Hire before buying....

Discussion in 'The Beginner' started by BAtoo, Mar 9, 2015.

  1. BAtoo

    BAtoo Read Only Funster

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    Hi,
    I'm new here & my first post other than a "Hello".
    After years of sailing & cruising (& other changes in my life) I've decided to part with the boat & am thinking about a motorhome to tour for holidays.
    Uncharacteristically I'm thinking of hiring before buying to make sure we both enjoy it. I'm Suffolk based and I'm thinking of hiring somewhere in Kent and going to France for a week in April - does that sound overly ambitious?
    I've driven large vans (Sprinters etc) many times & driven in Europe a lot. I'm also used to holidaying & living on a boat in a fairly confined space. My French is good enough to get by for holiday matters.
    My OH is less experienced in these things and is a little apprehensive... especially about the French loos!!!
    I've had a quote from Motorholme hire and it seems OK - has anyone used them/know them or aware of their reputation?
    So is this a daft idea?
    Thanks in advance.
    Roger
     
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  2. Lenny HB

    Lenny HB Funster

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    If you hire a van in the UK and want to take it across the channel they will charge silly money for additional insurance.
    We hired a couple of times before buying, hired in Germany as costs are far lower & no cross boarder restrictions on insurance.
     
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  3. TUCANO

    TUCANO Funster

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    Roger,

    Not a daft idea at all although I can't speak about hiring because we just bought outright as we knew we were going to enjoy it.
    Having camped around in France previously we headed there, and got as far as Gibralter even though I had never driven more than a family car.
    You have to be a little adaptable shall we say to the french standards of hygiene around Aires etc but it soon becomes a way of life.

    Have fun.
    Norman.
     
  4. NickNic

    NickNic Funster Life Member

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    We hired from them once before we bought our first van. No problems at all.
     
  5. hilldweller

    hilldweller Funster Life Member

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    Don't know about your firm but John's Cross who sponsor this site are as genuine as it gets.

    There is a small danger, you hire one and don't like but if you'd hired a different one you would have been sold on the idea.

    It's essential to sit in as many MHs as you can when choosing, there are so many subtle differences.

    Good luck, boats are good but MHs get you to many more places.

    PS French loos, some of them, are grim but you'll be taking yours with you. And even with no French you'd survive just fine. Go on, do it.
     
  6. gillnphil

    gillnphil Funster

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    Good idea to try before you buy. You could buy a cheapie to test the concept, We did and sold it a no loss, they hold their price.
    Now on our third van.
    Phil
     
  7. BMStewart2004

    BMStewart2004 Funster

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    We hired for a fortnight in France last year from Landcruise who were fine. Weather was poor the first week and it certainly focused our attention on what we didnt like with the dinette layout. We are hiring again this year having decided on the layout (Bailey 730/Autotrail Tracker RB) and will hopefully be in a better place when the time comes to buy next year. As already mentioned go to dealers/show and sit in as many as you can.
     
  8. Puddleduck

    Puddleduck Funster Life Member

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    I think Motorholme are private owners who hire out using Motorholme as an agent? No entirely sure though.

    If you are intending to go to France I would suggest you hire in France and get a LHD.

    Hiring first is a great idea though.
     
  9. emmitdb

    emmitdb Funster

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    Yee'll be dooooomed I tell you!:eek:

    We hired a clapped out, worn out knackered old 'van in NZ and as soon as we got back we spent a chunk of the kids inheritance on a 'van.

    Don't do it.;) You'll enjoy it so much you'll be throwing money at a 'van as soon as you get back.(y)(y)(y)
     
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  10. jaygee

    jaygee Funster

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    Few years ago we had a similar dilemma, so bought an old (93) hymer to give it a go, kept it for 2 years toured europe sold it on for more than we paid. Gave us a good grounding to then buy another to suit our needs.
    Im in Harwich so just across the water from you and i see from your avatar that you are a fellow cyclist?
     
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  11. Nirvanauk

    Nirvanauk Funster

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    We hired from Abacus on the south coast a couple of times. Knew what we wanted and bought something totally different. Useful company though.
     
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  12. Nick W

    Nick W Read Only Funster

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    We hired exactly the van we intended to buy, to try it for real. We hired from West's in Essex. It was the perfect opportunity to prove it was a valid choice. Would recommend hiring before buying to anyone. You hear so many folk changing their new van after a short while because they didn't do sufficient research. We will collect the new Tribute 670 next week.
     
  13. BAtoo

    BAtoo Read Only Funster

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    Thanks all for your replies.
    Cant get the hang of multi-quotes so a series of answers...
    I'm not quite in the position to buy just yet (few weeks hopefully/maybe) & we have some hols booked so feel it's the time to give it a try.
    I'm not worried about French facilities - I've worked in Eastern Europe on farms as an adviser so I've used worse!! And we'll have our own on board & there's plenty of hedges...
    I'll give Johns Cross a call but they don't have a low-profile 2B listed on their website which is what I want to try as that's what I think we'll be after.
    I'm sure throwing money at a 'van is no worse than throwing money at a boat....
    Yes, I'm a cyclist - the avatar was last year on a ride from Cherbourg to Esjberg for charity. Unfortunately this year I'm finding it hard to do as much as I would like without the impending challenge.

    Thanks again - I'm sure I'll be back :)
     
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  14. DanielFord

    DanielFord Funster

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    That's who we used, hired from them many times, £90 surcharge for 2 weeks in Europe, I didn't think that was bad. Anyway, we ended up buying our van from them, so we won't be hiring from them now.
     
  15. sedge

    sedge Funster

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    Re the loos ... yes there are naff ones wherever and whenever BUT 9 x out of 10 the public/ café loos in France these days are 'English' toilets not the holes in the ground they used to have almost everywhere.

    Seats however, aren't universal !

    Sometimes on campsites or on motorway rest areas with a row of doors the first however many will be 'footmark' ones and the last couple, English ones. Loo paper - not always. Go prepared with a couple of tissues in the pocket, in case.
     
  16. BAtoo

    BAtoo Read Only Funster

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    Lack of seats wont be a problem as I don't think she ever uses them except at home - something her Mother told her I believe !!!!:D
    Good point about the location of the "English" loos in a row - we'll see if it holds.
    I expect the 'van loo will get a good trial.......
     
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