Attention, all you intrepid travelers and vacationers! If you’re considering taking the plunge and purchasing an RV but aren’t quite ready, let me be your guide. Renting an RV is a stellar way to find out if the on-the-go lifestyle is right for you. Whether you’re dreaming of trekking across the open roads or simply enjoying a cozy weekend getaway, renting an RV not only gives you the freedom to do so but offers you valuable insight before making a full commitment. So, buckle up, and let’s explore the benefits of renting an RV!
Test-Drive the RV Life
Committing to buying an RV is a sizable investment. But just like fashion, it might not fit well, which is why renting is the perfect way to try it out. Renting an RV allows you to experience the joys (and occasional challenges) of living and traveling on wheels without the long-term financial investment. You’ll also learn the ins and outs of maintaining an RV and adapt to managing limited living space. By giving this lifestyle a test drive, you can fine-tune your preferences and feel confident about your decision to buy or not.
Renting gives you the chance to experiment with different styles, sizes, and features before settling down with your dream home-on-wheels. You can also use this opportunity to determine which type of RV suits your specific travel goals – whether it’s traversing the great outdoors or hitting up city hotspots. You may choose to try the van life for a road trip down California’s scenic coast, but then want a luxury motorhome for a stay in the Florida Keys. On another trip, you may bring the grandkids and want a bunk house fifth-wheel or travel trailer with additional spaces for sleeping.
Save on Expenses
Let’s talk wallets. Renting an RV can save you from diving into a long-term financial commitment. An entry-level bumper pull camper can easily run $20,000 or more while the average cost of a motorhome is upwards of $250,000. And that doesn’t count all the additional expenses of RV ownership such as maintenance, insurance, and storage fees. Think of the cash you’ll save that can be better spent exploring new experiences and creating unforgettable memories on your journey!
By renting an RV as opposed to buying, at least right away, you can ensure the maximum level of utility per dollar spent. Consider this: If you purchase a used gas class C RV, you can spend at least $50,000. Meanwhile, you can rent one for only $125 per night. This means that you will need to take about 70 trips in the purchased RV to justify owning it compared to renting. If your family averages 3 trips per year, that will take about 23 years to accomplish. After 23 years, imagine the amount of maintenance, insurance, and storage costs you will incur. It adds up.
RV Rental Companies
Some of the big outlets will just throw you and your family into a bottom-barrel model covered in advertisements. It feels a little bit like you’re paying to market the company for them.
Luckily, there are countless places like B&B RV that are privately owned and do not engage in this practice. These companies offer units that look like they just came off the showroom floor. Better yet, they offer an array of higher-end models that they replace every year. This provides the ability to always be in the latest model RV, with all of the top-of-the-line options.
Renting through a Broker
There are several companies that serve as an online marketplace listing and insuring privately owned RVs for rent. They act as an intermediary between RV owners and travelers, making it convenient and affordable to rent an RV for your next trip. With a huge variety of recreational vehicles available, from luxurious motorhomes to small campers, they ensure that you can find a perfect match for your road trip needs.
On a recent trip to the Outer Banks in North Carolina, we chose to rent a small camper for our son and his family through a company called Outdoorsy. As you can see from the options below, there was a great selection. And when you’re searching you can even choose to only look at options that include delivery, which is what we elected to do.
These are the benefits to renting with Outdoorsy:
- Wide Selection of RVs: Outdoorsy offers a vast selection of RVs, including travel trailers, fifth wheels, camper vans, and motorhomes to cater to diverse types of vacationers. So, no matter what your preferences are, you are bound to find the ideal vehicle for your road trip.
- Ease of Renting: The Outdoorsy platform is easy to use, making it simple to search and compare RVs in your desired location. Renters can filter their search based on price, type of RV, and other essential amenities, ensuring a great fit for their needs.
- Affordability: By renting an RV through Outdoorsy, you can save money compared to traditional lodging options. This is especially true if you use the RV kitchen or outdoor cooking space to save on meals. These savings can be used to extend your vacation or indulge in some extra activities along the way.
- Insurance and Roadside Assistance: Outdoorsy provides $1 million in liability insurance coverage and up to $250,000 in comprehensive and collision coverage. Furthermore, 24/7 roadside assistance is provided to ensure a worry-free and enjoyable trip.
- Flexibility and Freedom: Renting an RV means no packing and unpacking with each hotel change, enabling you to dictate your itinerary and enjoy a flexible and seamless travel experience.
- Pet-Friendly: Many Outdoorsy renters allow pets in their RVs, ensuring that your beloved furry friend can accompany you on your adventure without the need for pet sitters or boarding facilities.
- Delivery: Think you want to rent a travel trailer or fifth wheel, but don’t have a truck to tow it with? Outdoorsy’s got you covered! They have owners who will deliver and set up rental RVs right at the campground. We just shared a campfire in Key West with a couple who flew in and had an RV rental delivered to their site.
Novelty is Important
Believe it or not, there is actually a biological reason human beings are attracted to travel. Certain structures in the brain have evolved to take note of a changing environment. This circuitry is tripped by traveling to an unfamiliar place. The effect is an increase in creative thinking and focus. It makes sense, if an organism finds itself in an environment it is not familiar with, survival will be more likely if it is more creative and focused. This all translates to an experience of a fresh perspective on life. It is this circuitry that is likely the reason travel is so popular.
So how is all of this relevant when considering purchasing vs renting an RV? Well, if you are traveling in the same RV for every trip, it won’t feel novel. Because so much of a road trip is spent in the vehicle, you are missing out on the conditions that make travel so enjoyable. A novel environment is a must to get the most out of your trip. By renting, the vehicle changes every time you travel.
When Does it Make Sense to Buy?
We are certainly not making the argument to never purchase an RV. There are plenty of cases where purchasing makes far more sense than renting. For regular campers like hunters and fishermen purchasing makes plenty of sense. There is also something to be said about making an RV yours, just like you do with your home. And of course, RVers and even snowbirds who spend extended time in their RV will want their own. However, even they should probably rent one first to make sure they’ve selected the right model.
Try Before You Buy
Finally, the obvious argument for renting before you purchase is to get to know a unit before you select it. If you feel like purchasing is the right option for you, it’s still good to rent beforehand. You may realize that a given layout or feature will drive you nuts after a few days. Even if you only rent for 2 or 3 trips before you purchase, this can save a massive amount of regret.
We hope this article has shed some light on a common question for newcomers to the RV industry. Whether you are in the market for a purchase or just exploring options, the standard best route is clear. Rent before you buy, or simply rent. The odds that you will be happy you did within a year are extremely high.
Contemplating Purchasing An RV?
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