Renting a RV, Part Two


Where to rent RVs

This is a question to type into Google.  Just type in “rent RV” You will find that there are a wide variety of places that rent them, from small operations to large, national ones (Cruise America and USA RV Rentals are two national companies). Is there a difference? You may find that the RVs are a bit cleaner at the larger centers just simply because they have more staff and the RVs are usually newer. On the flip side, you may find that the smaller places are more affordable to rent from.

RV rental fees

Depending on the business, rental prices are usually assessed per day or per week. In addition, you may be charged for mileage. Typically, you  get free allowance per day or per week and then you pay for additional mileage accrued. In other rental centers, you might have to pay for each mile traveled (typically, 31 to 39 cents per mile). By the way, be careful about these mileage fees, they can add up quickly. Beforehand, plan your trip and calculate the amount of miles you will be driving so you have an approximate idea how much you will be spending.

RV rentals are usually assumed to be round trip meaning that you will be returning to the same place you rented the RV. If you want to return to another location, you’ll often pay an additional charge because the rental company will have to transport the RV back. One exception is in fall or spring when some RV rental companies are moving the bulk of their rentals to areas of higher demand. For example, in the fall most RV rental companies move their vehicles to southern locations so if you drop off your RV “down south”, you may not have to pay any additional fees.

Where to stay

More than 16,000 public and privately-owned campgrounds welcome RVs. Most offer far more than just a place to park. At the larger parks, you will find facilities ranging from swimming pools and playgrounds to game rooms and restaurants.

By the way, the folks at Holt Fiat of Fort Worth, TX, a full service Fiat dealer, suggest that if it’s late at night and you can’t find a RV-friendly campground, you can stop for the night in a Walmart parking lot (they allow it!) or a rest stop along a highway. That’s the fun part of traveling in an RV.

Other considerations

Since you are going to be driving a “temporary home,” you are going to need some domestic things like bed sheets, blankets, pillows, silverware, plates and dishes.  You can, of course, bring these items with you but if you are flying somewhere to pick up your RV, you may find renting these items from the RV center is more convenient. Typically, RV rental places charge some $80-$100 per person for these items.

Another note: If you’re driving your car to a rental location, ask about storing it while you are out on the road. You may be able to park on their property. Some will do it for free, others may charge a nominal charge, perhaps $10 per day.

Plan ahead

During the summer high season, make reservations in advance when going to popular sites like national parks. RVing has become very popular and the campgrounds that are close to major attractions usually fill up quickly.


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