The open road. A hand-drawn map to someplace awesome. A co-pilot with a killer playlist and bottomless snacks. Welcome to van life. Camping and road tripping via campervan is seeing a resurgence in popularity, as more people skip clunky, gas-guzzling RVs but still want to sleep somewhere more comfortable than a tent. The best part? You don’t have to buy one for a taste of the lifestyle, thanks to a proliferation of quality campervan outfitters across the country.
Vintage Surfari Wagons, Costa Mesa, California
Rent a restored vintage Volkswagen camper van from Vintage Surfari Wagons and you’ll be road tripping in style. Pick up your van at their Orange County headquarters and take a tour of the Pacific coast. The vans, with names like Van Morrison and Mad Maxx, are available from $129 a day and come loaded with a coffee press and cooking supplies.
Roadtrek Rental, Western U.S.
Perhaps you’re looking for a more upscale van experience. Check out Roadtrek Rentals, which rents Mercedes Roadtrek Sprinter Vans for $3,450 per week with pickup spots in over a dozen locations, from San Francisco to Salt Lake City to Portland, Oregon. Vans come with solar panels to power appliances without being plugged in, plus a hot shower, king bed, flat-screen TV, and optional concierge service to plan your road-trip itinerary and make you feel like you’re in a nice hotel—wherever you want that hotel to be.
Lost Campers, California and Utah
Considerably less expensive than other campervan rentals, Lost Campers prides itself on affordable, discrete (read: no loud paint jobs on the car’s exterior) camper vans with pick-up locations in San Francisco, Los Angeles, or Salt Lake City. Their stock of customized Dodge Grand Caravan, Ford E350, or Chrysler Town & Country vans, starting at around $50 a day, come stocked with a full-size bed, camp table and chairs, outdoor kitchen setup (including propane stove, ice chest, and cooking supplies), and 24-hour roadside assistance.
Westfalia Rentals, Canada and Washington
Westfalia Rentals has over 35 vans in their rental fleet, including Eurovans, 1980s-era Vanagons, and even VWs with Subaru engines for more power uphill. You can pick up your van starting as low as $109 a day in Victoria or Vancouver, BC, Calgary, Alberta, or Seattle, Washington, and head to points unknown.
Adventure Travel Sports Rentals, Golden, Colorado
Want a beefier rig for more off-road travel? Rent a Sportsmobile ($350 a day), a Tiger Bengal ($350 a day), or a 4Runner Trail Edition ($200 a day) from Adventure Travel Sports Rentals, a Colorado-based off-road van rental company. The vans come with pop-top beds, full kitchens, and plenty of clearance for rugged mountain or desert roads.
Dragonfly Vans, Missoula, Montana
Dragonfly Vans has 10 refurbished Westfalia camper vans available from $215 a day for road trips starting in Missoula, Montana. Owned by a professional VW mechanic, Dragonfly’s vans come equipped with all the camping and sleeping gear you’ll need. Opt for an upgrade for a standalone grill, a propane campfire in a can, or a bike rack.