6 Reasons Why Renting an RV Is a Good Idea

Parked RV with interior lights on

Purchasing an RV can be quite an expensive undertaking! Not only is it expensive but also requires space in which to park it. Many people just don’t have the room for a large RV sitting in their driveway or out in the street. In this case, there is another option for you to enjoy all that an RV has to offer.

Renting an RV is an option that allows anyone to enjoy the RV lifestyle without the downsides associated with owning one. The RV lifestyle is fun but comes with drawbacks to consider before deciding to purchase one. Renting an RV allows you to “test the waters” before you leap into ownership.

After you have gone through the rental process, you may even decide that you don’t want to own one. The occasional camper will probably be better off renting rather than owning since there is a high cost to owning and maintaining an RV. Renting is not for everyone and those who use their RV often or intend to live or travel in it will obviously not be satisfied with renting.

However, there are certain times that renting an RV is a great idea. It can be expensive depending on the type of RV you choose but in the end, it can allow you to experience the lifestyle without committing to a large purchase that will likely go down in value.

Let’s look at 6 reasons why renting an RV is a good idea.

1. It Gives You a Chance to Try It Out

Renting an RV is perfect for those who have never experienced the lifestyle. If you have always dreamed of having an RV and traveling, or living in it, renting one will give you a firsthand look at what it is really like. Rather than depending on what you see on social media, spend a little money to test out the waters for yourself to see if the lifestyle matches up with the way you think it will.

If you go and purchase an RV only to find out that you don’t like the lifestyle, you are then stuck with an RV that you have to turn around and sell and likely lose money on.

If you rent an RV and do not like the lifestyle, you can simply turn the rental back in and go on about your life. The only thing you will take from it is an education and an experience to remember.

Renting is great for this type of person and in fact, it might be a good idea to rent more than once before you decide on ownership. Renting different types and classes of RVs may be the best choice as you can figure out what you like and don’t like before you commit.

You may start with a class B van only to end up needing more space and feeling more comfortable in a class A. In this case, you’ll be glad that you rented multiple times so that you could discover just what it is that you need.

2. Helps You Decide Which RV Type Is Best for Your Needs

Woman driving an RV

Choosing the best type of RV for you and your family can be a difficult task. You may think you know exactly what you need but until you experience it on an actual trip, you won’t know for sure if it meets your needs or not. Class B camper vans are great small RVs to travel around in but they certainly are not for everyone.

However, van lifers make it look amazing online so you may assume that you could just make it work. However, once you begin traveling in one, you may have a completely different opinion of it.

Likewise, all of the room inside of a class A motorhome seems wonderful but once you experience the challenges that go along with that, you may long for something smaller and more maneuverable. All of these considerations are things that you won’t know until you experience actually being inside whatever RV it is you are interested in.

Once you have taken it out on a road trip or a local camping trip, you will be able to decide with greater confidence whether or not this is the RV type for you.

Renting RVs of different types allows you to experience them all and make a better decision.

3. No Commitment to an Expensive RV Purchase

An RV can be a very expensive purchase. Not only that but they almost always lose value so if you are not happy with what you have purchased, you will have lost money after driving it off of the lot. To avoid making a mistake like this, renting an RV is a good choice, especially for those who only want to go camping occasionally.

If you are someone who wants to take a trip once a year for a few days, there is no need to purchase a camper for this. You can find nice rental units from online services such as Outdoorsy or RVShare, or Cruise America.

The costs associated with an RV don’t just include the purchase itself but also all of the other things that go along with it including insurance, registration, maintenance, and storage. There are lots of additional costs that you might not think about when the RV bug has hit you.

If you are renting an RV, you don’t have to worry about any of these costs after your payment is made for the rental time. You can simply pay the rental fee, be on your way without the weight of all of these additional costs being on your shoulders.

4. No Maintenance Required

Man cleaning the roof on a camper van

Once you have purchased an RV, there is maintenance that goes along with it if you want to keep it running in tiptop shape. It will have to be treated like any other vehicle with basic maintenance items. These regularly scheduled maintenance items could include:

  • Oil changes
  • Tire replacements
  • Tire rotations
  • Wheel alignment
  • Cleaning
  • Recharging or replacing batteries
  • Repairing water leaks
  • Re-caulking and sealing windows, vents, and other openings where possible leaks could occur
  • Winterizing / De-winterizing

And the list goes on and on and on!

Maintenance like this requires a regular commitment. You will have to stay on top of it in order to make sure your RV lasts for an extended amount of time.

A rental RV comes to you with all the maintenance done! Even if the maintenance isn’t done, it isn’t your responsibility so you won’t care. This gives you a freer feeling as you rent your RV not having to worry about whether the oil needs to be changed or if the RV is going to break down.

5. No Parking Space Needed

An RV requires a lot of space to park depending on the size of the unit. A small camper van like I own doesn’t require much and sits in my driveway when not can use but a larger RV would be in the way most of the time. Unless you have a dedicated building for your RV, it may be a challenge to find a place to park it without it being an eyesore and in the way of others.

You may have to resort to paying for a storage location if you do not have the space. This introduces an additional cost and inconvenience. A class A RV can be anywhere from 25 to 45 feet long and that large of a footprint requires a big amount of space. Similarly, a travel trailer such as a large trailer or a fifth wheel will be just as large and will need to be parked somewhere when not in use.

By renting an RV, you won’t be required to have a parking space for it. Once you pick it up from where you are renting it from, you will be on your way and then simply drop it back off once you are finished. Whether you live in an apartment or a home that has a tiny amount of space for parking, you won’t have to worry about it if you choose a rental RV.

6. It Gives You a Unique Family Fun Adventure

Man and daughter enjoying RV life

If you travel on family vacations occasionally, renting an RV is another way to add some variety to the mix. Rather than the same trips to hotels and vacation homes, why not try an RV trip?

Renting an RV and going camping or traveling across the country is a great way to introduce something new. It will allow you to experience vacations in a new way. Trips like this can be fun for families as it allows a family to travel comfortably and stay together, spending lots of healthy family time together.

If you have never taken a family trip in an RV, perhaps renting is a great way to start. You can choose the size of unit you need based on the size of your family and enjoy a few nights away. This could turn into something that you do yearly or you may decide that one time was enough. Either way, you aren’t out any more money than the cost of the few nights you paid to rent the unit.

Best Places To Rent RVs

There are numerous websites that are dedicated to matching up people who want to camp with people who own RVs. These websites offer rentals from real people who own RVs and want to rent them out in order to earn some extra money. Many times, RVs sit dormant in a person’s driveway for much of the year. Renting it out becomes a win-win for both parties involved.

Here are a few locations that you might consider if you would like to rent an RV directly from another individual.

These companies allow users to list RVs for rent in order to earn extra income. You can take advantage of this and find nearly any type of RV you are looking for. Chances are, you’ll find one close by and for an affordable price.

If you are wanting to take a more traditional approach and rent directly from a company dedicated to RVs only, you might consider Cruise America. You’ll find motorhomes of all sizes here. You’ve probably seen these before because they usually have large amounts of advertising on them. No big deal though because you are only renting and it’s a good way to see what the RV life is all about.

If you know you want to rent a camper van, there are many companies that are dedicated to this type of RV alone. Many of them are regional so they may be hard to find nearby. However, Escape Campervans has quite a few locations throughout the US and Canada and may just have what you are looking for to experience a few days of van life.

Bottom Line

Renting an RV can be a great way to decide whether or not the lifestyle is for you. Even for those who just want to go on a camping trip occasionally, renting is a perfect way to make it happen without the commitment of ownership.

Renting an RV is comparable to renting a vacation home a week or two out of the year. Rather than just buying a home, you get to pick and choose where you stay and do not have to deal with the downsides of owning the property. You wouldn’t buy a vacation home in an area that you’ve never been before without first testing it out, would you?

Why buy an RV when you can rent one first to make sure you are making a good choice?

If you are in the market for an RV and are looking to spend a lot of money on one, it just makes sense to rent a few first to make sure you will be happy with the choice. It’s better to decide against it when you are renting an RV than to realize you made a bad choice after purchasing one.

Dan Collins

I consider myself an outdoor enthusiast. I love to travel and go to places that most people don't get a chance to go. I want to see it all and live life to the fullest while I'm alive. My camper van is helping me to do just that. I write about my experiences to help inspire others to do the same.

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