If you need to drive in some rough and rocky soil or in some mud or sand, you might want to hire a 4WD. These are available for those on holiday who want to explore the outback or go driving along the beach or in the woods, or for those who need a vehicle to visit a mining or construction site. Whatever your reason for needing a 4WD, note a few questions to ask so you ensure you get one that suits your needs and so you know everything involved in its rental as well.
Ask how far off the road you can take the vehicle
Many 4WD rental agencies will allow their vehicles to go off-roading, but there may be some limitations as to what this means. You may need to keep the vehicle on roads, trails, or paths that are found on maps; an agency may also allow them on the beach, but may not allow them to be taken into rough and dense forestry that doesn't include some type of path or to be taken in areas of the outback that are not mapped. This is to ensure the safety of the vehicle, so it doesn't get stuck or damaged in rougher areas, and it is also for your own safety, so you don't get tempted to get too far from civilization just because you're driving a rugged 4WD!
Ask about limitations for what you can haul in or on the vehicle
Many 4WD vehicles will have a roof rack for holding bikes or a kayak, and some even include a rooftop tent. However, you may not be allowed to bring propane or other flammable materials with you in a rented vehicle, and they will liekly have weight limits as to what you can store on the roof rack, even if those items fit on the rack itself. If you're bringing anything with you other than standard camping gear, always ask about these limitations when renting a 4WD.
Ask if they provide added gear for you
Some 4WD vehicles may have attached grills that fold down and work with small propane tanks, and some may have the tent top mentioned above, but if you need additional camping gear, don't expect it to be included. A 4WD rental agency may not provide actual sleeping bags and other gear for camping; however, very often they will know of agencies that specialise in this type of gear for those visiting the outback, the beach, or any other rugged area. Always ask if they can recommend a supplier or agency for you.