Buying a Motorhome, Caravan or Camper and COVID-19
Is it safe to visit a dealer or a private seller?
The situation with COVID-19 evolves fast, and what is allowed today, may not be allowed tomorrow, the opposite is also valid. With that in mind, check your State latest announcements in regards to movement restrictions. At the time of this writing, Melbourne based business and branches are under stage 4 restriction which may impact their ability to receive showroom visitors until the 14th of September.
You can find the latest info from the Victorian Caravan Industry here: https://ciavic.com.au/Support
Talking about all other States, take all safety precautions recommended by the Health Minister and you should be fine to visit an RV dealership or private seller. It will not expose you to any more risk of contracting COVID-19 than a trip to the shops – and RV dealers still have stock plenty available.
If you have any doubts, check with the dealership via telephone or email regarding the COVID-19 precautions it has taken and try and book a time for your visit.
Some dealers are also offering live chat, video tours and video calls and home demonstrations to limit your time at the dealership.
Remember too, that you can do the majority of your RV research and shopping online at home via https://www.tradervs.com.au/ and read plenty of reviews on https://caravan.hemax.com/ or https://camper.hemax.com/
Am I safe inspecting what is for sale?
Ask the dealer (or private seller) what COVID-19 precautions they have taken to ensure the RV is safe and clean.
These are extra precautions you can take:
1. Consider bringing in your hand sanitizer and clean your hands after touching anything on the item you are inspecting.
2. Wear disposable gloves and mask.
3. Don’t be afraid to ask the salesperson to stay outside or keep a distance of 1.5 metres while you look at the campervan. This is not rude, but merely observing the social distancing recommendations.
4. And don’t forget, you actually need to work out whether the vehicle suits you - so do your research before heading to the dealership or private seller.
Should I buy sight unseen?
This is a tricky question as in some circumstances this is entirely acceptable. Why not if this is not your first purchase and you already know the brand you are looking at very well?
The key is to do your research first. Make sure you look hard at the pictures available on the ad. Many dealers are also posting videos of their caravans, motorhome and camper trailers for sale, so look at that too.
Compare the market to make sure the price is in the ballpark and start negotiating…And if you’re serious, book an inspection or get someone with expert knowledge to check it out.
Will COVID-19 impact waiting lists and delivery times for new RVs?
This is a hard question to answer as it varies across brand, model, country of manufacture, and so on…
There is no shortage of new RVs for sale at Australian dealerships and among private sellers right now – in some cases, a confusion of options. In other cases, there are long and growing waiting lists.
Many Chinese plants/manufacturers will have experienced some form of production line stoppages or slowdowns. These will inevitably influence availability on popular imported models and will alter delivery times.
COVID-19 (coronavirus) measures are also affecting production schedules of local manufacturers, so if you are planning a holiday towards the end of the year, don't wait too long.
The Next Steps
If you need help choosing the next Rv or are thinking about upgrading your existing one, keep in mind that Tradervs can help you find new or used products from the best manufacturers, dealers and private sellers near you.