You know your RV is awesome, which is why you’re renting it out for others to enjoy! Once you’ve got your first rental booked, it’s time to start thinking about how to provide the best key exchange you possibly can. The following are 8 tips an optimal owner should follow to ensure an awesome key exchange.
1. Complete the Pre-Arrival Checklist
The Pre-Arrival Checklist is a handy list of tasks to complete before the arrival of your renters. It includes things like interior and exterior cleaning, tire inspection, routine maintenance, fluid check, systems check, and to have all the necessary paperwork printed out and ready to go before the renters arrive.
2. Schedule Ample Time for the Walk-Around
You never want your renters to feel rushed when they arrive to pick up your RV. You must schedule enough time to make sure you go over everything thoroughly and answer all of the questions they might have. Depending on how well-seasoned the renter is with RVs, it could take awhile, so it is best to plan accordingly.
3. Water and Snacks
When the renters arrive, have some water and snacks to offer them while you go through the key exchange process. This process could take awhile and depending on where you live, it could be very hot out. Make sure to greet them with ice cold water and some snacks, which will help them focus while you do the walk-around. People are excited to get on the road, so it’s important to keep them focused on the important and potentially life-saving information you’re about to give them.
4. Do a Walk-Around
Many RVs have small nuances that differ between rigs, so even a well-seasoned renter will need to know what makes your rig unique. For example, if a handle doesn’t turn quite right or there is a special trick to open a cabinet, these small details are important to make sure your renters have a seamless trip. In the walk around, open all of the cabinets to show them where they’ll find useful things like plates, cups, cutlery, etc. Show them how to flush the toilet properly, how the shower works, etc. You should also do a full walk-around the outside of the rig, opening storage compartments, identifying how the sewer and water hose hookups work, how to use the electric cord, etc.
5. Create a Walkthrough Video
Often times there is so much information a renter will be taking in during a walk around, that many small details will be missed or forgotten. If you shoot a video and upload it to YouTube, the renter will have more peace of mind knowing they can reference the video if they have forgotten something while out on the road. This will also eliminate the need for the renter to contact you after they’ve picked up the rig.
6. Go On a Test Drive
Make sure to take the renter out on a test drive. You want to make sure the renter feels comfortable navigating turns, understands how big the rig is, and mostly to make sure they are OK to drive the rig to their vacation destination which ensures their safety and the safety of your RV. Similarly, if they’re renting a trailer, showing them how to hook it up is important. If you don’t show them how to hook it up to the tow vehicle, they may run into problems when unhooking or when they’re ready to pack up to leave. Be very thorough, and remember things that seem obvious to you may not be as obvious to your renters. All of this information can be included in a YouTube video that they can reference if needed as well.
7. Outdoorsy RV Departure Form
The RV Departure Form should be filled out when the renter picks up the vehicle. It’s useful for quality assurance, insurance protection and to help set expectations between renters and owners before send-off. This form will guide you through an important checklist including damage walkthrough, RV training walkthrough, set-up lesson, driving lesson, final condition check, renter responsibilities, mileage & fuel readings, and sign-off & send-off.
8. Have Fun With It!
Your renters are VERY excited about their vacation and are pumped to hit the road. If you have a bad attitude or are rude to them at any point during the key exchange, it’ll leave a bad taste in their mouth, which will roll over into their vacation. Have a great attitude, interact in a positive way with the renters, and send them off with a big smile and a wave. You want to make sure they leave you a positive review, which will help you get more renters in the future.