We’re reader-supported. When you click on our chosen products, we may receive a commission.

Rent an RV: The Beginners Ultimate Guide 2023

Updated on January 28, 2024



Reviewed by

Renting an RV is a great way to experience the outdoors and have a remarkable journey. Knowing where to start when renting an RV can be difficult with so many options available.

rent an rv the beginners ultimate guide

In this blog post, we’ll discuss everything you need to know about renting RVs, including choosing one, finding the right rental company for your needs, and planning your trip in detail.

We’ll also answer some commonly asked questions about renting RVs and provide our conclusion on why rent an RV today.

So don’t wait – get ready for the journey of a lifetime by exploring all that comes with understanding and booking your own rental vehicle today.

Understanding RV Rentals

RV rentals can be a great way to travel and see the country. They offer the freedom to explore with all the necessary comforts of home – from full kitchens, beds, bathrooms and more.

Renting an RV means you don’t have to worry about buying or upkeeping your own vehicle, making it a cost-effective way to get out and see the world. Understanding your rental options, from size and amenities to insurance policies, will make for a smoother journey along the open road.

To rent an RV, or recreational vehicle, begin by researching reputable RV rental companies or peer-to-peer platforms that offer a wide selection of RV types and sizes to suit your travel needs.

Once you’ve found a reliable provider, browse their inventory and choose an RV that fits your preferences, such as the number of occupants, desired amenities, and budget. Next, verify the availability for your desired dates and review the rental terms, including insurance requirements, mileage limits, and any additional fees.

5 Things to Consider Before Renting an RV

Determine your budget and Stick to It

Determining how much you are willing and able to spend is important. Consider all the costs, including rental fees, insurance, fuel costs, and any additional fees associated with your trip. Many variables can affect the cost of a rental, so research the options available so you know what your budget should be. Once you’ve determined your budget, it is important to stick to it. This will help ensure you get the best RV rental experience possible while staying within your limits.

Research the Different Types of RVs

Researching the different types and classes of RVs is crucial to finding the right rental for you. Generally, there are five broad categories – motorhomes, travel trailers, fifth wheels, toy haulers, and truck campers. Each one has varying sizes, features, and amenities to choose from. Before taking the plunge, consider what type of RV is best suited for your needs and budget. Take some time to read up on the different models available so you can find the one that’s right for you.

Read Reviews from Previous Renters

It’s important to read reviews from previous renters. Find out their experiences and if they recommend the RV rental company. These reviews can provide invaluable insight into what to expect when renting an RV and help you make an informed decision as you shop around for the best option. Be sure to take note of any common complaints or issues that may arise so that you can prepare accordingly and have the best experience possible.

Make Sure You Have the Proper Insurance Coverage

Check your insurance coverage and make sure you are adequately covered. Different RV rental companies may have different requirements or restrictions when it comes to the types of insurance they accept, so be sure to read the fine print carefully.

If necessary, purchase a special insurance policy for added protection that meets the requirements for your chosen RV. Taking the extra steps to secure proper coverage will help you avoid complications down the road when you take your trip and ensure that you are fully protected in case of any accidents or damages.

Familiarize Yourself With RV Driving Rules and Regulations

Be sure to familiarize yourself with the state laws and regulations about operating an RV. How big of a vehicle can you legally drive? Are there any restrictions on where you can park? Do you need special license plates or permits? Knowing the answers to these questions before you hit the road is essential for having a safe and secure journey that follows all applicable driving rules. The more prepared you are, the smoother your trip will be.

Renting an RV can be a fantastic way to experience nature and create lasting memories, yet it’s critical to grasp all the particulars before committing. Having got a handle on the particulars of RV leasing, let’s now consider how to select the right one for you.

Key Takeaway: Renting an RV can be a fantastic option for traveling or going on a road journey without purchasing your own car. However, looking into different rental businesses and considering all aspects before making reservations is essential.

What Types of RVs Can You Rent?

When choosing the right RV for your next adventure, you should consider a few things. Primary in selecting an RV for your upcoming journey is deciding which kind will fit you best. When looking at RV rental options, there are many options with unique benefits and drawbacks.

Class A Motorhomes

Class A motorhomes are typically the largest and most luxurious option for recreational vehicles. They offer plenty of space for all your belongings and amenities, such as full bathrooms, kitchens, entertainment centers, and slide-outs that can significantly expand living areas. The cost of Class A motorhomes is generally higher than other RV types due to their expansive size and range of features.

Class B Motorhomes

Class B motorhomes (also known as camper vans) provide an economical way to travel in style without breaking the bank. These smaller rigs offer great fuel economy while providing enough room for two or a small family on vacation. Yet, if you’re after something more lavish, these Class B motorhomes may not be the perfect option for you as they might lack some of the features present in larger rigs like Class A’s.

Class C Motorhomes

Class C motorhomes are recreational vehicles (RV) built on a truck or van chassis and have a distinctive over-the-cab sleeping area. It is usually smaller than a Class A motorhome but larger than a Class B van conversion. Class C motorhomes are typically equipped with basic amenities such as a kitchenette, bathroom, and sleeping areas, making them popular among families and small groups. They are easy to drive and park and can be used for a variety of purposes, from weekend getaways to extended road trips.

Travel Trailers

Travel trailers come in various sizes, from tiny teardrop campers to large fifth wheels that can sleep several people comfortably. A travel trailer is easy to tow behind any vehicle that has adequate power, making them perfect for those who don’t want to drive around a large motorhome but still want some creature comforts while camping out in nature or visiting friends along their journey.

On top of being relatively affordable compared to other types of RVs, a travel trailer also require less maintenance since they don’t have engines or transmissions like motorized units do, so if convenience is what you’re after, then this could be just what you need.

Pop-Up Camper

Finally, pop-up campers provide an excellent balance between cost savings and comfort levels of a travel trailer, making them ideal choices for those on tighter budgets who still want some basic amenities while away from home, such as beds, kitchenettes, dinettes, etc. Pop-ups fold into compact packages when not used, allowing easy storage at campsites or backyards during off-season months.

Rent an RV that Fits Your Family

No matter which type of RV rental fits your needs best, one thing remains true; renting an RV can make any outdoor experience much more enjoyable by providing comfortable accommodations no matter where life takes you. Therefore, it is important to take time to research various models before deciding on one. Doing so will ensure that your next trip will be truly unforgettable.

When selecting an RV for your journey, it is important to evaluate all of the possibilities and make sure that you find one that meets your requirements. Now let’s look at how to find the best websites and companies with RV rentals to help make this dream a reality.

Key Takeaway: Renting an RV can be a great way to enhance your next outdoor escapade, so exploring the various models before settling on one is essential.

RV Rental Companies

Screenshot of outdoorsy.com, February 16, 2023.


Outdoorsy is a popular RV rental platform that connects RV owners with potential renters. They offer an extensive selection of RVs in Charlotte, including Class A, B, and C motorhomes, travel trailers, and campervans. With a user-friendly website and a robust filtering system, you can easily find the perfect RV to suit your needs and budget.

The booking process on Outdoorsy is straightforward. Once you find the RV you want to rent, you can request a booking and communicate with the RV owner to finalize the details. Outdoorsy provides insurance coverage options for both owners and renters, ensuring peace of mind during your trip. The platform also offers 24/7 roadside assistance, which can be invaluable in case of any unexpected issues on the road.

Some of the pros of using Outdoorsy include the variety of RVs available, the insurance coverage, and the user-friendly interface. However, the cons may include varying rental rates and additional fees depending on the RV owner’s preferences.

Screenshot of rvshare.com, February 16, 2023.


RVshare is another prominent RV rental platform that operates similarly to Outdoorsy. It connects RV owners with renters and offers a wide range of RV types in Charlotte, such as Class A, B, and C motorhomes, travel trailers, fifth wheels, and even pet-friendly options. The platform allows you to filter your search by various criteria, making it easy to find the ideal RV for your trip.

The booking process on RVshare is simple, and the platform offers secure payment options. RVshare also provides insurance coverage for both renters and owners, as well as 24/7 roadside assistance for added peace of mind.

The pros of RVshare include the vast selection of RVs, insurance coverage, and ease of use. The cons may include fluctuating rental rates and additional fees, which can vary depending on the RV owner’s preferences.

cruise america
Screenshot of cruiseamerica.com, February 16, 2023.

Cruise America

Cruise America is a well-established RV rental company with locations across the United States, including Charlotte, NC. They offer a more limited selection of RV types compared to Outdoorsy and RVshare, primarily focusing on Class C motorhomes. However, their RVs are specifically designed for rental purposes and come fully equipped with essential amenities.

The booking process with Cruise America is straightforward, and you can reserve your RV online or by calling their customer service. The company provides insurance coverage and also offers a range of additional services, such as one-way rentals and a comprehensive RV trip planning guide. Cruise America’s RVs come with 24/7 roadside assistance, ensuring a worry-free RV vacation.

The pros of renting from Cruise America include their well-maintained RV fleet, insurance coverage, and additional services. The cons may include limited RV types and higher rental rates compared to peer-to-peer platforms.

What Should I Look for in an RV Rental Company?

Check Their Reviews

When it comes to finding the best RV rental companies, you should consider a few things. To determine the reliability of a rental company, it is important to research customer feedback or seek advice from those who have already experienced their services.

You may want to investigate the reputation of a potential RV rental company by looking into customer feedback or consulting with those who have had prior experience. Additionally, you’ll want to make sure that they offer competitive rates for their rentals so that you get the most bang for your buck.

Next, look into what types of RVs they offer and if they provide any additional services such as delivery or setup assistance. This will assist in guaranteeing that your voyage progresses effortlessly, with no sudden shocks along the way. Also be sure to ask about insurance coverage since some companies may not include this in their rental agreement.

Research Their Offers and Assistance Provided

It is essential to discover what type of consumer service assistance is accessible from each RV rental business before making your selection. Do they have an emergency hotline? Are there trained technicians on staff who can answer questions or troubleshoot problems? It is essential to consider these elements when deciding which business best suits your requirements.

Once you’ve narrowed down your list of potential businesses that offer RV rentals based on these criteria, take some time to compare prices between them and read through their terms and conditions carefully before signing anything binding with one particular provider.

Ensuring that everything runs optimally during your vacation can provide a sense of security. By closely examining the prices and conditions before signing any binding agreement with an RV rental company, you can rest assured that any issues encountered will be addressed promptly and competently.

No matter what your budget or desired experience is, finding the perfect RV rental company is essential for a successful and enjoyable journey. Thoroughly exploring the possibilities and taking the time to properly assess your needs can guarantee a remarkable RV expedition.

Key Takeaway: Renting a recreational vehicle can be an excellent approach to discovering the outside, yet it’s fundamental to look into rental organizations in advance and ensure they offer reasonable rates, dependable client assistance backing, and satisfactory protection inclusion.

How Do I Plan My RV Rental Trip?

When it comes to devising a journey in your recreational vehicle, several elements need to be taken into account. Where do you want to go? What route will you take? What should you pack for the journey? And what safety tips should be followed while on the road in an RV?

Where to Go in Your RV

There are so many places that can be explored with an RV. The possibilities are endless, whether it’s a national park, beach town, or mountain range. Consider researching and visiting popular destinations like Yosemite National Park, Grand Canyon National Park, or Big Sur State Park. Or maybe explore lesser-known gems such as Redwood National Forest or Joshua Tree National Park. It depends on what type of scenery and activities you’re drawn to and your family’s preferences.

Planning Your Route

Once you have chosen where to go on your trip, plan out how long each leg of the journey will take and map out any stops along the way. This helps ensure that everyone is comfortable during their travels and allows for plenty of time for sightseeing at each destination without feeling rushed or overwhelmed by too much driving in one day. Make sure to check local laws regarding camping before setting up camp anywhere overnight – this ensures that everyone stays safe throughout their travels.

What to Pack for Your RV Trip

Packing for a recreational vehicle (RV) journey requires an array of items, from clothing to sustenance, first aid materials, lighting, and bug spray – depending on the destination. Additionally, toiletries & hygiene products (toilet paper.), cleaning supplies & garbage bags are necessary for keeping campsites clean. Extra blankets/pillows/sleeping bags should be included in the packing list, along with sunscreen and sunglasses if outdoor activities are planned. Lastly, do not forget entertainment options like books and board games.

Key Takeaway: Planning a journey in an RV necessitates pre-journey research, plotting out one’s course, and ensuring that provisions such as sustenance, medical supplies, and activities are brought along.

Final Thoughts When Renting an RV

Renting an RV is a fantastic way to immerse yourself in the great outdoors and journey easily. Before you rent, it’s important to do your research and make sure you choose the right RV for your needs. Consider factors such as size, amenities, cost, and availability when selecting a company offering RV rentals.

When embarking on your journey, verify applicable camping regulations and any additional charges that could be incurred. It’s also important to plan ahead for fuel costs and maintenance expenses while on the road.

Prior to embarking on your voyage, ensure all pertinent documentation is in order; this includes insurance papers and registration particulars. You should also familiarize yourself with basic safety procedures like checking tire pressure before driving off-road or filling up at gas stations along the way.

Don’t forget to savor the journey – revel in the experience and take pleasure in your time away. Exploring the outdoors in an RV rental is a great way to have fun, whether you’re alone or with companions.

FAQs for Renting an RV

Hiring an RV can be a fantastic method to investigate nature and journey with your loved ones or buddies. But before you rent, it’s important to understand the rules and regulations that come along with renting an RV. Here are some of the most common questions people have when considering RV rentals:

What is the minimum age to rent an RV?

The minimum age to hire a recreational vehicle is typically 25 years old, although some firms may allow younger drivers with additional charges. Most rental firms require renters to be at least 25 years old when renting an RV. Some companies may allow younger drivers, but additional fees may apply for those under 25.

Can you drive an RV with just a standard driver’s permit?

Yes, as long as you have a valid driver’s license from your state of residence, you should be able to operate any size recreational vehicle on public roads legally. Nevertheless, if you aim to drive an RV in Canada or Mexico, confirm that your license meets their respective demands beforehand.

Do I need special insurance for my RV rental?

Yes, you will likely need additional coverage beyond what your auto policy provides when renting an RV. Most rental companies offer their own coverage options at competitive rates; however, if you already have adequate coverage through another provider, this may be unnecessary. Be sure to read all paperwork carefully and ask questions if anything is unclear before signing any contracts or agreements related to insurance coverage while renting an RV.

How do I make a reservation for an RV rental?

Reserving your perfect RV rental is a straightforward process – contact the desired company either by phone or online, and provide them with information such as dates required, preferred location, type of vehicle needed, etc. They will then guide you through the booking procedure until everything has been finalized and confirmed correctly.

What happens if I damage the RV during my rental?

Damage caused by renters during their rentals is covered under most standard liability policies provided by many reputable companies; however, there may be certain exclusions, so always double-check before signing any contracts/agreements regarding damages caused during the use of rented RVs. If damages occur, then renters should report them immediately so that proper repairs can be made promptly without delay to avoid further issues due to unforeseen circumstances arising from negligence on behalf of either party involved in the said transaction(s).

Can I bring my pets on my RV trip?

This depends entirely upon each company’s pet policy; however, many allow small animals such as cats & dogs if they meet certain criteria (e.g., must remain inside kennel/crate at all times). It’s always best practice when booking a reservation ahead of time to double-check this particular detail first. Additionally, some campgrounds might also charge extra fees per pet, which must also be taken into consideration when budgeting out expenses associated with traveling via recreational vehicle(s).

How do I find RV-friendly campgrounds and parks?

Finding suitable campgrounds and parks for RVs can be made much easier with the help of websites that provide detailed reviews about various camping spots around North America. These sites offer useful information such as nearby amenities, availability of hookups, and other details tailored specifically towards travelers who own recreational vehicles like RVs and motorhomes. This makes locating places that meet your needs when planning a trip simpler.

What should I do if I have an emergency while on my RV trip?

In the event of an emergency while traveling in a rented campervan or motorhome, it is important to contact local authorities immediately. This will ensure that help can be directed appropriately depending on the situation at hand, whether it be mechanical issues related to the vehicle itself or medical emergencies involving passengers.

How do I clean and maintain the RV during my rental?

Cleaning and maintaining rented Recreational Vehicles properly throughout your stay is essential for ensuring safety for everyone onboard and preserving the asset’s value over time. Depending on the size of the rig being used, routine maintenance tasks include checking tire pressure regularly, topping off fluids to keep the engine running smoothly, emptying waste tanks to prevent odors from building up inside cabin space, wiping surfaces to remove dust and dirt buildup, etc. Taking care to perform these tasks diligently will ensure a smooth sailing experience for your entire vacation planning period.

Popular on Ever RVRight Now!

how long does propane last in an rv

How Long Does Propane Last in an RV? (And Tips to Make Propane Last Longer)

Wondering how long your RV propane tank will last? There’s no denying that staying in your RV for long periods ...
how to select the right weight distribution hitch

How To Select The Right Weight Distribution Hitch

How to select the right weight distribution hitch can be a real head-scratcher for many. Ready to hit the road with ...
how to make your rv fridge colder

How to Make Your RV Fridge Colder

It is summer season, the schools are off, and the setting is precise for an excellent RV trip with your ...
what is a fifth wheel to a gooseneck adapter

What is a 5th Wheel to Gooseneck Adapter? (And Is it Safe?)

Now that you have started your RVing journey with a fifth wheel, you might have heard the terms “5th wheel ...

Disclosure: Our content is reader-supported. This means if you click on some of our links, then we may earn a commission. See how WPBeginner is funded, why it matters, and how you can support us.

<span style="color: #01343d">About</span> Editorial Staff

About Editorial Staff

We’re passionate about all things RV and camper, and love sharing tips, “how-to”, and reviewing the latest products to help make your camping experience a success!

<span style="color: #01343d">About</span> Editorial Staff

About Editorial Staff

We’re passionate about all things RV and camper, and love sharing tips, “how-to”, and reviewing the latest products to help make your camping experience a success!