If you’re thinking about exploring van life, there are some essentials that make van living easier. Van life is a lifestyle choice that allows you to travel and explore the world. It gives you freedom and flexibility, as well as saving money. Here are some of our favorite van life essentials:
Magnetic hooks are a game changer when it comes to hanging things to dry, like your bathing suits, or towels. Since the van is metal, there are so many places to place these magnetic hooks. You can find them on Amazon. These are the ones we went for, and they hold up to 100 pounds!
Since you will be living in a small space, having collapsible items in your van will really help with storage, and being able to have more stuff. We have a collapsible tea kettle, collapsible Tupperware, and collapsible laundry baskets to shower in and use to bring to the laundromat!
When you live in a van, you will want air circulation that does not take up a lot of power, and that you can use all day and night if you need it to. We love our Maxx Air fan so much, we ended up installing two of them! Van Life in Florida can get hot, but with two Maxx Air fans, we have great circulation that lets us and our renters use our van all 12 months out of the year!
Solar panel, an inverter or battery packs to charge your devices. Enthusiasts of van life have long been fans of solar panels, which can be used to power your van, essentially a house on wheels. They’re perfect for powering lights at night or charging batteries during the day where there’s no access to electricity. Solar panel kits are also great if you want to use them with an inverter so that you can run a computer or refrigerator off of your battery system as well
People choose either propane or electric stoves. Propane stoves are easier to use, and you can always opt for a Coleman stove if you are on a budget. They are great to store in your van as they are mobile. People also use electric stoves or built in propane stoves. This is the one we use and we absolutely love it.
Having proper insulation is a must for any van conversion. Proper insulation will keep you warm in the winter and cool in the summer. There are three main types of insulation you can use to insulate your van. There is Havelock Wool (quick & easy install, most sustainable), Polyiso Foam Board (time intensive to install, most budget friendly), or Thinsulate (very expensive, and need a lot of it to insulate well).
When you choose the van life route, you need to make sure you can cover your windows for privacy & to keep the heat or cold out of your van as best you can. VanMadeGear has custom made window covers or you can DIY them which is really easy as long as you know how to sew! We chose the DIY route and we also have friends who love to sew too, it takes a village.
Its always important to have van life staples on hand as well. We like to include:
Refrigerator or cooler
Pots and a skillet
French press or coffee maker
Spices and spice rack
Can opener and bottle/wine opener
Cups, plates, bowls, coffee mugs
Knives and a cutting board
Dish Soap and sponges (washcloths stink up the van, so opt using those)
Paper towels and cleaning products
Water system or water tank
We are always growing or list of van life essentials and offer a variety of services with your van build or rental to help keep your van life easy! Come back to our blog soon for more van life tips and guides.