Minibus for 7 people plus all their luggage what would you recommend?

Submitted: Wednesday, Aug 06, 2014 at 15:29
ThreadID: 109043 Views:1395 Replies:5 FollowUps:15
This Thread has been Archived
Had a fantastic time in Aus in 2008 and 2009. Saw no end to amazing places including a bit of the Canning Stock Route and a huge chunk of the Gary Junction road all the way to Jupiter Well. Did Far North QLD, Tassie etc. etc. Was so privileged to see all of this. Thanks to all the kind aussies that gave encouragement.

Okay so I am planning to .... yes you guessed it come back. This time I am hoping to bring along 6 others from abroad looking to view some of the gorgeous Australian parrots I viewed and filmed.

So specifically I am wanting to know the best vehicle to rent to handle 7 people plus all their luggage in relative comfort with good windows for viewing and good fuel economy.
It would have to be some sort of minibus or van. But having driven 4 wheel drive vehicles and cars of many types I confess I have only driven vans a few times. Most importantly I don't know whats available in OZ to rent. If it goes as planned we would be doing a few dirt tracks near Adelaide and also a bit of dirt track in the Capertee Valley in NSW. Otherwise it would be bitumen.

Sure would love some advise. Thanks so much for a great site!

Don
Back Expand Un-Read 0 Moderator

Reply By: Steve D1 - Wednesday, Aug 06, 2014 at 16:06

Wednesday, Aug 06, 2014 at 16:06
Probably someone like Budget Rental will be the best option. 12 Seat bus, ( Toyota Coaster) will give all a window seat. They also have luggage trailers available, to leave more room inside. Diesel is good economy, auto / manual seem to be available. All on a standard licence.
Give them a call.

Steve.

( no afilliation etc. )
AnswerID: 537250

Follow Up By: Member - Tony H (touring oz) - Wednesday, Aug 06, 2014 at 16:12

Wednesday, Aug 06, 2014 at 16:12
Hi Steve,
Other than a coaster theres not a lot of choice, eh
Would really hate to do a long trip in those little seats that the coaster & similar have :-(
Insanity doesnt run in my family.... it gallops!

Member
My Profile  Send Message

1
FollowupID: 821529

Follow Up By: Wompoo - Wednesday, Aug 06, 2014 at 18:12

Wednesday, Aug 06, 2014 at 18:12
I bumped onto another suggestion online. Toyota Hiace
with fold down seats at back to take care of extra luggage. Thinking that might do the trick. Doubt if that type of vehicle ever comes in 4 wheel drive just in case some of the dirt roads around Mildura become a bit mucked up in the rain. What do you folks think of the Toyota Hiace?
Thanks so much...

Don
0
FollowupID: 821534

Follow Up By: Les PK Ranger - Wednesday, Aug 06, 2014 at 19:52

Wednesday, Aug 06, 2014 at 19:52
Actually, it's the Toyota Commuter bus you are likely thinking of . . . like a tall Hiace : )
Generally 12 to 14 seats, but the 12 seater you can drive on a car licence.
1
FollowupID: 821540

Follow Up By: Steve D1 - Wednesday, Aug 06, 2014 at 20:09

Wednesday, Aug 06, 2014 at 20:09
You're right. It is the commuter bus I meant to suggest. Thought of it on the way home.

Steve.
0
FollowupID: 821544

Follow Up By: The Bantam - Wednesday, Aug 06, 2014 at 20:27

Wednesday, Aug 06, 2014 at 20:27
7 people should be quite comfortable in a hiace comuter with their lugage.

I dont see whay you would need a trailer unless you where traveing heavy or carrying a lot of camping gear.

But the compenies that will rent you a comuter buss will rent you a lugage trailer.

A coaster on the other hand would seem to be a bit big and I think you need better than a car licence to drive one as they are over 4.5 tonne GVM and over 12 seats.

Hiaces do pretty fairly on dirt roads so if you are not going off road or traveling ...um...er....dodgy roads, you should have no problem.

cheers
0
FollowupID: 821546

Follow Up By: Member - Scott M (NSW) - Wednesday, Aug 06, 2014 at 21:47

Wednesday, Aug 06, 2014 at 21:47
sort of already suggested the commuter below...
0
FollowupID: 821556

Reply By: CSeaJay - Wednesday, Aug 06, 2014 at 16:45

Wednesday, Aug 06, 2014 at 16:45
Don,

Depending on budget consider two vehicles, then you can do without the need of a luggage trailer.
With a relatively cheap two way UHF you can be in constant communication as well.
It will certainly be more comfortable travelling (seats, speed, overtaking, aircon)
I realise that you need to pay for two tanks of fuel, but its worth throwing in the mix of things to consider...
Google is your friend here, together with an excel spreadsheet to compare rent, fuel etc. between your options
CJ
AnswerID: 537252

Reply By: Wompoo - Wednesday, Aug 06, 2014 at 18:00

Wednesday, Aug 06, 2014 at 18:00
Thats what I absolutely love about this site. Thoughtful responses by helpful ozzies. Any more suggestions you might have I am all ears. Trying to keep costs down but on the other hand I want to make sure that people enjoy themselves. If this comes together as hoped it would potentially be the trip of a lifetime for some. This is designed for parrot lovers. Trips starts in Cairns, then goes to Adelaide and then Sydney and back to Cairns. Flights of course between the cities. So appreciate you folks here..!

Don
AnswerID: 537258

Follow Up By: Member - Scott M (NSW) - Wednesday, Aug 06, 2014 at 18:26

Wednesday, Aug 06, 2014 at 18:26
Don, you indicated that you would fly between the cities - so this would mean renting a separate vehicle at each place.

Assume you're not camping - looking for booked accommodation? If so, it might be worth following CJays suggestion and looking at a couple of soft roaders and a hand held UHF between the vehicles. Subarus or something like that. Mind you all the suggestions are good. Depends on whether anyone else is comfortable driving or not - you've obviously spent some miles on the roads here so you know what they're like - would depend on where you're coming from.

Also look at time of year - some seasons are better for birds than others.
0
FollowupID: 821535

Follow Up By: Member - Scott M (NSW) - Wednesday, Aug 06, 2014 at 18:35

Wednesday, Aug 06, 2014 at 18:35
Something like this is probably what you're after - though you'd have to be careful where you take it. Any more seating capacity and you'll need an elevated class of license.

1
FollowupID: 821536

Follow Up By: Les PK Ranger - Wednesday, Aug 06, 2014 at 19:55

Wednesday, Aug 06, 2014 at 19:55
The Commuter is a very tidy unit to drive, had one for taking bushwalking tours out to various locations, and we took it to some pretty hariy trailheads and meet ups through the various trips we did.
Be surprised where they can go when asked nicely :D
1
FollowupID: 821541

Reply By: Honky - Wednesday, Aug 06, 2014 at 18:23

Wednesday, Aug 06, 2014 at 18:23
If you want to take seven people and also do 4wdriving that you should look at a Delica.

Honky
AnswerID: 537260

Follow Up By: Steve D1 - Wednesday, Aug 06, 2014 at 20:10

Wednesday, Aug 06, 2014 at 20:10
And where do you put 7 peoples luggage?

Steve
0
FollowupID: 821545

Follow Up By: Honky - Wednesday, Aug 06, 2014 at 22:38

Wednesday, Aug 06, 2014 at 22:38
The long wheel base has quite a lot of room behind the third row.
More than most vans.
0
FollowupID: 821558

Follow Up By: Wompoo - Thursday, Aug 07, 2014 at 04:20

Thursday, Aug 07, 2014 at 04:20
Thanks for the tips on the Delica folks. I like the looks of it although might be a bit slim on the luggage. Definitely dont want to haul some sort of rig behind with people's luggage in it. Am I correct in that its an older model of vehicle that rental places are not offering anymore? Seems like when I do a search for the vehicle it comes up as a used car for sale but not as a rental.
0
FollowupID: 821561

Follow Up By: Kilcowera Station Stay - Thursday, Aug 07, 2014 at 07:02

Thursday, Aug 07, 2014 at 07:02
We use a Hiace which can seat 11, it has good visibility and you can put a fair amount of luggage on the back seat, the seats are comfy. Our little bus has had a lift in the suspension and you would be amazed at the places we take it too. But your route doesn't sound particularly difficult Wompoo. The Hiace is also very economical. Cheers Toni
Kilcowera Station Stay

Business Member
My Profile  My Blog  Send Message

1
FollowupID: 821562

Follow Up By: Wompoo - Thursday, Aug 07, 2014 at 15:28

Thursday, Aug 07, 2014 at 15:28
Toni:

Considering your experience with outback living I am confident that you would be a great person to consult about the proper vehicle. I so appreciated your kind comments on my blog Polytelismedia. I hope you enjoyed reading about my quest to film all of Australia's parrots in 2008 and 2009. I have had folks ask me if they could come along on a personalized journey so that they could see and film parrots too. Thus my embarking on researching a vehicle. I have led tours in Canada etc. so not a stranger to leading groups but of course this needs to have the right vehicle and as few "surprises" as possible.

The name used on my blog was zenonie. I am hoping I have the right person... grin. Whatever the case I so appreciate your helpful advise! Stellar help on this site just like when I first came to OZ in 208. Thanks so much! - Don
1
FollowupID: 821592

Follow Up By: Kilcowera Station Stay - Thursday, Aug 07, 2014 at 17:12

Thursday, Aug 07, 2014 at 17:12
Yep, we have reconnected - I recognised Wompoo from a bird forum - the big world wide one I think. Hmm haven't been on there for awhile :) Hope you have a maarvelous trip Don, Cheers Toni
Kilcowera Station Stay

Business Member
My Profile  My Blog  Send Message

1
FollowupID: 821597

Reply By: patsproule - Friday, Aug 08, 2014 at 07:03

Friday, Aug 08, 2014 at 07:03
Had a few Ford Transit mini-busses in the old job we used to borrow to ferry students to gigs. 12 seats, good headroom, good heating & cooling, a huge luggage area with tonnes of power & good fuel eco to boot, and reasonable handling even when loaded. Only issue would be finding a rental one, and the stigma around reliability of a transit.
AnswerID: 537341

Sponsored Links

Popular Products (13)