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
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.
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.
|Size||5m wide x 1.4m high|
|Guy ropes||Two per pole|
|Flysheet fabric||PU coated polyester|
|Colours||Green and light green, with clear windows|
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.
- It's an easy windbreak to put up quickly
- Has two guy ropes per pole
- Great value
- Low price
- It even has windows
- Looks cheaper than rivals
- No peg bag