Three Factors To Decide Which Type of RV to Rent: Your Budget, Space Required and Towing Capacity
Let’s quickly dash through some types of variety of campers that are available. There are quite many of them but these below are quite narrowed down. So, you need to ask these questions for all kind of rv rentals: Will you like to drive the camper or tow it? And how much space or room do you need in your camper?
Starting with the first question, if you are going for the tow type, such as a pop up camper, then you should know the towing capacity of your family vehicle. Vehicles have different towing capacities. In other words, the weight of the load that one vehicle can move at a time is different across vehicles. Expectedly bigger family vehicles such as four wheel drive or 4×4 can tow a larger weight than regular cars. One sure way to determine the tow capacity of your family vehicle is to check the tow vehicle’s service manual or contact the manufacturer for details. The knowledge of this attribute will help in deciding on the trailer camper or types of RV rentals.
Definitely, the weight of the camper available for the rv rentals available, must fall within the range of your family car’s towing capacity. You do not want to get your family vehicle stretched and all worn out needing severe repairs after the vacation, as for example, issues with the transmission.
Now to the second question. The question of space is dependent on the size of your family and everyone that is going camping with you. It is a camper, remember? It is not a permanent home, unless you are living in your RV. So be conscious of not thinking about too much space, because undoubtedly, the bigger the camper, the costlier are the related RV rentals.
If you are renting an RV to decide later to purchase, start using the buying criteria you already have during the rental, picturing your future acquisition. Select one RV to rent that meets your present needs and gives room for future expansions, just as the one you plan to buy in the future. This is applicable to all the RV rentals where the goal is to familiarize with an RV class to see if it is suitable for you and meets your requirements.
Key Factors To Consider For RV Rentals
Apart from knowing the different types of RV rentals available for us, it is also important to think about these factors:
- Where to rent;
- The deposit or insurance which may be required;
- What influences the different rates which are charged in the market of RV rentals;
- Where to pack
- Planning your food and other necessities.
- Interior and exterior checkout
Where Can You Go For Cheap RV Rentals?
There are a number of companies offering RV rentals. Depending on your budget, you will retrieve the size and type of facility that you need for the trip. When making a choice, think about a reliable company, one that offers a suitable price and also one with customer support.
To obtain this kind of information, a search through the Internet will yield good results where you can scan through the reviews. Companies with positive reviews are worth considering whereas those with bad or negative feedback from customers of their RV rentals should be avoided at all costs, as you are bound to get the same treatment especially when they have not taken time to address the concerns which have previously been raised by dissatisfied customers.
For starters, here are some questions that should be considered when selecting a company to hire an RV:
- Does the company have a good reputation out there for the provision of these services?
- Are the RVs well maintained?
- Do the RVs have the proper papers, including insurance cover?
- Does the company offer adequate assistance in case of problems especially for first-time campers?
- Are the prices being charged for RV rentals commensurate to the features being offered?
- What is the condition of the RV at the time of hiring?
- Parking the RV: will it be easy for you?
These and other questions or factors can assist you in making the right decision during the hiring process. Do not rush to take anything that comes your way, take time, ask around, check and re-check; your enjoyment of the trip largely depends on how these RV rentals are addressed.
Deposits and Insurance Required
Deposits and insurance will come up at some point when negotiating RV rentals. Some companies may ask for a down payment when making a reservation and this cost will count when considering the final payment of the rental, so it is not regarded as an additional cost in any of the RV rentals you will find available.
The RV provider, the dealer, only needs a commitment that you will come for it so that there are no losses when you do not turn up to complete the rental. In most cases, failure to turn up means you have forfeited your deposit and these are standard clauses in RV rentals. It is assumed that another person would have taken it but since you had booked, it could not have been offered to this potential customer and the RV provider lost the cost of opportunity that you compensate through this forfeiture.
You may also be required to pay a security deposit for the RV rental service. This is a refundable payment when you return the RV in the same condition that was furnished to you.
Likewise, insurance is required. Some companies may provide it at an additional cost or you will have to provide your own insurance. The best way to get insurance if it is not provided is through your auto insurance company. Let them know because if they are insuring vehicles, they should be insuring RV rentals as well.
You will learn that there are a variety of rates that varies with the company, the type of RV hired, and the season, among other factors. You will be required to pay a daily rate which goes up depending on the type of the RV you have hired. To get the best deal you can do the following:
- Look for the most competitive company.
- Check out of the rental specials and deals that the RV companies offer. The largest the quantity of RVs found during your search, the better.
- Check out the seasons when fewer people are likely to book. This is during fall and winter. If you are planning to purchase an RV in the future, you can start with any type of RV rentals, to determine if you like the model or the class of RV. Fall is a good moment to do this: you rent in fall, and later, you buy during winter where the prices are very low.
- Also search to discover deals which may fit you: some companies or RV rentals dealers may charge you per mile while others may offer daily rates. For longer trips, daily rates are appropriate, whereas shorter trips near home are most economical at a mile rate.
- Book well in advance to get some discounts. When you plan to travel during the peak seasons, early booking will give you a relatively reduced price compared to booking a few days ahead of travel.
Parking of The Rented RV
You may think that just because you have mastered the art of parallel parking, you will automatically get it with the RV. I can assure you that there will be some challenges. I discovered it myself.
It is important to note that not every parking lot will accommodate the size of the RV. You may want to drive around the town for some errands or have some meal in your favorite restaurant. This will be a challenge when you find no parking slot that can fit your vehicle.
If you cannot get a parking slot and still need to go for dinner or shopping, separate arrangements can be made. With some RVs, such as large motorhomes, this is even mandatory. It may mean additional costs but if you are to get some of these things, you cannot avoid it. With a travel trailer or a fifth wheel, this is not a problem, as you can visit the town and park in the restaurant with your towing vehicle.
Even where parking is available, make sure it is suitable for your RV, given that there is some uniqueness about the facility. It is not just like any other vehicle, it has equipment that is sensitive, such as a fridge. The RV fridge cannot work properly when it is tilted or slanting.
These parking recommendations apply of course for RV rentals and if you have your own new RV. And this is maybe why I recommend that first, you should start renting, instead of directly purchasing an RV.
RV Rentals: Time To Empty And Clean The Toilets
Staying in an RV while on a road trip is fun but there is no glamorous part when toilets need to be emptied and cleaned. If there is a way to avoid this most of us would but it but we need to stay in a clean place during the camping period.
You will have to put up with this unpleasant activity for you to be comfortable and enjoy the whole trip. All you need to carry out this task is through the utilization of some protective gear. Use gloves all the time and if you cannot bear the smell, cover the nose. You can clean it often during the trip to avoid overflowing or being forced to empty it when you do not feel like it. Make it part of the journey and it will not bother you.
If cleaning toilets and clearing the wastewater tank is a problem for you and I totally understand you if it is, you can get somebody to do it for you, of course at a fee.
In all the RV rentals I had, you can return the RV and the owner or dealership will empty these wastewater tanks for you at a cost.
Inspection and Checkout
Everyone wants value for their money. And to achieve this, you need to check out whatever you intend to rent and make sure it is worth every nickel and dime to be spent on it. Hence, after you have made up your mind on the amount you would want to spend on a camper and the size you would need, the next step is to go check out the campers that fall into the category of your plans and needs.
Now, this is where you need to be careful about a number of issues. These issues range from the mechanical parts of the vehicle to the interior and exterior parts. You do not want to overlook anything. A faulty fridge can ruin your camping experience, so also can a bad tow-box detach to your trailer camper from the tow vehicle. So, check it all out including some of these below:
Mechanical Parts To Check Out
Check the Underbody And Frames
Now, do not get all scared about not knowing anything about engines, and do not think for a bit that you need a mechanical engineer to do this checking for you on your behalf. You can get it all right by yourself, but be prepared to crawl under the camper and get your hands and sleeves dirty while performing a bit in the scrutiny of the underbody. But it is all right, and it is worth it. Road safety is more crucial, right?
When you get under the camper to check out the mechanical parts at the base in the underbody section, start out by checking out the frames (these are the metals that suspend the weight of the trailer campus). Check if it is rusty or intact. A rusty frame indicates that the support structure of your camper may cave any time soon. So be sure to get one with reasonably good frames. Detecting rustiness does not need professional expertise to check out. You could easily detect if the frames have cracks, have been welded or broken. For RV rentals, it is fine. Move away from such a camper if any of these signs are noticed for an RV you intend to purchase.
Check Tires and Axles
When you are done with the frames, and you feel they are okay, move over to check the tires and axles. Even in RV rentals, check the tires because you are going to take the road with the RV. Do not get influences by clean tires. Clean does not necessarily mean good and new. Often, you may need to replace the tire when you purchase a camper, but for renting, it is a different criterion.
If you purchase a camper for sale, always include the cost of changing the wheels in your budget from inception, but in RV rentals you may not need to change the tires.
If the mechanical parts are in good working condition, the next step of action is to check the interiors and the exteriors of the trailer camper.
Interior and Exterior Checkout
Checking the interiors and exteriors may seem a bit of an easy task, in comparison with the inspection of the mechanical parts, but just as the latter, it requires every bit of attention to detail.
Do not let your emotions at this stage override your better judgment. While walking through the interior part of the camper that you intend to rent, do not allow the beauty you may see deceive you. Some things may be beautiful but faulty. So, do as full time RVers and pay attention to details such as;
- The working condition of the refrigerators and cooling systems
- The cabinets
- Floors and doors
- Curtains and carpets
- kitchen and gas cylinders
- Tow hitch
When you are buying an RV, for the ones that are not in good condition, you may want to consider the cost of repair or replacement, if the cost of repair or replacement overrides the amount for which it is offered; then the deal might not be worth it. For RV rentals instead, see how these appliances are working as you will not be able to replace anything.
Move on and check out other campers that are put up for rent until you get a couple of suitable and satisfactory ones. However, you should note that, since you are renting a used camper, there is only a one in a million chance that you will get a camper with all its parts intact and perfect. So be ready to compromise a bit before settling the operation with the dealer.
RV Rentals: Conclusions
Once you are done with the inspection, and you have visited several campers that meet your requirements and needs, do not be in a rush to rent, take your time, and go back to the drawing table. You may need to go online and compare prices with other campers that are up for rent in online stores.
Nevertheless, one of the principles I found here in the RV rentals world, is that I should not take too much time as the good RVs are rented fast, and you may find out that the vehicle is already rented later on: this happens all the time in spring and summer.
I am Tony, an RV designer and RV developer. I create bill of materials for RV manufacturers for travel trailers and fifth wheels. I worked as a freelance transportation consultant for Lyft. As an RV development consultant, I create customization trees for RV manufacturers who want to offer a solution to prospective customers to design their custom RV with variant configuration. Apart from this, I sell in Indiana trailer hitches, hitch balls, goosenecks and weight distribution systems where I provide advice to customers who want to know which is their towing capacity, which hitch ball should they utilize and how to deploy a weight distribution system. I do my best to explain all these processes and their installation, here in RV Favorites.