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Conversion Van Rental the Fun Way

Growing up we never had the luxury of riding in a conversion van.  We knew a few people that had them, but I had only seen the inside of one until I was 23 years old.  My first trip in a conversion van was awesome and when I was ready to rent a van to travel across country, the first thing I looked into was a conversion van rental.  Let me tell you why.

That first trip was a three hour trip to a camp ground.  I remember how impressed I was when I entered the van.  And I remember how comfortable the back seat felt as it seemed to mold around my back and legs.  It felt like I was sitting in a recliner in my living room.  The chairs swiveled, reclined, and had armrest.  The ceiling was high enough for us to stand up without hitting our heads.  Usually I get some amount of car sickness when I ride in any kind of vehicle, but in this conversion van I felt great.  I remember talking, laughing, eating, and just having loads of fun without any sickening feeling.  It was great.

Well, when I investigate getting a conversion van rental I was disappointed to find that the major rental companies don’t rent conversion vans.  This is because they are too expensive to buy and maintain.  That’s when I remembered another ride I took in a large comfortable vehicle.

This time we were heading to the State Penitentiary to minister to prisoners.  A good friend of mine had just assumed the note on a Ford Expedition.  Prior to this ride, I never been in any luxury SUV.  I had no idea how much space was in the inside of this thing.  The chairs and ride were just as comfortable as the conversion van.  The best thing was that rental companies do rent luxury SUVs out.  So, if you are looking for a conversion van rental and can’t find one, my advice would be to rent a luxury SUV.

10 Passenger Van Rental or Not?

If you are looking for a 10 passenger van rental, you have three options.  There are a few factors involved in choosing the right option.  You can rent a 12 passenger van, you can rent two smaller passenger vans, or you can rent a mini bus.  The larger passenger van rental vs the two smaller van rentals is one you should decide on early.  The first factor deals with safety.  The second is about organization.

Anytime you set out on an adventure you want to be safe.  This holds true when you are renting a 10 passenger van, a larger passenger van, or a smaller van like a 7 passenger van rental.  Smaller vans are easier to handle and generally safer.  They will perform better in all conditions.  They also have better rollover ratings than their larger counterparts.  You should check for the specific make and model you are going to rent to find out the specific crash ratings

The larger passenger van seems ideal because your group can be together and the two smaller van option requires you to have two drivers.  Sometimes groups want to stay together when they are traveling.  When we were in China we had a small group and always stayed together when we were traveling from one city to the other, but on some of the day outings we would split up into small groups.  We didn’t need vehicles for moving around the cities and towns.  We just used taxis and the subway system in major cities and we walked in smaller towns.

Two or more vehicles can provide you with the ability to have different groups go to different locations.  This can be ideal because not everyone wants to go to the same place everyday.

A mini bus rental, in my opinion, is the best option for groups larger than 8.  It will provide you with safe travel, allow you to stay together, and they are affordable.

Which every way you choose to move your group of 10 passengers, please be safe.

17, 18, 20 Passenger Van Rental Considerations

There are a good bit of people looking for 17, 18, and 20 passenger van rentals.  Our research has shown that the best vehicle to rent, if you have more than 9 passengers to seat, is a small bus.  There are several reasons you should rent a bus instead of a van for a large group of passengers.

Buses are designed to carry large groups of people.  The wheel base is wider on buses.  And in most cases, they have dual tires in the back which provide better traction are safer when there is a blowout.  Buses are also designed to be better in crashes than large vans.

Most large vans are designed with a thin shell on the outside and very little fortification for rollovers.  This can cause the exterior to crumble in a crash and passengers can be seriously injured.  A bus does not guarantee that no one will be seriously injured if there is a crash, it only greatly lessens the possibility.

To our knowledge, there are no manufactures making 17 – 20 passenger vans.  Do not be tempted to overload a smaller van.  This is very dangerous and could make it very hard for the driver to control the van.  In addition, the heavy weight could cause the tires to become overheated and blowout.

A small bus will allow you, your friends, and your family to travel in comfort.  It will also provide you the opportunity to travel together and arrive safely.   If a bus is not an option,  you should look at renting a few smaller vans.  Smaller vans will provide the safety you need and will also give you a few vehicles to drive around your destination.  This is what we did in Hawaii and it worked out great.

We had two vans.  It was probably the best decision we could have made.  On some days we went as a group to the beach or some other place.  On other days we would split up and take the two vans to different places.

Large Passenger Van Rental

Here are somethings to consider if you are looking for a large passenger van rental.

Large passenger van sizes

  • 12 passenger van
  • 15 passenger van
  • 17, 18, 20 passenger vans (Rent a small bus)

Safety

Large passenger vans are known to have safety concerns.  There are some steps that can be taken to mitigate the potential danger.  If possible, it may be better to rent a bus or several smaller vans.

  • Do not overload the van with people or supplies.
  • Check the tire pressure before setting out and periodically throughout long trips to make sure the tire pressure is correct.
  • Maintain good tires.
  • Outfit the rear wheels with dual tires.  This will help distribute the weight evenly.
  • Do not speed.

 

 

16 Passenger Van Rental

Some years back I took a trip to China.  We headed all the way out to the Northwest to the city of Urumuqi in the Xinjiang province.  From Urumuqi we hired a driver with a 16 passenger van rental to take us across the desert to Altay, which is about 60 miles from Mongolia.

The van was like a 16 passenger van you would see at an airport.  It was a dual wheeled mini bus rental.  It was clean and rather comfortable.  The morning of our ride to Altay, just before leaving, we were told that it would be a 14 hour ride.  It was one of the longest rides I had been on in any vehicle; topped only by the airplane ride to China and a train ride across China.  And it was one of the most interesting rides I have ever taken; only beaten by the ride back from Altay to Urumuqi in a 8 passenger van rental.

So, we loaded all of our things onto the passenger van and headed out for our 14 hour ride.  The beginning of the ride, as we left Urumuqi, was on a nice, new highway.  The scenery was of rolling hills and mountains in the distance.  It seemed that this would be a long, but bearable ride through the desert.

About an hour or so into the trip, we noticed the road had a lot of people working on it.  It wasn’t the kind of repair work you see in the states.  We would see one guy with a pick axe and then a half a mile or so later we would see another guy with a wagon full of pieces of the old black top.  Then we would see two guys shoveling new black top rocks into odd shaped pot holds that probable had been created by a guy with a pick axe.  This one or two guys and sometimes girls continued for miles.

Somewhere along the way we stopped seeing workers and just began to see massive amounts of pot holes.  Some of them looked like they had been filled in, but many had nothing but air and dirt in them.  The ride in the 16 passenger van began to become very rough.  As we drove, the road became thinner and thinner and the pot holes worsened.  Then, to our surprise, the road ended.  There was only desert in front of us.

At this point we thought the drive might turn around; maybe we made a wrong turn somewhere.  But it was not the case,  the drive continued as if he knew where he was going.  As we rode in the sand, we saw cars stuck in the distance to the right and left as sand devils spun all around us.  It was a very surreal scene.  We drove for two hours in the sand.  And then it was like the drive had a homing device setup to locate the other end of the road, we had found the other side of the highway.

We finally made it to Altay, a beautiful little city set in the hills.  Our driver and 16 passenger van rental had gotten us there safe.  It’s a trip I will never forget.

15 Passenger Van Rental

If you need a 15 passenger van rental, you will want to read this story before you make your decision.  My mom used to drive a 15 passenger van as the bus for my elementary school.  We would get up very early in the morning and set out to pick up all of the other students in a 10 mile radius from the school.  We didn’t really like it, but it was the way my mom paid for us to attend private school.

As we got older, we changed schools and my mom stopped driving the 15 passenger van.  And if we had boat loads of money after those early years, my story about a passenger van would end here.  But, that is not the case.  You see there was a time when we should have went to a local rental place and ordered a 15 passenger van rental and we didn’t.  No, my dad, bless his heart, he had different plans; and now that I am older and understand money more than I did then, I understand why he did what he did.

We would take little trips every now and then, but they were just an hour or so away.  This only required that we bring some clothing and a few toys because the campgrounds had plenty of equipment and activities for use to do.  One Summer, my parents decided that we were not going to take the usual one hour drive to our favorite place, but we instead where going on a twelve hour excursion.  Now I knew we didn’t have the vehicle for that kind of journey and thought that renting a van like a 15 passenger van rental would be perfect for our family.  Boy, was I in for a surprise when I learned of my dad’s plans.

My dad was a builder, and engineer of sorts.  He worked in carpentry and construction most of his life.  He also like to tinker with inventions.  So, his modifications to the old van that he purchased from a guy in the neighborhood shouldn’t have a shock to me, but they were.  First, as he drove the van home, he notice that there were many air leaks in the body of the van that caused a high whistling sound.  The van had formally been a 15 passenger van rental, owned by a rental company and bought by the owner who sold it to us.  He, the previous owner, ripped the seats and interior out to take the van from a 15 passenger van rental to a cargo van fitted for construction.

He used it like this for six years; banging and denting the body up with all of his tools, lumber, and equipment.  What my dad had purchased was the remnant of a battle worn 15 passenger van rental combined with a work truck.  So, his first task was to seal up all those leaks.  My dad, being the master at modification,  went to work.  I still remember the first time I saw all of that expanded yellow foam all over the van where the 15 people used to sit and enjoy there ride in its rental days.  To me, it looked like yellow lava had oozed out of the crevices and hardened into rock.

Now, like most people would do, my dad tuned the engine, had us wash the the outside, and then began to load it starting from the back.  It was loaded with luggage, toys, a barbecue pit, bikes, baseball equipment, and various other things we need for our two week stay away from home.  As you would expect, we helped him load everything in to the van.  What became a lingering question in my mind was, “Where are we going to sit?”  There where two captain’s chairs in the front for my mom and dad to sit in, but none for me and my brothers.  There was only one full row where the 15 passenger van seats used to be and a three feet by three feet hole on the side of all of our stuff.

Before I go any further,  you have to take into consideration that this was before many states had instituted mandatory seat belt laws, and most people felt that riding with out a seat belt was relatively safe.  Now back to the story.  In a 15 passenger van rental, the seats are bolted down the floor for safety.  You would think, and I would say you were right in thinking so, that we would have gotten a 15 passenger van seat and bolted that sucker to the bottom of the van.  Well, my dad did what any red blooded American with ingenuity would do.  He took our folding lawn chairs, stuffed one into the hole among our things and put the other three between the front seat and all of our things.  He then weaved a strap through each of them and secured to the side of the van.  We rocked and swayed our way all the way to that mountain cabin many miles away from home.  I can still remember it like it was yesterday.  My dad has gone home to be with Jesus now, but I will never forget his version of a 15 passenger van rental and our trip across country.

15 Passenger Van Rental

P.S.  My advice to you would be to cough up the dough and get a 15 passenger van rental.  It will be well worth the money and a whole lot safer than the contraption we used.

Truck Rental Unlimited Mileage

Choosing to get a truck rental unlimited mileage is going to save you a lot of money if you are moving across country.  Truck rentals com in a variety of sizes from small, big enough for a one bedroom apartment, to very large, big enough to move an entire house.  Whatever you are moving, an unlimited mileage truck rental will give you the best value.

Various forms of truck rentals

Trucks can be rented in three various ways.  You can rent a truck with unlimited mileage.  A second method is to rent a truck with a pay by the mile policy.  The third method is to pay by the hour for your truck rental.

Truck Rental Unlimited Mileage

An unlimited mileage truck rental allows you to pay one price and drive the truck as much as you want.  The good thing about having unlimited miles is that it lets you go over you estimated miles without any extra fees being tacked on.  Let’s say you have calculated you move to be between 350 to 400 miles.  If you have gotten the numbers right and don’t deviate from the route, then you may be able to save by paying for the exact mileage.  But let’s say there is some construction on the highway you planned to take and you don’t find out about it until you are sitting in traffic and being detoured to an alternative route which will add 5o more miles to your route.  If you have an unlimited mileage truck rental, you will not have to worry about the extra miles.  If you are paying by the mile, you will probable have to fork out some extra money.

Truck Rental Pay by the Mile vs Unlimited Mileage

Contrast getting an truck rental with unlimited mileage with a pay by the hour contract.  When you pay by the mile, you have to calculate the distance you are moving and then pay for the exact miles you are going to drive.  If you go over your pre-purchased miles you will have an additional fee to pay when you return the truck rental.  Paying for too many miles, on the other hand, will cost you also.  If you calculated your drive would be 500 miles and then you only drive 400 miles, you will have paid for 100 extra miles.  The over payment under most pay by mile contracts is non-refundable.  With an unlimited mileage truck rental you would be safe.

Unlimited Mileage Truck Rental vs Pay by the Hour

Pay by the hour truck rental does not compare to an unlimited mileage truck rental when you are talking about moving across country.  Pay by the hour truck rentals are good for doing local moves or picking up something from a local store that you want to deliver yourself.  Pay by the hour rentals are better compared to pay by the mile truck rentals and both are well suited for short moves.

A truck rental unlimited mileage is best for a move across country.  It gives you the liberty to adjust your route, whether you are detoured because of construction or you want to make a stop at a theme park.

Moving Out of Parents House Checklist

Moving out of your parents house can be different than moving out of your own place.  This is because you usually don’t have many of the things you will need in your new place.  Here is a checklist for moving out of your parents house.  We also have a moving out of your parents house checklist printable pdf.

Toiletries

  • Toilet Paper
  • Towels
  • Soap, Shampoo, and Conditioner
  • Toothbrush and toothpaste
  • Floor mats
  • Shower curtain
  • Blow dryer

Furniture

  • Kitchen table and chairs
  • Sofa
  • Bed and Bedding (Sheets, Blanket, and Pillow)
  • Desk and chair

Cleaning and Maintenance

  • Mop and bucket
  • Sponges
  • Floor cleaner
  • Multipurpose cleaner
  • Toilet cleaner
  • Duster
  • Vacuum

Personal

  • Clothing
  • Deodorant

Miscellaneous

  • Tool box with assorted screwdrivers and wrenches
  • Flashlight
  • Matches and candles
  • Air Freshener
  • Food and drink
  • Alarm clock
  • Telephone
  • Computer
  • Books

Use this checklist to help you prepare for your move out of your parents house and remember, they will always be your parents.  So, if you forget something, don’t be afraid to ask for their help.  They will understand.

Cargo Van Rental Unlimited Mileage

If you are going to rent a cargo van your best bet is to rent a cargo van with unlimited mileage. Cargo vans are good for moving small – medium rooms, small apartments, lots of boxes, and a whole array of nicknack stuff.

Different types of cargo van rentals

Cargo vans can be rented usually in three different ways. The first way is to rent it by the hour. The second way to pay by the mile. The third way is to rent a cargo van with unlimited mileage.

Rent by the hour

You will find that there are some companies that will rent by the hour and others that won’t. You will have to call around and see who offers this rental option if you are considering it. Renting a cargo van by the hour is convenient if you are only moving a few small loads between locations that are nearby.

Pay by the mile

With pay by the mile plans, you can have a straight x-amount of dollars per mile contract or buy the initial miles in a bulk lot and pay if you go over the limit. It is kind of like a cell phone contract. For example, you get 400 miles for $500 dollars, then each mile after that is priced per mile or sold in separate blocks. This method of renting a cargo van can be good if you know close to the exact amount of miles you will need to travel. The thing you have to be careful with is that you can over or under estimate. If you overestimate the miles then you will have wasted miles and money. The same is true if you underestimate, but many time the premium on the miles over is far greater than the price per mile in the initial block of miles purchased. This is purposely done so that you will buy more miles than need so that you don’t accidently go over. If you can find a contract that lets you roll into the next block of miles just by the occurence of the miles going over without incurring any penalty fees than this will provide you the most value. Also keep in mind that renting a cargo van by the mile works best if you are going to return the cargo van to the location you rented it from. If you are making a one way cargo van rental, then you will have to pay a premium for not returning the cargo van to its original location.

Cheapest way to move across the country

Moving across country can be very expensive. Let us show you the cheapest way to move across the country.

  1. Get rid of everything and restart at your new location.   Classified sites like craigslist make it easy to sell your larger belongings for a decent price.  You can have a garage sale or if you have time list some of your things on ebay.
  2. Rent a truck and move everything yourself.  A large cost of using a moving company is the labor to move everything.  If you have to move large items like furniture and a refrigerator, you could enlisted a friend to help and pay their way back.  Or you could find someone local that you could pay for the day.  Either way should be much cheaper than paying a moving company.
  3. Use a container/storage service.  These services drop a container off at your home.  You pack it and they pick it up.  They can store it in a warehouse for a time if you need them to.  This gives you time to setup other things before you have to unpack your home in your new location.  For long moves they can haul them on a truck or put them on a train.
  4. Sell all of the large stuff.  Pack your car with a much as you can and ship the rest through a parcel service like UPS or FedEx.
  5. Ship all of your books, videos, and other media via the United States Postal Service media mail.
  6. Tune up your car or truck before the move.  Changing spark plugs, air filter, and other parts as needed can be a huge money saver during your move across country.  You also get the added benefit of saving during your driving after the move.  Now that’s cheap.
  7. Look for gas prices online for the best prices all along the route you will travel.  Gas stations in the same area can have vastly different prices.  And gas along interstates can be very high.  Going of the highway just a little can save you  a lot.

Employ as many money saving and time saving tips as you can find. This will ensure you will experience the cheapest way to move across the country.