They are unmistakable when you see them on the road or in a campground. No other brand of recreational vehicle looks like them, and no other brand has reached their iconic status either. Since 1936, Airstream travel trailers, known for their sleek “silver bullet” design, have taken America’s highways by storm. Just what is it that makes this brand name so appealing among RV enthusiasts? Together, let’s explore the reasons why the Airstream brand name has appealed to the masses for so many decades.

The Epitome of Luxury

With polished aluminum exteriors and rounded aerodynamic shape for fuel efficiency, Airstreams look like luxury aircraft. Even the front windows of an Airstream travel trailer might be mistaken for a pair of designer sunglasses. In fact, everything about the Airstream design epitomizes luxury and style. RV enthusiasts love the vintage-chic appeal of the outside, combined with the unparalleled attention to interior detail. Unlike many RVs that use questionable color schemes, and sometimes inferior materials, for their upholstery and fabrics, Airstream uses top-of-the-line materials and coordinates every surface in various neutral hues. The result is an inviting interior that feels like a home away from home. In the past, Airstream has even collaborated with notable names like Eddie Bauer and Mauro Micheli to create special editions of its luxurious travel trailers.

This little beauty is a 1954 Aistream Flying Cloud that was restored for Orvis. Photo courtesy of Inhabitat.

This little beauty is a 1954 Aistream Flying Cloud that was restored for Orvis. Photo courtesy of Inhabitat.

Handcrafted Durability

Luxury means nothing without durability. Luxury brands must perform well and look great while doing it. This iconic brand’s mastery on both counts is what sets Airstream apart from its competitors. Remarkably, every Airstream is still handmade at a factory in Jackson Center, Ohio. Each trailer is lovingly pieced together by a team of talented craftsmen who take pride in making one of America’s best brands. The attention to detail means that Airstreams can last for a long time. Unlike some RVs that depreciate rapidly, Airstreams retain their value well. Some vintage travel trailers have even been sold used for the same price as when they were purchased new! Additionally, if parts do wear out, Airstream will gladly perform repairs on old models at their Ohio shop.

Craftsmen painstakingly craft each and every Airstream that rolls off the line in Ohio. Photo courtesy of Popular Mechanics.

Craftsmen painstakingly craft each and every Airstream that rolls off the line in Ohio. Photo courtesy of Popular Mechanics.

Universal Consumer Appeal

Airstreams appeal to an increasingly wide range of consumers. While older generations might appreciate the Airstream for its longevity and all-American appeal, younger generations love it just as much for its retro-chic design. Moonraker SEO Austin, an RV SEO agency, notes that the number of people searching for Airstreams online has spiked in recent years. The search metrics indicate that there are thousands of people searching Google for new and used Airstreams every month. This should come as no surprise since we’ve seen Airstreams pop up everywhere from a trailer park eatery in Austin to a rooftop trailer hotel in South Africa. For the near future, it doesn’t appear that the consumer demand for Airstreams will slow down.

A vintage Airstream that doubles as an ice cream stand in New Hampton, NH proves the popularity of Airstreams among creative businesses. Photo by Flickr user Rusty Clark.

A vintage Airstream that doubles as an ice cream stand in New Hampton, NH proves the popularity of Airstreams among creative businesses. Photo by Flickr user Rusty Clark.

Purchasing an RV for travel is a major expense, so you’ll want to maximize the value for your money. If you are like most RV enthusiasts, you’ll pore over details of design and technology trying to select the right coach or trailer. If the details matter to you, you need to take a close look at the travel trailers and touring coaches offered by Airstream. There is only one real way of knowing why Airstream is such a long-lived brand, and that is to experience it for yourself.