No one likes leaving money on the table.
When there is a popular local event that tourists are visiting for, such as a festival, sporting event, or a holiday weekend such as Presidents Day, local requests for RVs in the area soars. Owners would be wise to do their homework on the most popular times for tourists to visit their area and create seasonal rates and create add-on event packages in advance. A little bit of preparation can help your RV to pay for itself in just a few busy, fun months.
We’ve listed out the major events that RVers love to rent for. By reading this, you’ll know how to look up similar events in your region and get ready to rent. If you haven’t already, read our guide for owners to take advantage of the busy season.
Here are some types of events that renters love, and how to attract renters to them:
RV Tailgating at NASCAR and Sporting Events
NASCAR fans have enjoyed several decades rooting for the most popular spectator sport in America. Recently, NASCAR has become more affluent, and showing up in an RV is considered as cool as scoring a seat in a luxury box.
Some NASCAR fans like to tour from one event to the other, so you might consider offering discounts to attract the longer rentals. Often renters will want to stay near the track for several days before the event, and most venues offer full hookups. It’s like camping!
To get prepared for NASCAR, check to see if there is a NASCAR track near you. Reach out to NASCAR fans (and other sports fans) on forums and FB groups. You can also search “NASCAR rv” in Google and Facebook.
Offer a special tailgating package
Consider offering to set up the RV for your renter. Each NASCAR event website features maps of where the best place to park RVs will be at the local race. Don’t park too close, as the noise of the track might get overwhelming.
For many, one of the best things about sporting events is the tailgating experience. Consider offering add-on packages with “Barbeque Grill”. Expect renters to be dry camping and need a generator. For example, Class C owner Jim Sloan created a new add-on called a “Tailgating Special Package” in which he offers to handle the setup, takedown, tank dumping and cleaning of the grill, chairs, and tables. “Fans love it, they just have to show up and be there for a walk-through at setup and takedown,” Sloan says. Class A owner Brad Burns mentions that his RV has gone to the NASCAR races at Talladega and Dover, and says putting complimentary beer in the fridge is very much appreciated.
RV Camping at National Parks
America attracts travelers from around the world for to our majestic National Parks. If you haven’t already, check out the Outdoorsy guide to free National Park days. Even the most outdoorsy RVers are often surprised by the number of National Parks we have, and that there are days when anyone can visit for free.
Here are some tips for renting to folks who plan to camp in National Parks:
- Research and plan the best route. Research the steepness, road conditions, and any other unusual driving conditions, so you can know the best route for your RV.
- Make sure your renter knows the exact dimensions of your RV (including trailers, etc) so they can choose their parking spaces wisely. Campgrounds in National Parks can be tighter than most.
- Prepare your renter for the likelihood of ‘RV boondocking’ and inform them about how your RV operates when not connected to a generator. They need to know how much power the appliances consume and how many days they can camp without needing to empty the waste dump tanks.
- Make sure that whomever is driving in has a permit. If you are doing delivery and set up, you may need to coordinate a place to meet up beforehand. A permit is needed for each vehicle.
Bringing the RV to a Music Festival
Local RVs get huge demand at multi-day festivals such as Coachella, Bonnaroo, or Country Thunder. You might not have attended one of these large music festivals, but hundreds of thousands of car camping adventurers do each year in the US.
The general rule of thumb for renting to a music festival is to find a renter that you can trust.
Make sure your renters have an RV pass and encourage them to arrive early to the venue to ensure a good parking spot close to the appropriate hook-ups and utility sources they may need during the festival.
Decide if you may want to raise your price or deposit fee for the festival. “Festivals usually bring more wear and tear than regular camping,” Patz Turner explains, It would be reasonable to up the price by 25% to cover that. Also, be sure to have a deposit.” Rip Young noticed that rental requests go up by about 250% during CMA Fest (which is also the same week as Bonnaroo) and uses that information to decide on pricing adjustments.
Some owners are skeptical about renting to ‘kids’ going to a music festival. We are here to assure you to not be deterred by this. Regardless of the event, always vet your renters — don’t rent to someone you wouldn’t be friends with. Communicate well with them. Consider raising your deposit.
A note about Burning Man…
Burning Man isn’t like other festivals, and no other festival is like Burning Man. It’s not that the renters are any less trustworthy. It’s the PLAYA DUST. Short of completely wrapping your RV in saran wrap, you’re going to get some of the dust in your RV.
Renting to “Burners” can be very profitable. We’ve written up a longer guide just for helping you rent to Burning Man, but there’s one important thing to remember: If you RV goes to Burning Man, there is a chance that it won’t come back the same way. We recommend you substantially raise your rates and security deposit, and that you prepare the renter for a large cleaning fee.
The secret for cleaning the dust: Use vinegar.
Renting for special occasions is worth preparing for
By renting an RV for an event, travelers often have the opportunity to attend events that they might not have been able to before. Millions of adventurous individuals dream of attending multi-day festival or a National Park, and your RV might make it possible to be comfortable or to bring a beloved family member along.
Good luck, have fun, and feel free to share any advice or events with the Outdoorsy community.
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