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  1. Default Non-Resident Buying Travel Trailer?

    We're a family of 6 from NZ, looking at buying a travel trailer in the USA, doing a roadtrip for 2-3 months and then taking the trailer back home with us. I know it's pretty difficult to register a car in the USA if you're a non-resident - but what about trailers? If we hired a car and pulled our trailer with it?
    Any experiences, thoughts, input much appreciated!

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Dec 2008
    Location
    Melbourne, Australia
    Posts
    6,936

    Default It's not the trailer, it is the tow vehicle which will be the biggest obstacle.

    HI, and Welcome to the Great American Roadtrip Forum.

    Firstly you need to see if you can find a car rental company which would allow you to tow. It is generally something which is not allowed in rental contracts.

    There is a NZ member who recently did a similar thing with a camper, but his partner was a US citizen (though not a resident).

    You might make enquiries through the authorities in Washington State, which seems to be easier than most other States. However, you are still going to have to get over the hurdle of finding a tow vehicle.

    Lifey
    Last edited by Lifemagician; 12-17-2014 at 03:27 PM. Reason: typo

  3. Default

    Thanks for your reply!

    So something like this for example ? - http://www.enterprise.com/car_rental...US&language=en

    Which authorities would I contact? Is there some kind of department for this? Thank you very much!

  4. #4
    Join Date
    May 2003
    Location
    Green County, Wisconsin
    Posts
    13,063

    Default Fatal Flaw

    Sorry, but your plan is not going to work, for the reason Lifey stated: No major rental car company will allow you to tow a camper (or anything else) behind their vehicles. Enterprise, using your example, explicitly states "Enterprise does not allow a hitch to be attached or towing of any kind with the rental vehicle." You're going to find that is standard policy across every single major car rental company in the US.

    You really will have to find some other option. Purchasing a car as a non-resident is very difficult, but it's also not generally cost effective for a trip that's less than 3 months either - something that likely wouldn't get much better when you factor in the cost of trying to ship it to the other side of the planet. I suspect renting an RV will be your best, easiest, and most realistic option.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Dec 2008
    Location
    Melbourne, Australia
    Posts
    6,936

    Default Hand it to the shipping company.

    If you are specifically looking for a Travel Trailer to take back downunder, I suggest you find a shipping company which can pick it up from wherever you buy it, while you are over in the US. They do exist. It may cost extra on the shipping but that will be a small cost compared with trying to find a way to use it on your holiday. It would also mean that you will not need to worry about registering or other legalities.

    Then find another way to get around for your actual holiday.

    Lifey

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Nov 2009
    Location
    Brisbane, Queensland, Australia, Australia
    Posts
    142

    Default

    I agree with Lifey. Be very hard. I have seen adverts in the paper here in Brisbane advertising vans out of L A to any port in Australia and New Zealand. Personely i wouldnt be buying one with out flying over and checking it out. Apparently they change the wiring harness to what is used here and also put a door on the left hand side. Right side illegal. Also probably needs the awning moved up on to the roof as to wide for here. Im guessing NZ is the same. From what i read, only way you can bring a van back yourself is to be out of in my case Australia for 12 months and have owned the van for that length of time. NZ may be different. I dought it though. I took a car to NZ in mid 70's and i had to be out of country for 21 months and owned the car for 12 months.
    http://wholesaledealercentre.blogspo...torcycles.html
    Check this page out. May help. Be interested to hear how you go.
    Cheers. Keith

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Dec 2008
    Location
    Melbourne, Australia
    Posts
    6,936

    Default A great site.

    Wow Keith, that is a fantastic website. It is bound to be helpful whenever these questions come up. Hope it will be helpful to the nomads to secure and ship their trailer.

    Lifey

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Nov 2009
    Location
    Brisbane, Queensland, Australia, Australia
    Posts
    142

    Default

    Very tempting Lifey. would love to get one myself. See what happens. Our dollar isnt helping. :)

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Dec 2008
    Location
    Melbourne, Australia
    Posts
    6,936

    Default

    Not tempting me. I'm happy with my VW.

    You mean you did not stock up?? in anticipation of it falling. Not that I have all that much, but every little helps.

    When are we going to read about another trip of yours?

    Lifey

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Nov 2009
    Location
    Brisbane, Queensland, Australia, Australia
    Posts
    142

    Default

    Whoops. I thought to much time may have gone since we did the last trip and it would be all out of date. :) I suppose if i left prices out, it would be ok. Got tied up with other stuff and time flew away. We are still hoping for another trip in 2015. Just have to find a cheaper way of doing it. Sleep under the stars a few times maybe lol. Get back to you. :)

    Keith.

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