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Old 04-20-2013, 05:07 PM   #1
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2005 30' Land Yacht 30 SL
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Rental Cars

So, the wife and I have been talking about an RV for a long time. Now that we bought the LY, were thinking about toads and such. Does anyone rent a car at your destination or is it too much $. Are there other complications I am not thinking about? Thanks Chris
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Old 04-20-2013, 05:40 PM   #2
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Not having a MH, I never thought about it.

It is kind of like flying somewhere and renting a car. But if you are going to stay somewhere for a week or more, it may make sense—you'll save on fuel by not towing anything and save on maintenance for a toad that gets dragged around the country. I haven't rented a car in many years, but I suspect you'll have to research prices pretty carefully—they are more expensive on weekdays. Since I always rented the cheapest ones I could find, they were often pretty bad cars and were scary on expressways. After a while, my wife wouldn't let me do that anymore.

You'd have to check ahead of time where you can rent one—can you get a MH to the rental place? Highest prices are usually at airports and I wouldn't want to drive a MH into an airport anyway.

An interesting idea, but needs a lot of answers.

Gene
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Old 04-20-2013, 06:09 PM   #3
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Just got a good deal from Enterprise renting a small pickup for a week. Their shuttle will pick you up and drop you anywhere in their area, not just at the airport.
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Old 04-20-2013, 06:28 PM   #4
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I knew a guy who only rented his car. The monthly rate, plus unlimited miles was actually cheaper than owning one. Enterprise would come to his house every 6 month's with a new car. That was 15 years ago, prob. different nowdays though.
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Old 04-20-2013, 06:48 PM   #5
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So, the wife and I have been talking about an RV for a long time. Now that we bought the LY, were thinking about toads and such. Does anyone rent a car at your destination or is it too much $. Are there other complications I am not thinking about? Thanks Chris
Renting a car at places you plan to stay for a while might work out. but short stays of a day or two it might not be convenient to rent a car. Now you might say well for short stays I don't need a car. But it seems to always happen that that as soon as you get hooked up you find that you need something from the store or Walmart. A towed a car will give you more mobility in your motor home travels, but I can tell you this from just going through it, it's not cheap.

There are 3 ways to tow a car with the motor home, a trailer, a tow dolly or 4 wheels down with a tow bar. A trailer is big and you have to find someplace to put it when not in use. A tow dolly where the front tires ride on the dolly and the rear tires on the road is smaller but still has to be stored someplace when you arrive. Towing 4 wheels down has become the most widely used method of towing a car with a motor home. Its simple to hookup and unhook and nothing to store. The tow bar either stays on the coach with some models or folds up and stays connected to the front of the car. Both methods can be easily removed when not in use and stored in the coach storage compartments. So lets look at what you need to do if you decide on towing 4 wheels down. First find a car to tow 4 wheels down. You may already have a small car but is it towable, not all are. I have attached a dinghy tow guide that shows the towable cars for 2012 models and 2013 is about the same.

DinghyGuide2012.pdf

If the car you currently have is towable that's great. If not you may have to trade cars. Once you have a car then you need a tow bar such as Blue Ox or Roadmaster. You can check their web sites for different models and find the required "Base Plates" that have to be installed on the car in order to attach the tow bar. Once you have decided on a tow bar then you need to find a shop to install the base plates and making the wiring connection for the tail lights, turn signal and break lights. The next thing to consider is a braking system. Weight limitation on trailer towing including a car towed by your Motorhome vary by state. My 3000 lb Chevy Sonic is fine here in Texas which has a 4000 or 5000 lb limit before you need brakes but if I go to FL and pass through AL their limit is only 1000 lbs. In addition to these state requirements you need to consider the wear and tear on the motor home breaks if you tow with out brakes on the tow car. I decided to go ahead and get a tow car breaking system. There are a lot to choose from Blue Ox and Roadmaster offer brake system as well.

Everything on my 2005 Airstream 396 XL Motor Home and Chevy Sonic has been installed and I am towing 4 wheels down. It really is nice and easy and convenient. But as I said it's not cheap.

Good luck, do your research.
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Old 04-21-2013, 11:50 AM   #6
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So, the wife and I have been talking about an RV for a long time. Now that we bought the LY, were thinking about toads and such. Does anyone rent a car at your destination or is it too much $. Are there other complications I am not thinking about? Thanks Chris
We traveled from CA to UT last year, and instead of towing a vehicle as we had in the past, we rented an SUV once we got to our first destination, south of Salt Lake. It meant spitting up into 2 vehicles for the drive further south, but that was no big deal (I got the SUV with the AC!). For us, the rental worked very well for a long list of reasons. We rented from Budget and for the 11 days we had the rental out, it cost less than $400. We are looking at doing the same thing this year but are finding prices to be somewhat higher. Haven't made our rental reservation yet.
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Old 04-21-2013, 03:25 PM   #7
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Have been going through the same financial exercise here. We go to FL for 2 - 3 months in the winter from northern NY. While I would love to have the flexibility of the toad, the numbers really don't justify it. Staying in FL for the longer period, we'll rent this next year. We even figure driving a separate car to FL and the motorhome, is still cheaper than replacing our current car which can not be towed flat (all wheel drive Subaru) and the expensive of the tow bar, etc., etc. Good luck!
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Old 04-21-2013, 08:09 PM   #8
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Can't the Subaru be put in neutral? Some people disconnect the drive shaft, but on a front engine, that would be too difficult.

Gene
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Old 04-21-2013, 11:24 PM   #9
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There has been a change to the policy regarding towing of Subaru vehicles behind motorhomes. The following applies to 1990 through present model year Legacy (Including Outback), 1993 through present year Impreza (incl. Outback Sport), and 1992 through present year SVX.

Manual Transmission: All Wheel Drive vehicles can be towed with all four wheels on the ground or with all four wheels off the ground on a trailer but towing an AWD vehicle must never be attempted with only two wheels on the ground or two wheels on a dolly.

Front Wheel Drive vehicles can be towed with all four wheels on the ground in neutral or with the two front wheels off the ground.

Automatic Transmission AWD automatic 4 and 5 speed vehicles should not be towed with any wheels on the ground. The vehicle can only be towed on a trailer with all 4 wheels off the ground and the transmission in park.
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Old 04-22-2013, 09:05 AM   #10
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Bingo! We have automatic and it cannot be towed flat. Still would love to have a toad, but finding something in the 2000 pound range hasn't shown up yet. I see lots of larger motorhomes pulling Saturns, and Jeeps but I am not sure my old 300 LE would pull those.
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