From Wanderlust to Wheels: Selecting the Best Vans Van Life

Best vans for van life - vintage VW camper in red with couple sat on roof by sunset

From Wanderlust to Wheels: Selecting the Best Vans Van Life

Buy or Sell Campers

Buy or Sell Campers

26 May 2023

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Are you ready to embark on the ultimate adventure of van life? Picture this: cruising down scenic routes, waking up to breathtaking views, and living life on your own terms. But hold on, fellow road tripper, before you can hit the open road, you need the perfect set of wheels.

In this article, we’re going to spill the beans on the best vans for van life. Buckle up, because we’re about to unveil the keys to unlocking your van life dreams!

👇Table of Contents

  1. Introduction
  2. Why Choose Van Life?
  3. What Is a Camper Van?
  4. The Best Vans for Van Life
    4.1 Volkswagen Transporter
    4.2 Mercedes-Benz Sprinter
    4.3 Ford Transit
    4.4 Dodge Ram Promaster
  5. Size Matters: Finding the Right Fit
  6. Sleeping Arrangements: Cozy Beds on Wheels
  7. Kitchen on the Go: Cooking and Dining
  8. Bathroom Essentials: Staying Fresh and Clean
  9. Storage Solutions: Organizing Your Life
  10. Off-Grid Power: Keeping the Lights On
  11. Vehicle Maintenance: Keeping Your Van Running Smoothly
  12. Customization Options: Making It Your Own
  13. Budget Considerations: Finding Value for Money
  14. Safety First: Ensuring a Secure Journey
  15. Choosing Between New and Used Vans
  16. Test Driving and Inspecting a Camper Van
  17. The Joy of Van Life: Adventures and Freedom
  18. Key Takeaways
  19. Frequently Asked Questions

Reasons to Keep Reading…

  1. Discover the best vans for van life – tailor-made for campervan enthusiasts.
  2. Uncover the essential features to consider when choosing the best vans for van life.
  3. Learn expert tips on customization, budgeting, and making the most of your van life experience.
  4. Stay tuned for answers to common questions about van life, because we’ve got you covered!
Campervan with mountain view

🚐 Why Choose Van Life?

Have you ever imagined having a cozy home on wheels? Van life allows you to travel wherever you want while carrying your home with you. It’s like having a magical house that moves!

You can wake up to breathtaking landscapes, explore new places, and meet fellow adventurers along the way. Van life is all about freedom and living life on your terms!

What Is a Camper Van?

Imagine a van that looks like a tiny home. That’s a camper van! It’s a vehicle that’s been transformed into a comfortable living space. Inside, you’ll find a cozy bed, a kitchen facilities for cooking delicious meals, and potentially a bathroom for those necessary pit stops. It’s like having your own mini hotel on wheels!

💯 The Best Vans for Van Life

Not all vans are created equal when it comes to van life. Some vans are better suited for this amazing lifestyle. Here are a few of the best vans for van life – the kind that van lifers love:

VW Transportes - one of the best vans for van life

Photo credit: VW Transporter for sale

Best Vans for Van Life: Volkswagen Transporter

The Volkswagen Transporter, also known as the VW T-Series, is one of the best vans for van life. It has a cool and classic look that will turn heads wherever you go. Plus, it’s known for its reliability and comfortable interiors. With a VW Transporter, you’ll be cruising in style!

Best Vans for Van Life - Sprinter camper in grey with lights on

Best Vans for Van Life: Mercedes Benz Sprinter Camper

If you want a van that screams luxury, the Mercedes-Benz Sprinter is the way to go. It offers plenty of space for all your adventure gear and has a smooth ride that feels like gliding on a cloud. The Sprinter is the epitome of comfort and elegance on the road!

Best Vans for Van Life: Ford Transit Camper

The Ford Transit is a versatile van that’s loved by many van lifers. It comes in different sizes and configurations, allowing you to choose the perfect fit for your needs. Whether you’re a solo traveler or exploring with friends and family, the Ford Transit has got you covered!

Grey Ram Promaster Capmpervan on beach - best vans for van life

Photo credit: Ram Promaster for sale – Tommy Campervans

Best Vans for Van Life: Dodge Ram Promaster

If you’re looking for a van that offers great value for money, the Dodge Ram Promaster is a fantastic option. It has a spacious interior, excellent fuel efficiency, and a smooth ride. 

The Promaster is like a trusty companion that will take you on countless adventures without breaking the bank! It also has a super ‘boxy’ shape that doesn’t taper as much as a Sprinter at the top – perfect for maximizing space.

🏆 Choosing The Best Vans for Van Life

When it comes to embarking on the van life journey, choosing the best van for van life is not a one-size-fits-all decision. It’s about finding the perfect van that aligns with your unique van life vision and lifestyle.

The best vans for van life are the ones that cater to your specific needs, preferences, and travel aspirations. Whether you prioritize spaciousness, fuel efficiency, off-road capabilities, or a cozy interior, the right van will become your ultimate companion on the road.

Let’s explore the key factors to consider when selecting the best van for your van life adventure, to help you make an informed choice that sets the foundation for a fulfilling and rewarding nomadic lifestyle…


Size Matters: Finding the Right Fit

When choosing your dream camper van, size matters! Think about how many people will be traveling with you and how much space you’ll need for your belongings.

Do you want a micro camper that’s easy to maneuver or a larger one with ample living space? Consider your needs and find the perfect balance between comfort and practicality.


Sleeping Arrangements: Cozy Beds on Wheels

One of the best parts of van life is having a cozy bed wherever you go. When looking for a camper van, check out the sleeping arrangements. Some vans have foldable beds, while others have dedicated sleeping areas.

Think about your preferred sleeping setup and ensure it suits your needs for a good night’s rest. If possible, hire a camper van for a few nights before you commit. Specifically look for one with the same kind of sleeping arrangement you would look for.


Kitchen on the Go: Cooking and Dining

Even on the road, you can enjoy delicious home-cooked meals. Look for a van with a well-equipped kitchen area. It should have a stove or cooktop for preparing meals, a sink for washing dishes, and enough storage for your pots, pans, and utensils.

Remember, a well-fed camper equals a happy camper!


Bathroom Essentials: Staying Fresh and Clean

Nature calls, even when you’re living in a van. Consider your bathroom needs when choosing a camper van. Some vans have built-in bathrooms with toilets and showers, while others rely on portable options or campground facilities.

Decide what level of convenience you desire and make sure your van accommodates your bathroom needs.

Condiments organizer

Photo credit: @messygenius

Storage Solutions: Organizing Your Life

Living in a van means making the most of limited space. Look for clever storage solutions that maximize every nook and cranny. Cabinets, shelves, and compartments will keep your belongings organized and easily accessible.

Remember, a tidy van leads to a stress-free journey! For amazing storage tips for boho vans, check-out this blog: Boho Vans: 8 Gorgeous Accessories & Storage Essentials.


Off-Grid Power: Keeping the Lights On

When you’re off exploring remote areas, you’ll need a reliable power source. We highly recommend a van with solar panels or an auxiliary battery system.

These will keep your lights on, charge your devices, and power your appliances even when you’re far away from electrical hookups. Stay connected and enjoy the comforts of home, even in the wilderness!

Vehicle Condition

Just like any other vehicle, your camper van needs regular maintenance to stay in tip-top shape. The best vans for van life will have had routine check-ups, oil changes, and tire rotations. It’s important to take care of your van so it can take care of you on your exciting adventures!

Customization Options: To Make It Your Own

Each person’s van life journey is unique, and your camper van should reflect your personality. Choose a rig that has enough opportunity to customize it and make it yours!

You can add personal touches like curtains, and decals, or even build custom furniture to create a space that feels like home. Let your creativity shine and make your van a reflection of your style and taste!

Budget Considerations: Finding Value for Money

Setting a budget is essential when choosing the best vans for van life. Decide how much you’re willing to spend and consider factors like the van’s age, mileage, and overall condition. Remember, the perfect van for you is the one that fits your budget and offers the features and reliability you need for a memorable van life experience.

Safety First: Ensuring a Secure Journey

Safety is a top priority, for any vanlifer. We like to think we are invincible, but – hey – cut yourself some slack! It doesn’t have to all be on you!

the best vans for van life will have safety features such as airbags, anti-lock braking systems, and stability control. Additionally, consider installing security measures like an alarm system or GPS tracker to protect your van from theft. A safe journey is a happy journey!

Campervan interior

🤔 Choosing Between New and Used Vans: Finding the Best Vans for Van Life

When it comes to finding the best vans for van life, you’ll encounter both new and used options. New vans boast the latest features and come with warranties, but they can be pricier.

On the flip side, used vans can offer great value for money if you thoroughly research and find one in good condition. It’s essential to consider your budget and priorities to make the optimal decision for your van life adventure.

New Vans: Features and Warranties

New vans are an enticing option for van lifers, as they come with cutting-edge features and technologies. From advanced safety systems to innovative designs, new vans offer the latest in comfort and convenience.

Additionally, they typically come with warranties, providing peace of mind and protection against potential issues. While new vans can be more expensive, they often provide the assurance of a reliable and hassle-free experience on the road.

Used Vans: Value for Money

Used vans present an attractive alternative, especially for those on a tighter budget. With careful research and inspection, you can find a used van in good condition that suits your needs perfectly.

Used vans offer the opportunity to save a significant amount of money while still enjoying the benefits of van life. However, it’s crucial to approach the purchase with diligence, ensuring you thoroughly examine the van’s condition, maintenance history, and any potential issues.

Budget Considerations: Making the Best Decision

When deciding between new and used vans, your budget will play a pivotal role. Consider how much you’re willing to spend on your camper van adventure and weigh it against the advantages and disadvantages of each option.

If you have the financial means to invest in a new van, you’ll enjoy the latest features and the peace of mind that comes with a warranty. On the other hand, if budget is a concern, a well-researched used van can provide excellent value for money, allowing you to allocate your resources to other aspects of van life.

Priorities and Preferences: Tailoring Your Choice

Beyond budget considerations, it’s crucial to evaluate your priorities and preferences when choosing between new and used vans. Reflect on the specific features and functionalities that matter most to you.

Are you someone who desires the latest gadgets and technologies, or do you prioritize a cost-effective solution that allows for greater customization? By understanding your preferences, you can align your decision with the factors that will make your van life experience truly fulfilling.

Consulting Experts: Seeking Professional Advice

If you find yourself torn between new and used vans, it can be helpful to seek guidance from professionals in the industry.

Speak with van dealerships, mechanics, and experienced van lifers to gain insights and expert opinions. They can provide valuable advice based on their knowledge and expertise, helping you make an informed decision that aligns with your goals and aspirations.

In conclusion, choosing between new and used vans for your van life adventure is a significant decision. New vans offer the latest features and warranties, ensuring a seamless experience on the road, but they come at a higher price point.

Used vans, on the other hand, provide excellent value for money if you conduct thorough research and find one in good condition.

Ultimately, your budget, priorities, and preferences will guide your decision, so take the time to consider these factors carefully. Seek advice from professionals in the field to gain additional insights. By making a well-informed choice, you’ll be on your way to experiencing the joys of van life in the best van for you.

Woman driving with dog

Test Driving and Inspecting a Camper Van


Before making a final decision, it’s crucial to test drive and inspect any potential camper van. Take it for a spin and pay attention to how it handles on the road. Check the brakes, engine, and suspension for any signs of issues.


Additionally, thoroughly inspect the interior and exterior for any damage or wear. Don’t hesitate to ask questions and request maintenance records. It’s better to be safe than sorry!

The Joy of Van Life: Adventures and Freedom


Living life in a camper van is an incredible adventure filled with freedom and excitement. Imagine waking up to stunning sunrises, exploring breathtaking national parks, and meeting fellow van lifers around campfires.


Van life allows you to embrace a simpler lifestyle, connect with nature, and create lifelong memories. Get ready for a journey that will fill your heart with joy and your mind with unforgettable experiences!

🗒️ Key Takeaways


Van life offers the freedom to travel while carrying your home with you.


A camper van is like a small house on wheels, with a cozy bed, kitchen, and bathroom.
The best vans for van life include Volkswagen Transporter, Mercedes-Benz Sprinter, Ford Transit, and Dodge Ram Promaster.


Consider the size, sleeping arrangements, kitchen, bathroom, storage, power, maintenance, customization, budget, and safety when choosing your dream van.


Test drive and inspect any potential van before making a decision.


Van life is a thrilling adventure filled with incredible experiences and a deep connection to nature.


💬 Frequently Asked Questions


Q: How much does a camper van cost?


A: The cost of a camper van can vary greatly depending on factors such as the brand, age, size, and features. It can range from a few thousand dollars for a used van to over six figures for a luxurious new model.


Q: Can I live in a camper van full-time?


A: Absolutely! Many people choose to live in their camper vans full-time. It offers a nomadic lifestyle with the flexibility to travel and explore new places while enjoying the comforts of home.


Q: How do I find campsites for van life?


A: There are several resources available for finding campsites suitable for van life. Websites and apps such as Campendium, iOverlander, and AllStays provide information on campgrounds, RV parks, and even free camping spots.


Q: Do I need a special license to drive a camper van?


A: In most cases, a regular driver’s license is sufficient to drive a camper van. However, it’s essential to check the specific regulations and requirements of your country or state.


Q: Can I work remotely while living in a camper van?


A: Absolutely! Many van lifers work remotely, taking advantage of internet connectivity at campgrounds, cafes, or using mobile data plans. With the right setup, you can enjoy a work-life balance while exploring new destinations.


Now that you have all the full low-down on choosing the best vans for van life, it’s time to start your journey toward finding your dream camper van. Embrace van life and discover the road less traveled! Happy roadtripping!

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