Camplify, a new company marketed as the “Airbnb for caravans”, is creating a stir in the industry by creating a peer-to-peer sharing service for van owners to rent out their unused caravans and motorhomes to the public.
Justin Hales, CEO of Camplify, told ROAM he came up with the idea after looking into buying a van of his own and comparing the price versus how much he would use it. This led him to the idea of van sharing, giving him the caravan experience he wanted and an income stream for caravan owners.
“I looked into hiring a van and realised many were booked out 6-12 months in advance,” he recounted. “That’s when I thought, ‘Why can’t I just share someone else’s van? Instead of just sitting in the shed 46 weeks of the year, I could use it.’”
The team worked with the NRMA Jumpstart business accelerator program to fine tune the project and is now ready to take it to the masses. The system works by matching van owners with renters, with owners able to pick and choose whom they rent their vehicle to. Caravans, motorhomes, and campers are all welcome.
Justin added, “Every caravan we have on the system, we personally talk to the owners and send a professional photographer to photograph inside and out. This way renters know we’ve independently verified the quality of the caravan.”
It’s early days yet, but Camplify may be on to a winning idea. Justin has his sights set on a making Camplify a local success, with a view to potentially expanding to international destinations such as the United States in future.