Renting a Campervan
Replies: 3 - Last Post: Jan 4, 2012 2:21 PM Last Post By: habby
Jan 4, 2012 8:32 AM
Renting a CampervanHey everyone,
I'm travelling down the East Coast of Australia for 2 months in Oct 12 and wanted to rent a camper van for the duration.
I've heard that you can rent camper vans for free if you 'return' them to a location for the company you rent from.
I was wondering if anyone knows any more about this; Is there a set time you have to return the van? How do you find out about the vans they need moving? etc.
Also just any general advise on travelling around Australia and staying at campsites would be much appreciated!
My first time travelling other than just a holiday!
Thanks a lot :)
Jan 4, 2012 8:57 AM
1travelling is the same as a holiday, just longer and usually with more attention to budget.
free campervans sounds too good to be true but good luck if anyone knows different!
I found Aussie campsites to be excellent, although if you don't like noise then stay away from the big family sites with jumping pillows and swimming pools. Most have good shower/toilet blocks and camp kitchens (you'll need all the utensils and cooking stuff), and were a very good deal. Outside school holidays you can generally just rock up.
I had a backpacker car full of camping stuff, with a mattress and proper bedding to go inside the tent. Extremely comfortable even on that rock solid ground. It was a very memorable holiday.
Jan 4, 2012 11:49 AM
2Try www.standbyrelocs.com , they do relocations for cars and campervans. Not free but sometimes can be as low as $1.00 a day and they usually subsidise the fuel costs depending on the journey. They require a $1,000.00 credit card deposit, but the many times i have used them it has been returned within 24 hours of dropping the campervan off. If you do your homework you can utilise them to get you places and stay a few days then take another van/car to your next destination.
Jan 4, 2012 2:21 PM
3Some background info on campervans. There are heaps of campervan companies catering for different segments of the market, some are regionally based while others cater for the lower priced market segment (such as backpackers) where the vans will have a more basic layout, less well equipped, older (and often less reliable) vehicles. Have a look at the following website - haven’t used it myself but has been cited on other posts on this issue.
Maui, Britz, and Backpacker are probably the campervans you see most often on the road in Australia. They are generally a reliable and professionally run company. Backpacker is for the lower price segment, Mauri the top price segment and Britz in the middle. My wife and I hired a Britz van out of Perth late last year and were very happy with the van and service. We were upgraded to a Maui from a Britz and didn’t think there was a lot of difference in quality. I used the following website to get some comparisons.
For the larger companies the van layouts are fairly standard, they use vehicles with lower kilometres on the clock (so are more reliable and in better condition) and they have a reputation to protect.
From time to time you hear of some horror stories with all types of vehicle hire and if you hire at the lower priced end of the market you usually get what you pay for.
Be for warned that a number of the campervan hire companies have a base hire rate that includes an excess damage component. Typically the excess for campervans is around $7,000. This means that if you damage the vehicle you pay the excess. All hire companies have an option for an additional charge where you can waiver some or all of the excess which can add quite a lot to the hire cost. Some credit cards and travel insurance policies have an excess car hire insurance component or you can take out car hire excess insurance yourself (which is often cheaper than what the hire company will offer).
You also need to be aware that for campervan hire they will pre debit the excess damage from your credit card BEFORE you take the campervan. This means for a $7,000 excess you need the $7,000 credit available on your card and you will not be able to use this credit while you have the van. And if you have taken out excess insurance separately this pre debit still applies!
So you need to check the fine print i.e. the hiring conditions.
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