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What Is the Least Expensive Way to RV?


Get our top tips for saving money on a campervan trip:

What Is the Least Expensive Way to RV?

  Class B RV Rental

July 2, 2024 What Is the Least Expensive Way to RV?

Many people who want to go on an RV adventure are on a budget and want to do so affordably. The least expensive way to RV is to rent a camper van, also known as a class B RV. These budget RV options are much more compact, fuel-efficient, and easier to store, maintain, and drive than larger RVs like class A or C, which lowers rental prices and saves you money.

At Escape Camper Vans, we have over 600+ affordable class B camper vans available for rent. However, before you choose class B RV rental, we want to help you understand how to plan your trip affordably and ensure that it’s the right decision for your needs. We’ll detail everything you should know in the rest of this article.

How to Travel Cheaply in an RV? 

RV travel can be a budget-friendly adventure with the right tips and strategies. While camper vans are an affordable vacation rental solution, there are still other ways to save money if you need to reduce your expenses further. Let’s review some tips to make cheap RV camping possible.

Tips for Saving Money on Fuel

RVs aren’t as fuel-efficient as a standard car, and high gas prices can significantly impact your RV travel expenses. However, some camper van models get higher MPG than others. The Ford Transit, T-350, E-150, and Jeep Sahara models we have for rent at Escape are some of the most fuel-efficient models on the market. They average about 15.5 MPG, and our more compact Jeep Camper gets up to 20 MPG.

Using gas price apps to find lower-priced gas stations can also help you save on fuel costs. You can also save on fuel by turning your vehicle off when you aren’t driving it. Plus, driving slower and steadier will help. Camper vans typically get the best gas mileage while traveling between 55 and 65 MPH.

Find Free or Low-Cost Overnight RV Parking Options

If you’re seeking the least expensive way to park your RV in the USA, several free or low-cost RV parking options are available in most states.

Many big box stores like Walmart, Cracker Barrel, Denny’s, and Cabela’s allow RVs to park for free for one night, which can be a good option when you’re on the go. These locations often offer free overnight RV parking, providing a cost-saving option for full-time RVers. You can also find truck or public rest stops to park an RV for free in most areas.

Lastly, review the prices of campsites where you’re traveling. You can often find barebones campsites for as cheap as $10-20 per night. Plus, you might snag better deals if you travel in off-seasons with less crowded campgrounds. Dispersed camping is another option to consider when looking for cheaper accommodations. They are free; however, you’ll likely need to arrive early to secure a spot.

Use Memberships and Discounts

Some campsites and rest areas with fees will have memberships that provide discounts to regulars, helping to reduce campground fees. Look for options like state park passes that will help you get cheaper prices throughout the year or season.

More Money-Saving Tips for RV Travel

Traveling in an RV can be a fantastic way to explore while keeping your expenses in check. Here are some additional tips to help you save even more money on your RV adventure:

Meal Planning and Cooking

One of the biggest expenses while traveling is food. By planning your meals and cooking in your RV, you can save a significant amount of money. Stock up on groceries at affordable stores and prepare meals in advance. Use the propane stove and refrigerator in your camper van to store and cook food, reducing the need to eat out.

Travel Off-Peak

Traveling during off-peak seasons can help you save on various costs, including campsite fees and fuel. Campgrounds are less crowded, and you might find better deals. Additionally, attractions and activities often offer lower prices during these times.

Reduce Utility Usage

Be mindful of your utility usage while traveling. Turn off lights and appliances when not in use, take shorter showers, and conserve water whenever possible. Reducing your utility usage can help save on costs associated with refilling water tanks and using propane.

Implementing these tips along with the strategies mentioned earlier will ensure that your RV adventure remains budget-friendly and enjoyable.

Is It Financially Smart to Live in an RV with RV Insurance?

When you’re wondering about the cheapest way to live in an RV, you probably also want to know if it’s smart financially to do so. The answer is it can be financially smart, depending on the RV life you’re seeking.

If you plan to travel frequently and move around a lot, living out of an RV for an extended time makes sense. However, you should consider the RV cost, including frequent repairs and maintenance. You can usually get long-term rentals for between $75-150 per night for sleeping space and transportation. Plus, most have amenities like kitchen equipment to cook meals, saving more money than eating out.

Additionally, having RV insurance is crucial for full-time RV living, and you should factor in the specific costs involved. That’s much less expensive than alternatives like renting hotel rooms, which usually cost $150+ per night. Not to mention, you still have to pay for transportation after that.

However, it might not be the top choice if you’re looking at stationary RV living costs when you don’t plan to travel much. In most states, you can usually find apartments for $1,000-2,000 per month, much cheaper than monthly RV rentals. In that case, you’re better off having an apartment and renting an RV when you travel. You can read more about how much a camper bus in the USA costs here.

What Is the Least Expensive State to Buy an RV in? 

You may also be looking for the cheapest RV for sale to lower your costs. RV owners often compare rental platforms and their commission and fee structures to find the best deals. Arizona, Florida, and Texas are the least expensive states in which to buy an RV. These states all have a low cost of living and some of the lowest taxes on vehicle purchases, making RVs more affordable.

Even if you aren’t in these states, you still have options. Escape Camper Vans offers affordable rentals in 11 locations across the U.S., so you have many options.

How Can I Afford an RV? 

When looking at RVs you can buy, you might notice that many are expensive. New camper vans sell for $100,000+, and used ones generally go for $60,000+. Finding a long-term and affordable RV park can also help manage costs if you plan to live in your RV. Most dealerships will offer loans and financing options, so you don’t have to put all that money down at once.

However, if you want the cheapest way to get an RV, renting is usually the best choice for most people unless you plan to travel all the time for many years. Rental companies will take care of things like storage and routine maintenance for you, so you can pick one that is ready to go when you want to travel. That way, you don’t have to worry about all those expenses.

Get an Affordable RV Rental at Escape Camper Vans

Escape Camper Vans offers several affordable RV options, making accessing a great travel vehicle easy. An RV trip is a fantastic, affordable travel option, providing budget-friendly entertainment for the whole family. Plus, our vans are reliable, backed by excellent service, and come with several helpful features, including:

  • Queen size beds
  • Propane stove
  • Refrigerator
  • Sink with a water tank
  • Extra storage
  • Foldaway tables and benches

Are you ready to plan your trip? You can reserve yours today at one of our 11 locations across the U.S. or contact us with any other questions.

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