If you’re looking at VW campervan hire for your next road trip, then let me take you through the essential list of things you need to know.
Has renting a VW campervan been a lifelong dream for you?
It was for me.
When I was younger I used to dream of owning a VW camper and travelling round the beaches of Europe. I never quite got round to it and as I got older, and realised how expensive and time consuming they are, I decided that renting a VW campervan would be a much better idea.
Hiring a VW campervan may seem like a pretty scary endeavour though – there’s definitely a lot to consider.
Questions About VW Campervan Hire
I’ve done a few campervan rentals now, so I wanted to pass on what I’ve learned. If you have any more questions about VW campervan hire that I haven’t covered, just let me know in the comments below.
1. Can you hire a VW campervan?
Yes! This post will take you through how to hire a VW campervan.
There are a few places you can hire a VW campervan from, we hired ours from Goboony. They have a range of VW campervans to choose from.
We knew we wanted one near Wales, and so filtered through the results and found a super cool orange T2 bay window one in Brinkworth, Chippenham. We could drive up from Portsmouth, leave our car there, and then drive the 90 minutes to Bridgend in Wales.
There were lots of options on site though, and you can hire the best VW campervan for where you want to go.
I’d recommend hiring a VW campervan near-ish your destination so you don’t have to drive a different vehicle too far. It was only meant to be 90 minutes for us, but when I programmed Google Maps it said three hours because of the Friday evening 4pm traffic, which was a little overwhelming.
You can hire a vw transporter camper all over England with Goboony.
2. What is the best VW campervan to hire?
I really wanted one of these bay VW campervans. As I said in the intro I’d always wanted one of my own, but know how hard (and expensive) it is to own one, so renting a VW campervan is the best way.
The best VW campervan to hire is the one that will bring you the most enjoyment, and that you can afford.
You can choose between…
– Classic VW campervan hire, the T2 Bay Window or T1 Splitscreen
– Hire a VW California Ocean
– Hire a T5 / T6 Transporter
3. How much is it to hire a VW campervan?
This depends on whether you’re going for a classic VW camper hire, or a more modern VW campervan hire. Classic campervans or retro VW campervan hire can be more expensive, as more can go wrong. But then, modern campervan hire can be pretty pricey too, as you’ll have the latest models on the market.
The classic VW T2 campervan we hired was £550 for three nights. Included in this was a whole inventory of camping equipment we could use with it.
On top of this we had campsite fees, and petrol to consider.
4. How does insurance work on a VW campervan hire?
If you book through Goboony your agreement with them ensures you’re insured with the individual rented that you get your VW campervan hire from. It’s up to them to organise this, but it’s up to you to check this at the time of renting. It should just be a case of signing the forms they have.
5. How do you sleep in a VW campervan?
Ben and I slept well in our VW campervan. We took our own bedding which helped, including a pillow each, a duvet and a bed sheet. Ben is 6 foot 2 and I’m 5 ft 9 and we were comfy in our camper!
The two of us slept on the rock and roll top bed which folded down into the boot and across the back seats.
If you have kids you’ll sleep on this bed, and on the ‘shelf’ in the pop top. There was a mattress you could use up there.
Even though they’re advertised as four-berth I wouldn’t recommend the VW campervan hire we had for more than two adults TBH. You can get awnings and tents which attach to the side if you want to add more people to the adventure.
We’ve hired a few different motorhomes and campers and I have to say the T2 was my favourite space and layout of them all.
When we had a VW California we slept up top and there was plenty of room below for more stuff. There was also more ‘things’ in there though, so I actually preferred the sleeping set up of the T2.
6. What is a VW campervan like to drive?
Classic VW campervan hire can throw up driving problems you didn’t know existed.
If you’re hiring a VW campervan I’d strongly recommend practising extensively before you leave, so you can ask the person you’re renting off any questions or tips that might not arise until you drive.
On our VW campervan hire the gear stick was very sensitive, and difficult to get in gear. Both Ben and I swore a lot over the four days at the gear stick, and it took us a few days to have confidence in it.
Obviously, this depends on the VW campervan hire you have, but our T2 Bay was fiddly. For first gear you had to go slightly to the right of centre and up, second was down from there with no pressure to either side, and then for third a bit further across, but not fully. Nope, that’s too far. CRUNCH!
We have a 2006 VW Golf at home with no gear changing problems, this gear box was tough.
If you want something more modern, maybe consider hiring a VW Transporter camper instead. Modern VW campervan hire will make it just that little bit easier. I mean, obviously you won’t be able to look as cool as this^, but being able to find the right gear when you need it is underrated.
You could also hire a VW California – we did that to road trip around Somerset.
Apart from that, it was great to have such a big bay window, I liked the headspace, and the joy of having a VW campervan hire that looked like this made up for it.
7. Is a VW campervan hire worth it for a holiday?
Even though we had terrible traffic on day one (took us 7 hours to do a 3.5 hour journey from Portsmouth, via Brinkworth, to Bridgend, Wales) and torrential rain to deal with, we still had a great time.
We went to Bridgend, the Gower Peninsula and Cardiff for a three-day adventure with our friends who have a VW Transporter, a dog and a baby. It was great to just sit around and relax with everything we needed in the van, TBH.
Being able to hire a VW campervan means you get to try it out without the stress of buying one.
8. What is the toilet situation in a VW campervan hire?
Ha! Well, our hired VW campervan didn’t have a toilet – as most won’t.
We stayed at campsites for the first two nights and so used the toilets there. Most car parks we used had toilets too. I did have to do one nature wee when we stayed at a Park4aNight car park on the final night and the toilets were closed – this wasn’t a problem for me. I go to festivals and have travelled Africa, I have no shame in that department.
You could get a portable toilet though. Our friends we were travelling with had some sort of portable toilet in their camper which I never actually saw but they seemed to like
Or you could use Travel Janes and Travel Johns, which I’d probably do next time in emergencies. They’re bags with crystals in that you can use on the go, I’ve used them before at festivals. Absolute dream when it’s lashing rain outside and you don’t want to go out to the toilet.
Hire a VW transporter camper and you’ll have to work out what you’re comfortable with when it comes to the toilet situation.
9. Are there any other rules for driving a VW campervan?
Nope. Our campervan did 70mph+ so we were fine on the motorway, it fits into a normal parking space so that was great – not like the motorhome we had in the Peak District – and it was less than 2 metres high so we didn’t have a problem with tunnels at all.
10. What should you pack for a VW campervan trip?
As little as possible, but take what you need.
We had plenty of room in our campervan really. Ben had packed two normal sized rucksacks with what he needed, and I had a sports duffel bag. We were only going for three days so this was fine.
When we were driving the hired VW campervan we had it all in the boot and a bit on the seats, and when we were stationary we could use the top shelf inside to put it all on so the bed was clear for sleeps.
Thanks to this shelf I was pretty happy with how much space we had in the campervan.
Few tips for extra things to bring on your VW campervan holiday: mini speaker, chargers, sleep mask, snacks and slider shoes for inside the van.
11. How do the electrics work in a VW campervan hire?
As you drive you’ll be charging the leisure battery which powers the fridge and the lights. When you stop you can connect to the mains electrics at the campsite using the cord, which will cost a few pounds extra, and this will power the sockets.
Don’t leave lights or the radio on for too long while you’re stationary or this will drain the battery – just like in a normal car.
12. Any other tips for hiring a VW campervan?
– Confirm the locking system – we didn’t have central locking and had to lock each door separately.
– Turn your lights off! They don’t beep at you when you leave them, like our Golf does. We had some super helpful guy shouting at us in Asda that we’d left them on. Easily done.
– Hire a VW transporter camper if you want an easier ride.
– Hire a vintage camper van if you want to be the coolest though.
– Go with friends for a super fun experience.
13. What do I need to rent a VW camper van?
All Volkswagen camper van hire companies will be different, but the rules are usually something along the lines of…
- Aged 25+
- Full UK driving license
- Driving license verification – easily attainable from this page on the Government website.
- Scanned & emailed copy of your license
- 2 x recent utility bills
- A refundable deposit
You’ll need this for each person that intends to drive.
14. Who’s allowed to drive the campervan?
I’d strongly recommend you pay the extra to get two named drivers with your campervan hire. It just gives you options if one of you is having trouble, or you hit traffic. We paid an extra £30 to have two drivers for the 4 nights and 3 days – well worth it!
15. Get a pop top campervan
I loved the pop top on our recent campervan rental. It meant that we were small enough to fit under bridges and car park height restrictions, but with me being 5 foot 9 and Ben being 6 foot 2, we could stand up inside comfortably to sort our bedding out and all our stuff.
If ever I was to buy a campervan, I’d definitely get one with a pop top for this very reason.
Any more questions about VW campervan hire?
If you have any questions about hiring a VW campervan that I haven’t answered here, let me know!
Oh, and check out these great gifts for campervan lovers too.
I know that hiring a VW campervan for the first time – whichever model you go for – can be pretty stressful. Once you’ve hired a VW a few times you totally get into the swing of it, so just give me your questions below.