Waking up with the summer sun, searching for new adventures, the open road… there is no doubt, road life is the best life. You can arrange your living quarters to be as lavish or as basic as you prefer, but road life is not all flowers and butterflies. There is a learning curve that goes with it.
Here are 10 tips that will help you adjust into your new adventure:
It seems so simple, but having an organized living space makes living on the road much more fun! Whether it’s having cute little baskets containing your items, hanging clothes up when their clean, or keeping your passport in the same place every time…. these simple actions make road life the best life.
I had so much fun designing my space. Taking an extra moment to think about your layout will help you with your organization. Whether your living in a car, trailer or bus, the layout is crucial.
2) Save Money
The longer you can stretch out your cash, the longer you can enjoy life on the road! Having a route can help save gas. Picking adventures that are light on the wallet, buying second hand, and purchasing groceries to cook dinners will help stretch those funds.
Some costs you may be able to eliminate are accommodation (see number nine), dinners at restaurants, expensive gas (compare gas prices with Gas Buddy.com), and bottled beverages.
Hygiene is a personal preference, but trust me, everyone would appreciate you taking a shower or two on your trip! Hitting up gyms, campgrounds, marinas, and truck stops for their showers can help you save a dime or two as well! If you choose to shower outdoors, please think about the fishies when picking your soaps.
A few other ways to feel clean and fresh while on the road are:
– Wet wipes (for a bit of refreshment down there…) – side note, did you know wet wipes are usually made of plastic, and quite bad for the environment? Here’s an alternative that will help you, and the environment, stay squeaky clean.
– Face wipes or wet face cloths – again, pick the option that you can feel good about! Here’s a few environmentally friendly alternatives!
– Dry shampoo
– Hand sanitizer
– Mouth wash (but don’t skip on brushing those pearly whites as well!)
Have a plan of attack. Living situations, routes, finances. Think of all of your possibilities. Weigh them out. Plan ahead. It will help extend your travel. But, at the same time, be prepared to roll with the punches. Be flexible. Travel is about experiencing something new, exciting and spontaneous. Don’t be so tied to a plan that you lose sight of that goal.
5) Workout, Live Outdoors!
Road life is the best, but that doesn’t mean that you should forget to stretch your legs! Going for runs, walks, and hikes, spending time outside your vehicle, those are the moments you will remember. Don’t skip the mysterious trails. Explore, wander, and enjoy the world! These adventures will help you stay fit, focused, and will elevate the euphoric feeling you have while on the road.
6) Be Consistent
Consistency is key if your life on the road is long term. Finding a routine and some structure will help form your days, and keep you sane. I found a schedule that worked for my dogs and I, and even though sometimes it would be hard to stick to it, it became an important element for us all to enjoy a massive amount of time together in a tight space. Eating at the same times, exercising every day, going to bed at the time, find what works for your schedule, it all helps prolong your enjoyment on the road.
7) Save for Small Luxuries
Treat Yo-Self! Saving money every day can be a tough slog! See what works with your budget, and take yourself out for a dinner date once every month or two. Enjoy patio drinks in the summer sun, go to the festival, or sample seafood by the ocean. Don’t restrict your funds so much that you feel as though you are missing out on extra enjoyment on your road trip. But also discipline yourself. Plan ahead as to how you want to treat yourself, and then enjoy every minute of it!
8) Maintenance (Oil, Oil, Oil)
Nothing is worse than sticking to a budget only to find out that your trip will be cut short due to mechanical issues. Maintain your vehicle by sticking to the oil change recommendations, checking coolant levels, keeping your tires full, and not driving it into the ground. Issues with a vehicle can add up quick.
9) Safe Stays (What, How and Where)
Having a peaceful nights sleep will help your adventurous days. Feel confident in the spots you squat. Whether you call it boondocking, dry camping, dispersed camping, or wild camping, finding a place to enjoy the outdoors without having to pay a daily fee is crucial to extending life on the road. There are a ton of free spots out there – you just need to know where to look.
I used freecampsites.net a lot, and other boondocker’s comments helped me gauge whether or not it was a safe spot prior to my arrival. Walmarts, casinos, rest stops and truck stops are also helpful, as you can stock up on goods and spend the night under lights with other road warriors.
Usually in the United States you can camp for free in National Forests and Grasslands, and on Bureau of Land Management lands. As long as you are outside developed campgrounds, and there is no posted signage stating that you cannot camp on the land, you will be good to go. In Canada you are able to camp on Crown Land.
Be aware of your surroundings. If you don’t feel right about a spot, keep moving and find another. Most importantly, clean up after yourself. There is nothing worse than pulling up to a beautiful spot overlooking the ocean to see it littered with cigarette butts, plastic bottles, and other garbage. Clean up after yourself, plus some, and enjoy the night!
An awesome resource that breaks all of these down: Fresh Off The Grid
10) Find an Adventure and Chase It.
Does your road trip have a theme? When your home, or old (for those lifelong road warriors out there) what will you remember about your trip? Maybe it’s trying new activities, learning to surf across the west coast, climbing through the Rocky Mountains, or finding new biking trails. Whatever your adventure is, chase it. Try new foods, learn and grow as a person, surf those epic spots. Build your adventure, your way. That is how you make your road life the best life.