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  1. #1

    Default Renting an RV for National Park Trip

    This summer my partner and I are planning a road trip to Yellowstone, Bryce Canyon and Grand Canyon National Parks. We are going to rent a motor home and have done some research about renting. Wanted to know if anyone has rented an RV before and what their experiences were.
    We do camp so we do know about campgrounds we just want a to know about the positives and the negatives about renting.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    May 2003
    Green County, Wisconsin

    Default we've got that

    Welcome to the RTA Forum!

    If you check out the planning section of this site, you'll find lots of articles about RV travel, including one specifically about Renting RVs.

    If you're looking for pros and cons, what are you comparing it to? Buying an RV? Car Camping? Car and Motels?

  3. #3


    Regarding pros and cons I just want to know people's experience. Examples: Hard driving, dump issues, best routes, what not to miss stuff like that.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Jul 2007
    South of England.

    Default Basics

    Hi there,

    I travel by RV when visiting the US and absolutely love it as we spend most of our time in the National parks and small towns rather than Cities. However I was experienced with driving larger vehicles and I felt comfortable doing so but I would recommend [as I did] not pushing to many miles per day, especially in the first couple of days while you adjust to the size. If you are renting a class C the extra width is noticeable straight away but the longer it is the more overhang on the back wheels.

    The class C also has a more familiar feel to it when you settle into the drivers seat [class A is more coach like] and a competent driver should feel at home in there. There is a lot more sway then in a car so the main issue is to drive it as smoothly as possible and make sure you brake in a straight line before cornering as it is a big lump to get around, but to be honest no big deal just caution. When you are on 2 lane roads and holding up traffic use a pull out to let them by, it will take the pressure of you and a lot of the time you will be rewarded with a toot of the horn and a smile.

    Everything else associated with the RV is extremely easy, much more so when you are shown how everything operates such as filling and emptying water tanks than when reading the 1000 page manual Lol!

    As for routes etc that will depend on your itinerary but I have not had the RV stop me going anywhere I have wanted to go although on some roads there may be restrictions. The National park campsites are wonderful and although you don't have hook ups generally speaking they do have shower and loo blocks that you can take advantage of and keep your water use and waste to a minimum, although most also have dump stations. You should be equipped with a generator that you can use if need be to run power and charge the back up battery.

    Cons, slower moving, not so "City friendly", 10 mpg but if you like the lifestyle that will be off set by parking up in the heart of nature, lighting the campfire and gazing at the stars.

    If you have any specific questions just ask, or if you need any suggestions on your itinerary/routing just post it up here and we may be able to "fine tune" it.

  5. #5


    Thanks Dave for writing back. You gave me some great advice.
    We are going to be flying into Las Vegas staying the night and then in the morning driving to Salt Lake City.
    Spend the night in SLC. Then drive to Jackson WY and do the Teton National Park. Next day go to Yellowstone and spend four days there. Then back to SLC for the night. Then on to Bryce Canyon and spend the night there. From Bryce Canyon to the Grand Canyon spend the night and then back to Vegas.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Jul 2007
    South of England.

    Default You're Welcome.

    Pleased to be of some help, if there is anything else just ask.

    The trip to SLC is certainly doable but quite a stretch on the first day of picking up the RV but if need be you could always stop a little short and get back on track on day 2. I presume you have booked an early pick up time but when you arrive but expect it to take an hour to do the paper work and introduction to the RV plus getting your luggage transferred etc. Don't be in a hurry to get away and make sure all your mirrors are set for you and that you get comfortable in the drivers seat before heading off. You will want to stop off down the road I expect as well to get some provisions and I usually do this quite soon after leaving the depot as you can "tweak" your driving position and "kick the tyres" again to familiarise yourself with the RV, make sure your suitcases are in a secure place before heading off on the long journey.

    I wish you well and please let us know how you get on when you return !

  7. Default

    When we began planning a trip similar to yours, we started with the idea of renting an RV . . . but when we started looking at prices, we discovered that (although many people are devoted to the RV lifestyle) it was an expensive choice. It turned out to cost less than half as much to stay in budget/moderate hotels (and that's for a family of four, two being teenagers, so we often had two rooms or suites). Don't forget to add in the higher cost of gas and the campsite fees. Also, unless you're going to tow a car, consider your need for local transportation.

    Before you make concrete plans, check out the dollars and see what makes "cents" for you!

    If we had been able to borrow or barter for an RV, it might've been different for us. And we had no interest in owning one ourselves.

  8. #8
    laplaya Guest


    I agree with Mrs Pete, although we would very much like to travel in an RV, we found that it costs much more than travelling by car and staying in Super 8's and Days Inn We are two and we typically spend around $200.00 per day while travelling. When you consider the cost of renting the RV is $175.00 per day, there isnt anything left over from our $200.00 per day budget.

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