Vanlife during the pandemic (1 Viewer)

Batsy

Newbie
Joined
Aug 10, 2018
Messages
26
Location
SF East Bay, CA
I did a search and didn’t find this question. But apologies if it’s been asked before.

How different is vanlife during the pandemic vs. during regular times? Do you find it harder during the pandemic? Also, how do you deal with loneliness, with everything being closed and it being harder to meet new people?

I’m going to be getting a van soon, then it will take time to convert it. But once I’m able to, I want to hit the road sooner rather than later.

I worry that vanlife will be harder than usual before the pandemic ends, but I’ve also heard that the pandemic is motivating a lot of people to start vanlife. I figure that if they can enjoy it, so can I.

what are your thoughts? Thanks!
 
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Breck

Pilgrim
Joined
Jan 7, 2019
Messages
39
Location
Stuck in the rustbelt
Just bought a 91 dodge 150 to do van life. Trying to make it work on crappy paychecks. Not gonna insulate till summer rolls around. Gotta fix mechanical stuff first then worry about comfort levels. So far still stuck in hotel until it warms up..
 

MetalBryan

Vagabond
Joined
May 30, 2018
Messages
220
Location
Miami, FL
I'm replying mostly to see what others are saying. I've been thinking about getting a DL and van again, but run into the same questions. The only thing I can figure that would make it worth while is if you boondock the van, coming into town once a week for provisions. Living in a van 3 years taught me a lot about shitting and showering and I would not want to use public facilities right now even if they were NOT scarce. Free hangouts like the library aren't such a great idea either.

If you're out in the wilderness with your thoughts and a few books, you could bathe with a bucket and dig holes every morning for your daily constitution. I like the traveling aspect of van life and I just don't think that's a great idea right now. If you have a spot where you can spend 4-6 months getting your rig in order, that's ideal.
 

v0nz

Newbie
Joined
Nov 26, 2019
Messages
14
Location
South Bay, CA
I recently bought an Econoline to convert. We're about half way done with the build but we're using it and taking it on trips as if it's finished. I haven't run into any problems now with the pandemic. A lot of forest areas and BLM lands were closed or restricted but everything seems to be reopening around here!
 

drea99

Wayfarer
Joined
Aug 28, 2016
Messages
66
Location
BC, Canada
The biggest challenges for me living in my van during the pandemic has been the closure of rec centers to shower, and the lack of socializing with pals. I have been living in the small city of Victoria BC, on vancouver island, so the covid cases here compared to other cities arent as much, but it has still been in shut down. I have still traveled around the island during the shutdown, because technically I am home wherever my van is parked, but I havent been able to drive across the border which is something I planned to do. Other than that, vanlife hasnt been much different. If anything, the city has been more lenient with folks parking overnight in parks, and on residential streets. I haven't gotten a single ticket since last year, so I guess that is the only upside.
 

Omi

Newbie
Joined
Jun 21, 2018
Messages
7
Location
Houston
Started to travel alone again in my car. Currently, in Ohio stealth camping at a hotel parking lot. Planning to buy a jug and see how jugging is going to be like tomorrow. Places I know you can travel and enjoy yourself are Tulsa, OK or Fargo, ND. It seems like there is alot of open places in the Midwest to check out. Example bars, library, and arcades / bars.
 
Joined
Oct 25, 2020
Messages
26
Location
currently in a dystopian red time-warped suburbia
Things probably depend on location and the human population wherever. we've been in the suburbs, kind of caught between one place and figuring out where we might go, when suddenly we shouldn't: travel was a bad idea. then disallowed. pandemic living, in-vehicle, has been worse, in my experience, in the past year, in many ways: closures tightly restricted options for stores and restrooms, closed libraries; when businesses reopened, hours changed for many -- including formerly overnight supermarkets, leaving us only one overnight restroom for zipcodes; prices of everything went up (except, for a while, fuel, which was contextually great); lots of maskless humans, humans refusing to stay home, so the exposure chances increased exponentially; lots of mean, hostile, violent humans, trying to start wars over 'please wear a mask, they save lives' or 'there are free masks at the service counter'; some of the worst, especially in some of the worst, seemed to flood out in deluge; some businesses that used to allow (or at least overlook) overnight / hours-long parking rescinded their cooperation; with fewer vehicles and customers, and the limits on options, it was next to impossible to be as blended-in and unobtrusive; the coffee chains discontinued free refills, so the ones that charge full price for water were charging for every single cup of water; options like hostels, 'shelters', couch-surfing, anywhere around anyone really, seemed legitimately shady considerations. We worried not only about our own health, but about basically becoming vectors -- our increased exposure increased the chance of carrying; our (relative to homed people) increased presence in public increased the chances of transmission. the Black Lives Matter movement was going strong. there were definitely added moral dilemmae on whether or not to physically show up, and whether or not having to travel would affect those decisions. the whole 'not socializing' aspect, on the flip, hasn't bothered me. my friends where we've been, during this thus far, have been mostly animals, my human friends long-distance and/or long-between-contact, for the most part, anyway. for a while it was nice, when the places weren't congested with rushing, selfish, judgmental, hostile humans. fewer humans staring. more privacy. for a while, there seemed to be more time. i remember looking up at the sky one day and realizing how much clearer it was, as if i'd never truly seen what a clear and beautiful sky is until the pandemic -- the pandemic put much of human pollution on a time-out. so that was nice.
 

Batsy

Newbie
Joined
Aug 10, 2018
Messages
26
Location
SF East Bay, CA
Things probably depend on location and the human population wherever. we've been in the suburbs, kind of caught between one place and figuring out where we might go, when suddenly we shouldn't: travel was a bad idea. then disallowed. pandemic living, in-vehicle, has been worse, in my experience, in the past year, in many ways: closures tightly restricted options for stores and restrooms, closed libraries; when businesses reopened, hours changed for many -- including formerly overnight supermarkets, leaving us only one overnight restroom for zipcodes; prices of everything went up (except, for a while, fuel, which was contextually great); lots of maskless humans, humans refusing to stay home, so the exposure chances increased exponentially; lots of mean, hostile, violent humans, trying to start wars over 'please wear a mask, they save lives' or 'there are free masks at the service counter'; some of the worst, especially in some of the worst, seemed to flood out in deluge; some businesses that used to allow (or at least overlook) overnight / hours-long parking rescinded their cooperation; with fewer vehicles and customers, and the limits on options, it was next to impossible to be as blended-in and unobtrusive; the coffee chains discontinued free refills, so the ones that charge full price for water were charging for every single cup of water; options like hostels, 'shelters', couch-surfing, anywhere around anyone really, seemed legitimately shady considerations. We worried not only about our own health, but about basically becoming vectors -- our increased exposure increased the chance of carrying; our (relative to homed people) increased presence in public increased the chances of transmission. the Black Lives Matter movement was going strong. there were definitely added moral dilemmae on whether or not to physically show up, and whether or not having to travel would affect those decisions. the whole 'not socializing' aspect, on the flip, hasn't bothered me. my friends where we've been, during this thus far, have been mostly animals, my human friends long-distance and/or long-between-contact, for the most part, anyway. for a while it was nice, when the places weren't congested with rushing, selfish, judgmental, hostile humans. fewer humans staring. more privacy. for a while, there seemed to be more time. i remember looking up at the sky one day and realizing how much clearer it was, as if i'd never truly seen what a clear and beautiful sky is until the pandemic -- the pandemic put much of human pollution on a time-out. so that was nice.
Thanks for the answer. I bought a van yesterday and have decided I’m gonna give this a try! I hope all goes well.
 

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