van life

A Complete Guide To Living A Comfortable And Exciting Van Life

Sunday 20th Mar 2022 |

The feeling of complete freedom, the excitement and beauty of sleeping in the open beneath the stars, and the profit you can make by saving money you would otherwise give to mortgage, are just benefits of van life.

More and more young people across the States are taking up this lifestyle due to the changing economy, high real estate prices, and lack of well-paid jobs. 

Van life has often been associated with homelessness, however, in recent years, it has become more of a personal choice rather than a lack of accommodation, as people refuse to live a life trapped in debt and the constant struggle of affording basic commodities. Therefore, if you have been facing similar dilemmas, keep on reading for a complete guide on van life, and how to make it exciting and comfortable. 

It is a lifestyle 

In recent years, due to social media, van life has become a hashtag sensation and more and more people embrace this kind of life due to the beautiful social media pictures and the desire to leave it all behind and go far away. However, van life is more than just a little excursion or travel trip. For most people, it is a personal choice, a lifestyle, it represents the desire to fight the status quo, be different and resist the mainstream living conditions we are imposed. 

Van life is personal freedom, in terms of choice and willingness to do something you prefer as opposed to something you must do because it is expected of you. It represents a nomadic minimalist movement, resembling its 60s counterpart, and it seeks simplicity and less materialistic-driven life. Van life is more than a hashtag phenomenon, it requires dedication, a lot of sacrifices, and personal growth. Most people find it hard in the first year or two as we all grow up in decent conditions, always having hot water and a place to shower. Therefore, the choice of van life requires conquering obstacles down the way as you travel from place to place. 

It might be intimidating at first, but individuals become acclimated to the new way of life over time and continue to live it for years. It depends on what your final goal is; whether you feel a spiritual void, despise consumer society, and need complete freedom with the fresh breeze tickling your hair, it might be the right choice. However, you might just choose this lifestyle because you are saving money to start your own business or buy yourself an estate. The degree to which you become used to the option is determined by the main reason.

Building the van 

The assembling of the van can take some time as there are a lot of modifications you have to make. You can always buy a finished van ready to hit the road, however, you’ll miss the chance to customize it according to your desires and needs. When building it, have in mind several things, like electrical installation, or heat installation for cold places. You’ll need a waste disposer and enough room for your bed and clothing. 

One idea is cabinets for stashing away the necessities, and a bed that can be removed and put away when you need the space for showering. When thinking of the right choice for a van build, some iconic brands should immediately pop up into your head, like a VW Vanagon, or an MB Sprinter Van. The VW sometimes requires a lot of mechanical repairs and can cause trouble down the road, though it has an iconic look and often comes with a pop-top. 

The Sprinter offers far more space, is easier for adults and customization, and is newer. Some other options are a Cargo Van, or Class B Camper which might be the best option for newcomers and people just starting the van life. Make sure to take into account the potential mechanical issues, and have some basic knowledge on how to repair them on the road, therefore you’ll need some extra space for tools and spare parts. 

Aside from that, it can take many months, and the end result is your vehicle with all of the improvements you requested. Of course, it is always more fun when you have someone to share the experience with. 

Safety and Security 

Van life can sometimes be dangerous, as you’ll travel across states and you might find yourself in different and undesirable situations. You’ll need to look out for places where you are completely alone, which might seem dangerous, and where there is a chance of getting attacked or robbed. Fortunately, as more and more people are going for the van life, there are safe parking places across states, all you need is to look them up. 

The overall cost 

Though you can save a huge amount of money over a longer period, you must take into account the costs of repairs, gas, and food. Also, think about basic commodities and electricity, therefore it would be wise to find a job with flexible working hours as you’ll spend most of the day wandering around. 

We hope you embrace the lifestyle if you find it suitable for you. Be aware it comes with its sacrifices, though the results are rewarding.