Charger)

The one thing is if you ever purchase an Airstream and it doesn’t suit you, at least you know the quality materials and brand name can help you regain some of the purchase price you spent.

Why Are Airstreams So Expensive

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