You don’t have to quit your job and move into a van full-time to get a taste of the open road. For millions of Americans, a rented campervan provides easy access to turnkey adventure. If you plan accordingly, it could change your outlook on travel.
Why buy when you can rent? Aside from the high cost of the initial buy-in, the annual maintenance, insurance, and storage present deal-breaking challenges for many would-be RV owners.
Rentals like those from Travellers Autobarn remove the hassle factor with low prices, convenient locations, and a fleet of nicely appointed adventuremobiles.
It’s a perfect solution if you’re looking for an alternative to road-tripping in your daily driver. And it’s a great way to avoid expensive hotels or the inconvenience of tent camping.
A rolling habitat is ideally suited to seasonal getaways like music festivals, sporting events, or a rendezvous of friends at a far-flung trailhead. When you’re done with your fun, all you have to do is turn in the keys and start planning the next outing.
Where to Go and How to Get There
Most people have little problem picking a destination or plotting a course. But finalizing the minor details of where to camp, refuel, and resupply requires additional considerations.
Online resources like RV Trip Wizard provide an abundance of information with just a few clicks. The intuitive system helps locate campgrounds and attractions with suggested scenic routes.
And it sounds too good to be true, but Harvest Hosts unlocks access to hundreds of free camping opportunities at wineries, breweries, and farms throughout the nation. Other planning tools include the ever-popular Free Campsites website.
The crowdsourced iOverlander app, just launched a few years ago, contains thousands of listings for campsites, restaurants, and other must-see locations in the U.S., Canada, and beyond.
The most common mistake road-trippers make involves excessive hours behind the wheel. It’s hard to answer the call of the wild from the dark side of a windshield.
To ensure you enjoy your travels, limit drive time to half-days, or package most the big miles into a heavy push, with a few days parked in one spot. Don’t forget to share the drive time with your fellow travelers.
If you’re keen to fit as much adventure into your trip as possible, choose a service that facilitates one-way rentals.
Travellers Autobarn has locations in Los Angeles, Las Vegas, and San Francisco, all serviced with major airports. Renters can swoop into Las Vegas, grab a van with free unlimited miles, and hit a dozen national parks before rolling into San Fran for the flight home.
What to Pack and How to Manage Your Gear
We’ve all seen mountains of gear crammed into every nook and cranny of the family truckster. Don’t let the generous size of a van fool you — it’s easy to overstuff.
To maximize space and avoid the creep of clutter, organize your items in smaller bags that easily stash in various cabinets and bins throughout the vehicle. The tidier you are, the less time you’ll waste rummaging around looking for a lost headlamp or spork.
Before you pick up your rental, put careful thought into your meal planning. Bacon and eggs sound amazing until you roll into bear territory, where oatmeal might be a better, less-fragrant breakfast.
Also, consider the cleanup phase and choose foods that produce less mess. Water is a premium on the road. Try serving all of your meals on a tortilla-covered plate. Why wash the mess when you can eat it?
A Toe in Tempting Waters
If you’re contemplating full-time van dwelling or want to know what it’s like, a rental van creates a great space to give it a go.
It might be all the validation you need to sell everything and hit the road for good. Or it might just reaffirm the value of a week-long escape from the daily grind.
Either way, it’s a fun way to see the country without worrying about overnight accommodations. Simply drive, play, sleep, and repeat as necessary.
This article is sponsored by Travellers Autobarn.