A small RV rental will change the way you vacation this summer. You’re the person who hears the call of the open road anytime you get on the highway, even if you’re just commuting to work or running errands. You know the allure of blacktop divided by double yellow lines. It’s as American as apple pie, catching fireflies in the summer, and loving the Simpsons. The road trip is about saying yes to the unknown and chasing the horizon line. But just because you want adventure doesn’t mean you have to commit to buying an RV. With a small RV rental, you get independence, an unforgettable road trip, and none of the hassle of owning a huge vehicle. Check out our other post on the benefits of renting a camper.
A quick overview of the RV classes, before we get into specific models. There are three main classes:
- Class A: up to 45 feet long, the most extensive floor plans of any RV class. Usually, diesel-powered, with weak fuel economy.
- Class B: smallest of the three types. Excellent maneuverability and fuel economy.
- Class C: the best of both worlds. Large interior built on a truck chassis that’s comfortable to drive. While still small, Class C offers more extensive floor plans and sleep more people than Class B.
Another category of campers, usually pulled behind a truck or SUV, is the travel trailer. They’re often available for rent, but because they require a heavy-duty vehicle to tow them, we don’t discuss specific travel trailer models.
Best Small RVs for the Family
- Thor Motor Coach Chateau: sleeps 8, full bathroom, full kitchen.
- Coachman Freelander: sleep 6, climate-controlled, flat-screen tv, electric awning.
- Volkswagen Rialta Eurovan Camper: sleeps 4, climate-controlled, great gas mileage.
- Sunseeker 2290s: sleeps 6, electric awning, full bathroom.
- Coach House 4×4 Diesel: sleeps 4, easy-to-drive, off-roading, USB outlets.
Even small RVs can accommodate the entire family with space to spare. Everyone, but kids, in particular, will enjoy road trips more when they’re freed from passenger seats, relaxing in comfortable furniture in the RV, taking a nap in the bed, and even using the bathroom while on the road.
Thor Motor Coach Chateau
For combined family vacations or just big families, this 28-foot Class C motorhome sleeps eight. Kids will love sleeping in the bunk over the cab, with curtains over the windows so early morning light in the campsite won’t wake them. The sofa and dinette also fold away for additional sleeping for kids and their friends.
The Chateau is one model where the kitchen offers not only a propane stovetop but also a full oven for baking while camping. The Chateau feels more like a traveling apartment than an upgraded campsite with a full-size shower in the bathroom. This RV is a perfect way to turn kids ambivalent about camping and outdoor enthusiasts.
Six people can sleep inside this small Class C RV, with a queen-size bed in the back, cot over the cab, and two fold-out sleeping areas in the living area. It’s an ideal camper for three-season camping and camping in the rain. The air conditioning unit and a propane heater keep the interior comfortable regardless of what the weather throws at you.
Off-season RV camping is great because popular national parks have more campsite availability. There are plenty of ways to get cozy inside a small motorhome like the Freelander after exploring the great outdoors. Most models come with at least one flat-screen TV so that you can screen your favorite movies, and an electric awning to provide shelter outside from rain.
Volkswagen Rialta Eurovan Camper
Great for a small family visiting both cities and parks while on vacation. The Class B Rialta drives like a minivan, and gets up to 20 miles per gallon, making it a more affordable rental option on the road. It’s also easy to park the 21-foot RV on the street in either residential neighborhoods or in the city. Two full-size beds accommodate up to four people, both made by folding out the furniture in the camper.
Riding in the back of the Rialta is like traveling in your living room for longer road trips. Kids can hang out at the dining table, or on couches, heat food in the microwave. During the summer months, kick on the generator and run the camper’s air conditioning unit for a cool place to escape the heat.
Great for larger families or to bring along friends, this small Class C RV sleeps six. Its 25-foot length drives with ease in crowded parking lots and campsites, but it’s still spacious inside. The Sunseeker shines at campsites, where you can extend the outdoor awning for extra shade, and take advantage of the outdoor shower.
While on the road, kids can buckle up around the U-shaped dinette and play games, eat, or just watch the passing countryside. At night, fold down the dinette for extra sleeping space. There’s a queen-sized bed in the back, along with a full-size shower and bathroom. Above the driver’s cabin, there’s a small additional bunk for several kids or a single adult.
Coach House 4×4 Diesel
This small Class B motorhome is excellent for first-time RV drivers. It’s easy to navigate around campsites, and you can even take it down dirt roads for more secluded sites thanks to the 4×4 and high clearance. The 27-foot motorhome sleeps four, with a queen-sized bed for parents and an electric twin-sized folding sofa bed for kids.
The bathroom has a small separate shower, and with the plentiful electric outlets and USB hookups, your family is all set for glamping. The living area has leather couches and seats, complete with seat belts for everyone to hook in while you’re on the road.
Best Small RVs for Impromptu Adventures
- Winnebago Eurovan Weekender Camper: sleeps 2, plenty gear storage, great gas mileage.
- Mercedes Sprinter 4×4 Camper Van: sleeps 3, 4×4, versatile amenities.
- Mercedes/Winnebago Itasca Viva: sleeps 6, full bathroom, kitchenette, off-grid capable.
- Jeep Gladiator Camper: sleeps 2, 4×4, rooftop tent, plenty of gear storage space.
- Winnebago Travato: sleeps 3, combination bathroom, kitchenette.
- Sportsmobile Campervan: sleeps 2, butane stovetop, outdoor shower.
If you’re more adventurous, there are RVs designed for going off-road and chasing scenic overlooks. Imagine in the middle of a lush forest with mountain views, or the sound of the Pacific Ocean lapping just outside the window. If you’re always looking for the path less taken, these are the small RVs that can get you there.
Winnebago Eurovan Weekender Camper
You’re ready for adventure, and you don’t need a lot of extra bells and whistles the Weekender is the way to go. It comes with a queen-size bed, and just enough extra space to provide real versatility. You can sleep additional people with the fold-out benches, but it’s one Class B with options for storing gear like mountain bikes and climbing equipment. Or leave the bench seats for enjoying cozy time indoors on poor-weather days.
The top of the vehicle pops up for added headroom while moving around inside. There’s a propane heater and one small fridge that runs off the camper’s battery, for a little added luxury during camping trips. It may not have as many amenities as other models, but it gets excellent gas mileage and can get you to the trailhead or campsite that others may not.
Mercedes Sprinter 4×4 Camper Van
If you know for sure you’re leading a dirt-road, what’s around the river bend sort of lifestyle, then your small RV rental must have 4×4 capability. They designed this one, the 19-foot Sprinter, for adventure, by raising the front more than the back for exceptional climbing ability. While it’s the smallest Class C RVs made by the manufacturer, it still sleeps three, so it is perfect for solo travelers, couples, or families with small children.
Once parked, the Sprinter provides all the necessities for camping. They’re infinitely customizable so that each rental will offer unique features. Besides a full-size bed, a Sprinter van may have a refrigerator with a sink and convection burner for making simple meals inside the camper. There may also be a bathroom with a conversion shower, dinette table, fold-out second bed, or space for gear.
Mercedes/Winnebago Itasca Viva
This 24-foot turbo diesel Class C motorhome doesn’t need an RV park, a parking lot, or access to water or electricity. You get all the comforts of home wherever the road takes you. Plus, because it sleeps 5-6 people, you can bring friends, bring pets, or just enjoy a little extra space as a couple. It comes with propane, a generator, a full bathroom, and a kitchenette. It’s the RV for adventurous people who don’t want dirt in their morning eggs or to dig a hole before they go to the bathroom.
Jeep Gladiator Camper
Go off the grid, and don’t look back with Jeep Campers. Think of a Jeep camper as car camping-plus. For one thing, the Jeep can help you access places that other small RVs, and let’s face it, some cars, wouldn’t get you to. The Gladiator features a truck bed that organizes all of your camping gear, including camp stove, propane tanks, and potable water jugs. All Jeep Campers, including the Gladiator, have a rooftop pop-up tent area, which includes a memory foam mattress and additional storage space for luggage and clothing.
If you want to pick up your rental and just go, the Travato might be the way to go. You don’t need an RV park or a Class-B license. It’s just 20-feet long and drives like a minivan. It sleeps three, so it’s ideal for a couple or a family with small kids who will embrace the adventure of sleeping in cramped quarters. The bathroom comprises a toilet and a combination shower, and while the amenities may not be as spacious or luxurious as home, they add considerable comfort to any camping experience. The kitchenette has a sink, microwave, and refrigerator, plus a gas range stove for indoor cooking.
A small Class B motorhome as eager to discover the unexplored as you are. The van’s equipped with amenities like butane stove burners, a refrigerator, and a microwave. An exterior awning provides shade in scorching summer months and protection from rain during off-weather days. You’ll love the pop-up top of the van, which adds headroom to the interior and an additional sleeping space. Mesh windows allow extra airflow through the whole van. While there’s no bathroom, there is an exterior shower.
Best Vintage RVs
- Dodge Sportsman CampWagon: sleeps 4, kitchenette, hand-pump sink.
- Champion UltraStar Motorhome: sleeps 6, kitchenette, full bathroom, climate-controlled.
- Volkswagen Westfalia Camper: sleeps 2, manual transmission, external shower.
- Aero Cruiser 23: sleeps 4, full kitchen, full bathroom, rooftop deck.
You can time travel at the same time you’re traversing states, by traveling in a vintage RV. While they can’t off-road, they’re often less expensive than their more contemporary counterparts, with similar amenities. For a fun weekend getaway, and scroll-stopping Instagram photoshoots, a vintage RV is one way to go. Most owners upgrade the interiors and features and keep their vehicles well-maintained, which allows renters to experience vintage style with modern amenities.
Dodge Sportsman CampWagon
Whatever this small Class C RV lacks in amenities, it makes up for in sweet vintage style. You can snag models from the sixties which come in fantastic colors with chrome finishes. Their owners love them and have kept them running for the past 50 years so that you can expect top quality, if not modern features. The Sportsman has a small collapsible dinette with seating for four that turns into a full-size bed. The impressive kitchenette has a refrigerator, propane stovetop, and a hand pump sink for washing hands and dishes.
Champion UltraStar Motorhome
Have we all agreed on the eighties being cool yet? Because if you need extra convincing, the superb style of the 30-foot Champion UltraStar should do it. It’s spacious, with room to sleep six, perfect for a retro bachelor[ette] party. The kitchenette has everything you need for cooking, stovetop, oven, and a full sink. Extend the awning for shade during the day, or turn on the RV’s air conditioner to escape from the heat of summer. The bathroom includes an indoor shower, and there’s tons of storage throughout for luggage, outdoor gear, or rainy day activities.
Volkswagen Westfalia Camper
This small 15-foot van comes with a manual transmission, so renters must have experience driving with a clutch. Every rental will have original interior features, but many will have updated upholstery and mechanical parts. The pop-top lets in fresh airflow from outside and allows extra headroom in the kitchenette area. Many Westfalia models have an awning over the sliding door, which keeps the interior cool during the summer and provides protection against rain and inclement weather. Standard features of the 15-foot RV are a range stove, sink, and exterior shower setup.
Aero Cruiser 23
Vintage style and luxury in this 23-foot Class C RV, it’s perfect for families trying to recreate the road trips of their youths. It sleeps four, with a queen-size bed in the back of the camper, and a dinette which folds away into an additional twin size bed. Home chefs who prefer to travel with all the kitchen features will appreciate this Class A-sized kitchenette. Most models include a four-burner stove, with oven, refrigerator, and some may have included a microwave in a renovation. The bathroom comes with a toilet and shower. The rear of the Aero Cruiser has the classic RV ladder, where you can bring camp chairs to enjoy the rooftop deck and the views from wherever you parked for the night.
Best Small RVs for Travelling with Pets
- Forest River Forester: sleeps 6, climate-controlled, freshwater tank, off-grid capable.
- Jayco Greyhawk: sleeps 10, full kitchen, full bathroom, television.
- Dodge RoadTrek: sleeps 2, off-road capable, off-grid capable.
- Disco Dodge ProMaster: sleeps 3, stowing toilet, external shower.
Traveling with pets can be a real hassle. Whether flying or driving, it’s tough to find quality accommodations that allow your furry family member to stay. Plus, there’s always an additional fee. Instead of stressing, you can rent an RV spacious enough for Fido or Whiskers to get comfortable and road trip with you. Or pack up the gear and the pets in a small Class C motorhome and head for the mountains where you’ll be spending all your time outdoors, anyway.
Forest River Forester
This modern Class C RV has plenty of space, which sleeps six humans, or two humans and four dogs. The dinette folds away to create additional sleeping areas, perfect for furry companions that aren’t welcome in your bed. It has an easy-to-use furnace and AC unit, so when you leave your pets alone in the RV, they’ll feel comfortable regardless of the temperature outside. The Forester also has a large freshwater tank, so you can fill up dog bowls even when you’re off the grid without worrying about draining your supply. There’s plenty of cabinet space for storing treats and dog food overhead.
This massive 31-foot Class C motorhome has more than enough space for the whole human and furry family. It sleeps ten (people) and has everything you love about home, including a shower, microwave, oven, and stove. There are also TV’s throughout recent models, so you can leave on a set for anxious pups while you visit attractions during the day or explore places that aren’t dog-friendly. The massive Greyhawk is like bringing a small apartment on the road with you.
The RoadTrek is for bandana-wearing dogs who can’t wait to leap out of a car and start their next adventure, and their humans. It isn’t as spacious as some other models listed here, but it’s more maneuverable. Plus, it can sustain a couple (plus dogs) for up to three days of dry camping, away from hookups. The dinette folds away to turn into a queen-size bed, with plenty of space leftover for dog beds.
Disco Dodge ProMaster
The best part of the ProMaster may be the pop-up top, which adds headroom to the kitchenette and interior, but also provides a sleeping area surrounded by mesh windows where you can enjoy the fresh air from your campsite. The bench seats fold down into a secondary sleeping area, perfect for your furry friends. There’s a small stowing toilet, but also an exterior hot shower for rinsing grime off both humans and dogs after a day adventuring before heading into the van for the night.
Transform your Travel with a Small RV Rental
Check out our resources for RV camping posts for more ideas to plan your small RV rental trip.The best part about renting a small RV is you can test-drive the experience of RV travel and camping, or even using travel trailers, all for a few days at a time. You can figure out what features are a must for your future vacations and what amenities to look for in potential campsites. Small Class C and Class B RVs aren’t as challenging to drive as you may fear, many of them feel just like being behind the wheel of a minivan or RV. Now that you know some of the most popular models available for rental, you also know what the floor plans of Class B or Class C RVs offer. If you’re able with your current family vehicle, consider renting a travel trailer. While they have fewer amenities, they’re also less expensive, offer better fuel economy for road trips, and give you a comfortable place to sleep and cook while camping. But after you’ve experienced the comfort of a small Class C RVs, maybe the purchase of a used RV is even in your future?