Not all campervan hire companies will quote you all inclusive prices. Here’s a short list of questions to ask to be sure you’re given the REAL price when asking for a quote.
1. Is Insurance Included?
How often have you compared prices only to find out when you pick up the vehicle that insurance wasn’t included? And – surprise, surprise – the insurance is going to be more than the vehicle rental price. Make sure insurance is included in the price, and how much excess is, so that you can make an accurate comparison.
I compared the top ten campervan hire companies in Australia and found that nearly all of them had a AU$3000 insurance excess. This means that if you damage the vehicle, you must pay the first $3000 before insurance kicks in. What’s more, the hire company will debit your credit card for this amount while you have the vehicle, freezing up your money. To reduce this excess they will charge you a daily fee of around $30 – $45, which adds quite a bit to the rental costs. Camperman Campervan Hire was the only company who did not charge extra for low excess.
2. Are Your Road Tolls Covered?
Unpaid road tolls turn into hefty fines, but working out where road tolls are, how much they cost, and how to pay them is a nightmare. Some campervan hire companies fit their vehicles with a road toll token so that your road tolls are automatically paid as you drive through the toll point. That means you never have to worry about tolls. Ask about road tolls to make sure yours are covered. Some campervan hire companies include it in the rental price (Camperman), others charge a fee (Wicked, Apollo), while some don’t offer toll tokens at all (Britz, Maui, Mighty Campers).
3. Do You Get Access to 24 hour Roadside Assistance?
You’ve packed the camper van and you’re winding through the countryside singing happy camper songs, excited about the adventures that lie ahead of you. Suddenly the engine coughs, steam billows across the windscreen and there is an ominous hissing sound. The problem is you’re miles from the nearest town and it’s after five. This would be a tragedy if you didn’t have free access to 24 hour roadside assistance. For peace of mind, make sure you have it and that it is included in the quote.
4. Are Extra Drivers Included? Do they accept young drivers?
Driving is more fun when it’s shared. Some car and campervan rental companies charge a fee for every additional driver you put on the contract. Make sure all the licensed adults in your group are included in the price.
Some campervan hire companies will not allow anyone under 21 years of age to drive the vehicle. Some charge a daily fee for young drivers and additional drivers. Aussie Campervans charge $5 per day per driver.
5. Do You get Unlimited Kilometres?
Most campervan hire companies give you unlimited kilometres but it is certainly worth checking. In a country the size of Australia, kilometres can quickly add up. Traveling along the east coast from Cairns to Sydney, for example, is 2,640 km. That’s like driving from Paris to Istanbul. Get unlimited kilometres.
6. Can You Pick Up and Drop Off at Different Locations?
This is your grand adventure and you want to see as much as you can. Perhaps the best way to do this is a one way trip. Find out if the campervan hire company has locations in the places you wish to start and end your journey. There might be a fee for dropping of and picking up in different locations. Ask how much this is. In Australia, fees range from $0 to $200.
A Few Extra Questions to Consider
- Check that the campervan has air conditioning, especially if you’ll be driving in summer (Nov/Dec/Jan/Feb). Wicked charges a daily fee of AU$6 for air conditioning.
- Does the price include everything you’ll need on your road trip such as cooking equipment, bedding and road maps? Might Campers and Britz charge AU$10 per day to hire these necessities.
- Is there a cleaning fee? Wicked Campers charges AU$30.
- Is there an administration fee? Most campervan hire companies will charge between 2% and 5% of your total bill as an administration fee. Camperman Australia charges a $70 flat rate.
With these questions answered to your satisfaction, all you need do is get behind the wheel and enjoy the journey of a lifetime.
- For campervan hire that includes unlimited kms, insurance, toll fees, 24 hour roadside assistance, and extra drivers, plus advice on Australian road trips, try Camperman Australia. I made comparisons with the top ten campervan hire companies and Camperman had the most upfront and honest pricing amongst them. All-inclusive was all-inclusive. They also have a UK website.
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