As gorgeous as the UK is, sometimes a trip across the Channel is exactly what you’re looking for! Bring your motorhome abroad with you for a budget-friendly and freedom-filled holiday in Europe. We’ll tell you the ways you can bring your campervan to Europe, what you need to know and some fun extra tips! So grab your best beret, prepare for some delicious waffles and start reading.
Benefits to taking a motorhome abroad:
- You can pack at home and bring everything you want. There's no fuss about weight restrictions or liquids. Particularly for camping, this can be really helpful so you can bring camping furniture and other necessary items.
- You can bring your dog with you.
- You don't have to worry about flight cancellations or delays.
- You get to adapt your trip and stay flexible.
- It's usually cheaper than flights and hotels.
What do I need to do before going abroad with a motorhome?
Arrange a VE-103 form with the owner of the vehicle - this is a mandatory form required to take any hired vehicle to Europe.
Check if you need a Visa for your destination(s) - here's a list of Brexit impacts on European destinations.
Check that the motorhome has the necessary documentation and keep it in the van.
Check if your insurance policy applies to Europe or if you need to pay extra.
Check the motorhomes measurements, which you’ll need to supply the ferry or Eurotunnel with.
Make a good playlist for your adventure!
Taking the Eurotunnel
Taking a motorhome through the Eurotunnel means you’ll be allocated a space in one of the single deck carriages, which are twice as high as the double deck carriages and have wider entrances for easy manoeuvring. The price doesn’t differ between vehicles, so whether you’re in a cute VW campervan or a practical Swift motorhome, you’ll be paying the same amount. This also includes having a bike rack upon the back. But you will need to inform them of the size upon booking. During the trip you’ll need to stay with your vehicle and keep the gas switched off. The Eurotunnel is definitely the easiest way to cross the channel in a motorhome, and it is the quickest, taking a mere 35 minutes platform to platform!
Taking the Ferry
You’ll be spoiled for choice with all the various crossing options, with varying on-board facilities and journey times (from 90mins to 11hrs). How to choose which crossing to take?
What is your eventual destination?
Is the journey part of the adventure, or a time delaying inconvenience?
What is the size of your van? This includes extra fittings, e.g. bike racks.
You can also check out websites such as A-ferry or Direct Ferries, but we have found it to be cheaper and easier to book directly with the ferry company! You’ll need to submit the vehicle registration at the time of booking for immediate identification at check-in, as well as the vehicle length. Taking the ferry will allow you to enjoy the views and atmosphere of travelling abroad, but be aware it can run the risk of delays due to bad weather!
Check out this comprehensive list of ferry options in the UK.
Bringing a Pet
Be sure to gather all the necessary documentation and requirements for your pet, including vaccinations and microchips! As for actually transporting your pal, you can take both the ferry or Eurotunnel. However they will have to remain in your vehicle during the crossing, and so many pet owners prefer the Eurotunnel as it allows you to stay with them. Both options can vary in price, but expect to pay about £15-20 for bringing your dog or other animal each way.
The Eurostar doesn't allow pets, which is why many dog owners will opt for driving to Europe.
Motorhome Hire in Europe
If you’re not keen on the long drive or extra hassle of transporting a motorhome across the Channel, you’re left with two options. A staycation in the UK, or organising your motorhome hire in Europe! By hiring a campervan from your intended destination in Europe, you can avoid paying added costs for insurance and travel. You’ll also be able to get local tips and save time and money for your actual trip. However, this would mean limited packing and paying for getting to that destination, so there are pros and cons to this!
Thinking of leaving your motorhome behind for a part of the journey? Make sure to save money with a parking comparison website. Whether you are looking for London Stansted parking, Manchester, Bristol, or any other airport in the UK, Parkhero.co.uk can helps you find fantastic discounts.
Your European adventure awaits! Hire a motorhome or get yours out of the garage and let the fun begin. Behind the wheel of a motorhome you can go anywhere, everywhere. If you want to enjoy as much of this gorgeous continent as possible, consider embarking on an European road trip from the dozens of options. Bon voyage and safe travels!