We have both road tripped in campervans as free-spirited youths and loved every second of the adventure.
Living in a campervan was so exciting and it was such a great and flexible way to travel slowly and to explore properly. I fell in love with this way of life and vowed to get another campervan as soon as I could to allow my children to experience the same.
Now that we have a van and we are 2 years into vanning with children – here is a little of what I have learnt and why I would always recommend a can trip with family.
1. The freedom and spontaneity
The absolute best thing about having a campervan is the freedom it brings. You can go on holiday whenever and (almost) wherever you like! If you check the weather on a Friday morning and see we’re in for a sunny weekend, you can simply pack up your campervan, book a campsite and hit the road as soon as you finish work. If you are super organised you might keep the van packed so that it is always ready to go
2. Explore more of your home country
What we have discovered during lock down is that a campervan trip is such a great way to explore more of your home country. It has been a great way to see more of what we have in the north of Scotland on our doorstep. Having the opportunity to do little sections of the NC500 over time slowly has been great.
3. Get outdoors
Campervanning and the great outdoors go hand in hand and a campervan is a great way to get close to nature while keeping a few warm and cosy comforts! We all know there are huge health benefits to being outdoors, whether it’s getting some fresh air and exercise, getting fitter with a hike or the mental health benefits that come with being closer to nature.
4. It doesn’t need to cost the earth
The initial setup costs of buying a campervan are obviously a significant expense. If you find yourself a bargain, keep your van for years or keep your van in great condition so the resale value is still high, there’s no reason why a campervanning holiday can’t be a really affordable option. That’s especially true if you like to take lots of weekend breaks! We converted our own van which was a way to keep the costs affordable and you can, of course, hire a van.
If you’re staying on a campsite you’ll pay around £20-40 a night. Then there’s a small expense for food, fuel and activities but if you’re on a budget you could easily keep these costs very low! The average British family spends £4,800 a year on holidays. Now that could be a lot of campervan holidays!
5. You’ll build strong bonds and happy memories with your kids
We talk about the memories we have made on our trips often and when I look back on them they’re some of the happiest memories I have.
The close proximity of a campervan means you’re extra close to your family. But in a world where we spend less and less time interacting with people face-to-face, a bit of enforced closeness isn’t a bad thing! When at home, the children can disappear into their own rooms limiting our interaction. The slower pace and closeness of living mean we have some great quality time together. There can be the odd sibling tension but it blows over quickly enough and if you need it, most campsites have wifi. I tend to try and avoid giving them the password for as long as possible!
6. You can take the dog… we have two!
Hurrah for dog-friendly holidays! You can take your furry friend along with you and your pooch will love it. Our three furry friends love a trip as they know it sends to involve lots of outdoors. Just be sure your dog is safely seated, and never leave them alone in the van, especially on warm days.
7. Campervans often hold their value
Unlike cars, campervans can really hold their value and many people will make their money back or even make a profit when they come to sell them. This especially applies to vintage campervans, but even well-maintained campervans can retain their value, particularly if you make some modifications. And like us you could consider converting you own.
8. The campervanning community is amazing
The campervanning community is a massive draw for many people with campervans and, on the whole, you will meet lots of lovely people on your travels. There is always someone wanting to view your conversion and to get tips on the camp site and lots of other children to keep ours amused.
9. You can rent it out
Like we do – you can rent out your campervan when you aren’t using it yourselves.
10. You could use it as your everyday vehicle
Have you considered using a campervan as your everyday vehicle? It’s also becoming more popular for large families with three or more children to use a campervan as the everyday family vehicle. Many family cars can’t actually accommodate three children because the bulky car seats required by law won’t fit on most backseats, so a campervan can be a great option.