APOLLO VS BRITZ There’s no better way to see Australia then by touring around in a campervan. You can keep things at your own pace, and not have to rely on public transport to get to all those awesome places you want to explore. But since there are so many different campervan companies to choose from, we are going to compare two of the big guns in Australia – Apollo and Britz, so you can decide if one of these will suit your needs.
Who are the companies we are comparing today?
Apollo has been providing campervans to holidaymakers since 1985 and currently operate in Australia, New Zealand, Canada and the US. In Australia they have depots in all states. They pride themselves on having the most modern fleet in Australia, with vehicles serviced and maintained to the highest industry standards. Campervans are built by the largest Australian RV manufacturer Winnebago Motorhomes and designed using 3D modelling. They have a large selection of campervans, 4WDs and cars to choose from, with the Hippie Camper, Cheapa Campa and Star RV being great options for budget travellers.
With branches all around the country Britz is the largest Australian campervan provider including sister brands Mighty Campers and Maui. They also have a presence in NZ, Europe and North America. They build and design their own campervans and also offer 4WD campervans for getting off the beaten track. Britz are all about promoting fun and adventure and offer excellent customer service. They also implement customer feedback to improve their fleet to ensure future customers are able to have the time of their lives. Between them, Apollo and Britz have around 80% of the total rentals in the Australian campervan market. So, which is best? Let’s take a closer look at all you need to know.
A company’s reputation is important to grasp before making the commitment to hire a campervan, and you can usually get an idea by checking out reviews on social media and other review sites. Unfortunately, while both Britz and Apollo have a decent number of followers on Facebook, neither have the review page activated. But, both companies do have a substantial number of reviews on their own websites which can have us a good idea of where they stand. Apollo has a 4.3/5 rating on their site from reviews left by over 80,000 customers. Reading through the reviews we can see lots of comments about excellent customer service, comfort, with just a few small suggestions on how to improve the Apollo vehicle experience and check in time. Britz has a smaller number of reviews on their site, but have obtained 4.5/5 stars from over 10,000 customers that have taken the time to give their feedback. Most reviews describe an excellent experience, however there a couple of recent comments about older vehicles and broken parts. We can also look at Hit the Road website reviews for both companies. Apollo only scores 3.2 / 5 stars on our site by our customers, which is quite a difference from the reviews on their website. The most common complaints are about problems with overcharging and broken parts. Some were disappointed with the Deluxe vehicle not being at the standard they were expecting. Britz scores much higher on our site, but again lower than what they do on their actual site with 4/5 stars rated by our customers. Most reviews are fairly positive, but there are mentions of things not working properly in the campervans and bad customer service at times. While there are always bad reviews for any company, it’s important to remember that for every bad review there is likely to be a hundred good reviews. It’s usually people that have a not so good experience that take the time to leave a review as they feel frustrated, while many people that have a great experience won’t bother leaving one at all. In saying that, based on what we can see from a few different websites…
Apollo vs Britz Reputation Winner: Britz
Both rental companies offer a standard insurance excess, which is included in your rental cost. But since this figure is fairly significant, it’s a good idea to pay extra to reduce the excess. This could save you some money if you happen to have an accident while you are on your adventure. It’s also worth reading and understanding your insurance policy so you know exactly what you are getting yourself into and you are not left with any surprise bills. Here’s a roundup of what Apollo and Britz offer for their insurance policies.
|How is the Security Bond/Excess taken?
||Deducted from card
||Deducted from card
|What is the bond/excess for base level cover?
||$5000 or more
||$5000 or more
|What does it cost to reduce excess per day?
||$38pd to $2500 Excess
||$45 to $0 Excess
||$45pd to $250 excess
||$55pd to $0 excess + extras
|Is there a windscreen protection option?
||Yes - $7pd
|Claim administration fee?
||$60 per claim
|Under body or overhead protection option?
||$45pd for “Liability Reduction” package
|Tyre protection option?
||> Yes - $7pd
||$45pd for “Liability Reduction” package
When you rent with Apollo, you can purchase windscreen and tyre protection plus extended roadside assistance for $7pd. For longer rental periods you can receive this free for a portion of the time. For example, a 44 day rental gets you 19 days free windscreen and tyre protection. If you choose to reduce your excess with Britz you can take advantage of the Liability Reduction to $0 excess for $45dp or the Inclusive Pack which offers you the Liability Reduction to $0 as well as extras such as camping chairs and table, Wi-Fi Hotspot access and baby seats. Your charges will be capped at 50 days.
Realistically, if you combine the reduction options from Apollo you can get coverage for the whole vehicle at $45pd. Same goes for Britz at $45pd, but the Britz package brings your excess down to $0 whereas Apollo leaves you exposed to a $2500 excess in the event of a big accident. Also note, that $ numbers change in both companies when dealing with 4wd vehicles that are not discussed here. In general, the Britz packages are more easily defined and understood as ascertained by doing a search for “$” sign in the rental Terms and Conditions where in Apollo the $ shows up 111 times. For Britz, 34 times.
Apollo vs Britz Insurance Winner: Britz
Understanding what a campervan rental company offers in their fleet is useful if you are looking for vehicles for different adventures. It also tells you just how serious they are about providing a good range of options for tourists to be able to explore Australia. Britz currently offers 4 x 2 berth, 4 x 4 berth and 2 x 6 berth design options. They also have 3 x 4WD campers – 1 being a sleep inside and the other two with rooftop or ground tents. Apollo has 2 x 2 berth, 4 x 4 berth and 3 x 6 berth camper design options, plus 4 x 4WD campers. Whilst the 2WD campervans and motorhomes are very similar, the differences in 4WD vehicles is noticeable. Not only does Apollo have a wider choice but the capability of the fleet eclipses that of Britz. Britz has chosen to go with lighter weight and lower capability 4wd vehicles, where as Apollo has chosen much more robust and heavy hitting set of vehciles. Also Apollo is sticking with an older style design that allows the passengers to sleep inside the vehicle in most cases. Britz, has chosen tent accommodation for 2/3 of its fleet. The one remaining sleep inside campervan for Britz is probably the least 4wd capable across the 2 fleets. So, if you are looking for a rugged style of 4wd camper, go Apollo, if you are just looking to hit some dirt tracks, the Britz options are also on the table. Overall, each company has a similar offering, but this is not surprising seeing as they are the two biggest names in campervan rentals in Australia.
Apollo vs Britz Fleet Winner: Apollo
Anything else worth knowing?
Apollo’s vehicles are only on fleet for a maximum of three years, so you shouldn’t need to worry about getting a vehicle that has seen better days. They also have $1 per day vehicle relocations. The Apollo Connect app is a handy companion to have while you travel around Australia. It gives you helpful videos about how to make the most out of your campervan as well as tips and advice about what to see and where to go. If you purchase the Value all-inclusive pack, you can reduce your excess to $250 and also receive items such as a gas bottle, gas refill, camping chairs, table, baby seat and booster seat. If you decide to buy a campervan to continue your adventures after your rental period, you can check out Apollo RV Sales.
Britz enjoy connecting their community of travellers through their Instagram page and encourage people to share stories and photos. They are a company that is trying to minimise their impact on the environment and were the first Australian campervan company to attain Eco accreditation through EcoTourism Australia. They also participate in the Leave no Trace program. You can buy a whole lot of optional extras such as Wi-Fi hotspot data, and an Inclusive pack which offers $0 excess, Wi-Fi data, picnic table and chairs, extra driver fees, baby seats and a portable fan heater for $55 per day. There is also an express return pack for $165 which allows you to return the vehicle with an empty tank, empty gas bottle and an express key return. You also have access to the thl Road trip app, which allows you to find everything you need while on the road, watch vehicle help videos and connect with other travellers. You can also take advantage of the Linen Exchange, where you can exchange your dirty linen for fresh at any branch.
Apollo vs Britz Extras Winner: Britz
Overall Winner - Britz
Even though Apollo is one of the most companies in the Australian campervan rental market, Britz certainly takes our prize as the overall winner. Britz gives you so many more optional extras to choose from to make your road trip more comfortable, and they have a better reputation overall. Their insurance policy is easier to understand, and you are able to reduce your excess to $0, something which you are unable to do with Apollo. While you probably can’t go too wrong with Apollo, we definitely recommend checking out Britz for your campervan rental.