© Foto: Maridav - stock.adobe.com
What needs to be taken into account to make the right decision?

Renting or buying a motorhome?

Before you go on vacation with a home on four wheels, a whole host of questions arise. Which vehicle type is best for me? How big should the motorhome or campervan be? Which models can I drive with my driver's license? What kind of bed should I take? Which mattress? Bathroom or outdoor shower? Rear garage or bike rack? Longitudinal seating group or round seating group? Big or small kitchen? These are just a few questions that both newbies and experienced motorhome owners ask. But the most fundamental question is: Do I want to buy a motorhome or do I prefer to rent it?

      A fundamental question

      For anyone who has not yet decided whether to buy or rent a motorhome or a camper van, the motorhome couch provides some tips and suggestions here.

      A major investment

      Of course, the question of whether to buy or rent a motorhome or a campervan is primarily a question of one's wallet, but there are a number of other reasons in favour of one or the other.

      Prices for a new vehicle start at around €40,000. There are hardly any limits upwards. According to the CIVD, Germans spent an average of €73,829 on a new motorhome in 2020.

      Alternatively, you can also look for a cheap second-hand vehicle. Due to the high demand, prices are at a relatively high level at the moment.

      The advantage of buying a new motorhome is, of course, that you can choose and configure it exactly according to your wishes. But first you have to get an overview of the huge range of brands, models and model variants. That takes time. Currently, many manufacturers have long delivery times, especially if you have special requests, such as a special colour.

      © Foto: Osterland - stock.adobe.com
      • Foto: Osterland - stock.adobe.com

      When will the purchase be profitable?

      Once you have found your desired vehicle, many people will have a long-lived dream come true. Searching for the right companion in itself is already part of anticipation.

      The general rule is that a motorhome is only worthwhile if you use it for at least 6 weeks a year.

      In addition to the acquisition costs, the invoice must also include the ongoing costs for tax, insurance, wear and tear, repairs and the parking space at home. These amount to around €2500 per year.


      For many, however, these considerations do not matter, because you are happy to invest regularly in your lifelong dream. This includes ongoing improvements and embellishments to your own motorhome. Maybe later you will treat yourself to a hydraulic lift support system or a high-quality navigation system. A motorhome is a wonderful hobby in itself.

      Another argument for buying one is that smaller motorhomes can easily be used as second cars.

      © Foto: Alexander Limbach - stock.adobe.com
      • Foto: Alexander Limbach - stock.adobe.com
      © Foto: contrastwerkstatt - stock.adobe.com
      • Foto: contrastwerkstatt - stock.adobe.com

      Buying makes spontaneous

      With your own motorhome you not only always have your own bed and individually adapted equipment with you, you can also drive off spontaneously at any time. This means you can go on short weekend trips more often and usually use the motorhome more often than would be the case when renting it.

      © Foto: Thomas Reimer - stock.adobe.com
      • Foto: Thomas Reimer - stock.adobe.com

      Renting is cheaper

      In principle, renting around € 90-150 per day is usually cheaper than the one-time and ongoing costs for your own motorhome. However, you have to pay attention to other costs that may arise, for example, for additional equipment and cleaning. On the other hand, you save yourself the purchase of a bike rack or a camping table with chairs, for example, and you don't have to store them at home.

      If you decide to rent, you can also always drive a current and almost new model. In addition, you don't have to have a guilty conscience if you want to go on a hotel vacation in between.

      © Foto: Schlierner - stock.adobe.com
      • Foto: Schlierner - stock.adobe.com

      Renting saves time

      Going on vacation with a rented campervan or motorhome requires a certain amount of advance planning. In the high season, the supply of suitable vehicles can become scarce. It is therefore advisable to reserve as early as possible.

      On the other hand, if you have a holiday region in mind that is further away from home, you can only take over the motorhome at a rental station on site. You can also travel there by train or plane. This saves time on the mere journey if you want to concentrate on the target region. For many professionals or families, this is a crucial point.

      Furthermore, you save a lot of time when renting, because you don't have to worry about workshop visits and repairs, logging in and out, or the Technical Control Board.

      © Foto: Pexels
      • Foto: Pexels
      © Foto: Pixabay
      Trial rentals

      Before you decide to buy and make such a large expenditure, you should first test a certain motor home for a longer period of time. As a beginner, you should of course also find out first whether one of the holidays with a motorhome is at all! Rental is a perfect way to do this.

      Buyers often test several motorhomes before deciding on a model. Here you can find out which bed is the most practical, which seating group is the most comfortable, which bathroom floor plan is the most efficient. Gradually, all the questions you had at the beginning can be clarified in this way.

      The equipment is important

      You have to get used to every motorhome first. The dimensions differ significantly from those of a conventional car. Driving backwards without seeing through a rear window is the greatest challenge for many. Make sure that a reversing camera is installed in your rental vehicle.

      Very few motorhomes have parking sensors (PDC), which most of us know from conventional cars. The first rental motorhomes with Alpine parking sensors are currently being upgraded by our rental partners.

      To reach your destination safely and relaxed, you need a modern navigation device with camper software. An Alpine navigation system is optimally adapted to the vehicle and takes the height, width, length and weight of the motorhome into account when calculating the route. You will also be made aware of speed restrictions, transit bans and regional specificities in many European countries. During route planning, parking spaces for motorhomes that are on or off your itinerary can be selected and controlled directly. Parking space data from park4night is available on the Alpine system for this purpose.

      To make your holiday even more fun, there are motorhomes with a sound system from Alpine. You won't want to give up your rental vehicle!

      Motorhome Profiles | © ALPS ALPINE Europe GmbH
      • ALPS ALPINE Europe GmbH