Mileage is one of the most important considerations when looking into renting an RV. Knowing if mileage is included in your RV rental is essential. You want to be able to enjoy your time away and do not want to have extra worries that can ruin your budget and vacation quickly.
Do RV rentals include mileage? Yes, some RV rentals include mileage; however, others charge for mileage separately. Check with the company you plan to use, the rates that they have available, and the amount of mileage that is included in that charge.
In this article, you will learn how unexpected overages or lack of planning can wipe out a budget very quickly. You will find out how to look for the best discounts and rates when looking to rent an RV.
Do RV Rentals Include Mileage?
When figuring approximately how much mileage you will need to purchase, it is essential to know exactly where you are going. You will need to determine if you will be taking detours or stopping at places during your trip.
Some RV companies have a preset number of miles that can be rented, or you can purchase additional mileage if you feel it is needed, such as:
- RVShare offers free mileage in some of their RVs.
- CruiseAmerica offers a base rate to cover four hundred miles and then charges a set rate per mile for any overages.
- 84 RV Rentals gives all towable RVs no mileage charges and gives motorhomes one hundred miles a day for free.
Many companies have it listed that their mileage also depends on the location. In most cases, companies charge between thirty to fifty cents per mile (30 to 50-cents per mile). If you exceed the maximum available miles, you will be charged for each additional mile. This is where an overage fee will be placed.
Check with the RV rental company about excessive mileage charges. Some companies will charge an excess mileage fee at the time of the RV rental.If you do not exceed the available miles, you will be refunded.
Mileage can sometimes be counted from the RVs home to your home. To save on this, try to choose an RV that is closer to your destination. You can pack up your needs in your vehicle and take the ride to your destination in your vehicle. This can also save when returning the RV as well.
Pro Tip: Look for unlimited mileage! Some companies (like RVShare) offer unlimited mileage, which allows you freedom without the case of being charged extra if you go over.
Related reading: Can You Rent an RV If You’re Under 25? [Read This Before]
Tips for a Mileage-Smart Vacation
Besides researching companies and finding out what their mileage base is, make sure that your trip is also planned out correctly so that it better benefits you to the max without having to spend a whole lot of money. You want to be smart and not stress about the amount that you are spending during your trip.
Choose the Right RV
The location and the way transportation works in the area that you are going to will determine what type of RV you could use that would lower the mileage cost. Plan around your environment, and you could find yourself saving money.
Some factors you should consider when determining the type of RV to rent are:
- The number of people going with you
- Your budget
- Your destination and the trip to get there
- How you want to camp
- How long you will be camping
- If you will stay parked or be mobile
- If your vehicle can pull an RV
- Who will be driving?
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There are several types of RVs, so it can be challenging to find the best one to serve you and your vacation if you do not know what is available. The following list details the various RVs that you can choose for your trip:
- Motorhomes are RVs that are similar to large vans with all the home essentials inside. These are great for being constantly on the road, and there are several types to choose from. They run on diesel or gas.
- Fifth Wheels are campers that are connected to a large pick-up truck inside of the bed of the truck. They are more beneficial for larger families considering their slide out abilities.
- Toy Haulers are known for carrying things such as motorcycles, dirt bikes, and four-wheelers. These haulers are designed not only to carry ATVs and hold ramps but also to provide a home away from home. They provide quite a bit of variation for your vacation.
- Travel Trailers are typical campers that are pulled behind a vehicle. These can be set up at a campground. Many models have slide-outs which provide a larger living area when parked. These allow you to use your vehicle so that you do not have to rack up the mileage on the RV.
- Camping Trailers provide a more basic way of camping for individuals or families. This category includes teardrop campers and popup campers. They are more of an “off the ground” tent and can be pulled by the family vehicle. Using camping trailers is a great way to save on mileage.
Get Everything at Home
Make sure you get everything you need before you hit the road. This saves you from having to go to the store later and get things you need. Try to get your supplies together before the day of packing so that you can lessen the possibility of “forgetting” something.
Make a list of all the things that you need. This way, you can make sure that you have everything, and you can check off when you have gotten that item. If you travel often, keep several copies of this list so that you can be sure to have a new list for each trip.
Search for Company Offers
Sometimes, even if a company does not offer unlimited mileage, it may have specials that lessen the cost of mileage. Specials like the following could make a difference in the chances to get unlimited or getting discounts on the original mileage rate:
- RVShare provides several types of RVs, and each listing has a mileage rate. Some are unlimited; others are limited.
- Outdoorsy is a peer-to-peer based company, and you can find the difference in mileages depending on the RV that you rent. For some RVs, mileage is included with the daily rate. For others, you can get one hundred miles with a certain amount per mile after. They also offer unlimited mileage.
- CruiseAmerica applies a charge in the beginning to your rental for an allotted number of miles. If you do not use that mileage, you are refunded the miles you did not use. If you go over those allotted miles, you are charged thirty-five cents a mile.
Make sure you have a GPS available to use during your road trip – and keep track of it! The last thing you want is to lose your GPS (or not have it) and end up getting lost and taking on miles that you do not need.
Here are three highly-rated GPS systems you may like:
- Garmin DriveSmart 65 – This GPS is set for hands-free calling and traffic alerts, with a simple set up and easy to see maps. It can suggest alternate routes and is compatible with a backup camera.
- Garmin Drive 50 – This Garmin provides you with driver alerts that cover school zones, fatigue warnings, red lights, speed cameras, and more. It is easy to use and simplifies navigation as much as possible.
- Garmin RV 785 – This is an advanced GPS that gives you everything you need from dashcam to driver alerts and even custom routes based on the size of your RV. It can also help you find the best campground to park your RV!
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If you are parking at a campground, make sure that you have already reserved your spot and paid for it. This way, when you arrive, you do not have to turn around and have to search for another campground to park at for the night.
Here are some campground websites that may help you in your search:
- National Park Service – This site helps you find campgrounds throughout national parks across the country.
- Campendium – Campendium offers free camping areas through the United States; however, the camps do not have amenities.
- HipCamp – HipCamp allows you to find RV parks on over three hundred thousand pieces of land. It also provides you a nightly price and reviews from previous campers.
Related reading: Do RV Parks Allow Travel Trailers? – Read This Before You Go
How to Plan the Perfect Trip
Knowing how to plan is very important to make the most out of your trips and spend more of your time out having fun instead of being so stressed. Get ahead of the game by ensuring that every aspect of your trip is appropriately taken care of.
Here are thirteen tips for planning your trip and saving money:
- Know how many people are going.
It is essential to know who is going on the trip. You want to be able to plan a trip that is beneficial for all. If it is just for you, then pretty much anywhere is an open game. However, if you have children, elderly, or disabled individuals, you must choose a destination that supports them as well. You also need to know this information when renting your RV.
- Decide when you plan to travel.
It is important to know when and how long you want to travel. Sometimes you can catch seasonal discounts. Other times, the prices are slightly higher in certain regions. Knowing how long you’ll be gone can help you better plan your trip and figure prices for the duration of the trip.
- Estimate a budget.
Knowing the budget you have to work with is also critical. Not only does it provide and standpoint on how much of an RV rental fee you can take on, but it also helps you plan all the trip’s finances. If you are traveling with a group, you can see if some shared expenses can be shared.
- Choose a destination.
If you do not have unlimited amounts of money, and you need to stick to a budget, then it is best to plan that destination along with everything involved with getting to and from that destination.
- Plan your activities.
Make sure to research your destination and find everything within that area that you can do according to the time and budget you have planned. Schedule what you are comfortable with; do not over plan! It helps save money if you are parked in a campground, and you do not have to pay for mileage to drive around to find things you want to do.
- Keep track of your mileage.
Where some companies offer unlimited mileage, others may not. It is essential to know exactly where your destination is, how far it is, and the best plan in getting to your destination with the RV without costing you tons of money. Make sure to account for picking up the RV, having it delivered, and having it returned. Mileage and fuel usually fall on the renter.
- Do not forget insurance.
Remember to get insurance for the RV that you rent. There are many insurance policies that cover RV rentals, so you must find out what the guidelines are for the company that you are renting from.
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- Check for deals.
Before you put a financial plan together, check for deals! You do not want to miss out on the ability to save money while making your trip memorable. Check for free events in the area that you are going to and check the RV company for rental deals that could save you some extra money. Also, check your campgrounds for different prices and deals. If you travel often, it may be wise to get into a company group that runs several campgrounds because it can save you money.
- Book early.
Make sure to book early and wisely. If you have done all that you can do to make sure that you have chosen the right company and the right RV, then you are ready to start booking for RVs, campgrounds, and any other reservations that may need to be done. This way, you can make sure that you are not wandering around aimlessly searching for a place to park.
Look around for easy to get to adventures that are nearby your original destination. Book your trip in such a way that you do not have to change campgrounds or add extra mileage to your travels.
- Pack appropriately.
It is crucial to plan your packing and make sure that all of the essentials are taken care of. If not, you will find yourself aimlessly running to the store to get what you need. Make a list of things that you need personally and then make a list of things that you will need for the RV. Remember to take the weather and climate of your destination into consideration when packing, as well.
- Remember maintenance.
When you rent an RV, you are responsible for checking fluids and taking care of the RV while it is in your care. If you do not do this, you can find yourself in a mechanical emergency that can be quite costly. Make sure to speak to the rental company and do your research on how to care for the RV that you are renting properly. This way, you can make sure that everything is in tip-top shape, and you won’t have to pay extra for a tow truck to come.
No matter where you are going and what RV company and vehicle you go with, make sure you do research as much as you can. You do not want to be lacking in knowledge, especially if this is your first time renting an RV for a trip!
Feel Secure While Booking Online
While you are finding campsites and RV rental companies online, ensure your safety by taking a few extra steps for protection. If you do not have an account with a third-party payment processor, look into getting one for your protection.
Other things you should look for to ensure your transaction is secure:
- Check the website URL. At the beginning of the website it should have “https”. This means the website is secured using an SSL Certificate, which protects all your data.
- Check that every part of the URL is spelled correctly. Misspelling of a company’s name is a tell-tale sign of a fake or compromised site.
- Look for a lock symbol next to the URL.
There are so many memories to be made while traveling in an RV; however, those moments can turn bad if not adequately addressed, planned, and executed. Shop around and plan well ahead of time. If you feel uncertain about the amount of mileage you will need, ask for help, or choose a company with unlimited mileage. Taking the extra steps now can save you from any issues that may arise concerning your mileage.