Since the COVID-19 pandemic began, border closures between countries and other restrictions have forced Americans to look closer to home for their travel fix. Many have achieved this by buying or renting an RV. Nothing compares to exploring and appreciating the diverse topography of your home country, meeting fellow explorers and sharing your road trip stories around the campfire, and waking up to a different view outside your window every couple of days.
What Are Some of the Benefits of Renting an RV?
Renting an RV will allow you to experience everything it involves to help you decide if it’s something you will enjoy. Renting an RV will let you do the following.
Try the RV life before you buy
If you want to sample the RV lifestyle and see if it really is for you, renting gives you less to lose than committing to a large purchase. After a few days, you may miss the comforts of home or realize that you prefer to pack a tent in the car and camp out underneath the stars.
Experience driving an RV
Maneuvering an RV is distinctly different from driving most vehicles. Roads with width restrictions, unusual vehicle parameters, and the different acceleration characteristics can all take time to get used to. Although you should become comfortable with RV driving before you set out, there’s far less pressure if you can give it back after a couple of weeks.
Learn about your preferences
If you’re considering buying later on, renting an RV allows you to try out features you do or don’t like. Do you want to spend time in areas where a smaller RV would be more practical than a fifth-wheel trailer? Do you like to prepare meals in a kitchen that faces a window? Spending more time in an RV than you can at a dealership helps you to fine-tune your vision of what you eventually want to buy.
8 Things You Should Know Before Renting an RV
Before setting out to rent an RV for the first time, make sure you understand the potential cost and commitment of taking an unfamiliar, 10,000-plus-pound portable home out into the wilderness. Here are some important things to know to rent an RV successfully.
1. RV trips are more successful when certain elements are carefully planned
More people want to rent RVs than there are RVs to rent, so book one well in advance of your travel dates to avoid disappointment. Do some research to get an idea of what you’d like to do on your trip, where you want to stay, and what type of RV you’d prefer to try. If it’s your first RV trip, you may fare better traveling in the evenings to RV parks with full hookups, dump stations, and on-site staff. Start formulating a rough itinerary and working budget early in the process. This budget will probably change several times, so show yourself patience.
2. People can have very different expectations of an RV vacation
Try to make sure that everyone who’s coming along on vacation feels comfortable with where you’re going and what the sleeping arrangements will be. Plan something that everyone will enjoy at different points of the trip, whether it’s a relaxing walk to the beach or adventuring with outdoor activities. And, most importantly, give your RV travel buddies an idea of what kind of lifestyle you’ll be adopting. Will you be eating out at spots or cooking in the RV? Are you driving to a new location every day, or will you spend a few days at each place? Making sure that everyone’s on the same page now can help you avoid awkward disappointment later on.
3. There’s an RV for every type of person, but you’ll need to find it
RVs are incredibly varied to suit many different lifestyles. Some will suit a couple who want to pack minimally and hike into the mountains for days on end. Others are better for large, loud families who like their creature comforts. Once you have your initial plan nailed down, get to a dealership and start viewing RVs that fit your loose criteria. Make sure you have:
· Enough space to relax when everyone is in the RV
· Enough sleeping space for everyone
· Enough storage space and weight capacity for everything you need to bring
· The right features for the kind of trip you want to take; for instance, a fully functional kitchen if you want to make meals at the campground
4. Rental prices can greatly differ
RV rental prices will change depending on the location, duration, and distance of your trip, and the time of year. But you don’t have to put down a deposit on the first RV you like. Go to several dealers, pick out a few favorite models, and compare pricing. With more options, you’re more likely to score a good deal on your biggest vacation expense.
5. You’ll have to budget for far more than just the rental
Along with the RV rental cost, there are other expenses to consider, including:
· Insurance for your trip
· Roadside assistance
· Gas (RVs are not comparatively fuel-efficient, but you can hunt online for cheaper gas stations in advance)
· Extra amenities offered by the rental company
· Food and other essentials
· RV park, national park, and campground admission, plus the cost of extras such as propane, firewood, or a generator rental
· Transportation to and from the RV during the day
· Planned activities
· Spontaneous excursions
6. Your possessions can move around a lot in an RV
You’ll quickly realize how much things move around on bumpy roads once crockery starts falling noisily off the kitchen counter of your RV. Stay ahead of any potential accidents by securing everything in place. Before you set off on the road each time, seal cabinets, clear off surfaces, and stow loose items.
7. There are multiple sources of power for RVs
RVs are powered either by plugging into a power source or through the RV’s batteries. It’s essential to understand how this works and when you need to start the generator. It’s also important to get the hookups on your RV right, otherwise you could risk blowing out the RV’s electrical system or causing water issues. Read the manufacturer’s manual for your RV, ask the dealer to confirm your understanding before you leave, or ask for help from other RV owners once you get to your first RV park.
8. Waste disposal is an essential but manageable element of RV vacationing
Becoming familiar with how and where to dump your wastewater tanks is a necessary task you can’t avoid for too long. Most campgrounds have an on-site dump station, or your RV rental company may offer these services. If you do it yourself, make sure you’ve researched the task well, and don’t hesitate to ask for help from others on your first attempt.
It’s Time To Rent
With these tips in mind, you should be ready to rent an RV for your trip. Travelcamp RV Rentals offers a wide variety of types and sizes of rentals, so check out our inventory today.