Travelling in a campervan is something people dream about. Romantic nights in the middle of nowhere. Cooking in your own cute kitchen and travelling the world. We travelled in our own campervan for a year. On this page you can find the pros and cons for travelling the world in a van.
Freedom and affordable travels
Travelling in a van has pros and cons. The biggest pro is the freedom you have when travelling in a campervan. You can go everywhere you want, not bound by bus of train schedules. Besides, your house is always on your side. You can stop wherever you like and eat, drink and sleep. It is also possible to live ‘off-grid’, in the middle of nowhere, for a couple days. We can stay off-grid for six days, we will run out of water after those days. Water is a crucial part, because we could take enough (canned) food that last for weeks. Beside, when the sun shines, we never run out of power because of our solar panel. Another big upside of travelling in a van is the cost. Usually travelling costs a lot of money, but with travelling in a van, you can easily sleep for free and cook your own meals. This will save you a lot of money. During our trip, we spend about 1000 euro’s a month for the travels. The biggest costs were diesel and food.
Driving, driving, driving
During our journey we spend a lot of money on ferries. The prices are high because we have to take the van on the boat. Taking a ferry boat is a very fun thing to do because we love the sea. But, we do not take the ferries for fun, we go on a boat because we don’t like all the driving. So we skip a lot of km by taking the ferry. Our van is pretty old, that’s why the driving is a bit uncomfortable. The van makes a lot of noise, the driving is rough and we have to keep the windows open because we don’t have an air-conditioning. The roads we drove in the countries we visited during our journey, are sometimes in a pretty bad shape and the people drive like crazy. Driving is very tiresome if you have to keep an eye out for all the holes in the road. Besides, we drive very slow. We can manage to drive 110 km/u, but we normally don’t go faster than 80 km/u. Driving in a campervan differs from camper to camper. Some are new and drive like heaven, but we think that the driving is one of the cons of travelling in a van.
Getting to know the people
Meeting up with other people is a hard part of travelling in a van. We do a lot of wildcamping, so we don’t meet a lot of others tourist. It’s way easier to make new friends during a backpack trip, because you meet so many fellow travelers in hostels. Besides, by travelling in a bus or train you could easily chat with others. In Europe, there are a lot of places for camper vans. Outside the EU, we haven’t seen any. So it was hard for us to meet up with travelers. While travelling we tried to skip the most touristic parts and drove through the countryside. We got a lot of attention from the local people, they smiled, waved and we tried to chat. Although we didn’t speak the same language, we could kind of understand each other. We also met a lot of people in the online community of Instagram. We even met up in real life with some of them. That was such a fun thing to do!
Not a fancy life
Travelling in a campervan is lovely. It’s a cheap form of travel and you’ve got a lot of freedom, while taking your house everywhere you go. But I have to say that travelling in a van is not for everyone. We only take a shower twice a month, we swim in rivers and wash ourselves with cold water to get clean. Going to the toilet is always outside, or in dirty public toilet. We eat very simple, because most of the small shops in villages don’t have fancy stuff. Most of the time, we can’t find a washing machine, so we mainly wash our clothes in rivers. Our way of travelling in a van is very basic. When you have a bit more money than we have, you could easily buy a bigger and more luxurious campervan. Besides, when you travel to EU countries, you can find camping’s, with hot showers and washing machines, everywhere. So you can make travelling in a van as fancy as you want. We definitely recommend travelling the world in a van.
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