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Half a million Aussies have a potential $20,000 sitting in their garage

<i>Photo: Supplied</i>
Photo: Supplied

With more and more Aussies choosing to camp under the stars for the holidays, caravan and RV owners are sitting on some serious extra cash if they choose to rent out their vehicle.

Camping is undergoing a renaissance. The national number of overnight camping or caravan trips hit a record high of 12.3 million up to June 2018, according to research from Tourism Research Australia.

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How can you cash in on this holiday trend?

Half a million registered RVs in Australia spend most of the year in backyards or closed garages.

But these clunky, oversized vehicles could command an annual income to the tune of $40,000 a year, according to peer-to-peer RV sharing platform Camplify.

Newcastle-based Justin Hales set up Camplify, the ‘Airbnb’ of caravans and motorhomes in 2015, to connect the growing demand of holiday-makers and the thousands of caravan and RV owners whose vehicles were gathering dust.

“We’re constantly seeking new ways to inspire adventures and make sleeping in the great Aussie outdoors more accessible,” Hales said.

“With the average campervan used for just four to six weeks a year, we’re thrilled that our platform is able to help owners earn extra income by sharing the joys of freedom and travel.”

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He added that October had been a record month for Camplify, with more than $1 million paid to Australian RV owners.

What’s more, leasing out your RV has just become easier: new rules from the Australian Taxation Office (ATO) stipulates that RV owners can claim tax deductions on expenses such as maintenance costs.

So how much can you actually be making from this side hustle?

<i>Photo: Supplied</i>
Photo: Supplied

Even at the lowest end of the scale, campervans can bring in between $8,000 to $18,000 by renting out their vehicle to holiday-makers.

Caravans command a slightly higher figure at $12,000 to $20,000 a year, while campervan owners can see their vehicle rented out for anywhere between $9,000 to $21,000.

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Camper trailers are the most expensive to hire, raking in $22,000 to $40,000 in extra income annually.

So if you are one of these half a million RV owners, it’s time to think about how you can turn your dusty vehicle into a neat side hustle for yourself – and camping memories for others.

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