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Young man and women sitting on beach in front of Apollo rental campervan

Alex Fern
/ Categories: AU Blog

Beginner's Guide for Your Campervan Hire.

First time hitting the road in your camper hire? This guide will leave you feeling like a seasoned pro.

Two vanlife travellers admire the beachside scenery next to their Apollo Motorhome


Rule 1: Learn the lingo

Don’t know the difference between a campervan and a motorhome? Then the first step is to find your van-style. This will depend on your group size - are you going solo, travelling as a couple or bringing the whole family? It will also depend on your budget and travel needs - are you wanting a mobile home with all the creature comforts or simply a bed on wheels? You’ll be speaking in dimensions and about fuel consumption faster than you can transform your van’s dining table into a bed. Before taking off, take note of heights and weights to ensure you have enough clearance for bridges, car parks and petrol stations.


Rule 2: Enjoy planned spontaneity  

Since you’re officially travelling in a hotel on wheels, you can enjoy the freedom and flexibility of setting your own holiday pace, rather than rushing to make reception hours or chasing the sun to meet check-in. Plan to have some flexible nights so that if you are loving a spot you found, you can hang around longer than planned and really soak it up. This also allows you to adapt to the weather, if you arrive at what was supposed to be a glorious sunny beach spot and it's pouring rain, you can wait it out until the weather (hopefully) improves! 


Rule 3: Handle the van like a pro

Start your road trip by knowing your motorhome inside and out. It’s just like driving a supersized car, but there are a few quirks when it comes to highway driving. Since you’re carrying an extra tonne or two, you’re not going to be as zippy on the highway as you’re used to. Be courteous to other drivers and always be sure to double check steps and awnings are fully retracted before setting off. To learn all the features of your temporary home, watch our how-to videos on our Youtube channel. You can also find detailed vehicle descriptions under "Vehicles" in the main menu of our website. 


Rule 4: Embrace the social scene

If you were worried about fitting into the van community, all fears will be quelled the minute the handbrake goes on in a holiday park or campground. Armed with a few conversation-starters like “where are you going?” and “what are you driving?”, making small talk with your neighbours quickly slides into story-swapping around the campfire. The company of like-minded travellers is just one perk of travelling by motorhome, and you'll find that fellow van-travellers and non-van-travellers alike will have their curiosity piqued by your set up. Whether at a campground, a highway rest stop or even a Maccas car park, be ready for plenty of friendly encounters. 


Rule 5: Remember to breathe

The best part of a road trip holiday is that the journey is all part of the adventure, so slow down and enjoy the ride.  Embrace the adventures and occasional misadventures as part and parcel of this unique way of travelling. There's plenty of wonderous experiences to have and astounding places to see, so savour the sights by being present in each moment. Swap smartphones for storytelling, queue audio books and playlists, and create personalised games that will later become family folklore. The open road awaits! 


A dad and his two kids sit in camping chairs outside their Apollo Motorhome at a holiday park



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