Whether you are a weekend warrior or a full-time van dweller, here are five must know vanlife hacks that can make life on the road a whole lot easier. These five tricks to living in a small mobile space will provide your vanlife experience with more comfort and give you more time to do the things that make you happy while on the road.
Once you have secured a safe place to park, it's time to get out of your van and explore! Vanlife is about getting outside and seeing destinations. Depending on your location and what your favorite activities are, you are going to need a good pair of shoes or sandals for walking, as well as a bike, skateboard, rollerblades, or a one-wheel, etc. to commute around the town or countryside. Moving your van can only get you so far, for sometimes the true gems are hidden down the side streets, paths, and trails. A mode of transportation beyond the van will expand the circumference of your travel destination.
Something as simple as a mosquito net to keep bugs out of your van is a game-changer when you are staying somewhere in nature. Where there is light, the bugs follow and when dusk approaches, leaving the doors open while you are cooking dinner creates a wholesome atmosphere for bugs to join your fleet. However, once your van is full of too many bugs to count, the atmosphere changes to one where you are outnumbered by our insect friends. Mosquito nets are an easy DIY project to add to your van before you set out into the wild. You can get creative with velcro and mosquito netting to make the perfect fit.
No one likes bruised fruit dripping all over your van. A net that you can hang fruit in will save so many bruised avocados, pummeled pears, and crushed oranges. Another simple DIY project that can be done easily and save you time cleaning up sticky messes. All you need is a net or canvas bag (a shirt can be used instead) and a hook, and most importantly a place where you can hang the fruit bag. For extra security, you can attach a bungee to the bottom of the canvas bag to reduce the swinging. Voila, your fruit will be safe from the bumpy road to paradise.
In my van, I put the foldable table over part of my bench to turn a seating area to a standing desk and extra space when I am cooking. Foldable and collapsible surfaces can transform a living space and add efficiency to your van. When planning your build or adding on to your current build, think about ways to create transformable spaces. There is a time for sleeping and a time for cooking, with minimal space it is key to focus on how to make your space as efficient as possible.
Sometimes the simplest solutions are the best. Racks can be used for holding just about anything in place. Get crafty, racks of all kinds, from metal to plastic, can be repurposed and with the right placement make a stunning aesthetic in your van. I cannot tell you how many times I have driven my van and by the time I get to my destination, it looks like a bull in a China shop in the back of my van. Racks will help any loose idiom be easily stored quickly. Leaving some rack space open above your countertops will allow you to easily clean off the counter when heading out on the road.