Has anyone driven an RV to AK and then sold it there instead of driving it back? The return to the lower 48 would be via air or ferry, or a mix of both. Another option would be taking a towable camping trailer up and then selling it, opting for a drive or ferry trip south. Are RVs in demand in Alaska? How difficult is/was it to sell an RV?
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I have in the past purchased about a half dozen RVs in Alaska as it tends to be a buyers market. Many of the RV rental companies sell their rolling stock every two or three years and it is cheaper for them to sell them cheap, than to ship them back outside. However last fall, I did see one of the Anchorage RV rental companies offering reduced rental fees for people that would drive the used RVs to the lower 48 for the company. (one way trip)
Also the rotating military personal leave many used RVs in Alaska. This was the main source of the ones I purchased while living there. Most of the military are only there for two or three year tours and then ship out to another base somewhere. Having an RV for the time they are there seems to be very popular with many. Then if they get reassigned to a post where they can't take their RV, they sell them, or the credit union ends up with them. Many of the troops being reassigned don't have the time to drive an RV back outside, even if they are staying in the US for their next tour of duty. Some do, but not all.
All in all, I think you would have a hard time selling your RV in Alaska. Lots of logistic problems, where are you going to show it?, are you willing to hang around Anchorage for several weeks waiting for it to sell? Most of the RV rental companies give a warranty on their used units, are you able to do this?
I one time, many years ago, approached the Chevy dealer, about their buying my then new 1964 Chevy Impala I had just driven up to Alaska. Rather than paying to have it stored for the winter, I thought I might sell it to the dealer. He asked me what I had paid for the vehicle and I told him. He went into his office and pulled out an invoice showing what he had paid for a similar vehicle, direct from the factory, delivered by barge lines out of Washington. His new one was a lot less than what I had paid. He was willing to offer me, used wholesale for mine. I wasn't interested in taking that big a hit so I stored it for the winter in Anchorage and flew out to the bush for the winter.
With all that said, it only takes a willing buyer, willing seller to make a deal. I would run an ad in Craigslist Alaska, especially cover Anchorage, Fairbanks and the Kenai. Put photos on a web site/blog somewhere of your RV so folks can take a look at it. Reference the blog site in your ad. There is another good free ad site in Anchorage that the name just escapes me at this time. Perhaps one of the locals will list it. In your ad, make sure it is easy for someone to contact you, your asking price, when you could have it to Alaska for viewing, etc. Having a few good leads before arriving in Alaska could make a lot of difference. But be ready to drive it back home as well. Every year this question is asked. But no one has yet gotten back to the forum with how the process went for them, to the best of my knowledge. Good luck.
On second edit:
Might try www.anchoragelist.com
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Alaska-Colorado and other Trips posted
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There used to be businesses in Anchorage that paid for others to drive their new RVs TO Alaska rather than have them shipped. Check with some of the businesses there and ask if they still do that. Then you can have the best of taking an RV north and NOT having to sell it. Put an ad in the local paper and ask if someone is buying an RV and needs to driven there. Private persons may be interested in that option too.
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The RV rental companies select the people to deliver in August or so, and delivery is to be made in mid May with around 10 or so days allowed for the trip.
I have purchased units in Ak, and sold a few. It is not a way to pay for your trip, as there does not seem to be a large difference in price due to being in Alaska. Rather, depreciation seems to happen a lot faster.
But yes, you can sell in Alaska. Try Craigs List and Alaskas List on line.
Maybe this would help: while in Alaska 2009, we visited with a Florida family who went into partnership & bought an RV. Family A drove it to Alaska. They would meet Family B at the airport & turn the RV over to them before flying home. Family B would then use the RV & drive it back to Florida and it would be sold. We found this to be pretty clever.
also remember that Alaska is tax free, so a dealer selling RVs would not add sales tax ??
I do seem to remember locals saying that trucks were more expensive there----so you might break-even on a trailer and win ona truck ??
Nigel & Pamala ----UK
No direct personal experience, but would agree with teh others....probably not going to pay for your trip.
If you want to turn a few bucks, if you can drag a utility trailer (empty) behind your Class A or Class C, you'll probably be able to sell it for at least a bit more than you paid for it. Not a way to get rich, but pays for a bit of gas. I've turned 3 trailers this way (ranging from a kit trailer from Lowes to a Trail-king 40K trailer) and was always able to make a bit of profit. Pretty sure that it more than covered the extra fuel, but wasn't always able to calculate that precisely.
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