Peer-to-peer campervan hire launches

  • 12/09/2015
Peer-to-peer campervan hire launches

By Emma Cropper

It was an idea that came to them during a session in a German pub last year, but now Christchurch's Kris Johnstone and three others have made it happen.

They've launched a peer-to-peer campervan hire business in New Zealand and now plan to take it to the world.

Maja Mortz believes the best way to see the country is from a campervan.

"You get a little bit of nice scenery, real New Zealand sort of stuff," she says.

Now she's letting tourists do that in her own campervan, which is just six years old.

"It's lovely to share it and it allows me to cover some costs of running it."

She's one of the first people in New Zealand to sign up to SHAREaCAMPER, a new business that allows owners to list their privately owned campervans for hire on a website for tourists.

The owners set the rules, get the insurance, negotiate a price and then just hope for the best.

"Hopefully the camper doesn't get damaged by people who are not use to driving around a big vehicle on the other side of the road," says Ms Mortz.

It's been three months since SHAREaCAMPER was launched, and Mr Johnstone says it's really taking off.

"We're just trying to give people the opportunity to take an asset they already own that would otherwise be gathering dust in their driveway and they can utilise it," he says.

All damage is covered under insurance and the owners can offer discounts up to 30 or 40 percent less than standard campervan hires.

SHAREaCAMPER's opposition includes the likes of Kea and Maui, which are some of New Zealand's biggest campervan companies. They welcome innovation in this area and see it as a sign of growing popularity in motorhome travel in New Zealand.

Only 15 van owners have signed up so far, but Mr Johnstone says hundreds more are interested and he has plans to expand into hiring out private caravans as well.

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