HAVE ONLY ONE NAVIGATOR
Whether the navigator is the co-pilot or a passenger sitting farther back in the RV, it's important to establish one navigator to determine the location of the next rest stop or gas station. More than one navigator can lead to indecisive driving and, in a vehicle that calls as much attention to itself as an RV, that's the last thing you want.

WOULD WE DO IT AGAIN?
Six of seven said yes or maybe. One traveler noted that the only way she would consider another RV adventure is if it doesn't include a trip as harrowing as that stretch of road leading into the mountainous Telluride, Colorado.

What's it like driving an RV at night on a narrow, winding road in the rain? The driver at the time said, "When we get there, we can build a house with all the bricks I'm @#&!$ing." The rider who said "no" found RV-ing a worthwhile one-time experience, but that the issues with parking and low-lying trees, for example, were too much of a hassle. Although we now feel more comfortable with a 36-foot RV, a smaller vehicle might suit us better next time.

ONE LAST TIP
If at all possible, relax and take it slow. Our sojourn at the Grand Canyon was markedly shortened by the looming knowledge that we had to be at work in Southern California early the next morning. Whether you try a full-size RV and sleep in it every night or rent a smaller RV for a cross-country trip, RV-ing could be the travel option you never knew you had.

Where To Rent
Searching for the perfect rental RV can be overwhelming, but if you know where to look, you can save lots of money. A few Web sites connect RV owners directly to prospective renters, cutting the dealer from the process and potentially saving you thousands of dollars-if you find a trustworthy owner. With this method, we negotiated a great deal renting an RV in good condition. For some, a dealer premium is worth it. A dealer will have newer models that are more likely to be maintained in pristine mechanical condition.

  • sharemycoach.com
  • 1rvrentals.com
  • privatemotorhomerental.com

    Our 36-foot RV rental cost $1000 for seven days (negotiated from $1200) plus 25¢ for every mile after the first 100 each day (from a quoted 32¢). A comparable RV from a major RV rental company-before paying for mileage-would cost more than $2200 in our area. Call your insurance provider for a coverage price; ours cost $165. Don't forget gas: about $1000 for our journey. Various other charges include a cleaning fee (our RV was clean enough that this was waived) plus charges if you return the RV without a full tank of fuel or propane.