Selection Guide: Camper Trailer Layouts

Getting the best camper for your camping needs is similar to a goldilocks hunt for the right porridge. A camper is a tool for adventure, travel and exploration. So, what’s the best camper for you? In this article, we will be looking at the most typical camper trailer layouts and what to look out for.

Soft Floors

In recent years, soft floor trailers have dominated the landscape and markets of Australia. This is because they were the earliest trailer designs, and they are very sole to build. They are typically box trailers with a slide-out kitchen, bed on the top and a fold-up & over the tent. Soft floor campers are also very light.

Rear fold

Rear-fold campers are also one of the best off-road campers. They are an improvement on the early soft floor trailers, but with harder floors. The bed is still placed at the top, while the storage is underneath. The storage is easily accessed from the sides.

Rear fold campers have the same set-up as the soft floor campers. This means that they are relatively small, which is suitable for windy weather.

If you fold the floor rearwards, you’ll notice that the footprint is still large, so you have to be careful when placing them on the preferred campsite. This layout has suitable spaces for dad and mum, up to the kids, with the hard floor raised slightly off the floor.

Campers with crook backs and knees will get comfort and space in the high-end models. They are easier to set up than many soft floor trailers, and you are basically off the floor, making them perfect for cold weather. High-end manufacturers boost sales with innovations like push-button opening, lightweight camper material, expanded storage and high-tech rear folds.

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Forward fold

The present front runners in the market and campsites these days are the forward fold campers. The forward fold is similar to the rear fold; it takes you up from the floor and out of dirt, but in a rather unconventional way. You need to attach your bed to the lid and not the trailer. There is also a seating area inside the camper itself. You can easily convert it to another bed, making it appealing to younger families with little kids.


This layout is similar to readies trailers, only that it is smaller. Compact trailers reduce comfort and increase off-road capabilities. They usually have just one top tent and about half the size and weight of the rear or forward fold campers. You get exactly what you pay for when buying this camper, plus fit, finish and layout. The budget offerings are slightly bigger than storage boxes with a cooker. Still, high-end compact trailers are generally inside out the caravan, with enough storage, bench space, diesel heating and multiple batteries for the winter journey. Think of it as a ‘camping trailer’ and not a ‘camper trailer’ because it is quite easy to buy and can still be extended for kids.


The twin fold campers are a rare cross of the rear fold with the forward fold. They are an excellent option to buy before getting to the caravan level. This camper is a forward-fold camper, but with beds folding in the back and front. The beds are typically arranged sideways, with extra width to the campers. This results in a big lounge area, including double beds at the ends.

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The setup time is usually quick, even quicker than the forward fold, although with heavier weight. Its extra width also makes it look like a big SUV, so it won’t be ideal for placing it behind a small town vehicle or a Rav4.