Going on your first boondocking trip is incredibly exciting—and pretty low risk. But if you are planning on going off grid for an extended period of time, there are a few things you’ll want to read, some mindsets shifts you’ll need to make, and memberships you’ll want to own to make it the best trip ever!Enter your text here...
Books to Read
When you hit the road, there are some books you’ll want to have with you, and other books you’ll want to read ahead of time. Either way, books on the road are great ways to pass the time. But you might consider getting them on a digital reader to save space. Here is a list of five great books to read about van life and boondocking.
Loaded with insights from real van dwellers, this book helps guide you before and during your van life experience. And if you aren’t sure which direction to take next, there are 15+ ideas for your next road trip.
This book is a great tool to help immerse yourself in what van life is all about—a new way to travel and live. It acts as a guide to your journey.
This is a practical guide to cutting costs and maximizing experiences while boondocking. The writer makes a strong case for living and experiencing a full life on less than $1,000 a month. Whether you take all these steps or not, there are some great suggestions here.
We realize you aren’t necessarily planning on living life full-time in a van. But extended—or even short-term immersive—boondocking experiences have a lot of possibilities. Having this helpful companion along for the ride will help make dinner a little less boring on day seven of your trip.
Mindset Reality Check
Heading out to boondock in your van is unlike anything you’ve ever done before. You are way more nimble than a big RV. You have more conveniences than sleeping in the back of your Prius. You don’t have to return to any specific campsite. And the looks you get from people as you brush your teeth outside are uncomfortable, but might be one of the best things in the world.
However, it’s important to head into this experience after a nice reality check. Think through the following mindset reality checks below.
1) Gratitude on the Road
Nobody owes you anything on the road. If you go into an experience expecting a positive response from everyone, you will quickly become disappointed—and eventually bitter. Go into each situation hopeful, but without expectation, and you will find gratitude oozing from you in no time.
2) Expect Bumps in the Road—Literally and Figuratively
When boondocking, things don’t always go as planned—even with the best preparation. Some people may think to themselves, “no one has ever planned as well as I am going to.” But these people are in for a rude awakening! Boondocking is an experience full of hope, but with a heavy dose of unknowns to come. Knowing that bumps, mishaps, and adjustments are coming makes the experience a lot easier.
3) Believe in Yourself
Boondocking is an experience of trust—in yourself. Most of society is 100% reliant on someone else at almost every moment of their life. When you head out to boondock, you are transferring that responsibility onto yourself. Know that you are strong enough and smart enough to figure out anything that comes your way.
4) Slow Down
Take a deep breath—now. Life goes so fast that we often miss out on feeling the air come in and out of our lungs. A part of boondocking is experiencing the silent, quiet moments of life. It is the feeling of fresh air entering your body, the time to stretch your legs slowly without any reason other than wanting to stretch.
5) Listen, Don’t Speak
Boondocking creates the perfect environment to listen. You can listen to your body. You can listen to nature. You can listen to traveling companions. You can even listen to strangers. Boondocking typically creates a check-in/check-out-free world for you to move at your own pace without anyone or anything needing you. So the environment around you becomes the most important aspect of your life—in that moment.
Memberships to Have Before you Go on an Extended Trip
We have a few recommendations of memberships you ought to get before you head out on your travels. Here is a list of memberships or upgrades to consider.
A Tow Service
You don’t want anything to go wrong, but life happens. We’d recommend getting a AAA membership or something equivalent to that, just in case. The easiest way to handle this is to upgrade your car insurance to cover towing and other incidents like this. It will help ease your mind a little bit.
This is common for van dwellers to have. It’s a gym membership that gives you access to showers. They are all over North America with the majority being in the United States. A “PF Black Card” membership is just $24.99. With this, you and one guest get access to any of the 2,000+ locations world wide. And at some point, you will want a limitless hot shower.
This is the ultimate plan for anyone wanting to boondock. With 7,000+ locations across North America, you’ll gain access to unique boondocking destinations like beautiful farms, award-winning wineries, golf courses, and even private residences. This membership is a bargain and offers unlimited overnight stays for any self-contained vehicle—like your new van conversion.Best of all, they have a ton of resources to help you along the way like finding dump stations, potable water, cell phone coverage maps, and even active weather patterns in your area. This is the best membership a boondocker could have at their disposal
Get Started Today!
It’s easy to get caught up in the “paralysis by analysis” mode, and just research, plan, and prepare forever. But you’re not getting any younger. The world is out there, ready for you to explore and enjoy it. So take our helpful advice, and get ready for a boondocking adventure of a lifetime!