- I just love the open road!
Everyone has a different starting place and different desires for the RV lifestyle. These are some of my suggestions for those who want to live full-time in an RV or camper van and primarily boondock.
1. Begin to live a bit differently in whatever dwelling you’re currently in, to help ease the adjustments and form new habits. For example, if you are going to boondock a lot, shower for shorter amounts of time, less often. If you want “regular” showers- whatever that means to you- there are ways to have that happen. For many- probably most, showers happen less frequently and easing into that can make it smoother. It’s amazing how little water it takes to bathe! The same goes for clothes- if you plan to have fewer items, begin only wearing fewer. See how often you want to do laundry and what items you wear and like the most. You may also want to see if and how you can reduce the trash you accumulate.
2. Approximate new expenses. You will likely find yourself with propane, dump/fill, occasional campground, excursions/outings, laundry, RV insurance and roadside assistance expenses you may not have had before. Also, you may find you eat out more as you try new foods or that you buy different foods to fit your space and kitchen better. While some of this may be additional, there’s a good chance other costs will no longer concern you and so they swap out. Things like oil changes and tire rotations may be something to consider as well since you might want them more often if you’re driving a lot. My RV is a van and can be done at regular price at many regular shops(I go to dealerships and love the Express Lanes.) The rates I’ve noticed at RV shops and for bigger RVs are much higher.
3. If there is something you never or rarely use, don’t take it. Unless it’s something you really WANT anyway, it isn’t likely worth the space and weight. If you prefer to keep and not carry it, maybe you have a friend or relative who will store it for you or can rent a storage space. Check out my suggestions for clearing out here
. On that note, if you’re ready to go soon and there are things you want to buy online, order them while you still have an address they can be shipped directly to. It’s just easier than general delivery or finding a pick up location. Some stores do let you order online at pick up at a store, which is cool.
4. Tools are heavy. Carry the ones you need. Figure out what tools fit your screws and bolts, etc. and take them. You do not likely need an entire set of every size or kind.
5. Live in the RV, if you can, while you clear out and prepare to move out. My biggest suggestion is actually the following: go on a 7-10 day trip, preferably to someplace you’ve not yet been, starting with a full fresh tank and empty grey and black tanks, trying various options like a parking lot, the woods, a campground - whatever you want to, to see how things go. Make note of what you want/need/use and what you took you didn’t need at all. What did you like and what would you prefer? This is not camping like a vacation where you might think and act differently. I’m talking about going out and living like it’s your home and you have everything you need; living in your RV the way you imagine it will be when you are fully full-timing. You’ll quickly see some things that you can change, get or get rid of, how long your tanks lasted you, and so on. Then adjust as needed.
Choosing this lifestyle is so incredibly fun when it’s what you really want to do. I think there are always ways to improve the experience and playing with it as you go is fantastic. What works now may not work later. That’s fine. For anything you may be “giving up”, just think of all that you will be experiencing that you haven’t yet. The personal growth and expansion that comes from doing what you love is amazing. I love living in my RV. It’s awesome!