If you’re interested in renting an RV this summer camping season, but don’t know what to expect, we’ve got you covered. We asked a few seasoned RVers what first time renters should know before packing up the rig and hitting the open road. Here’s the top 4 tips to get you started.
1. Plan well in advance.
When planning to rent an RV, be sure to plan well in advance. Lots of rental companies book up quickly. This rule is especially important if you are looking for a very specific model or floor plan. We suggest planning your summer trip over the winter months, or at the very least a month in advance.
Aside from the actual rental, campgrounds can fill up as early as February’especially in the national parks this year with Canada’s 150th celebrations. Most national parks can be booked online around the beginning of each new year. Some, however, are limited to first-come, first-serve on your day of arrival. These parks can also fill up quick, but if you arrive early in the day you might have a chance at nabbing a spot. They are a great option for those who forgot to book your site ahead of time!
Another perk to planning far in advance is you won’t have to stress about the small things like last-minute insurance coverage or road routes. Spend some time online search campgrounds and RV rental companies for the perfect match for you and your family.
2. Start small.
You’ve booked your RV for a couple weeks and want to hit the open road to see all that Canada has to offer. Before you start out on a coast to coast journey, take it back a few steps. Have you ever rented an RV before’ Have you ever driven a big rig for extended periods of time’ As enticing as a cross-country road trip sounds, don’t make that trek your first trip in an RV.
Keep it simple and sweet, within a day’s drive so you can get a feel for camping in a big rig. Check out the most well-known camping areas in your own province, explore your own backyard! Get a feel for handling the rental before heading out on the ultimate road trip. If you are looking for a little more adventure, you could fly into the province you want to explore, and go from there.
Now, just because we advise that you don’t make the coast to coast trip your first time out with the rental, we definitely suggest making that journey as soon as possible. Our huge country is a must-see, especially with so many Canada 150th birthday celebrations planned for this camping season.
3. Pack beyond the essentials.
Many rental companies outfit the RV with accessories you will need for your trip. Some also offer extra packages that include household supplies and even bedding. However, it’s important figure out exactly what comes with your rental, and to pack a little more than the bare necessities.
A few other tools you will want to bring include an axe to chop your fire wood and camping chairs for relaxing after a long day. Insider tips: bring cooking spices, drinking water, or any small appliances that don’t come with the rental package. We haven’t even mentioned the outdoor cookware yet!
If your family is into hiking, don’t forget to pack all of the hiking necessities. Backpacks, water packs, or even water filters depending on where your adventure will take you! Lightweight snacks, bug spray, rain gear and even headlamps are also good to have on the trails.
4. Know the rules and regulations.
Are pets allowed in the park you plan to camp at, or will you have to leave Spot at home’ Some parks allow pets on the campsites, but not along the beach. We would hate to see you have to leave your furriest family member at the site while the rest of you spend the day soaking up the sun!
Are you planning to explore somewhere south of the border’ Be sure to brush up on the rules and regulations of crossing, staying, and what you can bring. Double check your medications, or the proper way to pass hunting gear through border control if that’s your kind of camping excursion.
If you do plan to hunt or fish, have your license on hand and follow the rules of the area. One misplaced line and lure could ruin the whole trip. Fishing from small watercrafts in Canada’even from canoes’requires the use of life vests and other small craft safety essentials. Know your stuff before you head out!
We’ve kept our tips short and sweet for your convenience, but there’s a lot to remember when planning an extended camping trip in a rented RV. Ultimately, we hope you have the most fun and enjoyment, which is what this RVing life is all about.
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