“I could get into this.” My hubby Patrick sat grinning at the wheel of a 31-foot camper we had borrowed for the family vacation. The Kelly family was touring Southern California, visiting relatives and using the giant rig as a moving hotel room.
“If we bought one, where would we park it?” I asked.
“Can’t you walk down this dreamy lane with me for a few minutes without getting all practical?” said Pat.
When we returned home, I got all practical and found out a few things about RV storage.
“We offer indoor and outdoor storage,” explained Tim Phillips, assistant manager at Big Toy Depot in Otay Mesa (619-661-8300; bigtoydepot.com). “We can accommodate pretty much any type of RV or trailer. About 45 feet is our max.
“For outside storage,” Phillips continued, “it is completely concrete paved, and customers have their own gate-access code. There are two gates — both have an answering keypad, and the customer puts in their PIN to enter and to exit. We have video-camera surveillance and a high fence with razor wire. It is 24/7 for picking up the camper on the outside storage. If the motorhome is stored inside, customers can pick it up 24/7 also, but they just have to let us know in advance and we’ll pull it out to make it easier for them.”
Nothing outside is covered. “If a customer has their own RV cover or wants to buy one, that’s up to them.” Toy Depot offers RV detailing, inside and out.
“Rates go by size of the vehicle. Inside storage runs $10 to $11 per foot per month. Outside storage costs $5 to $6 per foot per month. If a customer wants to store it for a couple of days, they have to pay the weekly rate.”
“We offer outdoor RV storage,” explained Kathy, manager at Scripps Mesa Storage in Mira Mesa (858-566-3881; scrippsmesastorage.com). “The storage is on gravel, partially lit. Customers can pick up their camper 24 hours a day. We don’t have security, but we do have an employee working different shifts, different hours, to be a presence.
“The rates run $125 to $400 a month, depending on the size of the space. Rentals are month to month. I have been offering shorter rentals, as long as I have space available. We don’t offer an RV cleaning service, but we do have an approved company that is allowed to go in and do cleaning service. They have a system that they use — they catch everything.”
“$80 to $125 per month for a camper, up to 60 feet,” quoted Ramón, assistant manager of the campground at San Diego KOA RV Storage in Chula Vista (619-427-3601; rvstoragesandiego.com). “The storage is part of our campground, toward the back of the campground. There’s a gate code, we have security, all the storage is fenced and alarmed, and we have cameras and staff on the grounds 24/7.”
For pickup of the camper, “There is a little process they have to follow. Since they have to come through the gate of the campground — which after hours is closed — they have to contact the night person through the intercom. Then they have the gate code, and they can come into the storage yards anytime.”
KOA offers rates for shorter rentals in the off season. “June through September we don’t offer shorter rentals, but in the off season we offer daily and weekly rates on a first-come, first-serve basis.”
Storage spots at KOA are gravel. “We do not offer any cleaning services, but we recommend mobile services for the detailing.”
Storage West (858-452-1047 or 858-674-1000; storagewest.com) has RV-storage locations in La Jolla and Rancho Bernardo and offers outdoor, concrete-surface storage. “We get a lot of people that are doing the cruises,” offered their receptionist. “They will store their RV while they go on their cruise for a couple of weeks. Rates vary according to the size needed, from $99.95 a month to $279.95 for a 10-by-70 camper size, the largest we have.”