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RVing with Alice and Jaimie

How to Rent an RV, by Alice Zyetz

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WHAT TYPES OF RVS CAN BE RENTED?
The most common rentals are motorhomes. They are easier to drive for the novice since they handle more like a car-although sometimes like a car designed for giants! However, you will find all variations available for rental, from the little pop-up trailer to 35-foot fifth wheel trailers.

CAN YOU RENT A LUXURY RV?
Similar to fractional ownership of small jets, companies will sell a fraction of a high end motorhome so that owners have the luxurious conveyance they desire for the few weeks a year they might use it without paying the full $250,000 to a million dollar price tag. The company houses and manages the motorhomes, enabling the owners to share the expenses of depreciation, maintenance, storage, insurance. Typically, when the three-year ownership agreement is completed, the RVs are sold and the proceeds are returned to the fractional owners.

This approach is not for everyone, but it is great for those who want a luxury vehicle without the headaches of sole ownership and the time and money expended for the upkeep. To find out what companies offer this service, look at this list provided by Google.

WHAT IS "LEASEBACK?"
Another variation on the rental story is the leaseback program. Sole owners will lease back their RVs to a company that will rent them to the general public. As Jeff Collison, owner of RV Central explains, "The benefit to the RV owners is that their RV is now rental property and is subject to a number of tax breaks for registration fees, insurance, repairs, etc. The advantage to the renter is that the price is lower since inventory costs are low and the owner and I share the expenses 50/50." In addition, the rigs range from a 1994 Class C (bed over the cab) to a 250 thousand dollar diesel pusher. Again, Google.com is a good source for finding companies that offer leaseback programs.

HOW MUCH DOES IT COST TO RENT AN RV?
You will have to do your research on this topic. The costs are dependent on the size and age of the rig, the season that you want it, the length of time you will rent it, additional services like delivering it to a certain location if needed, outfitting the rig with linens, dishes, food. Companies also have rental specials. Just to give you a base starting point, Jeff's prices for the leaseback rigs ranged from a Class C 1999 22-foot Jamboree for $107 per night to a 2001 39-foot Safari diesel pusher with two slide-outs and a washer/dryer for $279 per night.

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Alice Zyetz
8/1/05

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