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Find out How Much it Costs to Rent an RV
If you’re looking at renting an RV for an upcoming trip, your initial concern is likely the cost. Fortunately, renting an RV is relatively affordable if you take the time to choose your RV wisely (and ensure that you do not go overboard with the size and amenities), use a peer-to-peer platform such as RVshare to rent directly from the owner, and adopt various cost-cutting measures.
As you browse the RVshare marketplace, you’ll find thousands of listings of RVs spanning a variety of categories, and within those categories, you’ll find significant feature and size differences, too. Though it is reasonable to expect rental rates for each configuration to fit a more certain, limited range, the nature of the RVshare platform means that you will likely find quite a bit of rate diversity beyond that range.
How does the RVshare platform work?
On RVshare, you directly connect with owners interested in renting out their personal RV. This naturally leads to rental rate diversity. Owners are not businesses, and as such, they are subject to personal pressures that may cause them to list an RV at a wildly different rate than expected.
For example, you may find that an owner is renting out his high-end RV for a significant discount because he is not using the RV and would simply like others to experience the joy of RVing at an affordable price. Another owner might overprice their RV relative to the market because they value access to their RV at a premium and will only accept high offers.
As owners on the RVshare platform may price their RVs at rates that are difficult to predict, there are no “certainties” when it comes to rates. As a general rule, however, you can expect most RV listings on the RVshare platform to be priced within a range based on the category, feature-set, age, and other influencing factors.
Baseline RV Rental Costs
Baseline RV rental costs are based on the daily rental rate. Most owners set a daily rental rate, though many prefer weekly rentals or even monthly rentals, and will even offer discounts (up to 20-30% in some cases) if you rent their RV for a lengthier period of time.
As you consider the rental rate for each RV category, bear in mind that within each category you’ll find that there are significant differences in size, build quality, amenities, and furnishings, among other things. At the high-end, you’re more likely to find newer RVs with luxury amenities, and vice-versa at the low-end.
Motorized RVs are typically more expensive than their RV trailer counterparts, as they are functionally all-in-one and do not require towing.
Class A motorhomes are the largest and most luxurious of the motorized RVs. Their daily rate usually ranges from $150 to $450+.
Class B motorhomes are the smallest of the motorized RVs. Their daily rate usually ranges from $80 to $350+.
Class C motorhomes are mid-sized motorized RVs. Their daily rate usually ranges from $125 to $400+.
Though RV trailers are cheaper than motorized RVs, you will need to factor in the cost of renting a towing vehicle if you do not have a vehicle that is capable of towing the trailer already.
Fifth wheel trailers are the largest and most luxurious of the RV trailer categories, though they require heavy towing capability (and generally only pickup trucks have the specific profile suited for towing) them. Their daily rate usually ranges from $125 to $250+.
Travel trailers are perhaps the most diverse RV trailer offering, with a wide range of sizes available. Their daily rate usually ranges from $80 to $200+.
Pop-up camper trailers also range in size and complexity quite a bit. Some pop-up campers are quite minimal, while others are much more full-featured. Their daily rate usually ranges from $50 to $250+.
Additional and Unexpected Costs
Besides the baseline cost of renting an RV, there are additional costs to keep in mind when renting an RV for an upcoming trip.
Excess Daily Mileage
Some RV listings will charge for “excess mileage” driven past the free miles package. For example, you may be given 150 free miles, and then charged an addition $0.50 per mile after that. If you rent an RV with this mileage payment system, be sure to plan your trip carefully so that you can minimize costly detours.
Tool and Equipment Rental
Bring along your own tools and equipment if you have them readily available, as some RV owners will charge an additional fee to rent tools and other equipment for your RV trip. Of course, if you do not have any such equipment on-hand, it may be financially more sensible to rent directly from the owner. By renting from the owner, you can also rest easy that the tools will be compatible with the RV rental.
Though free campgrounds and parking lots are sprinkled across the country, most are paid and may even require advance booking (particularly during peak season). When calculating the cost of your trip, don’t forget to factor in the cost of staying overnight at a campground or in an RV parking lot – it can constitute a substantial portion of your total costs.
You may be able to reduce the cost of campground stays and overnight parking by joining an RV club with membership discounts. If you go RVing regularly, it’s worth checking out.
Rent Through RVshare for Competitive Rates
The RVshare peer-to-peer rental platform is the best place to find competitive rates for your rental. On RVshare, prospective renters can browse and compare RV listings freely. Owners must, therefore, price more competitively, as renters can easily select a lower price RV.
If you cannot find a suitable rate for an RV you’re interested in, consider contacting the owner and negotiating. You may find that the owner is willing to work with you and compromise down to a lower rate.