For those of us touring on a budget, £20 windbreaks like the Halfords Urban Escape Camping are hard to resist, but read Practical Motorhome's verdict first

Overview

In the true spirit of motorhome road trips, modern windbreaks trump drive-away awnings because they're just the lightest, quickest, least bulky shelters you could possibly have. So we've tested a whole bunch of windbreaks from a collection of famous names in the outdoor equipment world to find out which are the best windbreaks to take on holiday. 

Ideally, of course, our motorhome holidays would all be taken in sunny, calm weather. No lazy wind would exist to cut right through our T-shirts and puff out the flames of the barbecue. But in the real world, we like to enjoy the big outdoors in all weathers, so that's where some kind of temporary outdoor shelter can come in very handy.

On top of that, if you have a dog it can be very handy to put up a little fence around the motorhome doorway, so that he or she doesn't go bounding off to check out the bacon sandwiches being created for breakfast by those lovely friendly tent campers at the far side of the field. You can't blame a dog for trying. Where bacon is concerned, if it weren't for social convention we'd be queueing up looking hopeful as well. 

Then there's the beach. Nobody likes a sandwich full of sand or a fly-away salad on the beach. And there are times when a little bit of privacy is required. There's no doubt about it, windbreaks still have a place in our world. 

Thanks to a quiet revolution in windbreak product design, there's a vast array of high-tech modern windbreaks to choose from. We've tested them for Practical Motorhome and for comparison we'd recommend that you read our expert's other windbreak reviews and star ratings before you splash the cash. 

We awarded the highest marks to windbreaks that were strong and stable, especially if they came with two guy ropes per pole. We checked that the fabric went down all the way to the ground, to ensure that it made an effective dog fence if required. This could also be handy for keeping your children or visiting grandchildren safe and sound and close to the motorhome, too. We were less impressed by any windbreaks that seemed to bend and buckle in the wind. Finally, we looked at the various sizes and weights of windbreaks, because we do worry about packing too many hefty products and overloading our motorhome payloads. 

We tested the Vango Adventure Windbreak at £24.99, the SunnCamp Windjammer at £29.99, the yellow, orange and blue (yes really) Easy Camp Surf at £19.99, the Kampa Break at £39.99, the Outwell Premium Round Windscreen at £69.99 and the Coleman Windshield XL.

That said, here's how the Halfords Urban Escape Camping windbreak measured up against rival windbreaks on test

Out of the bag, this budget windbreak doesn’t inspire confidence. And that’s not helped by the guy lines and pegs being held in a piece of cardboard rather than the smart bags used by dearer rivals. But, in so many ways, this windbreak gets the basics spot on.

The steel poles and material are tough enough, and this is one of the few cheaper offerings that comes with enough guy ropes to double-line each pole. The bottom of this windbreak even sits snugly against the ground.

It is quick and easy to pitch, measures 5m wide and 1.4m high. The poles are steel and the flysheet fabric is PU coated polyester.

Technical specs

Size5m wide x 1.4m high
Guy ropesTwo per pole
Flysheet fabricPU coated polyester
PolesSteel
ColoursGreen and light green, with clear windows

Verdict

The Halfords Urban Escape Camping is an absolute bargain for £20 and we rate it higher than some rival windbreaks that cost twice as much. Practical Motorhome's expert has given this windbreak a four-star rating.

Conclusion

Pros

  • It's an easy windbreak to put up quickly
  • Has two guy ropes per pole
  • Great value
  • Low price
  • It even has windows

Cons

  • Looks cheaper than rivals
  • No peg bag
Share with friends

Follow us on

Most recent motorhome reviews

The Practical Motorhome Mercedes-Benz Marco Polo 250d Sport Long review – 1 - The Mercedes-Benz Marco Polo 250d Sport Long is priced from £56,670 OTR, £63,990 as tested (© Phil Russell/Practical Motorhome)
The Practical Motorhome Chausson Welcome 711 Travel Line review – 1 - The new Chausson 711 is being sold in Welcome Travel Line spec only (© Peter Baber/Practical Motorhome)

Swift Rio 325

£52,180OTR

The Practical Motorhome Swift Rio 325 review – 1 - The 2018 Swift Rio 325 is just 5.99m long and has a licence-friendly MTPLM of 3500kg (© Phil Russell/Practical Motorhome)
The Practical Motorhome IH N-Class 630 RLS review – 1 - The IH N-Class 630 RLS is priced from £73,995 OTR for the 130bhp variant and from £76,490 OTR for the 180bhp version – we're testing the latter (© Gentleman Jack/Practical Motorhome)
The Practical Motorhome Marquis Majestic 196 review – 1 - Fitting six berths and six travel seats into a 3500kg motorhome is no mean feat – does it work? (© Phil Russell/Practical Motorhome)
The Practical Motorhome Swift Bessacarr 597 review – 1 - The ’van tested has an MTPLM of 3850kg, but there is a version with a 3500kg MTPLM (and a lower payload) – read more in our Swift Bessacarr 597 review (© Peter Baber/Practical Motorhome)