In a completely new twist for the RV industry, former Thor Industries Inc. executive Dicky Riegel in May will launch Airstream 2 Go LLC, a company that plans to rent Airstream travel trailers hitched to GMC Yukon Denali SUV tow vehicles to retail consumers.
”Airstream 2 Go is entirely new for people who never have had the experience of an Airstream,” said Riegel, former president of Airstream Inc. and senior president of Thor, Airstream’s parent company.
Airstream 2 Go initially will make available through facilities in Las Vegas and Los Angeles a fleet of 20 Airstream International Signature travel trailers, offered in 23- and 28-foot lengths, with interiors by noted designer Christopher C. Deam.
Rates for a weeklong rental will range from $5,300 for people who just want to pick up a trailer/tow package and range up to $7,500 for a customized itinerary developed by Airstream 2 Go’s partner Off the Beaten Path, a Montana-based travel planning and outfitting company. Riegel noted that Airstream 2 Go would limit rentals to five days or longer.
”It’s a premium experience,” Riegel said. ”Many in the RV industry will say, ‘Wow, that’s a lot of money.’ But if you think about how unique Airstream 2 Go is, and the ability we give to visit America’s great venues in a quintessential way, we know there will be demand for the experience at the premium price point.”
Rental customers will be covered by their automobile insurance, Riegel said. ”Insurance coverage will be just like when they rent an automobile,” he said.
Riegel said Airstream 2 Go, in developing its novel business plan, surveyed 60,000 consumers about their interest in renting an Airstream and found a substantial number of positive responses.
”For all those people, Airstream 2 Go presents an exciting opportunity never offered before,” Riegel said.
Also as part of its game plan, Airstream 2 Go has an exclusive arrangement with Airstream Inc. to provide rental travel trailers to the public, which heretofore had not been available.
In California, Airstream 2 Go will offer rentals at the Airstream Los Angeles dealership in San Gabriel. In Nevada, the new company will have a 28,000-square-foot lot in a redevelopment project in downtown Las Vegas.
Riegel said Airstream 2 Go over the next three to five years expects to establish facilities in Florida, Texas, the Pacific Northwest, Illinois and New England, among other locations.