This is just a small taste of what you’ll need in your small space.
- You don’t need to look like you live in a van. Keep up with your appearance, get haircuts, realize how often you shower and do laundry. A toiletry bag like this one keeps me in order whether I’m at the beach, the gym, or a shady public restroom. I use just a handful of products and they fit perfectly in this bag.
- Baby wipes are a lifesaver. Don’t sleep on baby wipes.
- A dirty clothes bag and detergent. Take the time and do the laundry. And then put it away. Living in a small space gets messy very quickly, put away your clothes. It’s too easy to slip into a cycle of depression when you have a little cave you live in.
- Get a gym membership to a 24-hour chain like Planet Fitness. The gym itself sucks but they are everywhere and usually have a Chipotle in the parking lot. Personally, having a cheap gym membership gives me the motivation to workout.
- A backup light. A rechargeable lantern or an oil one. It’s important to have a backup light for emergency purposes, be safe out there.
- A basic roadside emergency kit with jumper cables. I generate all of my own electricity but one of the downsides to living in an old van is random power failures and shorts. Or me accidentally leaving my lights on.
- External battery packs. Having one with enough mAh to charge a laptop or phone a few times if affordable. Charge by day, swipe by night.
- I love having my longboard. Since I live in LA and don’t live in the van full-time, sometimes it’s rough finding parking close to my apartment. But I can longboard home in minutes. and it’s just fun to ride a skateboard, c’mon.
- National or State Park passes. Free for veterans (like me). And abundant bathroom facilities. You can park at some of the campgrounds for a few weeks at a time before you have to move and they have convenience stores and small towns close by.
- Portable speaker. UE Boom 2 is the one I’m using now. There are many like it but this one is sweet. Clear sound, easy connection, small enough to carry. You can link a few speakers together to create a wall of sound if you’re into that. Done and done.
- A journal has been a really cool and fun way to keep track of the unique people I meet, the interesting opportunities this van has afforded me, an just whatever pops into my mind.