Campers, motorhomes, high-tops… the rental jargon explained!

Australia and New Zealand have pretty much the same kinds of campers and motorhomes as anywhere else overseas. However, depending on where you intend to travel and what you need from your relocation , it’s a good idea to know what each type of vehicle looks like and what extras they come with.

Before we start, here’s a little glossary of terms or rental jargon that will help you out:

Berth: for example 2 berth. The berth quantity indicates the legal number of passengers the vehicle can sleep and also generally indicates how many seat belts are available.

High-top: A vehicle with a fixed,  extended roof.

Pop-top: A vehicle with an extended roof that must be manually folded out or up.

Campervan or camper: Has sleeping and cooking facilities.

Campervan compact: Smaller campers  that look like a Toyota Previa or similar.

Motorhome or RV: Has sleeping and cooking facilities as well as a shower, toilet and hot water.


A camper or campervan can come as a 2 berth, 3 berth, 4 berth or 5 berth and can be a compact, high top, pop-top or 4WD. They all come with sleeping and simple cooking facilities (a small gas stove) and can look like any one of the images at the end of this article.


Motorhomes (also called RVs) are larger vehicles that have all the amenities as a campervan but also come with a toilet, shower and hot water. Depending on the berth size, it can range from a long wheelbase van to a full on truck.

The type of vehicle you require will depend on how many passengers, their particular needs (such as small children and elderly) and the terrain you intend to travel on.

For example, in the Australian outback, you will often find 4WD campervans due to the nature of the roads. They will not be equipped with a toilet and shower (unless it is a 4WD motorhome) and are smaller than the High-tops and Pop-tops you see around.

It’s important to note that many smaller (2 berth) campervans and motorhomes will not cater to small children who need a booster seat or car seat. If you are travelling with children it is best to check these details out before you turn up for the vehicle.

All the vehicles will be equipped with bedding that can either come with the rental or relocation or can be purchased as a travel pack. You may need to fill up the gas bottles for cooking and empty the waste water and sewage prior to returning the vehicle if it is a motorhome.

A final note to mention is to read the instruction manual or watch the DVD that comes with the vehicle as many motorhomes differ in their power usage, waste removal and water filling requirements.

Now you know what you need, check out Transfercar NZ or Transfercar AU for a rental that will cost you no more than $5 per day!



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