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When it comes to rentals, there is more out there than cars and homes. You can rent an RV or motorhome nowadays so that you can hit the road without worrying about where you will sleep!
If you’re an RV owner, it may be a smart idea for you to rent out your rig when you don’t plan on using it. Knowing the best website to do business with is a smart idea for renters and owners alike.
But of the many different companies out there, what are your options and which should you choose? Two popular rental sites spring to mind: RVShare and Outdoorsy.
So between RVShare and Outdoorsy, which should you choose to do business with whether you’re a renter or an owner?
It seems as though Outdoorsy is the more popular option currently. With lower commission rates and better insurance options, Outdoorsy suits both owners and renters much better. However, your own personal needs and wants may change this answer!
For now, let’s take a look at RV rental services, specifically RVShare and Outdoorsy, and what they have to offer.
What are RV Rental Services?
RV rental services are exactly what they sound like: websites that allow you to rent an RV instead of purchasing one. These services are similar to rental car services as well as hotels or other home rentals.
However, renting an RV has a few more steps involved than simply paying for a hotel for the night. Companies like RVShare and Outdoorsy have a few more rules and regulations, and for good reason. Driving an RV is no joke!
Having a more involved screening process for both renters and owners leads to happier customers overall.
RV rental services involve independent contractors or RV owners rather than utilizing a traditional rental car business model where a company owns all the vehicles. You as an individual are listing your RV for prospective renters to check out, so there are pros and cons to both sides.
Let’s look at some of those pros and cons now!
What are the Benefits of Renting an RV?
While renting an RV may seem daunting for a weekend camping trip, there are a lot of benefits. Here are some of the top perks for renting an RV versus choosing to purchase an RV.
- You aren’t saddled with an expensive RV payment
- You don’t have to worry about all of the maintenance involved in owning an RV
- You can try out an RV for a weekend if you are thinking about purchasing one
- Renting an RV is sometimes more affordable than hotel stays
- Most RVs are easy to drive around so that you can visit anywhere you’d like
- You can have an RV delivered to and picked up from your camping location (usually for an extra fee)
There are perks to renting out your RV if you are an owner as well. Some of those perks include:
- Renting out your RV can help offset your RV payment
- If you don’t have an RV payment, you can earn extra income while not using your RV
- Outdoorsy and RVShare offer protections and insurance for owners
- Renting your RV keeps it from sitting idle, where it may incur more maintenance needs
As you can see, there are a lot of benefits to renting an RV, both for owners and renters! I particularly enjoy the “try before you buy” aspect of these rental programs.
What are the Drawbacks of Renting an RV?
As with everything, there are perks and drawbacks to renting an RV. Some of those drawbacks for renters may include:
- Some RV rental options don’t allow pets
- Some RV owners might set high fees for renting their rigs
- If any damages occur (both interior and exterior) you will be responsible for paying them
- If you have never driven an RV before, it may be difficult
- Learning how an RV works can be complicated
There are also some possible drawbacks for owners when it comes to renting out their RVs. These drawbacks can consist of:
- There’s no guarantee that your RV will be rented
- Damages and other misuse could occur
- Your RV could be in demand during a time you would like to be using it
- You may be required to deliver the RV to customers
While the drawbacks don’t exactly outweigh the benefits, you may want to consider all of your options before you decide to either rent an RV, whether you’re an owner or customer!
What Types of RVs are Available to Rent?
If you are considering renting or renting out your RV, you may be wondering what types of RVs are available to rent. If it’s your first time renting or dealing with RVs, you may not know what type will best suit your needs.
Here’s a list of the types of RVs available to rent on both Outdoorsy and RVShare!
- Camper Vans or Class B Motorhomes. These are small, easy to drive vans with minimal interior space. However, all of these van options should include a kitchen and bed area; some may even include wet baths. These are best for single people or couples.
- Teardrop Trailers. These little trailers are also great for one or two people. They have an interior bed area and usually an outdoor kitchen. They do not have bathrooms. They need to be towed, but often don’t need a high capacity towing vehicle.
- Travel Trailers. Travel trailers come in many different lengths and layouts and are very versatile RVs. The options are endless for these rigs, but they must be towed, which means that the length may matter to you. However, these are great options for families or groups.
- Fifth Wheels. Fifth wheels are similar to travel trailers in that they have many lengths and layouts. They are often the largest towable rigs available on the market, and for this reason, fifth wheels require a very specific hitch. This may not be something you have readily available, and the towing skills needed for these rigs are much more advanced.
- Class A Motorhomes. If you’ve ever seen an RV on the road that looks like a bus, there’s no doubt that it’s a Class A. These large rigs are versatile and perfect for the whole family, though they do take some getting used to in terms of driving. However, they should have all the amenities you’d need for a great camping trip.
- Class C Motorhomes. Often known as the Goldilocks of motorhomes, Class C rigs are smaller than Class A’s, and therefore easier to drive. They contain all the amenities one might need for a camping trip, and they can accommodate an average family!
There are many things to consider before choosing your final RV rental, such as fuel, towing abilities, and how many sleeping arrangements you may need. However, there are so many different RVs on the market that you should have no trouble finding your perfect fit!
What are the Average Fees for RV Rentals?
Just like hotels or car rental services, the list price on whatever RV you are attempting to rent is not the final price you will pay. There are fees, both for renters and owners, on both Outdoorsy and RVShare.
These fees are not being paid for nothing, however. A renter’s fees pay for cleaning costs, insurance, and various add on fees. An owner’s fees pay for your listing on sites like Outdoorsy and RVShare.
The average fees for renters are between 5% and 20%, depending on your reservation length, desire for RV delivery and pickup, and other reservation details. The longer the reservation, the higher your fees, but it is usually a price worth paying so that you can take the trip you’ve dreamed of taking!
The average fees for owners are about 20% to 25%, depending on the rental service website you choose to list with. This fee goes directly to companies like Outdoorsy and RVShare, while owners keep the remaining funds.
These fees are necessary to protect both owner and renter, and they help keep these companies afloat. But these fees are something to keep in mind when you are budgeting for your upcoming RV trip, or even your monthly income as an owner.
Comparing RVShare and Outdoorsy
Now it’s time to determine which online RV rental company will best suit your needs: RVShare or Outdoorsy! Whether you are a renter or an owner, there are pros and cons to both websites. Let’s take a more in depth look at what it is like, for both renters and owners!
What is it Like for Renters Using RVShare?
Trying to decide which company to book your RV adventure through?
Let’s start with RVShare as a possible option for those of you with adventure on your mind!
RVShare offers the perfect RV for your trip by using their detailed search settings. Filter by location, features and RV type to find exactly what you’re looking for. Hopefully you’ll have narrowed down what type of RV you’re looking for, but RVShare allows you to browse all of their possible listings before you make a final decision!
Once you’ve found your perfect match, you will talk directly with the RV owner to arrange your trip. Go through a quick demo of how to use your rental when you pick up the RV, and you’re on your way! Enjoy the comfort of that home-away-from-home feeling while you’re on the road.
When it comes time for your trip to be over, RVShare asks that you dump the tanks, fill up the gas and return the RV to its home. While you may not have to worry about returning the rig if you had it delivered to you, it is still important to leave the RV better than you found it.
There are many protections for RVShare renters. With RVShare’s secure payment platform, your rental payment is protected against fraud. If anything goes wrong with your payment, they will refund you within 24 hours. They also verify accounts and perform fraud checks to keep your transactions safe.
RVShare also offers many perks just in case something goes wrong with the RV you have reserved. If you need assistance during your trip, they are there to help through phone, 24/7 chat, and email. While rare, sometimes an owner has to cancel a booking at the last minute. RVShare’s dedicated Booking Services team is there to help you find and book a similar RV.
RVShare also has a pretty great rebooking option should your RV not meet or exceed your expectations. If your RV rental was considerably misrepresented in the online listing, or you are unable to reach the owner at the time your trip is to begin, let RVShare know in the first 12 hours and they will work to find you a new RV!
Sometimes owners can be tricky to work with. If you believe the RV owner has wrongfully withheld your damage deposit after your trip, RVshare will assist in mediating a dispute. RVShare also protects you with Roadside Assistance. Every booked reservation through RVshare includes Roadside Assistance provided by Questx Tow Network. They are available nationwide to assist with issues 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.
When a renter books a reservation through a listing that has active RVshare Rental Insurance, basic Standard RVshare Rental Insurance is automatically included in the rental quote. The renter can choose to upgrade coverage to Enhanced or Premier at checkout. RVshare Rental Insurance covers both domestic and international renters, which can be a very handy feature.
There isn’t much more to RVShare other than making sure to return the RV to its owner in as good a shape as it was when you began your trip. RVShare offers the following important information to any renter using their website:
- Make sure that the RV is returned to the owner in the agreed-upon condition to avoid possible post-trip fees. This might mean stopping at a car wash to remove excess dirt from the RV exterior, thoroughly cleaning the interior, refilling the fuel and propane tanks, and dumping the waste tanks.
- Be sure to remove all of your personal items from the RV.
- If damage occurred to the RV during your trip, make sure to bring it to the attention of the RV owner so they are aware and can get it fixed for their next rental.
- Take photos of the post-trip condition of the RV.
- Leave the owner a review – you will get an email with a link to give feedback once the trip is over.
The trickiest part of RVShare that has been mentioned is that renters need to verify their IDs before they can complete the booking process. While this is a necessary and important step renters need to take, it can cause delays in booking.
What is it Like for Owners Using RVShare?
Thinking about listing your RV as a possible rental through RVShare?
It’s easier than you think, but here is where you will find any important owner information you may not know of yet!
List your RV on RVShare’s site by adding photos and a detailed description. You get to manage exactly what potential renters see when they search, a cool feature for many owners. Review reservation requests and work directly with renters to agree on terms. You’re in complete control, which can be beneficial for many owners.
Then comes the fun part of sending your RV out into the world! Meet the renter, give them a quick demo, and send them on their way. This is also when you should agree upon other terms with your renter, such as refilling propane or gas tanks, cleaning the exterior, etc.
In terms of being an owner on RVShare, you get to reap the benefits of listing on the largest rental network in the world. The renter will return your RV at the end of their trip, hopefully in the condition you expect. If they don’t, RVShare has many protections for you as an owner.
Owner rules are an important piece of RVShare, and they allow an owner to document their rules and have renters agree to them when they book. Owners can add up to five rules that are important to them and ensure they are comfortable with who is renting their RV. Any rules an owner adds must be agreed to by the renter ahead of booking when they check out.
The Owner Rental Agreement along with any rules, restrictions, eligibility requirements, or practices that the owner applies to the rental of the RV must abide by RVshare’s Respectful Community Policy. This policy details important pieces of information regarding inclusion and diversity.
When an owner signs up to advertise their RV and assigns a value to their RV, the price of the minimum daily insurance to be charged to the renter is determined. Standard RVshare Rental Insurance is automatically included when a renter checks out and they can choose to upgrade their insurance package if desired.
RVshare is committed to providing you and your renters with the best experience possible, and this includes an expansive 24/7 Roadside Assistance program. The Service Fee (charged to your renters) helps to ensure that your renter has a positive outcome if the unexpected occurs while on the road; this includes lockouts, dead batteries, tire changes, towing, and more.
Overall, listing your RV on RVShare seems like a fairly simple process. They have many insurances and other support options for both renters and owners alike, and their customer service team is fairly on top of things. However, it is worth noting that RV owners pay RVShare a 25% commission.
What is it Like for Renters Using Outdoorsy?
Now what is it like for customers utilizing Outdoorsy? Let’s start with RV renters, and see what the process is like for them!
The process begins just like RVShare, though the website does seem a bit more hip and up to date. Renters search for RVs near you or your destination. Click on the listings for more information including owner profiles, details on amenities, and photos. Save RVs that catch your eye for when you’re ready to rent.
It is important to note that Outdoorsy requires that you verify your ID before you finish booking. This is a simple online process and shouldn’t take too much time to accomplish. You can add multiple drivers at this step as well.
Found the one and ready to rent?
Send the RV owner a booking request. From that point, you can ask the owner questions about the rig and arrange details like a pick-up time. Outdoorsy owners offer delivery to your home or campsite or you can arrange a pick-up, which is a great perk. The owner will do a key exchange to walk you through all the details of the RV.
After your walkthrough and RV tutorial, you are free to hit the road! Returning your RV in the same state that you received it is important, just like RVShare. Though you may have an owner that has more rules than Outdoorsy lists, it is important to keep these specifications in mind.
The renter service fee for vehicle bookings ranges between 5% and 20% of the booking subtotal (the nightly rate plus cleaning fee, add-on fees, delivery fee, and any other fees, if applicable, but excluding Outdoorsy fees, protection packages, and taxes). Service fees will vary with a number of factors not limited to the length of trip, time of year, availability, and the insurance offering. Renters see this fee on the checkout page before they book a reservation.
Outdoorsy owners carefully curate each listing, but in rare cases, you may discover an issue when picking up the RV. If any item listed below qualifies, the renter must notify Outdoorsy immediately by contacting Customer Support. Keep in mind that, if you wait to notify Outdoorsy of a rental issue, they may not be able to assist you.
For the most part, Outdoorsy seems to have much more information and protection for their renters than RVShare. International travelers are welcomed, and there are various cancellation policy options though these are set by the owners.
Outdoorsy seems to allow owners to set many of their own rules, more so than RVShare. This can be great for owners, but tricky for renters. It is important to check all of the individual rules and regulations on an RV listing rather than just assume you are doing everything you need to do before you return the rig.
What is it Like for Owners Using Outdoorsy?
From just a cursory glance at Outdoorsy, they seem to allow their owners more freedom than RVShare. Their process is simple, much like RVShare, but the allowance for more rules and owner-determined regulations is a huge plus.
Posting your RV listing is simple! Add photos of your RV, enter a name, description, and price, confirm your location, and publish your listing, simple as that. Now anyone looking in your area can find your RV and message you if they want to rent it.
Visit your dashboard to manage your listings, see messages, and keep track of all of your booking requests, present and past. Meet the renter when it comes time for their departure, give them the rundown on your RV, and some tips for traveling in your area. Expect money in your bank account within 24 hours of a returned rental.
As part of Outdoorsy’s efforts to reimagine the way people access the outdoors, they’ve added the ability for RV owners to offer delivery and setup to RV renters. Whether you drop off your rig at the airport, at the renter’s home, or at their final destination, the delivery and setup function offers ease and convenience to the RV renter while adding an extra source of revenue to the RV owner.
All renters on Outdoorsy go through a driver verification process, which means that you should feel confident in listing your RV. In addition to confirming the renter’s identity, they also run a background check that looks at many different elements about the rental request such as DMV check, location, vehicle type, rental period, etc.
One of the benefits of renting through Outdoorsy is the opportunity to review renters. This is valuable to ensure all owners have a good experience by properly assessing prospective booking requests. There are also INSTAbook options provided through Outdoorsy that allow renters to instantly book their RV, if this is an option you’d prefer.
Outdoorsy owners are able to send over a customized quote to any renter on the platform. Sending over a quote is a great opportunity to accommodate a renter quickly and tailor it especially to them. Sending over a quote allows you to choose a different nightly rate, personalized add-ons, and even a different security deposit amount. What is great about sending over a quote is that it’s only a two step process.
What makes setting up your owner listing so fun is that they are totally customizable. Do you know of a big event happening near you that will cause a large demand for RV rentals? You can set a rule to alter your pricing for those specific dates! Or maybe you would only like to rent your rig for a minimum of 3 nights at a time, you can set that as a requirement as well.
If you live in a place with a winter season and you know your requests will slow down, why not offer seasonal pricing so that renters are more inclined to book with you during the slower months? Some renters are looking for a monthly long rental. You can actually set up your listing to give a lower nightly rate for a certain length of booking.
As a lister on Outdoorsy, you agree to have your tires inspected before each reservation. You also agree to inspect your electrical systems, LP Gas system, appliances and brakes once every three months. You agree that your tires will be maintained to a fifty percent (50%) tread-wear life or greater for your vehicle to remain certified and insured on Outdoorsy.
While this may seem like a pain, it leads to more successful listings and renting than RVShare. Having a more in depth security process, both for owners and renters, grants peace of mind to all involved. Plus owners only owe Outdoorsy a 20% commission, so you would be getting 5% more than using RVShare.
Outdoorsy has a lot to offer owners, more than RVShare it would seem. Plus many renters are used to this sort of bespoke booking process these days, so it would seem that Outdoorsy is keeping up with the crowds!
Which Company Has Better Reviews: RVShare or Outdoorsy?
While reviews come from many different places, there are a few more reliable sources than others. Both RVShare and Outdoorsy have reviews from the Better Business Bureau as well as customer reviews in various locations such as Google and Facebook.
Companies are allowed to respond to reviews from the Better Business Bureau as well as individuals online, and RVShare has fallen behind on this important task. Granted, the company overall has an A+ rating with the Better Business Bureau and a fairly impressive 4 star rating from customers.
However, RVShare has been reportedly unresponsive when it comes to complaints, only addressing a few here and there. Many renters and owners are left without answers to various claims and issues, most likely due to RVShare’s complicated damage claim process in the first place.
While RVShare has done well over the recent years to address complaints, it is clear that there is still work to be done. RVShare has more complaints on file than Outdoorsy does, as well as fewer resolved issues.
Having fewer complaints and more addressed issues is a good place to start, and that’s exactly what Outdoorsy has to offer. Outdoorsy also has more users overall as well, leading me to believe that using their platform is a much more comprehensible experience.
Outdoorsy has a few complaints on file with the Better Business Bureau, but not nearly as many as RVShare. They have a 4.5 star rating with the Better Business Bureau currently. And in terms of reviews on popular websites, Outdoorsy’s reviews remain overwhelmingly positive.
Why might this be? It feels as though Outdoorsy’s basic platform of direct owner control and communication with renters has created a better environment for communication. RVShare still allows owners and renters to communicate, but there are more company-mandated rules and regulations.
I believe Outdoorsy has better reviews because their owners are simply better. Whatever the case, Outdoorsy has consistently better and more promising reviews than RVShare does.
Which Company Has Better Insurance: RVShare or Outdoorsy?
It is important to pay attention to RV insurance, whether you are choosing to rent or list your RV on either RVShare or Outdoorsy (or both!). So which company offers better insurance? Let’s take a closer look to find out.
While both options offer comparable 24/7 roadside assistance, their insurance coverage varies. However, both options do indeed insure international travelers, and this is great news for those of you traveling overseas! How do these companies differ, however?
RVShare does keep insurance in mind, offering owners up to $1,000,000 in liability coverage for both RVShare Rental Insurance and Liability only insurance. Comprehensive and collision coverage for the value of their RV up to $300,000 is also included with RVShare Rental Insurance but not Liability only insurance.
However, the age of your rig matters, and if you own an RV that is 15 years old or newer, with a stated value of $300,000 or less, it will automatically be approved for coverage whether it is a motorhome or travel trailer. RVs older than 15 years are only eligible for liability coverage.
RVShare does not list what insurance company it works with, which means it may be difficult for owners to know what to expect when it comes to filing claims. RVShare also bases their insurance rates on the type of RV insured, as well as the overall size of the rig.
This can be an unfortunate note for many owners as well as renters, since the insurance rates are much higher for drivable rigs instead of towable rigs. This can lead to many customers choosing a different option just based on the price of insurance.
While the coverage is good and comparable to Outdoorsy, the notion that insurance is based on the style of rig can be a deal breaker for owners choosing to list their drivable rigs. So how exactly does Outdoorsy structure their insurance rates?
Outdoorsy’s liability insurance is provided by Assurant, one of the largest insurance providers in the world. For any damage to the RV, Outdoorsy provides direct coverage backed by this well-known insurance company. Any motorized unit or trailer with a salvage-title history does not qualify for coverage. Any vehicle with a model year 2000 or older generally will not have coverage, but owners may apply for an exemption.
Outdoorsy offers episodic insurance, meaning that coverage lasts for the duration of the rental period you booked the RV for, much like RVShare. Coverage goes in force when you take the keys and ends when you hand the keys back at the end of the rental period or drop the vehicle and keys off at an agreed location.
The best part about Outdoorsy’s insurance is that the renter can choose how much to pay for. Outdoorsy offers three different levels of insurance so you can choose the most suitable level of protection for your rented RV. No matter which of the three insurance packages you choose, Outdoorsy offers up to $1 million in liability coverage and up to $1 million in comprehensive and collision coverage.
The three insurance packages are broken up into categories: essential, preferred, and peace of mind. Their specific details are below, and it was great to find this information so readily on Outdoorsy’s website; RVShare seemed more difficult to navigate.
Liability Coverage: State Minimum
Comprehensive & Collision Protection: Up to $1M
Support: 24/7 Customer Support
Windshield repair coverage
Liability Coverage: State Minimum
Comprehensive & Collision Protection: Up to $1M
Support: 24/7 Customer Support
Windshield repair coverage
Mobile Mechanic Service
RV Technical Assistance Hotline
Peace of Mind
Liability Coverage: $1M Liability Coverage
Comprehensive & Collision Protection: Up to $1M
Protection: Windshield Repair Coverage
Protection: Accident Interruption
Support: 24/7 Customer Support
Support: Concierge Services
Mobile Mechanic Service
RV Technical Assistance Hotline
As you can no doubt tell when comparing the two listings, Outdoorsy offers a bit more protection, which is important for both owners and renters. Peace of mind is everything, and Outdoorsy knows this so well that they have an insurance package that says so!
Which to Choose: RVShare or Outdoorsy?
It is difficult to make a final decision when it comes to two very similar websites. While there are many listings on both RVShare and Outdoorsy, it would seem safe to say that Outdoorsy is the overall winner among renters and owners alike.
With its clear focus on owners, Outdoorsy allows for many more listing options and preferences than RVShare. Outdoorsy has also been more communicative and patient when it comes to negative feedback and claims. This has led to a better following of consumers and less hiccups as they have built their business.
While RVShare is still an easy to use website, their insurance policies leave something to be desired, and they take a higher commission from owners than Outdoorsy does. While 5% doesn’t seem like a huge difference, you as an owner are not receiving the same levels of protection in exchange.
Outdoorsy allows their owners to take charge, and that can make or break an independent contractor based business. Renters are also growing more used to having owners involved, and tend to appreciate the clear expectations more than company implemented rules.
Outdoorsy also has a slightly easier to navigate website, catering to a younger crowd. While RVing is a fun time for all ages, it is safe to say that it has had a resurgence among younger generations!
Plus, Outdoorsy offers perks for both owners and renters in terms of how much money they are expected to spend. Outdoorsy takes a 20% commission from owners, while RVShare takes 25%. And RVShare bases their insurance rates on the type of rig you wish to rent, while Outdoorsy allows renters to choose their level of insurance coverage.
Besides the more positive reviews, I think it is safe to say that Outdoorsy has much more to offer. However, if you are an owner thinking about listing your RV online, you can list on either website for free! Many owners utilize both sites, as it can be beneficial to have your RV seen by as many people as possible.
Whether you are hoping to rent an RV and hit the road, or list your RV for rent so that it isn’t sitting in your driveway for the majority of the year, there are options for you. While RVShare and Outdoorsy are amazing websites, it all comes down to what perks you are looking for.
Thankfully, both websites have a lot to offer, including helpful customer service lines. You should feel confident in your RV rental process using either of these two companies, whether you’re a renter or an owner!