Where are you located ?
Type 114 Ingalls Santa Cruz, CA into google maps. We were previously located in Tahoe City, CA
IS THIS FOR ME ?
The classic Westfalia camper van is an easy to drive, compact machine, that is no bigger than your average mini-van. We offer vans with automatic transmissions, so practically anyone can drive them (Those 25 years or older). Vans include 125 miles a day. ($0.75 a mile after that) These vans are easily capable of cruising at 65 miles per hour on flat ground but you can expect to do 45-50 over mountain passes. These are not rocket-ships, but I promise you will learn to embrace the slower paced style of the VW Vanagon. With the vast amount of national forests in California and surrounding areas, you often do not even need to pay for a camp site. Westy living is so much more comfortable than tent camping, but you are still roughing it a bit. Westfalias do not have showers or toilets so keep that in mind. A shovel is included.
How DO they drive ?
Vanagons provide a very smooth ride with their 4 wheel independent suspension. The cab forward, rear engine, rear wheel drive design creates a very unique, and comfortable driving experience. Remember, these vehicles are nearing 30 years old and were designed when the speed limit was 55 in most places. These vans can cruise 65mph on flat ground comfortably, but expect to drop down to 45-50 over mountain passes. These are not rocketships, but I promise you will learn to embrace the slowed down style of the VW Vanagon. The Westfalia is one of those vehicles that makes people smile when it passes by. Expect waves, and cell phone pictures from strangers on your adventure.
Whats the minimum number of nights ?
3 nights in the off season and 4 nights in the high season. Because of the labor intensive process of cleaning and maintaining the vans between renters it does not make sense for us to do shorter term rentals.
What kind of camping features do they have ?
The Vanagon Westfalia is the one of the most utilitarian vehicles on the planet. The vehicle is capable of sleeping 4 people. Two on the lower bed, and two in the pop up bunk area. The pop top design allows for over 7 feet of standing room while cooking, dressing, etc. Storage is almost endless with a closet and 8 additional storage compartments. The van holds up to 14 gallons of water for the sink and is easily filled with any garden hose. The stove top unit runs off of propane which is filled prior to each trip. You do not need to worry about refilling this tank when returning the van. We will go over how to use anything you are unsure of before leaving. You can also contact us at any time during your trip with questions. We can often respond with picture or video texts. Vans are equipped with vintage style coolers for parishable food storage.
Insurance coverage for the duration of your trip is purchased when booking and is mandatory.
WHY NOT RENT A REGULAR RV ?
Because your significant other isn't going to be impressed with that. If you found your way here you are probably intrigued by these unique campers. These vans are highly sought after, and for very good reason. They camp like nothing else, and still fit in a regular parking space. Sure, a large RV may have a toilet and a shower. but I can promise you'll have more fun driving, and camping in a VW.
WHAT'S INCLUDED ?
- All vans are equipped with iottie 2 cell phone mounts in them. These fit standard size smart phones.
- I-pod, aux cord compatible sound controls.
- Coffee Press, Forks, Knives, Spoons (4 of each)
- Cups, bowls, plates (4 of each)
- small box in kitchen contains (salt & pepper, coconut oil, foil)
- Bottom sheet for top or bottom bunks, 2 Pillows w/ cases. (many renters often use their own sleeping bags, but we can supply them)
- Fire extinguisher, lighter for stove
- Frying Pan, Pot, Colander
- Small broom
- Simple Green cleaning solution spray bottle
- Biodegradable hand soap for sink use
- Camping chairs (2) Let us know if you need more
- 1 Roll of Paper Towel & Toilet paper
- Deck of cards
- Small Shovel (for you know what)
- If there is something you don't see that would make your trip more enjoyable let us know !
i'm thinking of buying one
Those seriously considering buying one, will sometimes rent a Westy to see how much they like it first. Sorry but none of ours are for sale.
Pick UP / DROP OFF
Once your trip is booked you can email or call to figure out the pick up arrangements. San Jose is the closest airport and generally less than a $50 uber ride away from our shop. Show up at the airport (or drive) with a weeks worth of clothes, and you are ready to go. Smile as you pass the car rental outfit, and the hotels, as you are about to have a room with a different view every night. We can store one vehicle per rental at our facility at no charge. Return the van with a full tank of fuel, with the interior cleaned up and you are good to go. We will take care of the exterior washing, bedding cleaning, propane filling etc.
WHERE CAN I GO ?
We must keep the vans within a reasonable distance, (300 miles) but can allow them to go further with pre-approval. Please respect these vans and stick to the pavement. Washboard roads and rutted/rough roads are extremely hard on a vehicle. You will lose your entire security deposit with any evidence of hard core off-roading. If you have itinerary that's great, if not, take a look at our destinations page and start planning! Please beware that the mileage cut off is at 150 miles/day before the overages start. You can drive all 750 miles with a 6 day booking, the first day if you wish, but you will be charged $0.75/mile after that.
I HAVEN'T DRIVEN A STICK SHIFT IN YEARS...
If you haven't driven a manual since high school, please do not attempt to relearn this art on our vehicles. Basically, if your daily driver is not a manual, please rent the automatics. Clutch and transmission repairs are very expensive.
CAN I TAKE IT TO BURNING MAN ?
Sorry but no vans are allowed to this festival. Playa dust has a way of working itself into every nook and cranny and is corrosive to metal and wiring. $1800 is charged for vans that have any evidence of being out on the Playa. Vans are GPS tracked. Your rental will be recovered within hours of entering the festival without a refund. We're not trying to be rude here, but we need to keep these classic vans nice for everyone.....It's not like we can just go out and buy another one....ya dig ? :)
CAN I BRING MY DOG ?
Sorry but we can no longer allow dogs. Interior components of these campers are no longer available and we must keep them nice for everyone.
How do i keep my food cold ?
The refrigerator that came factory installed in the Westfalias are now antiques, and can only keep the interior of the fridge about 40 degrees below ambient temperatures while running on propane. They are quite small as well. If you are plugged in at a campsite they do alright, but they are just a little temperamental sometimes. Most refrigerators have been removed for more storage space in our fleet. (our van Montana has a modern fridge) All other vans come equipped with standard Coleman 48 qt coolers. (aprox 65 cans) Ice generally lasts 2-3 days in them.
WHATS UP WITH THE VAN NAMES ?
Our vans are named after Landforms of the Sierra range, or sometimes the area the van was originally purchased from.
DO THEY HAVE HEAT?
Westfalias do not come with auxiliary heaters, meaning that when they are not running, there is no heat. We currently only rent in the warmer months so this is not an issue. Most renters bring their own 20 degree sleeping bag and it is more than enough. Please do not idle these vans for heat. This can result in overheating. (our van Montana now has a furnace)
modern van rentals are less expensive...
These late model Westfalias command a high price tag. A clean late model Westfalia can fetch anywhere from $20-50k, and even more for fully restored examples. Properly maintaining these as rental vehicles is a huge undertaking and expense. This rental fleet is irreplaceable. You are not renting a new minivan that gets crushed in eight years (average new car lifespan). I hope you will respect the immense time and effort it takes to make this endeavor even possible. I can't stress enough that you are renting a classic vehicle! If you are looking to get somewhere at 75 MPH, A/C blasting, with the kids watching movies on the headrests, the Westfalia is probably not what you are looking for.
WHAT IF I HAVE A PROBLEM ON THE ROAD ?
These are some of the most well maintained westfalias you will find anywhere, but please keep in mind that you are renting a classic vehicle. If anything arises, all vans carry 24 hour roadside assistance if you get a flat, run out of fuel, need a tow, etc. We are all VW enthusiast and on call 24/7 whenever a renter is out. If anything comes up, immediately call us, and someone will be on the way, or getting help to you. When maintained and updated, the Vanagon is actually a very reliable machine, and you shouldn't worry.
do you service vw's?
We do service Vanagons on the side when time permits. In the winter months we can take on larger jobs. Give us a call to set up an appointment.
DO THEY HAVE AIR CONDITIONING ?
No, A/C in these was never that great/reliable to begin with, and robs much needed horsepower at altitude. Roll down the window, crack the vent window and enjoy the open road.
DO YOU RENT IN THE WINTER ?
Yes, The reason we moved our shop from Tahoe City to Santa Cruz is so we can operate all year long now. We will be closed until the first of the year while we dial in our new shop.
Can I rent one for a wedding, commercial or photo shoot ?
Yes, we can accommodate this. Please contact us and let us know what you are thinking.
I'm not near Santa Cruz, but I want to rent a westfalia.
Fortunately, we are not the only ones that do this. There are other awesome companies that rent and support these westfalias. Please check out this link for other companies that offer Westfalia rentals.
HAVE ANOTHER QUESTION ?
Send a message through the contact page, and we will respond as quickly as possible