Do you recommend traveling with or without a vehicle? (1 Viewer)

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CelticHeathen

Previously HoboSquirrell
Joined
Nov 8, 2011
Messages
134
Age
40
Location
Chillicothe, Ohio
Hey, Y'all! My name's Bats. I wrote out this post on here before, but accidentally deleted it instead of posting it. Hopefully, things will go better this time :)

So I'm finishing up my last month or so of high school, and I want to hit the road afterwards. At this point I'm not sure how soon I'm gonna start traveling, but I've been doing lots of learning and some practice in the mean time (for about 2 years).

I have a small car that I've slept in before, and I'm wondering if I should travel in my car, or go without a vehicle?

I remember asking this question to Jessie from Days 'N Daze, and he said he recommended going "with a car, for sure!" He told me a story of how he got stranded for 6 days at a gas station while hitchhiking.

The benefits I can see of traveling with a car is that I can get myself places and I can use the car as shelter. The downsides that I can see (but am not sure if they're really present) is the added expense of gas, and the car potentially limiting my experiences (is this a thing?).

What I mean is, I want to travel with other people, and my car can hold up to 5 people while driving, and less while sleeping. Will I be limited to only traveling with this many people? I also want to try squatting, tent camps, and other sorts of living situations. Would I not be able to do these if I have a car (e.g. will the other people at a tent camp try to break into my car if they're desperate, will having a car parked outside of a squat give it away, etc.)?

I appreciate any input you have.

Thanks!

There are pros and cons to both...Some pros being, you have shelter when you need it, which can help your morale a lot sometimes. Also, no sitting on the side of the road hoping someone will be nice enough to give you a ride, and so on. Some cons obviously, if it breaks down and you're broke or not handy, you may be shit out of luck, and depending on how much you have with you, gear an so on, you may be stuck having to abandon a lot of shit you wouldnt want to.

Honeslty, Id say if you have a car, just make sure before you head out, especially if its gonna be a long shot, like across country, that its up to par. Learn some basics, how to change your own oil, replace a flat, simple shit, and make sure you have a gas jug, you may have to spange for gas.

Plus, the one bonus of having a vehicle, is tha if it breaks down somewhere close to a town, or you just get tired of it...it will be a source of income. You can sell it for parts if it breaks down probably make an easy $3-500 bucks, or if it runs, probably a grand or better. So you have that going for you.

Over all weigh in the idea personally, if YOU feel you're up to the challenge and learning experience, go for it. Your gut is a powerful tool. Good luck either way man, be safe and have some fun!
 
Last edited:

Dutch

Pilgrim
Joined
Jan 3, 2015
Messages
25
Location
Midwest, US
I've tried both. I need a van in my life. I needed to be able to get a temp job and know I have a way of getting there. I need a place to sleep.

And now that you can doordash in any city within minutes, with same day pay... Forget about it... I have more money and freedom now than I have at any time in my life.

I went to Detroit. Within a week I knew that city like the back of my hand from delivering food. Moved on to Omaha, same thing.

I admit to liking money and a few creature comforts. Some get by just fine without it. Ymmv.
 

SneakyWeasel

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If you travel in a vehicle you'll need a source of income and plan to have money set aside for emergency repairs or just maintenance. The freedom to go most places at a moments notice is great, but it comes with a price tag.
 

WyldLyfe

I'm a d-bag and got banned.
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236
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tasmania
Use to use a car, still use em but not my one at the moment (travel with others).. cars good cause you can go many places easier an get around faster its more convenient. Some people say a cars a hassle maybe they worry about it getting stolen (one of my cars was stolen, i saw it drive off in the distance and just laughed honestly.. i thought it was funny..) anyway some ppl saying they don't leave there back pack alone.. its always with them..? the only thing i put in my back pack is... clothes... and food, tent or bivy.. I wouldn't want these to get stolen too but if they did.. i mean i often where cargo pants with many pockets, or ya can get hoodies with hidden pockets or make em, my stuff that i really don't want to get stolen, wallet, money ect... is not even in my bag or attached to it.. its in my pockets. A car is like a big bag that you can lock too.. i like cars but traveling without is cool too.. cars r expensive, fines, rego, insurance, parts.. it does add up but with it you should be able to move around to work sites easier an make cash for it, in stead of trying to hitch a ride an b late for work.. or just camp near by I know..
 

Melkordoom

Newbie
Joined
May 11, 2016
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Nope
Hey, Y'all! My name's Bats. I wrote out this post on here before, but accidentally deleted it instead of posting it. Hopefully, things will go better this time :)

So I'm finishing up my last month or so of high school, and I want to hit the road afterwards. At this point I'm not sure how soon I'm gonna start traveling, but I've been doing lots of learning and some practice in the mean time (for about 2 years).

I have a small car that I've slept in before, and I'm wondering if I should travel in my car, or go without a vehicle?

I remember asking this question to Jessie from Days 'N Daze, and he said he recommended going "with a car, for sure!" He told me a story of how he got stranded for 6 days at a gas station while hitchhiking.

The benefits I can see of traveling with a car is that I can get myself places and I can use the car as shelter. The downsides that I can see (but am not sure if they're really present) is the added expense of gas, and the car potentially limiting my experiences (is this a thing?).

What I mean is, I want to travel with other people, and my car can hold up to 5 people while driving, and less while sleeping. Will I be limited to only traveling with this many people? I also want to try squatting, tent camps, and other sorts of living situations. Would I not be able to do these if I have a car (e.g. will the other people at a tent camp try to break into my car if they're desperate, will having a car parked outside of a squat give it away, etc.)?

I appreciate any input you have.

Thanks!
Ummm in my opinion and I’m saying this as a seasoned person who had a rough time with going at it alone and shelterless.

keep your car and get to a place where you wanna live or some place you’re going to settle down at.

If it breaks down and I’ve met plenty of people who are mechanics that’ll let you park your car at, but a word of caution.

be safe and be vigilant about keeping yourgear/valuables to a pack sized so if you’re shit outta luck your car could be a place to sleep for a bit.

A group of people is rad just know if you have more then two it’s going to be uncomfortable.
 

WyldLyfe

I'm a d-bag and got banned.
Banned
Joined
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Messages
236
Location
tasmania
Another thing... iv also been using a bike lately, man its like im 16 again.. memories ya know, anyway.. something else iv noticed with a car if you wanted to go camp at a spot or just travel to certain places its better not to have a car because it can draw attention to you, someone sees a car just randomly parked somewhere, but without it u can go off into areas ppl and cars don't go an ur car wont be sitting there back at the road awaiting ur return.. so thats another good point for no car.
 

seasonchange

Newbie
Joined
Jul 21, 2010
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The anxiety of ownership is enough that I wanna echo everyone mentioning it.

If you have friends along your route with a place you can park, hybrid travel is a joy. I like driving somewhere semi-rural and kicking it til I wanna go elsewhere, but feel secure leaving my RV and everything in it somewhere quiet it's less likely to be a headache or possible thieves' wet dream.

I traveled with no car for years and then got a minivan and loved it, but it's too easy to hole up in new places and let your anxiety run rampant if you have any of that in you naturally. The perceoved downsides to pack-only travel are sincerely the best for stories and experienxe and always remind me that humanity ain't the worst when I talk to more people.
 
Joined
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Messages
150
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23
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Everywhere
Personally, I hate car traveling of all forms. I just gas jugged like 9,000 miles and I was pretty depressed. I don’t really enjoy hitch hiking either, but it’s way better than rubber tramping. Bikes and long distance wilderness hiking and trains and kayaks are the most fun thing I have done so far
 

OTTERWOLF

Adult Dyslexic
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334
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East Derby, CT
I'm living at my own place, for many many years - but even I go back and forth on if a car is worth it or not.... I mean, when they are running great they can't be beat but when they break down, man it sucks.
I think - if I was going far away, I'd use the railroad, I don't think I would be driving - unless it was a rental car.
Again, breaking down sucks.
At least if you are on your own out and about, you know exactly what you are up against at any given moment.
 

kriminalmisfit

Wanderer
Joined
Aug 10, 2015
Messages
156
Location
San Antonio, Texas
i spent the first 2 years of my travel career hopping rails and hitching, now i'm vanning it solo, i don't even have a pet. gotta say it can be lonely, but i'm enjoying being able to get to places i wouldn't be able to on foot, like hot springs and national forests. i'm definetely thankful not to be sleeping outside anymore, even the thought gives me anxiety on cold nights even though i used to do that often, even sometimes in snowy or rainy weather. i really think it's important to have the experience of different ways of travel, i'm thankful of all my experiences, i'm still new to van life so learning every day still. i also love being able to pick up hitchhikers.. if you got wheels might as well put them to good use and help people.
 

Melkordoom

Newbie
Joined
May 11, 2016
Messages
13
Location
Nope
Personally, I hate car traveling of all forms. I just gas jugged like 9,000 miles and I was pretty depressed. I don’t really enjoy hitch hiking either, but it’s way better than rubber tramping. Bikes and long distance wilderness hiking and trains and kayaks are the most fun thing I have done so far
Well buddy not all of us can just buy a kayak but whatever, to have a car then just let it go is nothing short of being spoiled baby.
 

LuckyMinnie

Rambler
Joined
Jun 3, 2019
Messages
49
Location
El Paso, TX
Hey, Y'all! My name's Bats. I wrote out this post on here before, but accidentally deleted it instead of posting it. Hopefully, things will go better this time :)

So I'm finishing up my last month or so of high school, and I want to hit the road afterwards. At this point I'm not sure how soon I'm gonna start traveling, but I've been doing lots of learning and some practice in the mean time (for about 2 years).

I have a small car that I've slept in before, and I'm wondering if I should travel in my car, or go without a vehicle?

I remember asking this question to Jessie from Days 'N Daze, and he said he recommended going "with a car, for sure!" He told me a story of how he got stranded for 6 days at a gas station while hitchhiking.

The benefits I can see of traveling with a car is that I can get myself places and I can use the car as shelter. The downsides that I can see (but am not sure if they're really present) is the added expense of gas, and the car potentially limiting my experiences (is this a thing?).

What I mean is, I want to travel with other people, and my car can hold up to 5 people while driving, and less while sleeping. Will I be limited to only traveling with this many people? I also want to try squatting, tent camps, and other sorts of living situations. Would I not be able to do these if I have a car (e.g. will the other people at a tent camp try to break into my car if they're desperate, will having a car parked outside of a squat give it away, etc.)?

I appreciate any input you have.

Thanks!
It really just depends on your personality and preferences. Also it depends on how much of a hurry you're in. My perferred method of travel is on a mountain bike. You do miss a lot in a car, especially if you're a nature lover. I know more about my neighborhood that I've been living in for a couple of years than most people who have lived here there whole lives, simply because they are zooming by in their cars and not taking time to notice. There's also a sense of accomplishment and independence that goes with traveling by bicycle. Also, I don't like using fossil fuels if I don't absolutely need to.
 
Joined
Jan 28, 2008
Messages
794
Location
The woods
Done both plenty. It's all about situation. If I'm just bumming it and cruising around a pack is definitely the way to go. I hate gas jugging, and if you've got a valid license ride sharing is easy enough.

If you've got a work hussle vehicles are the way to go. I used to spend 6+ months a year working at festivals and concerts n shit and it was way better with a vehicle. Small truck with a camper shell is the way to go, fuck vans and sedans. If you can get enough scratch go hit Tucson, quartzsite or some shit and get yourself a little spread together so you can always go vend at a flea market or something in a pinch.

Also, if you're not at least a little mechanically inclined, just don't. I've been working on cars since I was little and still feel like I don't know shit about shit half the time. I've seen many travelers let good vehicles go for peanuts due to what were actually pretty simple fixes, but they just didn't have the know-how, cash and or tools to properly address it.
 

starpurple

Newbie
Joined
Jan 26, 2019
Messages
23
Location
california
i currently live in my van but have the equipment to not have my van. i like driving and i prefer having a car because i can go wherever whenever. however, its not hard for me to leave it parked somewhere then dip out without it. when i leave it i don't leave valuables so if it does get broken into, then oh well. i always have the mindset my van is gonna get broken into haha. you pretty much always always lose money on having a car.
 

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