Is It Cheaper to RV or Stay in Hotels? (Save More Money)

renting an RV vs staying in a Hotel

Published Date: July 15, 2021

Last Updated on March 23, 2023 by Camper Front

What do you think, is it cheaper to RV or stay in hotels?

This is the question every traveler had to debate on before going on their favorite trips.

Although, according to Tripsavvy and Condor Ferries, “it is cheaper to RV than staying in hotels.” They claim you can even save up to 20% to 60% of travel costs when you rent or have an RV compared to staying in a hotel.

But we’re going to look into that in-depth so you can compare notes and make an informed decision – one that is free from your emotional baggage.

Is it Cheaper to RV or Stay in Hotels (Shocking Alternative)

Since RVs have turned out to be the new norm in the travel industry, most RVers will readily say: “RVing is more economical.”

And it is likely to be true because it cuts the cost of vacation flights, rental cars or Ubering around, accommodations, and meals out, especially with kids or picky eaters.

Although, it depends!

A large family may want to skip the chores to simply ​relish and revel in the tasty luxurious lifestyle of exotic hotels, even if it’s a pricier alternative for them.

The itinerary also counts. While you’ll be entertained through your RV’s window for free; your hotel bills will be at its perk considering the sceneries and location. However, large cities are not RV-friendly.

As you can see both options have a buying list of advantages and disadvantages. So it all depends on your preferences, as well as the circumstances.

But since it’s a fair debate, we are all participating. While I’m the debater presenting different scenarios of renting an RV vs staying in a Hotel, you all will be the panel of judges.

And in the end, you might even have a change of taste, even if you have a greater liking for one alternative over the others.

So without further ado, let the debate begins

The Average Costs of Renting an RV

Is It Cheaper to RV or Stay in Hotels

If it’s a class B or C or trailer and depending on the host:

  • Class A: $350-$450/night (newer) or $175-$275/night (10+ years or older)
  • Class B: $200-$350/night (newer) or $100-$200/night (10+ years or older)
  • Class C: $225-$400/night (newer) or $150-$200/night (10+ years or older)
  • Travel Trailer:$125-$200/night or $50-$125/night (10+ years or older)
  • Gasoline: $560 (3500 miles, 15 MPG, $2.4 gallon)
  • Meals: $120
  • Parking fees: $120 ($20 per day) depending on the RV Park

Note: Some firms are willing to give out their RV at a 20% to 60% discount. But if you own an RV, kudos! Because you’re just cut down 80% of your expenses.

The Costs of Staying at a Standard Hotel

Is It Cheaper to RV or Stay in Hotels?

Base on The standard hotel night stay is based on 2019 data – Statistica

  • Hotel room: $131 to 350 per day
  • Meals: $700 ($100 per day) If you’re eating cheaply for one person. So imagine when you are eating exotic meals with your family.
  • Gasoline: $300 (3500 miles, 28 MPG, $2.4 gallon)

Staying at a High-End Hotel

For those with high taste, a typical 5-star might do.

  • Sweet: an average cost of $884 to $2,396 per day or lower
  • Meals: $180 to 400 per day with a discount–it depends
  • Gasoline: $300 (3500 miles, 28 MPG, $2.4 gallon)

What about the Experiences?

Hotels give you a luxurious experience where you’re served and pampered. Aside from that includes:  

  • 24/7 security and service are guaranteed
  • Awesome amenities
  • Variety of dining options
  • Reliable internet connection
  • Cleanliness all the way

However, RVing provides the chance of staying at some really cool places with even fantastic sceneries and experiences –and many are for free.

You wake up surrounded by the wilderness. The tune of the waves in the background. The slow crushing and swelling of sea sounds are naturally calming.

Furthermore,  you can Indulge in campfire cooking, stay on (BLM) land, or boondock in a secluded spot off the beaten path, or stay at many Walmart or shopping center parking spaces. And the awesome part of all this is that it costs a BIG FAT $0.

If it’s a rental you want to focus more on modern small RVs  –those less than about 25 feet in length.

The reason for this is that they are the MOST cost-effective. And these types of mini modern RVs are not only economical but also comfortable for couples or even small families.


So for you is it cheaper to RV or stay in a hotel?

Comment your thoughts below.

But generally, when thinking of traveling (with family or friends), what usually grips the minds of most travelers is the substantial cost of transport, accommodation, and meals – which can be discouraging knowing fully well the cost will triple.

Both alternatives offer you ample opportunity to live efficiently without compromising on your trip experiences. But it just depends on the situation at hand.

For me, since I’m a camper who is budget-friendly and lusts for adventure. Therefore, vacationing in an RV provides me with the opportunity for a perfect getaway.

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