The Ultimate Guide to taking a Campervan to Europe 

Quirky Campers Guide to Campervan EU Travel 

You can take a campervan or motorhome to the EU – all you need is the right paperwork, information and gear. Taking a campervan road-trip through Europe is the holiday bucket list dreams are made of, but it can seem daunting at first. This comprehensive and easy to use guide will tell you exactly how to travel to Europe in a campervan. Quirky Campers have been running for over ten years, and in that time we’ve amassed expert knowledge on all things campervan. We want to share that knowledge and experience with our customers so that you can enjoy the freedom and excitement of campervan travel in Europe.  

Why Travel to Europe in a Campervan?

Taking a road trip in a campervan offers freedom, fun, and a stress-free holiday. You can bring your pets, the whole family, and even the kitchen sink along with you. Packing is a breeze when you can travel with everything you need. As you drive through Europe, you can enjoy French patisserie in the morning and Italian pizza in the evening. Explore the mountains and lakes of Switzerland, and the deep forests and castles of Germany—all at your own pace, without the rush of check-in and check-out times, or the chaos of summer in airports. Experience all of Europe at your fingertips with the freedom of the open road.

Where in Europe can I travel in a Campervan? 

Europe and the European Union are distinct entities. It is important to check your insurance and plan ahead to ensure you only travel in countries where your insurance and breakdown coverage are valid. If you’re renting a campervan from Quirky Campers – discuss your travel plans with the van owner ahead of your trip to be sure you’re covered the whole time. The countries in the European Union include:

  • Austria 
  • Belgium
  • Bulgaria
  • Croatia
  • Republic of Cyprus
  • Czech Republic 
  • Denmark
  • Estonia
  • Finland 
  • France
  • Germany
  • Greece
  • Hungary
  • Ireland 
  • Italy
  • Latvia
  • Lithuania
  • Luxembourg
  • Malta
  • Netherlands
  • Poland
  • Portugal
  • Romania
  • Slovakia
  • Slovenia
  • Spain
  • Sweden

Plan ahead and do your research for a smooth and stress free road-trip. Ferries are usually best booked in advance, as is Le Shuttle (Euro Tunnel), plan for delays and arrive early for any border crossings especially in summer and high seasons. 

How much does it cost to travel Europe by campervan? 

Travel costs can vary widely based on factors such as the length of your stay, the distance you plan to travel, where you plan to spend the night in your van, and whether you cook in the van or dine out. However, you can plan a trip to suit any budget. Your main expenses will include:

  • Fuel 
  • Insurance 
  • Breakdown Cover 
  • Ferries/Le Shuttle 
  • EU Travel Pack
  • Travel insurance 

You can keep costs low by: 

  • Buying food at local supermarkets
  • Booking transport such as ferries in advance
  • Prioritising slow travel 
  • Staying at Aires or free parking 

If you plan on hiring out a campervan from Quirky Campers, your insurance and breakdown cover is included in the cost – all you need to pay for is the EU Travel Pack (£30.00) plus fuel, travel insurance and the cost of the ferry/train over to Europe. 

Which Campervan should I Choose? 

When choosing a campervan for a trip to Europe, it’s essential to consider your specific needs, whether you’re travelling with companions, and the destinations you plan to visit. Here are some key factors to keep in mind:

Purpose of the Trip

  • Adventure and Outdoor Activities: If you’re an active holiday-type and plan to get outdoors with activities like hiking, surfing, or biking, ensure the campervan has ample storage for your equipment, for example Quirky Campers has a whole section of Campervans with Bike Racks. 
  • Relaxation and Comfort: If your trip is more about relaxation, consider a campervan with extra amenities like a TV, bathroom, outdoor furniture or an awning.

Number of Travelers

  • Family Travel: For families, a larger campervan with enough beds, seatbelts, and storage space is essential. Look for models with family-friendly features like Isofix, games, hammocks and a spacious dining area. 
  • Couples or Solo Travel: Smaller campervans can be more economical and easier to drive. Consider a compact campervan that still offers all the necessary amenities but gives you more freedom.

Travel Destinations

  • Urban vs. Rural: If you plan to visit cities, a smaller campervan will be easier to manoeuvre and park. For rural adventures, a larger van with off-road capabilities might be more your style. If travelling in cities you may need to pay emission zone fees – so include this in your budget.
  • Climate: Depending on the climate of your destination and the season you’re travelling in, you might need a campervan with good insulation, heating, a fan or air conditioning.
  • Off-grid or Hook-Up: Research the availability of campsites along your route and what amenities they have to offer. Some areas might have well-equipped campsites, while others may require more self-sufficiency. Consider Whether you’re planning to stay at campsites all the time and want a campervan with an electric hook-up or if you’re planning to go off-grid you’ll need to consider how much power you’ll be using and need a van with solar panels for example. 

Amenities and Features

  • Sleeping Arrangements: Make sure the campervan has enough comfortable beds for all travellers.
  • Kitchen Facilities: All Quirk Campers come with a well equipped kitchen so you won’t need to worry about taking kitchen goods with you. But if you’re a chef extraordinaire you may prefer a campervan with an oven rather than just a hob, or even outdoor cooking facilities. 
  • Bathroom Facilities: Depending on your comfort level, you might want a campervan with an onboard toilet and shower.
  • Storage Space: You’ll want a campervan with enough storage for all your belongings, especially if you’re travelling with sports equipment or kids. If you’re a minimalist packer you may be able to get away with a more compact campervan. 

Driving and Handling

  • Size and Maneuverability: Consider how comfortable you are and how experience you have with driving large vehicles. A more compact campervan can be easier to handle and park. You can also choose vans on the Quirky website that have extra features such as reverse sensors or parking cameras.
  • Fuel Efficiency: Long trips can be costly for fuel, so consider how far you need to travel – remember larger and older campervans aren’t going to go as far as fast as a car. 
  • Insurance and Breakdown Cover: Always double check that your insurance and breakdown cover are valid in all the countries you plan to visit.


  • Rental Costs: Campervan rental prices can vary significantly. Compare different models and companies to find the best deal for your budget.
  • Additional Costs: Consider costs for fuel, campsite fees, tolls, and parking.
  • Seasonal Pricing: Prices can fluctuate based on the season, with peak travel times typically being more expensive.

By carefully considering these factors, you can choose a campervan that perfectly suits your travel plans and ensures a smooth and enjoyable journey through Europe.

Requirements for taking a hired campervan to the EU* 

  • Vehicle on Hire Form (VOH)
  • EU Travel Pack 
  • EU Breakdown Cover and Insurance 
  • Travel Insurance
  • Passport 
  • Visa (Only required for UK Passports if you are spending more than 90 days in the EU 
  • If travelling with pets – Pet Passport and Health Documents (AHC- animal health certificate) 

*Check the website of local authorities for country/state/city specific requirements before you travel, these are subject to change. 

Requirements for Taking your own Campervan to the EU* 

  • V5C Log Book 
  • EU Travel Kit 
  • EU Breakdown Cover and Insurance 
  • Passport 
  • Visa (Only required for UK Passports if you are spending more than 90 days in the EU 
  • If travelling with pets – Pet Passport and Health Documents (AHC- animal health certificate) 

*Check the website of local authorities for country/state/city specific requirements before you travel, these are subject to change. 

Paperwork for taking a campervan to Europe 

To take a campervan into the EU on hire you need an VOH certificate, EU Travel Pack and EU breakdown cover and insurance. 

Vehicle on Hire Certificate (VOH)

If you rent a campervan from Quirky Campers you will need a vehicle on hire certificate, this is a form that is created and filled in by the van owner and tells the authorities that you are hiring out this campervan with their permission. This should be done ahead of your booking start date and will be purchased by the owner of the van. However, it’s your responsibility to tell the van owner that you are going to Europe so they can organise this ahead of time. Most EU Friendly vans on our website have an ‘EU TRAVEL PACK’ you can choose as an add on – this includes the cost of the VOH certificate and the EU Travel Pack. 

EU Travel Pack or European Driving Kit 

To drive in most European Countries you are legally required to have an EU Travel Pack in the vehicle. This pack provides you with safety equipment you need in case of breakdowns on the road. They must contain the following: 

  • Headlight beam benders
  • UK sticker
  • First aid kit
  • Warning triangle
  • Hi-vis vest
  • Bulb kit

We also recommend:

  • Maps
  • Breathalyser/alcohol test (recommended but not mandatory)
  • Spare bulbs (recommended but not mandatory)
  • Snow chains (if visiting in the winter in some areas)

EU Breakdown Cover and Insurance 

Any campervans or motorhomes travelling in Europe need EU breakdown cover and insurance that covers travel in Europe. If you hire a campervan from Quirky Campers this will be organised for you by the van owner – as long as you tell them ahead of time you are planning to travel to Europe. If you are taking your own vehicle you may need to keep proof of these in the van with you along with your MOT paperwork.  

V5C Vehicle Log Book

The V5C is your vehicle log book – this proves you own the vehicle and must be with you in the van when you travel into Europe. 

Driving in Europe Tips and Tricks

  • Before you begin your journey be sure to check the driving laws of any country you are going to.
  • Most countries in Europe drive on the right hand side – check ahead for each country you are visiting.
  • Road signs will also be different in every country you go through – take a look before hand to familiarise yourself with important road signage.
  • In Portugal it is illegal to use a dash cam, and in France it is illegal to drive while using headphones or earphones – make sure to check any local driving laws when choosing your route.
  • Some countries will have Emission Zone Charges for driving through cities or towns – either avoid these or check online to pay the charges and avoid fines. In France to drive through certain areas you need a CritAir or ‘clean air’ sticker – which tells local authorities what the vans emission level is and what the charges will be.
  • Toll roads can make long journeys much quicker in Europe – however you will normally need to pay the charges within 24 hours of using the tolls to avoid fines.
  • Be aware of the speed limit – most countries in Europe us KM/H.
  • Know your van height (including any solar panels/fans on top) – many car parks will have a height restriction, know your van height and you won’t be scraping your solar panels off on a barrier!

Where can I Camp? 


Europe has endless campsites that you can stay in, from large holiday parks with facilities like pools, restaurants and play areas for children to minimal back to basics campsites immersed in nature. Many campsites offer Electric Hook-ups for use if you’re staying in one place for a long time, or laundry and waste disposal facilities. Not all campsites accept campervans, and many popular campsites get booked up in peak seasons so check ahead to make sure you’re booking the right ones.  

Aires De Service

Aries are overnight parking stays that motorhomes and campervans can make use of. Most are free or have a small surcharge and have basic facilities. These are mostly found in France but can also be found in Switzerland and Italy. 

Wild/Free Camping 

The benefit of travelling in campervans and motorhomes is the freedom to park up where you can and still have your bed with you. Many people wild or free camp parking up in areas and sleeping for the night. The rules around wild camping vary depending on where you are, always check local signage, laws and rules before staying over. Apps like Park4Night or Search For Sites can be very useful in finding park ups. But most importantly leave no mess behind and park responsibly!  

EU Travel Friendly Campervans For Hire 

Are you ready for the road-trip of a lifetime? Our collection of EU friendly ready to hire campervans all come with insurance, breakdown cover and of course the absolute freedom of travel on the open road. Go ahead, make your dream holiday come true and book in today!

Daffy – Hire From London 

Are you ready to take this little slice of sunshine for a spin? Daffy is a one of a kind, heavenly crafted campervan, located in London. Daffy expertly intertwines several styles to create a stylish and bright atmosphere. From a wooden panelled ceiling to geometric soft furnishings, Daffy really will stand out on any instagram feed. A snug L shape sofa transforms into a cosy double bed by night, the perfect set up for a romantic getaway.

Air Conditioner | Audio Inputs | Extra Storage | Festival Friendly | Inverter | Kitchen | Sink | Outside Shower | Pet Friendly | Radio | Refrigerator | Stove | EU Travel Allowed

Gigi – Hire from Longhope 

Get ready to be blown away by Gigi, the lightest and brightest van for all the family. Fitted with a remarkable 6 belted seats and enough space for 2 adults and 4 children, what more could you possibly need for your best holiday yet? Waking up every morning to Gigi’s spacious and airy interior will have everyone starting their day with a skip in their step. Crack some coffee on the hob, get the kids around the table for a fully cooked breakfast and prepare for a day of new discoveries.

Audio Inputs | Dining Table | Festival Friendly | Heater | Kitchen Sink | Levelling Jacks | Radio | Refrigerator | Solar | Stove | Fixed Bed | Parking Space | Sat Nav  | Reverse Sensors | Reverse Camera | EU Travel Allowed

Eartha – Hire From Hailsham 

There’s no better way to explore this Earth than in Eartha. Nestled in the South Downs National Park, Eartha is only 11 miles from the sunny seaside town of Eastbourne, where you can enjoy breathtaking views of dramatic Beachy Head white cliffs. Her earthy tones provide a warm and inviting atmosphere for couples on a romantic escape. Her L shaped seating area transforms into a cosy double bed where you can enjoy breakfast in bed.

Audio Inputs | Heater | Inverter | Kitchen Sink | Outside Shower | Radio | Refrigerator | Solar | Toilet | Reverse Camera | CD Player | EU Travel Allowed

Vanessa – Hire From Rowlands Castle 

Vanessa is a beautiful campervan perfect for those who want to combine comfort and luxury. Her whitewash interior and dark wood panelling provide a cosy and homely atmosphere in which two adults can make memories and explore the world.

Air Conditioner | Audio Inputs | Ceiling Fan | Dining Table | Heater | Inverter | Kitchen | Sink | Outside Shower | Radio | Refrigerator | Solar | Toilet | 6ft+ Bed | Fixed Bed | Parking Space | Sat Nav | Reverse Sensors | Reverse Camera | CD Player | EU Travel Allowed

Are you ready to take a European road-trip in the campervan of your dreams? Check out our handcrafted selection of campervans for hire today and book in for a bucket list holiday!

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