Head Down Under and yap about bloody Australia, New Zealand and the Pacific Islands. Determine the best place to buy a car, how to get a working holiday visa and the best route for travelling the east coast of Oz and around the Kiwi Islands.

To buy or to rent, that is the question

blkrosesneverdi23

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  • Added on: January 19th, 2011
Hi,
I was wondering if anyone had campervan experience!! I’m planning to go to Oz in Feb. I’d like to stay until May. The original plan was to get a job and an apartment and leave it at that. But then it started flooding….I’d like to help out on the East Coast with the disaster clean-up and relief effort so I want to stay mobile so that I can still go out an work during the week and do clean-up on weekends. (I’ve lived on the Gulf Coast of the US all my life, went through almost every major disaster in the last 20 yrs, including Katrina, so this isn’t my 1st rodeo as it were :D ) I was thinking about buying a campervan. I’ve found some really nice ones that have just about everything I need but my question is, do you think at the end of my trip I’d be able to sell it. I can buy one for about $3,600 where as renting seems to be around $5,000. If I could get at least some of the money back, I think it’d totally be worth buying. But I’ve read that certain times of the year, it’s nearly impossible to sell. Is May one of those times? Any thoughts…..

Mama-to-many

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  • Added on: January 20th, 2011
We bought TWO campervans in Germany and sold them both six months later.
Are you sure about $3,600 to buy? Sounds cheap - if so, it's cheaper than renting even if you don't recoup any money and leave it on the side of the road!
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blkrosesneverdi23

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  • Added on: January 20th, 2011
That's true. So now should I be worried that there must be something really wrong for it to be $3,600?!?! :)
Another question - has anyone done the campervan thing from say Sydney to Brisbane? I have driven it but we stayed in motels. We passed some campegrounds that looked nice.
Byron Bay and Lennox Head were really lovely, has anyone been able to get part-time or seasonal work around that area? Just curious.
Thanks for the reply Mama-to-many!

cascada

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  • Added on: January 21st, 2011
I'm not sure about Oz specifically--my experiences are from New Zealand. But! If you have found a campervan that is in the "traveler's circuit," i.e. it's probably been bought and sold a dozen times before you, then $2500-5000 (NZD) would be about right. Yeah, it's really cheap, but these vehicles trade hands once or twice a year. Now, if that's the price for a brand-new vehicle just off the lot, I'd say run for the hills!

As long as the vehicle checks out ok (if you don't know mechanics yourself, it's worth paying a professional to kick the tires and peek under the hood), then buy instead of rent. Definitely definitely definitely!

blkrosesneverdi23

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  • Added on: January 22nd, 2011
Thanks for the advice! All the campervans are older then 96. and I'm pretty sure they were in the traveler's circuit! I feel pretty good about it! I don't know anything about vehicle checks but I know people in all the areas I'm looking so I may enlist some help.
Thanks for the experienced advice!

gettingready

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  • Added on: January 29th, 2011
Definatley buy. Some rentals are not allowed on gravel.

Price sounds abuut right

have you looked on Gumtree? Its the best place for on selling of campers.

LilaBear

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  • Added on: February 26th, 2011
I think we need to clarify the term 'campervan' here. Mama-to-many, you had two what I would call motorhomes. While they do get called campervans too, that term also gets given to caravans. $3600 is still a damn cheap caravan too. The only camper-anything I can think of that normally goes for around that price is a camper trailer (ie. a trailer with a tent that unfolds from it, but that's probably not what the OP is referring to).

If it is a motorhome, for that price, I'd be making sure you have someone who knows what they're doing to have a look at it. I don't care how many times it's been bought and resold. Even a regular car for that price is often a piece of junk.

busman7

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  • Added on: February 26th, 2011
LilaBear wrote:I think we need to clarify the term 'campervan' here. Mama-to-many, you had two what I would call motorhomes. While they do get called campervans too, that term also gets given to caravans. $3600 is still a damn cheap caravan too. The only camper-anything I can think of that normally goes for around that price is a camper trailer (ie. a trailer with a tent that unfolds from it, but that's probably not what the OP is referring to).

If it is a motorhome, for that price, I'd be making sure you have someone who knows what they're doing to have a look at it. I don't care how many times it's been bought and resold. Even a regular car for that price is often a piece of junk.


Your qualifications for making such a broad assumption are?
http://blogs.bootsnall.com/busman7 | http://wwwlasbrisasplayasandiego.blogspot.com
"I started out alone to seek adventures. You don't really have to seek them - that is nothing but a phrase - they come to you." Mark Twain

gettingready

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  • Added on: February 28th, 2011
ila bear is correct. This is the Australian terminology:

I think the OP should be looking for a camper van (VAN being the key word, it will be a toyota or mitsubishi VAN with e a bed and maybe small fridge/ water storage and not much else. Thes will be about $3000 on gumtree. Ten years ago there were Kombi's, but they are pretty rare now.

A motorhome will be much more, and will have tables, more beds, bulit in sink etc

A camper trailer is towed behind and folds out into a large tent

A caravan is a caravan. You wouldn't wat to buy one for $3000. More a family option

Both a camper trailer and a caravan will require a tow vehicle.

The best and cheapest option, and most common for backpackers. , is a campervan.

BTW the Sydney to Cairns route is not the best part of Oz. At least if you have uyour own campervan you'll be able to get away from the tourist trail.

Best beaches are in SW of Western Australia. Best snorkelling is Ningaloo reef, also in WA

RyuKamagata

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  • Added on: March 30th, 2011
blkrosesneverdi23 wrote:Hi,
I was wondering if anyone had campervan experience!! I’m planning to go to Oz in Feb. I’d like to stay until May. The original plan was to get a job and an apartment and leave it at that. But then it started flooding….I’d like to help out on the East Coast with the disaster clean-up and relief effort so I want to stay mobile so that I can still go out an work during the week and do clean-up on weekends. (I’ve lived on the Gulf Coast of the US all my life, went through almost every major disaster in the last 20 yrs, including Katrina, so this isn’t my 1st rodeo as it were :D ) I was thinking about buying a campervan. I’ve found some really nice ones that have just about everything I need but my question is, do you think at the end of my trip I’d be able to sell it. I can buy one for about $3,600 where as renting seems to be around $5,000. If I could get at least some of the money back, I think it’d totally be worth buying. But I’ve read that certain times of the year, it’s nearly impossible to sell. Is May one of those times? Any thoughts…..


Kudos to you for your desire to help out your fellow man and woman! I actually like your plan; given the high cost of apartment rentals in most cities in Australia, your camper van should pay itself off within several months. 8-)

Brooke vs. the World

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  • Added on: April 27th, 2011
If you plan to buy, please get the vehicle checked thoroughly beforehand. A couple friends of mine just bought a van a couple months ago, one of the cheaper backpacker kind, to just be met with a broken engine a week later. They then doubled the price of the van when getting it fixed and have yet to sell it off now that their road trip is over.
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JainaSJedi

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  • Added on: May 22nd, 2011
Brooke vs. the World wrote:If you plan to buy, please get the vehicle checked thoroughly beforehand. A couple friends of mine just bought a van a couple months ago, one of the cheaper backpacker kind, to just be met with a broken engine a week later. They then doubled the price of the van when getting it fixed and have yet to sell it off now that their road trip is over.


This happened to me in New Zealand. I was looking for a car in Queenstown in early April and bought a 1992 Subaru Legacy off a couple who was leaving. I took it on a test drive and checked the typical stuff out; and it all seemed fine. Everything was great until I drove it over the Crown Range (one of the routes from Queenstown to Wanaka), and it overheated on me. I took it to a mechanic in Wanaka who found that it probably had a blown head gasket. Luckily, they fixed it up enough to get me to Dunedin, where I have a job until July. But now, the car is ready to die. It needs a new engine, which is going to cost more than what I paid for it. So now I am looking for another car. I might just rent one for a while to get my touring done. I am probably going to be cutting my time in NZ down because of this.

So, moral of the story is that while it's a good idea to get a car checked out by a mechanic before you buy it; there may be other problems that are not going to show up until later. You are taking your chances when you buy a backpacker car.

busman7

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  • Added on: May 22nd, 2011
If the car overheated enough to blow a head gasket, the problem lies with the driver who wasn't paying attention. Not the car!
http://blogs.bootsnall.com/busman7 | http://wwwlasbrisasplayasandiego.blogspot.com
"I started out alone to seek adventures. You don't really have to seek them - that is nothing but a phrase - they come to you." Mark Twain

yongmorgan

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  • Added on: May 24th, 2011
While buying a second hand vehicle one is always at a risk of making higher payment than what actually the vehicle costs. Later on the person may have to pay in bulk for its maintenance and some unforeseen circumstances. So personally I'm not in favor of buying a used vehicle.



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