Whether you’re looking to buy or rent a camper van, aka Class-B RV, the cost will likely play a role in that decision.
So, how much does a camper van cost to buy and rent? And what’s the true cost of ownership if you decide to buy?
Let’s break down the average cost to buy a new and used camper van, how much a camper van rental typically costs, plus cover the main (and hidden) costs of RV ownership.
How Much Does a Camper Van Cost?
A camper van costs between $40,000 for a used model to $150,000 brand new on average, with some new models jumping to over $250,000 (the Airstream Interstate, for example). As you can see, the price varies wildly depending on the RVs amenities, whether it’s new or used, the time of year you buy it, etc.
Here’s a snapshot of the current price ranges of Class-B camper vans for sale on CampingWorld.com.
They range from $67,999 for a used 2011 Roadtrek 190 Popular to $254,995 for a new Airstream Interstate 24X.
Plus, there’s the option to rent, which might save you a lot in up-front buying costs and the cost of ownership if you only plan on using the camper once or twice a year.
To get you a more accurate cost for all the different models of RVs out there, we separate them by new vs. used and then by type below.
And if you’re intent on buying a Class-B van, don’t skip the cost of ownership section below, as it will help paint a more accurate picture of how much that RV will cost for as long as you own it.
Let’s start with new camper vans.
How Much Is a New Camper Van?
On average, a new camper van will cost between $70,000 and $150,000. As mentioned above, some outliers cost over a quarter million dollars (the Airstream Interstate, for example), but the majority are cheaper.
So, how does a new camper van compare to the other types of RVs in price?
Related: How Much Does an RV Cost?
Average RV Cost by Type
|Type||Average Cost (New)|
|Class-A||$50,000 – $300,000|
|Class-B (Camper van)||$70,000 – $150,000|
|Class-C||$50,000 – $150,000|
|Travel trailer||$20,000 – $75,000|
|5th wheel||$35,000 – $125,000|
|Pop-up camper/Teardrop||$10,000 – $20,000|
|Truck Camper||$5,000 – $50,000|
Important: The figures in this table represent averages. You’ll find some models well outside these average prices. As mentioned above, the Airstream Interstate runs around $250,000! But, for your typical RV, you can expect it to fall within the ranges above.
Class-Bs are typically your smallest type of motorized RV, but because of their popularity tend to cost as much or more than Class-Cs (on average).
Now, let’s look at how much used camper vans cost.
How Much Is a Used Camper Van?
You can find used Class-Bs a little cheaper than new ones, typically between $40,000 and $115,000. Again, there are outliers, some used luxury camper vans can cost over $250,000, but the majority are much cheaper.
The type of used RV and the year are the two biggest factors that drive cost. So, let’s see how used Class-Bs compare to the other types of RVs on the market.
Average Used RV Cost by Type
|Type||Average Cost (Used)|
|Class-A||$30,000 – $175,000|
|Class-B (Camper van)||$40,000 – $115,000|
|Class-C||$30,000 – $75,000|
|Travel trailer||$10,000 – $50,000|
|5th wheel||$30,000 – $100,000|
|Pop-up camper/Teardrop||$2,000 – $15,000|
|Truck Camper||$1,000 – $30,000|
Used prices for RVs are all over the board, as so many factors can influence the price.
How Much Does a Camper Van Cost to Rent?
Renting an RV is a great option whether you want to test out the RV lifestyle before buying or want all the thrills of camping in an RV without the maintenance and annual insurance costs.
A camper van costs between $100 to $350 per night on average to rent. Remember that these are average prices and will vary depending on the amenities, size, time of year, length of rental, location, etc.
How does a camper van rental price compare to other types of RVs?
|Class A Motorhome||$175-$275 (10+) or $350-$450 (Newer)|
|Class B Motorhome||$100-$200 (10+) or $200-$350 (Newer)|
|Class C Motorhome||$150-$200 (10+) or $225-$400 (Newer)|
|Travel Trailer||$50-$125 (10+) or $125-$200 (Newer)|
|Fifth Wheel||$60-$150 (10+) or $150-$300 (Newer)|
|Pop-up Camper/Teardrop||$30-$100 (10+) or $75-$150 (Newer)|
Tip: Check out our guide titled How Much Does It Cost to Rent an RV for a complete breakdown of the costs plus tips to get the most out of your rental!
To get a true cost of the entire RV rental vacation, you’ll need to factor in:
- Rental insurance: This may be included in the rental cost if you use a reputable RV rental company like Outdoorsy. But, for extra damage or trip insurance, you’ll have to pay out of pocket.
- Price-per-mile: Some rental companies charge per mile you drive on top of the daily rental fee. For example, Cruise America charges .38 per mile driven.
- Fuel expense: You will need to pay for the gas used during the trip, and many rental companies require the tank to be full when it’s returned. Fortunately, Class-B RVs get the best gas mileage of all the motorized RVs. That said, depending on the cost per gallon of gas and the miles traveled, this expense can add up!
- Campground fees: Campgrounds can range from $15 to over $100 per night, depending on their location and amenities. If you’re looking to save money, you can always dry camp, as well, which is typically free (you’ll just have zero amenities).
It’s a good idea to plan for these expenses ahead of time to better understand the trip’s total cost before securing your rental.
Cost of Camper Van Ownership
When you buy an RV, whether new or used, the expenses don’t stop there. In fact, there’s something called the cost of RV ownership, which can add up to quite a bit.
So, what is the true cost of owning a Class-B camper van?
If you’ve owned an RV before, then you probably have a pretty good idea of all the extra expenses that come with ownership.
But, if you’re looking to buy your first camper van, here is a list of the potential costs of owning an RV that you’ll want to plan for.
Camper Van Maintenance & Repairs
Like any vehicle, an RV requires regular maintenance. But, an RV is also a house on wheels, so the amount of maintenance grows exponentially.
Some typical maintenance tasks can include:
- Tire replacement
- Brake replacement
- Battery testing and replacement
- Oil changes
- Propane tank refill/replacement
- Filter cleaning/replacement
- Coolant and wiper fluid checks
- Regular washing and waxing of the exterior
- Replace seals
- Sanitize the water tanks
- And so on
Plus, don’t forget about repairs. If something breaks, and things will break, you have to pay to either get it fixed or for the part and fix it yourself.
For example, water heaters will eventually go out and need to be replaced, window screens tear, tail lights burn out, etc.
So, is it expensive to maintain a camper van?
On average, RVers typically spend between $500 to $2000 per year on maintenance. But, if something major goes wrong, you can expect that number to jump. Warranties can help cover some costs, and getting a professional inspection performed on your RV before the purchase can help protect you and your wallet.
Similar to your home or auto, insurance to protect you and your camper van is another recurring cost you’ll want to consider.
According to Progressive, the average annual RV insurance policy will cost $848 for a motorhome in 2020. Liability-only policies started at $125 per year.
That said, the actual cost for an insurance policy will vary based on the type of RV, location, features, driving experience, and so on.
Fuel costs will vary significantly depending on your motorhome’s MPG, distance traveled, cost per gallon of gas, etc.
Tip: Use a fuel calculator to estimate fuel costs before the trip. And use apps like Gas Buddy to find the cheapest gas near you.
Hidden Costs of Owning a Camper Van
Along with the above costs, there are what some would consider “hidden” costs to owning a camper van. Or costs that many tend to overlook (but can add up quickly).
- Park Fees: The cost to reserve a spot at an RV park can range from $15 to over $100 per night, depending on their location and amenities. You can help offset these costs by splitting your time at free boondocking locations.
- Storage Fees: You’ll need a place to store your RV when not used. Some have the luxury of being able to store their RV on their own property, but many do not. Expect to pay between $50 to $250 per month to store your RV. Luckily, camper vans are typically much smaller than other types of motorized RVs, so you shouldn’t have to pay extra for large storage space.
- Registration Fees: Depending on where you live, you’ll likely have yearly registration fees. For example, in Iowa, a Class-A recreational vehicle that costs over $80,000 has a $400 per year registration fee.
- Memberships: While RV membership programs like Thousand Trails and Passport America are designed to save you money, they still cost to be a part of.
- Supplies: Similar to a home, you’ll need to stock your van with supplies, including kitchen utensils, food, laundry and cleaning supplies, etc.
- Upgrades: Upgrade costs will certainly vary, but if you want a better wifi signal or a satellite dish, for example, these will incur additional costs.
- Depreciation: While not a direct cost, your camper will lose value, especially if you buy new. One way to avoid that initial major drop in value is to buy used. Your used RV will still depreciate over time, but it won’t be as drastic as the first few years.
Now that you understand the costs of buying and owning a camper van, what’s next? Check out our guide on the pros and cons of owning an RV to find out if it’s cost-effective and right for you!
Plus, check out our guide on what to look for when buying a used camper van, complete with a downloadable checklist!