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Old 09-29-2020, 06:34 AM   #1
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TOAD vs Rental Car...

I'm new to class A's... Will be taking our first trips in the spring...

Initially our plan is to get to our desired site, and if needed, rent a car for 4-5 days...

Curious why more folks don't just do that?

Many car rental companies will drop the car off for you...

At $30 a day for 5 days, you have $150 or so...

My guess is that dragging a car with you will cost at least that in gas, depreciation, wear and tear, etc...

I do understand that a TOAD is a convinience,and if you RV a lot, then it makes sense.

If you take 3-4 trips a year, then it may be less beneficial...?

When most of you started driving Class A's, how did you initially get around? Suggestions?

UBER?
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Old 09-29-2020, 06:43 AM   #2
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You won't know the toad is there as far as mpg OR drag... stopping, maybe, but you need a braking system anyway...
Have your ever waited on a rental car or uber out of a major metropolitan area ? I won't... and having a toad allows us to get into all the areas we want to get into, including the areas a rv CAN'T get into...

but the big thing is, what about any issues with coach in the middle of a long travel day.... having the toad available sure beats waiting on the side of the road after the wrecker drags your rv off

it's sorta like 4wd on a pickup... it's a nice to have, until you HAVE to have it...
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Old 09-29-2020, 06:43 AM   #3
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Welcome to the club!
You are going to get a lot of suggestions as everyone's situation is a little different. We only take a few trips a year but a towed car became a must. The first time you stop and get all setup for the night and then realize that you are out of something the car becomes pretty nice to have tagging along. We also use the car to go on sightseeing day trips when stopped for a few days. You can always start out without one and then get a feel for the need.
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Old 09-29-2020, 06:49 AM   #4
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When we blew a steering tire 40 miles from anywhere in North Carolina, we unhooked the toad and moved it well off the shoulder for safety and sat in air-conditioned comfort in 90+ degrees outside waiting for the tow. Also kept us out of the fire ants.
Renting is certainly a viable option depending on your type of RVing, just understand, towing is nothing to be afraid of. - Ron
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Old 09-29-2020, 06:50 AM   #5
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We did not have a toad for 3 years, for a couple of trips we went with just the MH but then my wife started following in a SUV. We are now on our 2nd season with a Wrangler toad.
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Old 09-29-2020, 06:53 AM   #6
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We camp in more remote settings and less in corporate campground settings. I just do not see renting a car working out for us.
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Old 09-29-2020, 06:57 AM   #7
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Nothing about owning a motorhome revolves around saving money or being financially practical. Get the toad and enjoy the added convenience!
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Old 09-29-2020, 07:05 AM   #8
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This question has been asked numerous times over the years. The answers won't change.

Is a Rental/Uber a viable option? Depends on where you camp, how much time you have to wait on others, how self-reliant you like to be, and how much sight-seeing/exploring you like to do away from camp.

A Rental/Uber doesn't check many of those boxes whereas a toad does.
Cost to tow/wear and tear is negligible but the cost to setup is there either with a tow dolly or baseplate/tow bar, etc for flat tow; but it really isn't a financial decision for most: it's a reliability/convenience decision.
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Old 09-29-2020, 07:06 AM   #9
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I think that in the beginning, if you don't want to tow a car, then don't. Depending on where you like to travel to, you'll find out quickly enough about rental availability in general, and if not having immediate availability of local transportation will be an issue/irritant or not. If you really get hooked on RV'ing like the majority of us have, I think your travel horizons will expand considerably which will be reason to reevaluate the option of pulling a toad. For sure, setting up for towing, whether via a dolly or 4-wheels down entails upfront investment, so experimenting in the beginning is a reasonable option. The most important thing is to get out in that RV. You'll figure things out pretty quickly once you do. Good luck and safe travels.

An Aside: When we bought our 1st MH in 2004, I purchased a used 1999 Saturn S300 sedan to be used as our toad. I bought it knowing it could be towed 4-wheels down. We used it as our toad and 2nd car until 2012 when I "sold" it to our youngest son as his 1st car. He used it for 3-4 years after until he could get one more to his liking. To replace the Saturn, I purchased (used) our present Pontiac G6 for our toad (4-wheels down) and also 2nd car. Between the two, I've pulled them as toads behind our MH's for nearly 80,000 miles in addition to the miles they've been driven as our 2nd car. I maintain them, certainly, but not specifically because I pull them behind out MH. I am careful to maintain alignment and do yearly preventative maintenance, but nothing really specific to towing. Just thought I'd add my experience as a data point for you.
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Old 09-29-2020, 07:16 AM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bpu699 View Post
I'm new to class A's... Will be taking our first trips in the spring...

Initially our plan is to get to our desired site, and if needed, rent a car for 4-5 days...

Curious why more folks don't just do that?

Many car rental companies will drop the car off for you...

At $30 a day for 5 days, you have $150 or so...

My guess is that dragging a car with you will cost at least that in gas, depreciation, wear and tear, etc...

I do understand that a TOAD is a convenience, and if you RV a lot, then it makes sense.

If you take 3-4 trips a year, then it may be less beneficial...?

When most of you started driving Class A's, how did you initially get around? Suggestions?

UBER?
First off the "We'll pick you up" has distance limit of a few miles from the rental office and if they have someone available. Same for Uber, Lyft or other car hire services. To far out and no one will respond to the request for a ride out and return. So unless you're camped somewhat close to metro areas it's really not an option.

A rental for $30 a day doesn't include all the other costs and taxes, particularly the long list of taxes. Your $30 a day will quickly escalate to $45 of more.

I'm a weekender with a two week summer vacation RV owner and had my daily driver set up to tow six months after bringing the RV home. I don't normally take the toad along for the weekend trips but like having the option if I choose. When towing I lose maybe 1/3 to 1/2 mile to the gallon. Wear and tear is negligible.
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Old 09-29-2020, 07:22 AM   #11
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Try it out. If it suits your style, just rent. We tried the rental thing once after getting our new RV but soon outfitted it like all our others in the past. Nothing like the comfort of another vehicle that is immediately accessible. Some hassles of course.
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Old 09-29-2020, 07:26 AM   #12
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Depending on where you camp you will quickly run out of patience for Uber or rental cars.

We started off in a Class C and still only lasted 8 months before we bought our first toad.

Having a car at your disposal is a good thing.

You might look at a vehicle that you can also use as an "everyday" drive that you can use when not camping.

Good luck.
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Old 09-29-2020, 07:28 AM   #13
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One of my concerns with the TOAD is licensing...

I'm in Wisconsin...

My understanding is once you get over 45 feet you need a commercial license... RV is 40 feet. I expect any car to be longer than 5 feet ...

In many states, the combined weight also puts you over a threshold, and all of a sudden you need a different license...
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Old 09-29-2020, 07:31 AM   #14
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That $30 a day doesn't include insurance.

You need to read up on rental car insurance and decide if having it makes sense.

Even with your own coverage, the rental company doesn't wait for litigation, They hit your credit card for its max.
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