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One Way RV Rentals
If you’re thinking about renting an RV for your next trip, you may want to consider a one-way RV rental. In recent years, RV rental companies and dealerships have had to diversify their service offering to capture a rapidly diversifying market: there are families looking to rent an RV for a short weekend of camping, adventurous couples looking to rent for a cross-country road trip, and young groups of friends looking to rent an RV to serve as a comfortable “home base” at a music festival.
More than ever, the RVing community is pushing the boundaries of what it means to RV, and rental dealerships are being forced to respond to these changing needs.
Enter the one-way RV rental.
One Way Rentals for Cross-Country Road Trips
One-way RV rentals are a fantastic option for those prospective renters interested in going on a long, cross-country road trip. How does it work?
Essentially, a one-way rental lets you rent an RV from your departure location and drop it off at a different arrival location. This service is a game-changer for a select group of RVers who – for a long time – have been chronically undeserved by most dealerships.
Let’s run through a quick example to illustrate the value of one-way RV rentals.
Suppose that you want to rent an RV for a cross-country road trip. You and a few friends would like to travel all the way from coast to coast, Boston to San Francisco, but scheduling is difficult – you have only two weeks of overlapping vacation days. If you were to book a standard RV rental, you would have to drive cross-country, then all the way back to return the RV at the original rental location. Your trip would be rushed, and you and your friends might be exhausted and already satisfied with the trip at the end of the initial cross-country leg.
With a one-way rental, you can drive cross-country and drop off the RV at a qualifying location near San Francisco. Instead of driving back to Boston to return the RV, you can have a more relaxed one-way trip, or enjoy a shorter overall trip. A one-way rental allows you to finish the trip in significantly less time overall, saving you roughly 50% on your rental (plus associated costs, such as fuel and overnight campground stays). At the end of your trip, you can simply purchase a ticket to get back home.
One-way rentals offer cross-country and long distance RVers an opportunity to enjoy heightened trip variety – with one-way rentals, RV road trips can be customized so that they are less time-consuming, cheaper, and more comfortable overall.
How Much Does it Cost for a One Way RV Rental?
One-way RV rentals don’t have a uniform cost. Most RV rental companies charge a one-way drop off fee that can vary somewhat depending on the pickup and drop-off location. Some companies – like USA RV Rentals – will waive the one-way fee if you reserve your one-way RV rental far in advance of the trip date.
One Way RV Rental Companies
Most RV rental dealerships do not offer one-way rentals, as they do not have a multi-regional or national network of outlets to make use of such a service. If you’re interested in a one-way RV rental, you will generally have to rely on a large, national or global RV rental company like Cruise America, USA RV Rentals, Apollo, JUCY, and others. Some regional RV companies with multiple outlets may allow one-way rentals as well.
When renting from an RV rental company offering one-way rentals, be aware that these rentals are usually qualified – in other words, you may not be able to do a one-way rental from-and-to any location in their network. Companies frequently designate certain locations as “one-way” pickup and drop-off qualified, so make sure you do your research to ensure that you can actually drop off your RV at the target dealership outlet.
RVshare Platform and Services
RVshare is an online, peer-to-peer RV rental service that directly connects individual owners with prospective renters.
On RVshare, owners put up rental listings for their RV(s). Prospective renters are then given access to tools to search and filter for listings that suit their particular budget, location, and RV configuration needs. As owners generally post their personal RVs for rent, the variety of RV models and configurations available for rent is staggering in light of the competition. Traditional RV rental companies and dealerships must maintain a fleet that is focused on efficiency and profit. As such, they tend to invest in popular, mainstream RV models and configurations that are more likely to be rented. Niche models and configurations are underrepresented, if represented at all.
Further, because RVshare lowers the barrier for users to compare and contrast rentals, owners must be competitive with their price, benefits, and equipment offering to find success on the platform.
RVshare does not currently offer one-way RV rental services, though plans are currently in development. In the meanwhile, however, you may find that the advantages of RVshare make a standard rental comparable to a one-way rental from a traditional RV rental company.
For one thing, RVshare rental rates tend to be much lower than those offered by traditional RV rental companies and dealerships – in many cases, users report rates up to 40% cheaper! You may also be able to find your ideal RV model, saving you from having to rent a larger, more expensive model. These “second choice” costs are typical of renting from traditional dealerships and can stretch your budget significantly. Thus, if you’re intention is to use a one-way RV rental to save money, you may be well-served by going for a standard rental through the RVshare platform.