Recommendations for first time van lifers!

We are starting our planning for our adventure. We are currently saving and planning as we plan to leave in the next 2-3 years.
However were after some honest opinions and recommendations on vans/motorhomes.
We want separate vans and need something suitable for a dog and will be travelling through Europe. Also opinions and tips on solar power and any recommendations!


A cheap OLDER camper van or RV will save you money both up front, and long term. Get one with a good floor plan that is move in ready. GREAT RV’s can be found for under $2500.

Don’t get suckered into building your own, or remodeling one. The people recommending this stuff are just after your money, and are nobody’s friend. Get something that is move in ready, with a comfortable floor plan.

Get rigs that are mechanically sound, and everything works in the house section. Check the floor, walls, ceiling, and inside closets and cabinets for evidence of presence or past leaks. If it smells or feels damp or moldy inside, walk away. Normal wear and tear is fine, but obvious soft spots or water damage are red flags.

With animals you’re going to want something with factory installed air conditioning, usually roof mounted, and a generator big enough to run it. Skip the solar, it’s a poor choice. You want to park in the shade during the summer whenever possible.

Money, or actually the lack of money is actually one of the largest failure points for new vandwellers or fulltimers. Fulltiming isn’t cheap, and in fact frequently costs more than traditional living. Savings only go so far, so for most of us that means we still need to work while traveling. You can work online from anywhere there is an internet connection. Some regular jobs involve travel, and you have the option of settling down for a while to work normal jobs long enough to save up to travel again. In some areas, day labor or temp jobs might be available, but shouldn’t be counted on.

Give a shout if you need more…


"Worst Choice: Cargo van & expensive, complicated build.
Better Choice: Passenger Van w/ cheap simple build.
Best Choice: Cheap, older, factory camper van or RV." ~ CheapLivin

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