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Renting a motorhome for vacations is becoming more and more popular. People want to be outside, experiencing fresh air and nature, but don’t necessarily want to tent camp. Or, after dealing with the COVID-19 pandemic and unrest, people are seeking an escape in the safest way possible, desiring to travel a distance without flying or staying in hotels.
No matter your reason for considering a motorhome rental, it’s important to learn all you can about this form of travel before you hit the road. So, you’re in the right place for that. Our family has been traveling in rented RVs since 2003, so we’ve got lots of experience to share with you.
Why are RV’s rentals becoming increasingly popular?
Renting a motorhome for vacation has become so popular in 2020 because it helps avoid the germs around airports, restaurants, bathrooms, and other questionable public space. RV vacationing allows people with autoimmune diseases or other vulnerable traits to enjoy the summer while still staying safe from COVID-19.
While simultaneously keeping you safe, RV’s offer a glamping experience. Feel free to travel to the many national and state parks opening soon and enjoy exploring the vast outdoors during a sunny day. At night, step into your cozy home-on-wheels with the peace of mind you’ll get a good night sleep, fully protected from the elements (unlike a tent camping experience!).
Amidst the craziness that the year has brought us, there is a way for you to enjoy your time with your people. Bring your loved ones close together, and even see extended family this summer by renting an RV! Simply park in their driveway or nearby RV park, and enjoy each other’s company in an unprecedented day and age.
Long distances? No problem! Making the most out of your RV road trip is half the fun!
Which type of motorhome is best?
You have a few different options when deciding to rent a motorhome. The first decision you need to make is the type of driveable rig you’d like to rent.
Class A motorhomes are the ones to pick if you think the bigger, the better. Class A’s have the most square footage, and are usually equipped with slide-out sections to expand your living room, and include a master bedroom suite in the back.
Class A’s also offer the most amenities, such as full bathroom and showers, ice makers, entertainment systems, and sometimes even laundry machines. Some are them are pretty luxurious and take camping to a whole new level.
The downfall with Class A’s is that their size is intimidating to some. They can be difficult to maneuver, particularly around narrow twisty mountain passes. You cannot easily take small day trips from the campsite unless you tow a separate vehicle. Also due to their size, they are costly to fuel.
- Ample living space
- Luxurious amenities
- Plenty of cargo and storage space
- Costly to fuel
- Can be hard to maneuver
- Cannot easily take small day trips from the campsite, unless you tow a separate vehicle.
This type of motorhome is typically referred to as a ‘camper van’. Though they are small, they pack all of your essentials and facilitate a comfortable camping experience that’s easily mobile for day trip excursions from the simple campsite setup. Due to their agility, they are immensely more fuel-efficient.
Cons to this model are you don’t get as much interior space or luxuries that the other classes offer. If you’re the type to overpack there may be a chance you feel cramped. If more than 2 people are using it, the small quarters can become uncomfortable.
- Fuel efficient
- Comfortable sleeping space with necessities
- Easy to drive and convenient for excursions
- Can be a cramped living quarters (2 people max.)
- Little cargo space
- Limited amenities.
Class C’s are the “Goldilocks” of motorhomes. Ranging from 20-33ft, you can find an option that’s not too big, not too little, but just right. Class C’s tend to have many of the same amenities as Class A’s, but are less costly. Due to their compartmental designs, there are usually hidden sleeping quarters that double as couches or dining areas, making them large enough for the entire family.
The downsides of Class C’s are that they’re still as costly to fuel as Class A’s, they can still be pretty difficult to maneuver and again it’s difficult to make day trips without towing a separate vehicle.
- Large enough for family and friends
- Cheaper than Class A motorhomes
- Equipped with amenities
- Difficult to maneuver
- Still expensive to operate
- Separate vehicle needed for day trips
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Where do travelers find motorhomes to rent?
Now that you’ve decided what type of motorhome you’d like to rent, the next step is deciding where to to rent from. You can choose from national rental chains, local RV dealers, or RV’s for rent by the owner.
National RV rental chains
National rental chains are a great reliable way to travel the country. Their booking processes are usually simple, and with many locations, this option is ideal for those who want to fly to their destination and drive back or vice versa. Also, they tend to be more popular and have more reviews, so you can rely on feedback from past vacationers to gauge your experience.
A downside is that larger RV rental operations don’t have much variety in types of RVs available. And they tend to be the most expensive rentals. Often, you need to pay for extras like kitchen supplies, bedding and such.
Regional and local RV dealers
Local RV rental companies or dealerships can be the best way to travel if you’re looking to be a little nicer to your wallet. Family-owned and operated options ensure great customer service and may offer special packages and discounts. They’re more familiar with the area and can help you plan your itinerary to include all the “must-see” attractions in the area. You’ll feel good knowing that you’ve supported a small business.
One drawback, however, is that most local RV dealers can’t offer a one-way package. And they don’t have as large a fleet as national chains, so availability may be limited
You can find these smaller rental companies by searching online for “RV rental company near (your destination)”
Motorhomes for rent by owner
Renting RVs by owner is a very budget-friendly way to travel. Like the local dealers, RV owners know a lot about their location and can help you plan your trip. Since the motorhome is someone’s personal property, they tend to take really good care of it and are accommodating to their renters (in hopes of getting a stellar review).
Our family prefers renting from private owners over national chains or local dealerships (we’ve tried them all). We’ve had a chance to try out different types of rigs (including trailers) and have formed some memorable relationships with the owners. We’ve found that motorhomes for rent by owners are better equipped with supplies. This is a crucial deciding factor when we plan a destination RV trip (flying or driving by car to our starting point) and are traveling light.
There are a few credible websites for finding motorhomes for rent by owner, such as Outdoorsy and RVShare. With tons of options listed across the USA, there is surely something to suit your itinerary, budget and accommodation needs. THIS POST shares more about the best ways to find RVs for rent by owners.
Tell me, what stage are you at in your plans for renting a motorhome? Have any of these tips helped you make a decision about your RV adventure?
- How To Choose The Best RV Rental For Your Next Vacation
- Why You Should Rent an RV Before You Decide to Buy an RV