April 5, 2022

What are some of the things you need to know when renting an RV in Canada?

How RV rentals differ from car hire and hotel stays...

Like airlines, car hire and hotels, many companies who rent an RV base their pricing on what is known as a ‘flex’ model. Pricing fluctuates by supply and demand. Generally, this means that the earlier you book, the lower the nightly rate will be. Some companies offer good incentives, including bonus offers, if you book well in advance of your travel dates.

RV rentals are often charged on a nightly rate, not on a 24-hour basis. At CanaDream, regular drop-off times are between 8.00am and 10.00am. Depending on the pick-up location, earlier pick-up times may be available for a small fee. You will be asked to select your pick-up time when you complete the Online Check-in process. You will also have the option to choose a later drop-off time (up until 3.00pm) for an additional fee. This will give you some flexibility with your RV vacation.

Computer on table surrounded by travel brochures
Booking your vacation online is an easy, streamlined process.

Check the Cancellation Policy

Cancellation policies vary by RV rental company. Unlike car rental companies, hotels and airlines, it is difficult for RV rental companies to rent out an RV at short notice, so your cancellation will most likely mean that the vehicle originally assigned to you will sit on their lot. It is advisable to take out insurance against cancellation. Check the RV company’s cancellation policy carefully before booking and make sure you are aware of all conditions.

Will I be reimbursed for unused nights if I drop off the RV early?

If you decide once you’re on your RV vacation to drop off your vehicle early, it’s unlikely you will receive reimbursement or a credit for the days not used. Where hotels will charge you for only one unused night, car hire companies and RV Rental companies may have policies of no refund if you decide to return early.

Man in yellow shirt with driver license and camper on road
A valid driver's licence is required for everyone driving the RV.

Set aside time to familiarize yourself with the RV before you leave the pick-up location

Plan to spend 30-45 minutes at the RV rental company when you pick up your RV, longer if you require a personalized demonstration. Unlike a hotel or a car hire, there’s a lot to familiarize yourself with in the RV before you leave.

Mother and child enquiring about renting an RV
Our friendly Cast members are here to welcome you and help you get on the road as quickly as possible.

Check that the Rental Company has On-Road Assistance Available

If you experience any issues with the RV once you begin your vacation, it’s important that you let the RV company know as soon as you can so they can provide timely assistance. If, when you drop off your RV, you complain about something the company wasn’t aware of or ask for a discount because of it, it’s unlikely you will receive a positive outcome. It’s unreasonable to expect compensation for an issue the company hasn’t been given an opportunity to rectify. Most companies will provide you with a toll-free 24-hour help line number when you pick up your RV.

Does the RV come with kitchen equipment and Bedding?

Kitchen equipment and bedding is often not included in the cost of the RV rental. These items are usually offered at an additional cost although some special packages may include them as part of the rental. Check with the company to find out what is and isn’t included.

Does the RV come with Unlimited Kilometres?

Unlike many car rentals, RV rentals don’t normally include unlimited kilometres. Some RV companies include a small number of kilometres in their nightly rates while others don’t offer any. Most companies offer kilometre packages prior to pick up but do not provide a refund for unused kilometres. It is recommended that you calculate as close as possible to the number of kilometres you believe you will use, then pay the per kilometre rate for any additional km.

Vehicle odometer and open road in mountains
With the many kilometres that you will be driving, it's worth looking into pre-purchasing some KM packages.

Are there restrictions on where I can travel in an RV rental?

Most RV companies have restrictions on roads you can travel on. Some don’t permit any gravel roads unless they lead to a recognized campground while others may restrict roads at certain times of the year. If you are planning to travel to a specific destination, check with the rental company to make sure the road you intend to travel is permitted. If you travel on a non-permitted road and incur damage to your RV, your insurance may not be valid.

Is it possible to travel one-way in an RV rental?

When renting an RV from a company that has multiple locations across the country, it will most likely be possible to travel one way between their locations. There will normally be a fee for this but that fee is likely less than the cost you would incur by returning the vehicle back to the location you picked up from. Check with the RV company to find out if they offer one way rentals and how much they cost.

Mother and child in RV reading a child's book
We love our CanaDream Kidz.

Why should I choose an RV Vacation?

An RV vacation gives you the freedom to travel at your own pace, often to places not permitted with a car rental. There’s nothing more liberating than being able to move into your “home on wheels” on day one of your vacation and unpack, knowing you won’t have to repack until the last day of your vacation. You get to sleep in the same bed every night and make your own decisions as to whether to eat out or eat meals in your RV. You get to camp out surrounded by nature, enveloped by trees and a sky full of stars.

As with any vacation, it’s important to do your research about your destination. Is there cell service where you are travelling? Can you get WiFi in an RV? Can you drive wherever you want or are there restrictions? Do you need to book campgrounds ahead of time? What are the road conditions like? Can you take your dog with you? The RV company will be able to provide answers to many of your questions but, ultimately, the end responsibility is yours.

Renting an RV in Canada is easy. CanaDream is the #1 RV rental company, offering RV rentals from seven locations.  One-way rentals are possible between CanaDream locations and vehicles are suitable for one to seven people travelling. For more information about motorhome rentals in Canada with CanaDream or to book your own RV road trip in the perfect RV for you, chat with us online on our website or email us at booking@canadream.com.  You can also reach us by phone at 1-800-347-7126 (toll-free within North America).

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