In 2022, the global van conversion market was valued at $8.05 billion. It is expected to grow at a compound annual growth rate of 6.0%. Are you dreaming of an epic adventure in a van?
Have you always wanted to go on an adventure trip filled with laughter, smiles, and time spent with loved ones? The idea of living the van life sure is tempting. It’s inexpensive, requires little to no planning, and can get you places many others only dream of seeing.
But before you go out and buy a van, there are a few things you’ll want to consider first. Then it’s about time you started living in a van. You may be aware that one of the eras is to throw off the chains and escape the lifestyle.
Continue reading to learn more about planning your van life adventure.
What Exactly Is a Van Life?
Living in vans that have been converted into dwellings is known as the “van life” alternative lifestyle. A reevaluation of what is crucial in life is a characteristic of this nomadic style of life. Van life is depicted in a more flattering light than it is, with travel and charming photographs on social media being the most associations.
It’s about meeting strangers and accepting them for their differences while seeing their commonalities. But deeper than that, van life is about the commitment to create the most fulfilling life you can for yourself. It’s also about not settling for all the “shoulds” that others try to push upon you.
It’s about focusing on what’s meaningful in life and shedding what isn’t.
What You Need for Van Living
All you need for van life are the things you already have in your possession. Pay attention to what you’re using—or not using—to reduce and pack what you need in your van. It is a fantastic moment to assess what you need to be content with and to begin considering how you might be able to simplify your equipment.
Check out shops that sell different-sized boxes and bins that can be stored in your van. Look for packing cubes where you can stash your clothing and soft goods and prevent clutter. Choosing what clothes to carry may be one of the most challenging aspects of downsizing for van life.
Check these suggestions for van living attire and equipment:
- Keep it simple
- Only pack wrinkle-free, machine-washable clothing
- If you have a piece you like, bring two or an extra in another color
- If you don’t wear it often already at home, leave it at home
- Make sure you plan for the change in seasons
- Ditch the books
- Quality over quantity
Things to Consider When Planning Your Van Life Adventure
Calculate Your Budget
When it comes to planning your van life adventure, budgeting is an essential element to consider. Before going out and making any purchases, you should determine how much you can afford and make a budget. Start by creating a budget that outlines the cost of travel, the cost of the van, gas, insurance, and other necessities.
Get Your Vehicle Ready for the Road
Ensuring your car is roadworthy should be the first step in preparing for a van life adventure. Check the levels of all your fluids, change your oil if necessary, and make sure your hoses and belts are in good shape. Examine the condition of the tread and tire wear.
Review all safety equipment, including brakes, steering, indicators, and headlights. Invest in comfy seats, and look into possible extra storage possibilities. If space is not an issue, spend money on high-quality solar panels, a generator, and a small refrigerator.
You can also increase your van’s capabilities by giving it enhancements. You can get services from businesses that specialize in adventure van conversion to help you get the proper amenities you need for your adventure.
Research Your Destinations
The adventurous life in a van is always available, but preparation is essential! It is crucial to research your location. Make sure you have the appropriate resources on hand for the kinds of activities that are accessible along your path.
Planning a van life adventure is an exciting task! Before you take the plunge into van life, conduct thorough research. Decide ahead of time where you want to go for the safety of your destinations.
Be sure to check their laws and regulations so you are informed and prepared when you arrive. Gather resources and contacts from past van lifers to get local tips on the best places to visit and camp. You will have a good foundation for planning your route and budget.
Equip Your Vehicle With the Necessary Supplies
Careful planning is required when choosing what to bring, where to travel, and what to do on a van life trip. First, stock the vehicle with all the necessities. Along with clothing and personal items, it’s crucial to take a camp stove, cookware, a lamp, and some essential equipment.
Decide on a destination next. Choose your mode of transportation third. Finally, make plans for each stop along the way. Cycling, hiking swimming are just a few ways to make the most of the experience.
The van life adventure can be an exhilarating and unforgettable experience. Make sure your car is outfitted with the required resources to guarantee success. Make a list of the goods you’ll need. Make sure to confirm insurance and registration.
Where Will This Van Life Journey Take You?
There are many reasons why people choose a nomadic lifestyle. Some do van life part-time, some for a road trip. Still, others sell off their belongings and commit to living in a van full-time.
But yet you go about it van life is rewarding. It’s exciting. And it’s a ton of fun – if you allow it to be.
Freedom to Go Places and Do Things on Your Timetable
Living in a van allows you to visit the locations you’ve always wanted to see on your schedule. Van life equips you with the utmost freedom to travel without time restrictions, reservations, or agendas and visit all the National Parks or take a cross-country road trip while visiting all 50 states.
Van Life Teaches You to Embrace a Simpler Lifestyle
Living in a van requires a simpler lifestyle with fewer belongings. You’ll have to focus on the crucial things in your life and let go of those that aren’t essential. For many people, this is one of the greatest lessons of van life!
Spend More Time Outdoors
Living in a van can be a fantastic way to spend more time outside. Living in a van allows you to get out and explore the great outdoors, from dispersed camping to visiting National Parks. Vans are excellent starting and finishing points for overnight expeditions backpacking excursions, and basecamps for skiing.
Be Location Independent
One of the benefits of living and working on the road is that you can be location-independent. You may need to find reliable wifi now and then if you work, but for the most part, location independence while living in a van means that you can go where you want when you want.
Planning a Route for Your Road Trip
Take into account the distance to go as well as any locations you plan to stay longer. Make sure it’s a manageable distance between these two destinations.
Locate Some Potential Rest Spots Along the Road as a Last Reso
Overnight RV or vehicle parking is permitted at some chain businesses or fueling stations. Locate a couple along your intended path in case you do not get to your destination on time.
Plan Your Epic Road Trip Based on Your Battery’s Capacity
Your van’s electricity supply is restricted. You must plan your route to ensure adequate power before reaching the next electrical outlet and charging your battery. Be mindful of your energy consumption if you are boondocking (camping without electricity).
Plan Your Itinerary Based on Water Intake
As with power, you’ll need to discover RV parks that allow you to discharge waste and refill your clean water. Plan your route to have enough water between the campsites that offer these services. Take it easy on the showers, too.
Road Trip Planning Apps
Whether you need a digital road trip planner to help you map out your next journey or an app that leads you around – these apps have you covered.
Here are the best road trip apps to download ASAP ahead of your next adventure.
Find camping destinations and read reviews from other fellow travelers. Available globally.
Their range of apps helps you find everything from a place to dump your waste to Walmart parking lots that let you park your van. Available in the US and Canada.
Input your start and end points and other preferences. Then they suggest the perfect route. Available globally.
What Food to Bring?
The number of grocery stores can vary depending on where you are going. For this reason, bring some long-lasting food essentials with you. Non-perishable staples include things like pasta, couscous, and lentils.
Beans, soups, corn, and peas from cans can be paired with cuisines. Food that has been frozen includes meat, veggies, and ready-made frozen dinners for lazy days. Produce your bread.
Store-bought bread can soon develop mold. Yet, the fundamental components of homemade bread—oil, water, dry yeast, flour, and salt—can last a very long time! Campfire bread is one of the many easy-to-make recipes that may be prepared over an open flame.
For some simple recipes, search online. Pack your food in plastic containers for your fridge and freezer. In this manner, as you go down the highway, all the loose food won’t be hurled back and forth in the refrigerator.
What to Do With All of Your Stuff
There are a few questions you can ask yourself to guide your decision-making before moving into a van or rent a storage unit:
- Do you intend to travel for an extended period
- Do you plan on returning to the location
- Why did I decide to retain this for so long
- Is this something I need or desire
Place It in Storage
If you don’t know how long you want to live in a van but want to return to the same place when you’re done. Renting a storage unit can be a good idea. If you have precious items and furnishings to part with, renting a storage container is also an option.
Storage units can range in price from $50 to $200 per month on where you live. Some things are crucial to keeping safe. Consider digitizing them and several copies on external hard drives and Google Drive.
A safe deposit box is a good option for important documents, jewelry, or small family heirlooms. You could also store these items at a friend or family member’s house that you trust.
Sell Your Stuff
It is an excellent idea if you’re considering moving somewhere else after your travels. If it’s replaceable, or if you plan to transition to full-time van life. It’s also a great way to get extra cash for van life.
If you feel comfortable, share with people what you’re doing and why you’re inspired to travel in a van. Share your excitement and intention in minimizing your stuff.
Make the Most Out of Living the Van Life
Van life is a fantastic journey and can offer an exceptional experience. Get a cooking set, invest in a dependable van, look up potential destinations, and be ready for anything. There are no restrictions on what you can do if you are prepared, enthusiastic, and open-minded.
So get out there and start enjoying living the van life now without restrictions, and learn more about yourself as you go!
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