Van life is a wonderful way of living; or maybe just a new way of spending your holidays. What do you choose?
More people around the globe are opening up to the idea of making travel plans in campervans. The reason for the increase in more people using campervans is not far-fetched. Making the rounds on your vacation is infinitely cheaper and more cost effective than staying at a hotel; in fact, to hire a camper in Sardinia is one of the cheapest ways to explore the island.
You have an automobile that serves as your bathroom, kitchen, dining table and bedroom. Plus, you get to travel around it. What more fun can a person ask for? More campervans provide most, if not all, of the luxuries and comfort that you get at home or in a hotel; and you also experience the excitement of being in the wild outdoors. Planning a campervan trip can be a little more involved than planning a trip where you stay at a hotel.
If you want to make the best and most of your campervan trip, it begins right from your packing.
Pack Appropriately – Take care of the Basics
You are going to be in a moving house, yes. But you really do not want to start driving around for something like a toothbrush. You need to be meticulous with your packing. Start from when you get off bed in the morning. You need a pair of slippers, toothbrush, toothpaste, toilet soap, toilet paper, shampoo, a towel, sunscreen, insect repellents, and basically everything you need if you were staying at a hotel and more. While you are trying to pack everything that you need, be careful not to over pack that you do not have enough space in your camper.
A camper is an automobile, and it is bigger than, and different from the convertible you drive to work. You need to be used to the turning radius and size of the campervan. If you have a campervan already, which you most likely do not, then you are covered. But since you do not, you may have to rent one from a campervan service. Get the details of the van from the rental company and be sure to follow stick to every safety rule concerning the campervan that you are given.
Plan Ahead your Van Life
The fun thing about traveling or touring in a campervan is the spontaneity of the experience. If you come across a fun or interesting landmark, you may want to stop and see it. And you can park pretty much anywhere safe to spend the night. But it still does no harm to plan ahead. Get a map of your traveling route, and plan your campsites ahead.
If you are traveling in a group of campervans, do not assume that others know the route. Plan it out yourself. Impulsiveness is good for road trips, but you cannot be over prepared. If you have a good idea of where your next campsite will be, you can plan out your trip, factoring in the distance and the speed of your campervan to arrive at the campsite before nightfall.
When you get the campervan from the rental company, find out what facilities are included in the van. If something is missing from the van that shouldn’t be, ask about it. If there is something that shouldn’t be present and is, ask about it. Juxtapose this with what you need. This will help you not to leave anything unpacked. As much as possible too, try to leave the van in the condition you got it. Or you may have to spread precious dollars on repairs for the van.
Don’t Forget Food
On camping trails, you do not have all the freedom you need to make whatever you want to eat, however you want to make it, whenever you want to make it. To avoid going hungry on trails, you need to plan your meals ahead.
Now this is not saying that you should have a meal timetable for breakfast, lunch and dinner for the entirety of your trip. Let’s not forget about the spontaneity.
But you need to have all the canned and packaged food items that you need, enough drinks, vegetables, side dishes and a mini fridge or cooler. Make meals that are simple and quick to make on an open fire. Do not forget to also pack some snacks that you can munch on while driving.
Light is Important
Keep a flashlight or two on your person at all times. Preferably, have a battery-powered flashlight that is sure to last you for several days. Also have extra batteries for the flashlight. Should you need to make a night trip to the bathroom, or you hear unhealthy noises near you at night, you need the light to see before you go jumping into trouble.
Be Safety Conscious
There are several rules guiding the use of campervans in several places. The specific rules and laws may differ from place to place, but they all essentially carry the same message.
Do not leave trash lying around after you’ve left a campsite. It is bad for the environment and equally bad for the campers coming behind you. Before starting a campfire or a bonfire, check for fire restrictions. Forest fires are a legitimate concern. Store food accordingly so ants do not get in them, otherwise you’ll end up going hungry.
As much as possible, park your campervan, and camp on a paved road. Campervans should be kept at least 30 metres away from the closest lake or stream.
Keep a map on you at all times, and know how to read it, so you do not end up getting lost. If you can be careful enough to take good care of your campervan; and you are determined to have a great time, your experience in a van will be something that you are eager to repeat.