Friday, March 1st, 2019 - VAN

Caravanning is trendy. But before investing in a home on wheels, a rental vehicle is recommended for trying out this form of vacation.

The camper van sector has been growing steadily for several years. The holiday on wheels is finding more and more fans. However, before considering the purchase of an expensive Campervan, it is advisable to take a taster vacation with a rented vehicle.

First things first: Which vehicle is right for me? The range extends from the campervan in the format of a VW Bulli (California) over compact boxcars to partially or fully integrated vehicles and alcove types between six and nine meters. In principle: Beyond the VW model, all Campervan categories have comprehensive living comfort on board, ie: kitchen, refrigerator, seating area, fixed beds, heating, fresh and waste water tanks and a wash and toilet room – usually with a portable solution for the disposal of the toilet.

The difference is the size because each Campervan is a compromise between mobility and comfort. Removed van, mostly on Fiat Ducato basis, are easier to drive, are agile and also suitable for exploration on narrower streets. Compromise: The interior is closer. For two people that may be okay, in a four-person crew can enforce by rainy days couch potatoes quickly vibe the mood.


A semi-integrated such as a Knaus Sky Wave or an integrated into the format of the Hymer B-Class can be piloted by an inexperienced but cumbersome, but offer much more freedom of movement inside. In addition, they usually have larger tank contents for fresh and waste water, which significantly prolongs the intervals for supply and disposal. However, the fuel consumption is also one to two liters per 100 kilometers higher. Especially with lift beds they are well suited for four people.

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For six inmates, an alcove model would be preferable. These categories also have the advantage that they are often equipped with a rear garage, which can easily accommodate bicycles, e-bikes or even scooters.

Not only the weight and the axle loads should be considered. For Campervan with a total weight of up to 3.5 tonnes, the loading options can quickly be exhausted, especially in the large dimensions, if sports equipment, camping tables or chairs have to be taken into account. Also, the contents of fresh and waste water tanks should not be forgotten: A full 100-liter tank means 100 kilograms more weight .


When looking for a RV rental company, it is quickly confusing when Googling, because the offer including sharing portals is varied. There are private and professional providers. The latter has the advantage that they have a larger fleet and therefore more likely to have a replacement vehicle ready if a Campervan fails in the short term due to an accident. Anyone who gets a provision guarantee in the rental agreement is on the safe side. In addition, the big companies usually have the newer vehicles in the program.

With around 2,200 vehicles, ADAC is likely to have the largest Campervan rental fleet, which can also be booked in other European countries and other continents. Nevertheless, McRent is Europe’s Campervan motorhome rental company. With Rent-Easy (Luxury Mobile Only) and Best Time RV (the US and Canada), the company is part of the Rent Alliance, which is a subsidiary of the Erwin Hymer Group.


At more than 28 stations in Germany, another 56 distributed in 15 European countries as well as two stations in New Zealand and six in Japan, numerous products from the Hymer Group can be booked at this provider – from VW California as the only non-brand product to the integrated Dethleffs XLi , For orientation: For a camping bus in the economy season about 63 € per day to be estimated, for a semi-integrated with four seats and beds in the season at least 127 € .

The example of McRent, founded in 2004, shows that manufacturers have long recognized the potential they have in the rental business. The tenants of today are the buyers of tomorrow. Similarly operates the Trigano Group, which offers models of Eura and Forster on the German Campervan rental, and for two years, the “Rent-and-Travel” subsidiary of Knaus-Tabbert.

However, she goes a different way and offers their rental service through to the planned Campervan tour of over 300 partner travel agencies. The 1,200 models of the Knaus and Weinsberg brands can now be taken over at 120 rental stations in Germany, but also in the United Kingdom and Sweden.


When the vehicle and landlord are found, there are some things to consider when signing and handing over the contract. For most providers in Germany, the renter must be at least 21 years old and have his driver’s license for one year. For larger vehicles, it may also be 25 years minimum age and three years driving license ownership. It is clear that with the driving license class B made after 1999 only Campervan up to 3.5 tons can be moved. Only after the old driving license class 3, the border lies with 7,5 tons.

Rasam is a bookable insurance package with full insurance, whereby the excess is selectable at best. It is advisable to read the fine print or at least to clarify in advance what to do in case of defects: whether minor defects may also be repaired yourself, and how to proceed if on vacation a longer-lasting repair is necessary. The amount of the deposit (can be up to 1,500 euros) and their repayment should be clarified specifically.

That everything is clean and the tanks are emptied at the handover should be a matter of course. The two mostly belonging to the inventory 11-kilo gas cylinders must be full, which should be enough, at least in the summer for a stay of several weeks without refilling. In the winter with continuous heating, a bottle holds however only about four days.

It should also be ensured that a cable reel with the two necessary power connections (vehicle and removal point) is present. If possible also a water hose. From the landlord, you should show all the shut-off valves and fuses and let explain the control instruments. Any damage discovered should be noted in the handover report.


What newcomers to the Campervan floater should know: Free camping is allowed in Germany on a regular parking, but only for one night to “restore fitness to drive,” as it is officially called. An awning must not be extended while the camping table and chairs must remain parked in parking lots.

Pitches are offered as inexpensive, multi-day accommodation. Five to 15 euros are to be estimated per day, depending on the location and comfort. In campsites, where also the supply and disposal is included in the price, in the season for a Campervan with two people per day between 20 and 35 euros to cover. Near capitals and in Switzerland, it can also be 50 to 60 euros and more.


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