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RV Renting Tips For Newbies

Heading out on the open road to find new adventures is becoming the vacation choice for many this summer. The ease of RVing, along with the ability to have your own space no matter where you stop for the night, is only a few of the advantages the RV experience provides. Renting an RV is a new way to hit the open road without the year-round commitment of RV care and ownership.

When renting an RV there are a few things to keep in mind which can ensure an enjoyable trip for everyone involved. After all, recreational vehicles are built and drive differently than the one you drive to work every day. It’s important to take some time and make sure you understand how things work and how to handle an emergency should one arise on the road.

Know What You’re Renting

There are many different types of RV’s and it can get confusing as to know which is the right one to rent. Before going to the dealer, it is helpful to determine how much room you will need for everyone to be comfortable in the unit. The specification may say it will sleep six people, and while technically true, the amount of room allowed for all six to be in the unit moving around may not be adequate.

Know What You're Renting

It is also important to ensure you are comfortable with the size of RV you’ll be driving. Driving a large Class A RV or pulling a travel trailer requires a different approach to driving tasks, such as turning corners. Ask the person you are renting from (or RV rental company) if you can test drive the unit around their facilities a little to ensure you are comfortable with the way it handles before signing the agreement and heading out on the open road. This is also a great time to ask questions about how the different functions of the RV work, such as the gray water holding tank and dumping sewage.

Protect You and the RV with Insurance

When renting a car, most people have a temporary rider placed on their personal insurance policy to protect them in the case of an accident. The same rule holds true for driving an RV. It may be a house on wheels, but it is still a vehicle and needs to be treated as such.

Get Quality Rental Insurance

There are different options to choose from for insurance. The first, of course, is checking with your private insurance and asking if a rider can be added to your personal policy during the time of your vacation. The second option for insurance is to purchase a coverage policy from the company you are renting the RV from. There are usually a variety of coverage options and levels to choose from. Beyond the required liability and collision coverage, it is important to include Act of God coverage in the policy you purchase. This type of coverage protects you in the event of a weather-related event that may damage the RV.  Hail storms, tornados, and other hostile weather events can occur without warning during the RVing season; it’s important to safeguard yourself from expensive repairs.

Plan for the Worst, Hope for the Best

Nobody likes to think about what could go wrong on a trip, but failure to do so will only compound the event. Road hazards happen, and flat tires or mechanical problems can take the joy out of an RVing vacation in a hurry. However, planning what you will do in these situations helps to keep them in perspective. A good roadside assistance plan can provide peace of mind on a cross country trip with help only a phone call away.

When selecting a roadside assistance program make sure they cover calls in the area where you’ll be traveling and make sure you understand how the program works. For example, will you be expected to pay the service providers upfront with the service reimbursing you, or will they take care of all fees directly with the service provider? Roadside assistance programs that pay service companies directly are more convenient because then you don’t have to have extra money with for potential emergency situations.

Renting an RV is a great way to travel across the country for less money than flying. This type of travel also allows for sight-seeing along the way. The ability to cook your own food, have your own space, and never worrying about room availability are only a few of the advantages to this type of travel. A little time spent planning for the unexpected can ensure an RV rental vacation is a relaxing way to travel.


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John R. ~ “Call agent called back twice to confirm service provider showed up and the service was great. He was knowledgeable, completed the work quickly, and even had a few tips for me!”