"there must be a better way"
It took 1hr 15mins to pick up the van with no queue. Van had several broke...
Competitive rates and New Zealand’s most modern and uniquely-designed vehicles have made Apollo Motorhomes one of the largest privately owned leisure vehicle operators in the world.
In 1985, Apollo Motorhome started as a family business offering friendly rental service in Australia. After 31 years of service, the company has been listed on the Australian Stock Exchange as a large corporation. The company has been branching out ever since, coming to New Zealand in 2000; they also have extensions in the United States. Because of their prominence in the rental industry, they even have their own manufacturer holding with Talvor Motorhomes.
The Apollo fleet has a fair few vehicles to choose from— all of which are 1 year old on average and a maximum age of 3 years (or around 150,000km) campers and motorhomes. These are premium quality rental units that are custom built by the company's own manufacturer, Talvor Motorhomes. Some are manual, some are automatic. From the outside, the units have some unique features that make them stand out among the others— more height and deluxe accommodations. All cooking utensils, cutlery, crockery, and tea towels are included, and they offer a doona (duvet), bed sheets, pillows, pillow cases, and bath towels at no additional charge. Additionally, the amount of extras you can add on with Apollo is pretty big — such as portable GPS units, baby seats, mountain bikes, and booster seats. But what’s a really nice extra is the Welcome Pack — a supply of coffee, tea, sugar, dish washing soap, matches, shampoo, conditioner, salt, pepper, body soap, and a sponge. This little extra is not just a nice touch, it saves you from having to supply your own for at least one night — kind of like a little hotel on wheels.
A unique model among the fleet is the Endeavour Campervan— a two to four berth for a small family but without a shower and toilet on board (which is not typically a problem if you can find a camp site that furnishes these items). So, if you are looking for compact, super fuel economy family camper, and willing to sacrifice some comforts for a smaller price, this unit by Apollo might just be the ticket. But you have to be nimble.
Unlike the automatic Endeavor, the Hitop needs continuous shifting of gears throughout your trip. A manual Toyota Hiace, the campervan is still a breeze to drive because of its 2.4L unleaded petrol engine. Standing upright or stretching your arms inside is made easier with the extended roof height. So for giant couples who just want to explore the countryside on a budget, this Apollo Hitop is waiting for you. Plus, the campervan is equipped with a kitchen with sink, gas stove, microwave and fridge.
Apollo Campers New Zealand has introduced a new, zippy little camper they call Vivid. Barrelling head long in to a market space dominated by Jucy and Spaceships, Apollo's new family member is a compact 4 berth with a customised interior for kitchen, bag storage and sleeping whilst making day time driving just like being in a mini van. At night it folds out for 2 peeps to sleep inside and there's a nifty little roof tent to sleep 2 peeps up top. This way you get a car during the day and 4 beds at night. This style of travel and accomodation has been adopted by the youthful purple and green of Jucy for some years and Apollo must feel it is worth splashing some design cash in to get the youth market. One thing that sets this version apart from the Jucy model is the quality of the mini van that it is based on - Mercedes Benz as opposed to Jucy's Toyota range.
A posh treat for couples, the Euro Tourer is a luxury campervan built upon either a manual/ automatic Mercedes or VW. Both vehicles are top notch deluxe units that are furnished with fancy facilities at competitive prices. Features include a bathroom with shower & toilet, spacious rear bed, equipped kitchen and cozy living area. For your stuff, there's an ample storage space that lets you store your things conveniently.
First on the Apollo motorhome selection is the Euro Campera— a 4 berth unit than can be fitted with child restraints. This beautifully designed luxury unit is great for a family of four, either all grown-ups or with the kids. As a family friendly unit, it has the ability to fit both baby and booster seats. The easy access to the living room is very convenient as the dinette also acts as one of the double beds at night. For the remaining passengers, they can sleep at the cab-over bed comfortably. The shower and toilet as well as the kitchen are positioned at the rear, leaving more space on the living quarters.
Another 4 berth motorhome is the Euro Star, which is a great alternative for touring families. With a slightly extended internal height, this family-friendly unit provides added comfort, especially for taller passengers. This unit is quite different compared to the previous motorhome, in terms of interior layout. The rear lounge becomes a very cozy double bed while the bathroom is fitted at the side, right before the bedroom. The other double bed is located at the cab-over with a ladder. Hence, no need for dinette conversion. Deluxe facilities on-board include elegant entertainment set and plush bathroom.
An entire family of 6 will appreciate this beautiful Apollo Euro Deluxe. This upscale motorhome is definitely your go-to apartment on wheels— with appointed kitchen that includes a 3 burner gas stove, 110 l refrigerator and microwave, and a full bathroom with shower & toilet. Plus, there's an internal heating on-board for extra comfort and child restraints can be fitted out. Aside from the kitted amenities, you have the option to choose either a manual or automatic luxury vehicle.
The rental charge includes the standard liability excess of $5,000 for the all campervans, and $7,500 for all other vehicles. The excess or bond will be collected from you through your credit card, at the time of signing. There are options to reduce the excess for campervans, motorhomes, and all other vehicles:
Liability Reduction 1 at $27/day for a bond & excess of $2, 500 with a maximum of $1, 500. Liability Reduction 2 at $45/day for a bond of $250 & excess of $0 with a maximum of $2, 250. The latter option already includes includes one windscreen, two tyres and demurrage.
Apollo doesn’t have the reputation you’d expect from all the hype they get. They are Qualmark endorsed, however, but it would seem that they have a hit-or-miss reputation when it comes to their company overall. They often receive average marks for average service. In other words, it often looks like people expect much more than they deliver. As an overall reputation, they are, in fact, average — could be better, could be worse — according to customers, that is. Perhaps it is due to the fact that their website seems to offer insanely wonderful vehicles at super low prices, and then, even if they do deliver exactly what they promise, the customer is left disappointed because they build their hopes up too much. It appears to be a classic case of a company promising something great, delivering something great, but to an audience that expected more than just great.
Apollo Motorhomes provides a mid-range, high-quality motorhome to families and couples who are interested in affordability but not so much as to sacrifice quality and services.