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 > Planning a trip to the southwest US and renting an RV

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ejacoby

Jackson, NJ, USA

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Posted: 10/07/19 04:27pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

I'm not sure I'm really a beginner, as we have rented RVs in the past twice. But those trips were a while ago. Plus, this time it's different.

I'd like to take a trip to visit family in New Mexico as well as visit the sites in that area of the US. We have never been there. To drive from New Jersey (where we live) across country is not in the budget, plus the time consideration. So I am considering flying out and renting an RV there. I have several questions regarding this, mostly looking for advice on the most frugal way to do this. Which state is best for rentals in the area? We will be visiting Abiquiu NM and the Grand Canyon for certain. Other than that, nothing is a must do. So the trip could start at one place and end at the other. Or could be a loop. I'm looking for any advice or suggestions. There's 5 of us, my wife and I both mid 50's and three teens. I think a class C would be ok for us.

If someone has experience with renting and driving cross country I'd like to hear from you too. Maybe I'm wrong thinking it is a savings to fly out and rent.

Thanks.

Ed

Lwiddis

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Posted: 10/07/19 05:03pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

What is the budget? How long between arrival and departure? How much time will you spend visiting family? What’s the best airfare offer for five round trip?


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TenOC

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Posted: 10/07/19 05:24pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Las Vegas may be the cheapest air fare and not that far from Grand Canyon.


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DutchmenSport

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Posted: 10/07/19 06:22pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Well, I do know Cruise America is not cheap. Just this week-end we rented an 18 foot travel trailer for one of our relatives for a family get together. It was Friday night, Saturday, and returned the trailer Sunday. This company towed the trailer to the campsite, set it up, and took it back to their business. It did come complete with lawn chairs, grass mats, tacky lights, cooking utensils, culinary utensils, everything, except bedding and food and personal hygiene items. For the week-end (an 18 foot towable, in Indiana, delivered, set up, and removed) was over $500). Not cheap at all. BUT a lot cheaper than buying one, since this was a one-time event.

Cruise America has CLASS-C's and they are drivable, require insurance, and you supply your own fuel. Plus, they don't come outfitted with the camping gear, as that is rented separate. What I'm saying is, it's going to cost you. If driving cross country is too much financially, renting a "C" is something you really need to VERY carefully consider financially.

I suggest starting with Cruise America and see where their rental and return locations are. Get some prices, and then you have a base-line to start from. Then research local-yocals, like the company we rented the travel trailer from, Mom & Pop shops.

Good luck.

Lwiddis

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Posted: 10/07/19 06:44pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Two good suggestions, ejaycoby.

Powertour

Nevada

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Posted: 10/08/19 09:01am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Fly into Las Vegas & rent from there. You have multiple choices of rental outfits in Vegas to choose from but I would seriously consider using services such as RV Share & Outdoorsy if I were in your shoes. A guy I work with has 2 RVs he rents out on the side & it seems like a win-win to me but at the end of the day it's about the money (whomever comes out best in a cost-comparison would likely get my biz).

My bottom line .02: Vegas is in easy RV striking distance of pretty much everything out West & is super easy to fly in to with it being one of the busiest airports in the nation.


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BadgerMcAdams

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Posted: 10/08/19 09:54am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Renting an RV, while not cheap, is not a bank breaker either. This summer the wife and I rented a Large Class C from Cruise America (this unit would easily sleep all 5 of you). They had a 300 mile free discount online which helped with the costs. We didn't need any camping supplies/bedding/cooking stuff (as I had all those items already). But I would imagine you would require some stuff which can also be rented from them.

Not counting the $500.00 refundable deposit (which is put down before you leave and get back as long as you don't blow the rig up), we were out $305 and change for 4 days. That charge did included them doing the waste Dump and Propane refill (additional, or you can go find a propane place and sewer dump yourself).

We are in Phoenix, which too is pretty much central to what you are wanting to do. (Grand Canyon and New Mexico). If you decide to do this, I would get on Google Maps (or any other mapping program) and determine your mileage. Most RV rental places charge a mileage fee (usually 0.25$ per mile which is why the 300 free miles really helped out) so if you are planning on a long circular route (Phx - Grand Canyon - New Mexico - Phx) figuring out approx how far you are going to be going will help you plan accordingly for the bill at the end.

The RV was in great condition, clean inside, and the bed was actually not bad. The tires were new (or at least only had one or two trips on them), the stove, heater, water heater, and fridge worked with no problems.

Yes, it isn't going to be a poor man's getaway, but it IS a lot cheaper than renting on the east coast, driving out here, and driving back.

Just my 2 cents worth...your mileage may vary, see dealer for details.

Jebby14

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Posted: 10/08/19 11:47am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

If you are on your third rental might be something to start thinking about owning. my first travel tarailer did 5 years of service for under 3k (including maintenance) Canadian. sold for half that.


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2012Coleman

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Posted: 10/08/19 12:00pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Check out RVShare.com. You can enter a pickup location and see what is available there. My FIL rented from here and joined us on our annual summer camping trip.

You can find all types of RV's some which will most likely be set up with everything needed. You would of course have to return it - or you may find someone willing to take it to your location, and drop off.

Good luck


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Grit dog

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Posted: 10/08/19 01:16pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Won’t know until you price out the options and compare.
You’ll pay for the convienence of renting a rv and flying. You’ll also pay with wasted time and $ by driving out.
Not something we can decide for you. Sounds like a great trip though!


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