Is Van Living for You?
By John Doe
Looking to set out on a new adventure and go off the grid? Have you considered van living? Cook, work, sleep, and shower all in your home on wheels, travel, and live life on your time! Check out our van life guide below.
What is van living?
Van life may be pretty self-explanatory – living in a van – but it can mean so much more than that. Travel the world on your own schedule and live a simple life using a van as a mobile home. Not all lifestyles are the same, some people choose to live full time on the road and others only stay in their vans on weekends and holidays. Some people like to stay totally off the grid; others enjoy staying at campsites. Van lifers can be a solo thing or you can take the whole family with you! Most nomads find this van life freeing.
Why choose van life? Those who have adopted van life customs embrace a minimalist lifestyle, decrease their carbon footprint, focus on hobbies, and steer away from a 9 – 5 job. Here are some of the reasons living out of a van is right for them!
Freedom Bike ride up and down the coast in the middle of the week. Van life allows you to have the freedom to go on a trip without having to figure out scheduling time off. Your time is more flexible and you are not tied to any commitment like being locked into a lease or mortgage.
Simplicity Living minimally takes away the stress of worrying about precious items behind. It is much more difficult to make impulsive purchases because there is limited space inside the van. Van life requires you to think about the most important things to you as well as reduce the items you don’t need.
Adventuring Every day is a new adventure when you live the van life! Wake up and meet new friends, take in local culture, or discover some of nature’s secrets. Every day is different and unpredictable when you live the van life.
Cash Saving Rent, mortgage, utilities, cable, and internet are monthly expenses that add up quickly. Van life can cut down on these expenses and is a great reason to consider this way of living.
Be Bossy Working remotely is significantly more popular today than it was previously, this makes van life great for digital nomads. Some van dwellers use living on the road as an opportunity to start their own businesses and make some money. Blogging, photography, painting, and selling homemade goods are some of the popular van life professions.
Challenges Van life can come with its own difficulties. Traveling across the country, spending days relaxing, or working on your own schedule can be exhilarating but there are a lot of challenges not discussed on social media. Some challenges to be aware of are as follows.
Have a Plan Going where the wind takes you may seem like fun there is a lot of planning involved in every aspect of traveling. Some things to plan out before driving to a destination are getting groceries, where to sleep, showering, using the bathroom, refilling water, or where to get wifi is a good list to start with.
Security A hi-tech security system or cameras around your home to make feel safe is not something you will be able to have as a “van lifer”. You will be more vulnerable when on the road so you must take safety measures to protect yourself by avoiding unsafe places. Never leave your belongings unattended for too long and be sure to have some kind of emergency communication device.
Vehicle Maintenance You may run into unexpected situations like a flat tire, dead transmission, or a busted stove. Just like a car or a home you will have unplanned expenses with your van to ensure it’s safe to drive and live in. You will need to make sure you have a way to get these issues resolved immediately.
Know the Weather The weather is so unpredictable. You could run into snowstorms, heavy rain, or extreme heat. Be sure to prep your van for the elements with things like insulation, fans, and heaters, and map out where you want to be to avoid inclement weather.
Van Life Before making a purchase or starting conversions think about mileage, space, and budget. Some types of vans that are popular among nomads: Vanagons are Volkswagon vans that have been around since the 1950s. If you need a large layout in your van these can have a kitchen, eating area, and full-sized bed. Campgrounds are better suited for these types of vehicles rather than stealth camping.
Sprinter vans are more common in the van life community since they provide a lot of space, are reliable, and last a long time. The cabinets, showers, and bathrooms allow for a lot of customization.
Cargo vans blend into cities since a lot of companies use them for commercial work. Built for driving on rougher terrain, affordable and can reach up to 300,000 miles.
Campers are a go-to if you would like a vehicle equipped with everything you need to get on the road. The shower, toilet, kitchen with appliances, storage space, and bedroom make these campers great for national parks and campgrounds.
High-top conversions are built for van life and require very little customization. They offer lots of storage options, really good mileage, and ample headroom, and you can get them for an affordable price.
A school bus or Skoolies are best for those traveling with friends or family due to a large amount of space. They also require very little reconstruction and allow you to customize them to fit your needs and style.
If you need to store belongings while you give van life a try Horizon Mini Storage can be of assistance. Rent your unit today and get started on your new adventure!