Purchase or hire?
These days we are spoiled for choice in how to travel – from camping, to hitching up a caravan or camper trailer, or getting behind the wheel of a campervan or RV. Many people don’t even realise that hiring a caravan is a thing. Well we’re here to explain the options and tell you why its such an awesome way to have a holiday.
Regular travellers and serious off-roaders often purchase a caravan or camper trailer, but this isn’t for everyone. Unless you are retired or semi retired, a caravan or camper trailer may not get as much use as you’d like, and you may find it’s not worth the investment. A lot of people lack the space to store a caravan or camper trailer, and for others, the cost of purchasing may be out of reach. For those who have never traveled in a caravan before, and don’t want to commit to such a significant purchase, testing the waters first to see whether caravanning or camping suits you, is often the first step. That’s why hiring a caravan is often the best option.
Peer to peer versus commercial caravan hire
If you have decided to hire a caravan for a weekend away or an extended holiday, you have a couple of choices with the way you hire. You can hire from a commercial caravan hire business or from a private owner via a peer-to-peer (or sharing) hire service. Peer to peer caravan hire websites are designed as a platform for existing caravan owners to hire out their caravan when they are not using it. They’re based on the Airbnb model, and are a way for owners to make money, rather than having their caravan or camper trailer sit idle. So what’s the difference between these two options?
The first difference between a share service and a commercial hire service is the range of different vans from which to choose. A commercial hire business will have a fleet of caravans of different sizes and models. These are usually the same brand of caravan, and are all of a similar age. Commercial hire businesses generally try to keep their fleets fresh and new, and they upgrade them regularly.
On a peer-to-peer website, your choice of vans will depend upon how many owners in the area are hiring out their caravan, and the type of vans they own. You may find a peer to peer website provides you with more vans of different styles, but their age and condition will vary considerably between owners. This could work if you are looking for something a little bit different.
Consistency for peace of mind
If you want to rely on being able to hire the same van each time you travel and enjoy the same hire conditions, you may prefer to go with a commercial hire business. With a variety of owners hiring out their vans, hiring conditions will vary on a peer to peer site, as will things that are included, like appliances, accessories, furniture and the standard of cleanliness. Caravan hire also includes a cleaning cost, which may also differ between owners. If you hire from a different owner, on a peer to peer site, you’ll likely have a different experience each time, whereas a commercial hire company will generally provide you with a more consistent service. You’ll know what to expect each time.
Why not try before you buy?
Whether you choose to use a peer to peer service or a commercial hire business will depend on the type of caravan you want. Many people like to hire a caravan as part of the research they do before purchasing one. Commercial hire businesses usually stock the most popular caravan brands like, Jayco and Avan, and they have the latest models, so commercial caravan hire businesses are a good place to start.
What's involved in caravan hire
No matter where you hire a caravan there are a few things to know about the process. The finer details may differ, depending on where you hire.
Minimum Hire: There is usually a minimum hire period. This may be two or four days. The minimum hire period is often more during peak periods, like school holidays.
Age Limit: Sometimes age restrictions are imposed, so make sure to check these.
Insurance: When you hire a caravan the business from which you purchase will usually cover the insurance on the caravan. You should always check the details and find out your liability in case of any damage.
Add-Ons: When you hire a caravan, add-ons are often available for hire at an extra fee. These may include things like chairs, tables, an extra fridge, or a detachable annexe. What’s included and the price will depend on who you hire from.
Pick Up & Drop-Off: Usually when you hire a caravan, you must pick it up and return it to the same place. Some caravan hire businesses are happy to deliver your caravan to you, and some will even drop it off at your holiday destination. Check to see whether this is a service they offer.
Extending Your Stay: If you are on holiday and having such an amazing time that you want to extend your holiday, sometimes a hire businesses will be happy for you to extend your stay, if you contact them. This will depend on their bookings.
Cleaning: You must return the caravan you hire in the same state in which it was hired. Sometimes a business is happier to do all the cleaning of the caravan and simply charge you the cost (usually around $50 per hour). If you return the caravan with damage or in a poor state, you may be liable for extra charges for cleaning.
Towing Laws: Whether the caravan is your own or your are hiring a caravan, the same towing laws apply. If you are towing for the first time, make sure you familiarise yourself with these. More information is available on safe caravanning on the VicRoads website.
Time to hire a caravan for your next adventure?
Hiring a caravan is an easy, no fuss way to enjoy a holiday, with all the comforts provided by caravan travel, without the commitment of purchasing. Caravanning is becoming more popular in Australia and is a lot more affordable than staying in expensive Hotels or BnBs.
Victorian Caravan Hire are a family owned and operated caravan hire business. We have new Jayco and Avan model caravans for hire from $100 per day, with toilets, all mode cons and a range of sizes to suit you. Find out more by browsing our van listings. Contact us for more information or call us on 1300 499 588