Uk & Europe for summer13
Replies: 13 - Last Post: Mar 15, 2013 4:57 AM Last Post By: bellart1
Feb 10, 2013 1:11 PM
Uk & Europe for summer13We are flying in to London & then travelling down to Spain & Morocco. We then come back up & do England, Ireland & Scotland, Italy, Greece, Germany, Netherlands & Czech Republic ( not necessarily in that order)
We have a few Festivals on our hit list & want this to be a road trip.
After looking at various camper hires, they are expensive!
Wicked is cheap, but they only have a cooler ... no fridge.
So, IM wondering if there are companies that will sell you a van & then buy it back at the end of your journey?
To just buy a van on arrival may be a hassle to sell when we are leaving & I dont want to have to waste time trying to sell a vehicle, as we are only there 3 months.
We definately want a road trip, so train & busses arent an option.
A van it must be!
I believe rego may be a problem too if we arent residents, which we arent.
Thanks in advance.
Feb 10, 2013 9:30 PM
This is achievable, but will be a rather expensive way of getting around Europe. See also http://www.gomotorhoming.co.uk/touring-europe-in-a-motorhome.shtml
Campervans tend to be much more expensive to hire in Europe. If you want to do it the funky way, consider something like http://www.vwcamperhire.net/ which will happily provide you a old skool VW camper van - for between £500 and £700 a week that is. Having checked JustGo for a modern style campervan (they want £700 a week too) it's either pay that price for a decent one (with a fridge), or pay wicked campervan's prices.
However, this is irrelevant, because the problem is the price.
Taking Wicked's smallest van (which I know you don't want due to lack of fridge), hiring for 3 months they quote £3,404.
However, in high summer free camping is a wee bit hard to find or in highly inconvenient areas, so some nights you'll have to pay somewhere between £5 to £20 a night (depending on location, date and facilities on site). Lets run at £10 a night for 45 nights on that expense. Parking up in lay-bys or motorway service stations is usually OK - it depends which country you're on but sometimes you'll be moved on. So let's budget £450 for camping fees.
Next up is fuel. Taking the countries you want to visit, and re ordering them into something logical that starts and finishes in the UK (I went London to Dublin to Cork to Galway to Edinburgh to London to Santander to Madrid to Seville to Tangier to Marrakesh to Nador to Barcelona to Genoa to Rome to Bari to Athens back to Bari to Venice to Brno to Prague to Dresden to Berlin to Amsterdam to London. http://www.viamichelin.com will help you figure out costs + duration. I got really bored and did it for you and I make it 8,900 miles, €407 in tolls, €1800 in fuel burn. but worse, a full 188 hours of driving. That's 2 hrs of driving, every single day of your trip, on average. Rather you than me, but let's keep going :)
Ferries - you'll need a boat from Wales to Ireland, from N Ireland to Scotland, from Dover to Calais (although you might wanna consider doing Plymouth to Santander instead), from Seville to Fez, back to Spain, and a return across the Adriatic to Greece. This I leave with you to figure out, but I reckon that's another €2500 off the top of my head.
Minimum hire (for a very very basic campervan - assuming they let you take it to Morocco of course) + camping fees + fuel + tolls + ferries = in gbp...
3,400 + 450 + 1550 + 350 + 2150 = £7,900, or a burn per day of £88. Don't forget of course that food + drink + sightseeing costs are not included in this, so you'd probably need another £30-50 per person per day depending on how much you see, how much you drink.
Alternatively, you could always buy 3 month long rail passes. http://www.eurail.com will sell you a 3 month long pass for €1,564 (£1,323) that'll cover everywhere except for Morocco (and in Ireland I'd use the buses instead of the trains as they're a bit more frequent). I know you don't want to do rail and are insisting on a road trip, but I thought I'd give you an alternative idea if you're now going pale at the cost of your intended road trip :)
PS - UK is in Europe ;)
Feb 11, 2013 2:53 AM
2Well fowggie's done his homework and gets an A*...
To add though, the option of buying is problematic too. Yes, you do have to be a resident, so first off you'd need a kind friend or relative to allow you to use their address - and proving you live there is not easy. Second, insurance is a killer. I imagine you are in your twenties. If you are under 25, even third party (which is compulsory here as you do not get thrid party with your rego like you do in Oz) will be astronomical. I'll give you an example. My stepson is 20 and learning to drive so he made some enquiries about buying a Nissan Micra, one of the cheapest cars on the road and only 998cc.... he was quoted an annual premium of over £2,000 for a car worth about £500.... dread to think what it would cost to insure a campervan. And that was only third party!
I'd post this on the Australian forum too as you may get someone there who found a way round this... if you haven't already. Good luck.
Sorry, but it looks like you're stuck between a rock and a hard place.
Feb 11, 2013 3:30 AM
Feb 11, 2013 4:00 AM
4The whole style of travel is different in Europe to say Australia or the US. Europe is far more densely populated and therefore the public transport system is far superior to geographically large countries with a disperse population where the car is king.
It really would be good to consider public transport for all of the reasons given above.
Feb 11, 2013 4:20 AM
Feb 13, 2013 9:13 AM
6As above, registration plus insurance and resale are major issues even if you are feeling wealthy). I was determined to spend 6 months driving Europe (17 countries) and had to overcome these problems too. Oddly it was the French that came to my rescue. All the main car makers (Peugeot, Renault & Citroen) have a scheme that is only open to non EU residents. You get a brand new car of your choice fully registered to you with 5* dealer and insurance cover (comprehensive "green card" for all of Europe including most Eastern European countries). Its basically your car except you don't pay for it, you just hand it back at the end of the agreed term (minimum 21 days). You pay a hire rate for those 21 days and then a much reduced rate for the term thereafter getting cheaper the longer you have it. I had mine for 6 months and the rate was no more than the cost of insurance. Delivered & dropped off where you want in Europe, I handed my brand new car back full of wear and tear scratches & dents after 21,000km's (it includes unlimited miles) and they did not bat an eyelid. Wonderful. Too good to be true?: http://www.peugeot-openeurope.com/
Whilst they have vans, I don't know about campers (check Citroen & Renault too) but I thought you would like to know....not many people do....
Feb 13, 2013 12:58 PM
Feb 14, 2013 8:56 AM
8Not bad huh?....ironically I am a Brit but because I have Costa Rican residency I was able to use that to qualify. For Ozzies & Merkins with plenty of time its a steal. One of the best parts is the insurance because you can actually drive into Russia, Ukraine, Serbia etc etc which would cost you a bomb if you tried to get cover or simply wouldn't be allowed with a lot of hire cars....
Feb 20, 2013 2:36 PM
9wow! thanks for all your feedback!
it is much appreciated :)
A friend allso just mentioned the speeds travelled throughout Europe on roads are much faster than we drive here in Aus...AND on the opp side of the road.
Maybe public transport is better on many levels :0
Feb 20, 2013 2:37 PM
Feb 21, 2013 12:23 AM
11Yeah, you Aussies tend to drive at a snails pace which baffles me given the distances you have to cover. Still, at least we don't tend to have the risk of a roo or camel jumping out in front of us.
Motorway speeds tend to be between 100 (in built up areas) to 130kmh, with half of Germany's autobahn infamously having a "recommended" speed limit of 130kmh and no maximum. You can break that recommendation - and plenty of people here (I live in Germany) do, but your insurance then becomes increasingly invalid (i.e. you pay more towards any crash you're involved in). I wouldn't exceed 130 if you're an Aussie unused to it, and especially not if you're in a campervan. Make sure you very heavily use your mirrors if you drive there, because you wouldn't believe how fast someone closes on you when you're doing 120 and they're doing 200 or more.
As for festivals, you need to start researching which ones you wanna do, when and why. Closure dates for applications for some festivals has already passed, so don't hang about too much. Going to festivals is gonna murder your wallet, they're not cheap...
Mar 15, 2013 3:58 AM
12Lots of great advice and tips here. I do agree that " to 'do' 10 countries in 12 weeks" is probably going to kill any fun.
We've been traveling via campervan around Europe for 7 plus years on just $23/day pp, so we think it's one of the cheapest and BEST ways to experience Europe. We've written a ton about it on our blog.
We keep our old ( 98) , small motorhome in Europe for $750 a year ( lux covered parking in Barcelona) which gives us a home/storage unit/vehicle to use when ever we return to Europe for long stays. ( We're in Asia now for kidlet's Mandarin immersion, but will return soon...we do slow round-the-world travel as a family freedom lifestyle). Something to consider if you think you are going to want to return to Europe for several long stays. Works for us!
There are lots of ways to lease in Amsterdam, UK or Germany, we did it through B&W and only pay for reg and insurance etc when we are in Europe.
Europe IS dense, so it's best to do slow travel and take mass transit and add bikes to the back.Often you can get discounts that way as well...super cheap off season in high lux places. MUCH cheaper way to go than hostels and more fun IMHO..especially for families.
I think it will be less of a hassle than you think. I know a single mom with 2 young kids who was inspired by us and she bought an RV in the USA shipped it over, had a ball for 6 months then sold it in England in one days time on ebay I think.
Check out my recommendations for best books for this and best camping sites on our blog!
Good luck and happy planning!
Mar 15, 2013 4:57 AM
13What a lovely inspiring post! I'm sure the OP will really appreciate this, especially after we've been oh so practical and full of doom and gloom.... apart from Boomer, of course.
Fwoggie - not all Aussies drive at a snail's pace but they are generally good at sticking to speed limits because their roads are not as congested (with the exception of Sydney/Melbourne particularly) so they don't get as impatient as we do on British roads. But out in the bush? Speed limits? What speed limits???
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