What You Need To Know Before Your First Campervan Holiday

By Hand On The Hip - 10/09/2019

Image via Pixabay - CC0 Licence

It’s a type of getaway which is only increasing in popularity - the craze for campervan holidays is taking over an Instagram feed near you. Something about being able to hit the open road, explore multiple new destinations, stopping where you like along the way, and living minimally, is powerfully appealing to today’s experience focused travellers - whether solo or with friends. The idea of taking a road trip as a break from everyday life can be addictive - once you’ve experienced a break where you aren’t tethered to one location you’re likely to get the bug. But for your very first break away, what do you need to know?

To Buy Or Not To Buy?

Before rushing into finding a vintage camper to lovingly restore, try hiring one for a short break instead. It's easy to find fully refurbished and stocked vehicles with all the items you’ll need for your trip, and it gives you the opportunity to test out van life and see if it's for you. Once you’ve gotten hooked, you could consider buying your own camper, and there are also lots of after-market accessories you can source to make them more useful, such as sleeper tops, trailers, awnings and more - find a source like https://www.austrackcampers.com.au/ and have a browse to see what creature comforts you can add to your ride.

Learn The Art Of Packing

One of the main appeals of camper van breaks is that is provides a sort of hybrid - a chance to escape into the wilderness without going completely off-grid, and with a few more comforts than sleeping under canvas. The whole point is not to feel weighed down, and space is limited, so be sure not to overpack, but to pack smart, especially if you’re planning a longer break. Clothing should be light layers which are easily combined to overcome changes in temperature, and items like an ultralight down jacket that will keep you warm but pack down to nothing are a smart choice. Look for items which do double duty or are collapsible, especially kitchen items like a washing up bowl or colander. Choose soft storage bags over hard suitcases, as these are easier to pack full and allow for more overall storage. You may also learn a few clever tricks, like stuffing cushions and pillows with rolled up spare clothes - if packed tightly, this can be very comfortable, not to mention genius. You may also want to invest in a sturdy roof box to hold essentials, and a rack to attach bikes or surfboards to the back of your campervan.

Prebook Your Site

Once you’ve chosen a destination and made a road trip playlist, you can pre-book campsites using an app for ultimate peace of mind. That way you know you have a pitch for the night and access to electric and other amenities like a shop to stock up on supplies. Try not to plan too long a drive on your first night - it's better to gradually build up the distances you go to allow for getting used to the vehicle plus any late starts on the first day. Then all you have to do is relax, drive, and enjoy your trip of a lifetime.

P.S. This post is a collaborative post and not written by Hand On The Hip.

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