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car rental versus campervan?

melbourne
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car rental versus campervan?

can anyone tell me which way to go is best. We have tried to work out costs as one against the other, including rental car and hotels against camping park site costs, etc. Getting more confused. Going for 3 weeks in september. Thinking now of hiring a car in north island and campervan in south island. Is this a good idea?

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Oz
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1. Re: car rental versus campervan?

Hi,

Cost wise it is cheaper to hire a car and stay in hotels. When you add in the additional rental costs, insurance, fuel economy etc for a camper over a car and motel/hotel/B&B it's cheaper and that's without the divorce costs :-)

Enjoyment wise.............thats your call!

Go with the car the other road users will applaud your choice.

Cheers,

Edited: 06 June 2012, 06:08
New Zealand
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for South Island
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2. Re: car rental versus campervan?

Yep, a car and motels is the more affordable option. In Sept it will also be the warmer option. A campervan usually travels about 20% slower than a car and with the increased fuel and insurance costs it isn't a budget way to travel.

If you really do want to campervan then I think a campervan for the smaller, compact North Island and a car for the more challenging distances and rugged terrain of the South Island would be best.

Happy planning :)

South Island
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for South Island
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3. Re: car rental versus campervan?

If you are on a budget a cheap hire car combined with one of the backpacker networks like bbh.co.nz is the most economic way to drive yourself throughout New Zealand.

Recent Freedom camping restrictions have made campervans a less favourable option.

Dunedin, New Zealand
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4. Re: car rental versus campervan?

The economics of campervans trend into affordability where the traveller is incountry for several months. In these cases, people generally purchase a cheap van or station wagon already kitted out for travel.

Buying such a vehicle can be quite a gamble unless you have the mechanical knowledge to properly assess the vehicle. There have been dodgy operators which prey upon the vulnerable or naive traveller.

Unfortunately, these backpacker vehicles are often in very poor mechanical condition, despite having the necessary warrent of fitness etc. The economics work out if one can resell the vehicle at the end of the journey for close to the purchase price.

This doesn't always happen, mostly due to unaffordable mechanical repairs such as a timing belt replacement. Overheating and cooking the motor is another common killer of traveller vans.

The other problem is that you have to find a buyer. This can take some time which the seller may not always have if they have a plane to catch. There are backpacker car yards in some of the larger towns. But it is generally difficult to find a good deal in these.

If you are lucky enough to find a vehicle at an affordable price which is in sound condition, purchasing a vehicle can be a cost effective transport alternative.

melbourne
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5. Re: car rental versus campervan?

thank you so much everybody for your advice. Will look at car hire - we are not backpackers but mature couple on a budget. I guess you have cabins in caravan parks as we do in

australia as a cheaper option than hotels.

Oz
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6. Re: car rental versus campervan?

Hi chrissieMelbo,

Don't forget when budgeting that currently 1$ Aus buys 1.28NZ :-)

Cheers,

melbourne
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7. Re: car rental versus campervan?

Yes thank you ozrcflyer - we are aware of the great dollar value - that's why we're going this year.

Oz
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51 reviews
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8. Re: car rental versus campervan?

Hi chrissieMelbo,

We discovered the fantastic scenery, activities, wines and restaurants and skiing on the South Island some years ago and have been returning nearly every year since. The great value for us Aussies is a bonus as are the people so long as you don't mention Rugby or sheep :-) We would go anyway for the experiences almost regardless of price.

Enjoy your holiday

9. Re: car rental versus campervan?

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