blossom

Getting about on holiday

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Hi all,

 

my parents are finally going to come over and visit. Yay!

 

They will be here for 60 days (that's how long their insurance allows). We are in Adelaide and they are thinking of coming in November so they are here for Christmas.

 

They are thinking of flying into Sydney and then making their way to Melbourne and then great ocean road to Adelaide.

They are really stuck on just what to do though. They had been wanting to hire a camper van but have read that even if you pay extra for a low excess that the excess is still £500 odd and some horror stories of them trying to claim you've done damage you haven't.

Can anyone recommend any camper companies you've had good experiences with?

Any tips on travelling around then which will just about be school holidays? ?

 

We are all clueless really lol. So thanks for any advice.

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My mate rented a couple with Britz and had no issues. One he rented in Sydney and drove to a festival in Victoria. It was a 6 berth van so quite big, very comfortable though. He did say that it drank fuel though and worked out a lot more expensive that he had thought it would.

 

You will always have an excess. They could try taking out separate insurance to cover the excess if they wanted. Try googling it.

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Hi all,

 

my parents are finally going to come over and visit. Yay!

 

They will be here for 60 days (that's how long their insurance allows). We are in Adelaide and they are thinking of coming in November so they are here for Christmas.

 

They are thinking of flying into Sydney and then making their way to Melbourne and then great ocean road to Adelaide.

They are really stuck on just what to do though. They had been wanting to hire a camper van but have read that even if you pay extra for a low excess that the excess is still £500 odd and some horror stories of them trying to claim you've done damage you haven't.

Can anyone recommend any camper companies you've had good experiences with?

Any tips on travelling around then which will just about be school holidays? 

 

We are all clueless really lol. So thanks for any advice.

 

Do they really want to drive the campervan for the experience or because they think it's cheaper? It's quite a long way via the coasts and the novelty may wear off quickly. A car may be easier with cheaper motels/ cabins along the way. I know that campervans seem to offer flexibility but you are often not allowed to park them in towns so they'll be up for camping fees anyway - plus the fuel of course. If they'd find the drive more stressful that way then it may not be that great - it's nice to see the Great Ocean Road rather than gripping the wheel to keep your campervan on the correct side of the twisty road from Fairhaven to Apollo Bay. But if they've always fancied it, then good luck to them.

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My sister and her family have just done the Great Ocean Road but I can't remember which hire company it was - what I do know is that we (my family when they come and us before we left) always book stuff through Trailfinders - flights/hire/trips etc

 

And if they're feeling pretty free spirited they could always keep an eye on this page closer to the time: https://www.drivenow.com.au/onewayrentals.jspc?fromUpdate=true&utm_medium=email&utm_source=relocation-update&utm_campaign=watchlist-2017-02-07-thl-au#/relocations/AU

Edited by flossybeth

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Yes my boys were going to do a one way hire from Melb to Adelaide in one. When they added it all up it was pretty costly with no aircon and cheaper to just hire a car and do b & b . In the end they flew!

 

Travelling and sleeping in one without aircon is an issue. Many do have aircon but it doesn't work when the engine is off.

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Hi

 

We did Melbourne to Adelaide then Adelaide to Robe, Port fairy for 2 nights each and returned up The great ocean road stopping in all the usual places overnight took 10 days in total in a Maui 6 berth van in the first weeks of Jan 2015. Price wise most campsites was $80 inc power a night, fuel was $400ish and the van was $1800 from memory . We opted out of the extra insurance and was also a little concerned after hearing the storys of false damages etc etc but when we returned it they was slack to say the least I wouldn't worry to much.

 

If they are doing the costal roads I would allow a min of 2 weeks

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No idea on camper vans sorry but if it is school holidays try to work out how much driving they want to do each day and book spots in advance. When we did our road trip we allowed 8 hours driving and made sure we had somewhere for each night before we set off.

Hubby and i were talking about doing some longer trips in a camper van and we think we would book a hotel/motel for a night here and there to have a decent shower or bath,lol..

 

Cal x

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I love camper van holidays, we've been on one in South Africa and one in the US - if we could have afforded it in Australia then that would have been a dream trip for me.

 

Our recent US trip we booked via Motorhome Republic with StarRV - StarRV are part of the Apollo Group but is their premium brand.

 

The van was amazing a less than 6 month old Winnebago with everything you could possibly want including heating and aircon. It came with electrical hook-up so when you were on a site you could have air-con/heating etc. on anytime you wanted. It also had a generator so if you were camping 'rough' then you still had full use of everything - this was as simple as a light-switch to switch it on - though it was a bit noisy.

 

We didn't take the insurance offered by the company so the excess was $1500, however we took out a standalone CDW policy which was a fraction of the price.

 

You do need to inspect the vehicle fully before you take it and mark down the tiniest scratch, the bloke that did the check-out with us was fab and pointed out things we'd have missed but on our return we got the full deposit back (& actually more as the exchange rate had shifted in our favour - could have gone the other way!).

 

They even paid our taxi from the cruise terminal - though that was part of the 'Star RV' package.

 

Having not done it in Australia I can't compare prices but in the US especially if you are travelling long distances a hire car/motel is cheaper - not least because a camper van burns fuel at an alarming rate but the experience doesn't compare - with a car/motel you are constantly packing/unpacking and you are eating out an awful lot, when I'm travelling for a few weeks I prefer my own healthy food (I know for some people eating out is part of the holiday & I do like a fancy meal but as a veggie roadside food can be pretty uninspiring!)

 

Would both your parents be driving? I think it is quite hard work for the driver, I drove in South Africa & I really did intend to drive in the US but never quite plucked up the courage because we were doing Route 66 and whenever my OH got tired we always seemed to be on a tiny, bumpy road! If we'd rented a car I definitely would have shared the driving so if one of your parents is a nervous driver that could be a consideration.

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Thanks everyone. They have a campervan in the uk, so they are hoping to get one out here at least as good as that. I think the kettle and the toilet coming with them is one of the main selling points. They were telling me they were on some website where people list laces you can take campervans to stay for free, and it covers Australia as well as the uk, so I'm guessing that's what they normally do. So I'd guess they would be looking at a van which you can use while not plugged in.

Mum realy surprised the campsites are so expensive @MBI. It's been a while since I've been camping, so I tend to stay in cabins at campsites and cabins are not much more than that! That's crazy!

 

Very good point about the great ocean road being quite windey. It's only my dad who does the driving.

 

Thanks again for all the tips. :-)

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Check out http://www.drivenow.com.au/onewayrentals

 

The hire companies often need their vans relocating and they only charge $5 per day and give you a fuel allowance. The downside is there is normally a time constraint attached plus you can't plan very long in advance. Syd to Mel and Mel to Adelaide are often on the list. I get a daily email alerting me to the availability and as I am in Adelaide I have set it to only tell me about the Adelaide requirements.

 

Might not be what your parents need but it may be useful for someone else

 

The only other thing I have found when hiring camper vans is that Maui are better than Britz who are better than Mighty. The agency I went to said that Maui have the newest vans which get passed onto Britz who use them for a few more years and then they get passed to Mighty. From experience, our Maui hires have always been better than the only Britz one we hired

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The Great Ocean Road is narrow as well as windy so I wouldn't go for a very big van. If it is school hols time I would book asap because even campsites fill up quickly- especially round Lorne to Port Fairy- in fact I would be looking now. We have already booked for October this year. Should be ok beyond Port Fairy though.

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