The Answer to a Nomad’s Prayers” - All you need to know about Caravans
With over 9.3 million Instagram results surfacing on #VanLife, and the recent pandemic making people rethink their lifestyle and holidays, let us delve into the rapidly growing Van Culture.
As the name suggests, Van Life is when you choose to live in a vehicle rather than in a traditional foundation-based home. For some, this can merely be a part-time affair. While for others, it can be an indefinite full-time lifestyle choice.
Though mostly conceptualized for travel purposes, there are numerous instances when people sought camper vans just to go off-grid.
A little history of how it all started…..
In 1969, Volkswagen introduced it’s first ‘hippie van’. Evidently, it caught everyone’s eyes and soon became a symbol of minimalism.
The trend drove further with the introduction of Sprinter vans in 2001. Marketed initially as cargo vehicles, the caravan community eventually embraced them because they were both mobile and spacious at roughly the size of a short bus.
PRESENT DAY CAMPER VANS
Campervans typically come with a fridge and a shower, powered either by gas, battery, or solar panels.
Likewise, there can be a fixed or pop-up roof.
They usually have a small kitchen along with an electric cooktop, grill, or microwave oven. A bed is accompanied by a built-in or portable toilet. Depending upon the size, a campervan can have anything from radio, television, and portable water tank to a generator, water heater, and air conditioner.
The appliances fetch power from a dedicated battery other than the van’s or AC power, supplied at a campsite via a hook-up cable.
Most people who have shifted to van living seek the simplicity of life on the open road. Van culture embraces a minimalized and sustainable lifestyle nestled in immaterial things like health, nature and freedom.
Additionally, cutting down on electricity, water usage and waste, life in a van promotes a greener, more frugal lifestyle, and perhaps a more frugal one.
Long story short, vans are more for travelling to remote places and seeing the beauty of it. Relish the solitude and positivity nature has to impart, even if that means you have to be more creative about where to find your parking!
VAN LIFE – INCREASING POPULARITY
In recent years, van life has propelled extensively. There is a gamut of van camping sites spread across the globe, especially in the US. Plenty of businesses are offering services and amenities to help that lifestyle. Companies are helping you convert your vehicle to camper vans.
Freelancers such as web developers, graphic designers, social media managers, bloggers, online marketers, and writers are among the most common professionals switching to living in vans. There are also artists, photographers and other people willing to cherish miscellaneous seasonal work. Reasonably enough, it’s a good catch if you are not bound to work from a particular location.
Apart from the lone dwellers, there are partners, pets, and even families for whom vans work just right. They are satisfyingly living in it.
Precisely 50% of the nomad population who live out of their van do so part-time, while the other half are full-time.
Freedom and doing work on ones own will have always aroused a catnip in people. So why would the travellers be left behind? They want to have a raw experience, wander about and connect with places naturally and on self-interests. And for this, camper vans sound like the perfect alternative.
- Sense of freedom
- Ease in finding a parking space
- Affordable, especially in cities as compared to renting a place
- Saves extra money by incorporating a minimalist way of lifestyle
- Comfortable when in remote locations, where it’s hard to find a stay option
- Provide general transportation that city dwellers could otherwise not afford
- Apart from the setup, the cost of upkeep and maintenance is high.
- The maintenance can be jarring, especially if something goes awry.
- Safety concerns, i.e., uncertainty in finding someplace safe for the night
One of the best parts of the van life is the caravan events and gatherings. Consider them as the Disneyland for the van dwellers. They serve as a hub where people from different van culture communities can engage with each other. It is the next big way of finding similar folks on the road.
They host adventure gigs, workshops, mountain biking, kayaking, yoga, musical performances, local sight-seeing, and whatnot. The idea is to wrap up all the aspects of van life.
Besides, the events answer all the questions related to a caravan lifestyle. For instance,
- How to make money when you’re out on the road
- How to get into the van life with kids and pets
- How to build or customize your own van
- How to keep safe and healthy out on the road
- And so much more
These meets help the van life community keep growing. The pandemic rendered many of these events to a screeching halt. But as the conditions get better, we are to witness some of them real soon. So, gear up! You wouldn’t want to miss any.
The future of van culture is as clear as an azure blue sky. It is there to stay. With events and camping sites being held all around, it’s quite blatant that van life’s popularity is steering in the right way. Granted, there are quite a few setbacks, but the silver linings are far more significant. The ultimate freedom it ensures precedes other million reasons why you should go for it!
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