CHECK OUT THESE ESSENTIAL TIPS TO START LIVING AS A VANLIFER TO SEE IF IT’S FOR YOU!
Ever thought about living life in a van? People who do this are called vanlifers? Those with a thirst for travel who don’t mind small living quarters have found ways to make buses, trucks, and vans into homes for their nomadic lifestyles. If you think living as a vanlifer is for you, read these best tips to start living as a vanlifer and see if van life fits your lifestyle.
Though different vehicles that offer living accommodations exist, people have turned their own cars into tiny homes throughout history. With a driving section up front and a makeshift bed in the back, they began their journeys on the road. As the minimalist movement continues, many have found creative ways to expand upon these earlier ideas.
LIVE LIKE A VANLIFER
With more people working remotely and living in solitude than ever, why not pack up and traverse across the country as van lifers do? You can visit and stay in beautiful national parks, national forests, and state parks while on the road. Heck, you can even document your travels on social media.
If you want to start an adventure in your ride and enjoy modest living, consider these essential tips to start living as a vanlifer before you go. Your infatuation about that road trip may just become a reality.
What Is A Vanlifer?
A vanlifer is adventurous and doesn’t mind living in a small space just to feel the nomadic lifestyle. If the important things to you are freedom, the open road, and new places every day or two, living out of a car is a great way to achieve it. Some do this full time, while others prefer just to do it on road trip vacations.
START WITH DOING A VANLIFER PRACTICE RUN
Do a practice run before setting out on a long journey and paring down all of your belongings. Turn your van into a very minimal camper van and try living in it in a controlled environment to determine whether you’ll enjoy this experience. You will want to ensure you’ve accounted for everything and worked out the kinks before being in an unknown location without resources.
YOU’LL NEED AN EMERGENCY FUND
You might not think you’ll need much money, and you’re probably right, but having an emergency fund upfront for things that could happen out of the blue, is almost essential. Yes, you will save a significant amount of money by eliminating most of your possession, as well as the costs of living in a home or apartment, but still, emergencies happen. Try not to get caught up in a false sense of security, as you will still have expenses. Consider using a national bank where you can find a location regardless of the state you’re in. This fund could make or break your nomadic lifestyle.
BATHING PRACTICES FOR A VANLIFER
Living as a vanlifer may not be for everyone, but when it comes to bathing, you really don’t need to bathe every day; dry shampoo can go a long way. What you’ll want to do is make sure you’re changing your clothing regularly. You can shower at campgrounds, gyms (if you’re a member of a national chain), or a solar shower. And, don’t overlook taking baths in hot springs. When you’re active outdoors, you’ll want to ensure you’re clean before going to bed.
For the time in between your bathing, keep wet wipes on hand. Additionally, it would be best if you kept up on your laundry. Hygiene encompasses more than just your body’s cleanliness. Ensure you clean the clothing you wear and store it to prevent spreading germs, bacteria growth, illness, and odor. If it’s your first time on the road as a vanlifer, you’ll understand these practices, but don’t forget them as time goes on and you get comfy.
BRING ONLY BELONGINGS YOU CAN’T LIVE WITHOUT
Before heading off, you must determine which belongings will join you on your journey and which will not. The more you bring, the less room you have. You don’t want to clutter, and you don’t want your items flying around when driving. Pack the essentials, as well as things you need to complete work or pass the time when you’re stationary.
In packing food, you will want to bring non-perishables when possible. You can stop for fresh ingredients and fruits and vegetables along the way, but store them in sealed containers, so you don’t attract pests. It wouldn’t be wise to eat out every day.
You may want to invest in a small smokeless grill. Obtaining and knowing how a smokeless grill works will allow you to cook freely, pack up quickly, and use it as a fire pit in the interim.
There are many essential tips to start living as a van dweller. Take it in stride, and you’ll indeed find van life tips and tricks that help with organization and efficiency. This is the beginning of your next chapter—good luck! If you’re still stuck, get the best advice from your friends. The van life movement is on the rise, but it may not be for you.