The year of the campervan
It is now a common trend all over the planet: in recent times travelling in campervans has become very popular. Covid-19 has arrived and the longing for privacy and freedom has meant that the demand for travelling using this attractive means has multiplied.
Which one is the most suitable?
The first question that must be asked by those who decide to start the adventure of travelling in a campervan is which one to choose. There are light ones, which are the best if you plan to travel through areas that have campsites or supermarkets where we can stock up on provisions and everything that we might need during our trip. These are also more logical if you are travelling alone or as a couple, since they are easier to drive and they use less fuel. If, on the other hand your journey is longer, or you want to travel as a group or family, it is better to opt for larger, more comfortable models.
How much does a camper van cost?
Even for those who are really thinking about acquiring a campervan, if you have no experience driving these vehicles, the best idea is to rent one first to try the experience out. Although the prices depend on the models and the variations on the market, in general you should calculate around 100-200 euros per day. You must add the price of the deposit, which can be around 500-800 euros to this. Those who are completely convinced about opting for this means of transport and prefer buying will be able to find one from around 30,000 euros new and 15,000 second hand.
What you need to take into account before setting off...
Planning your route is one of the most important aspects to do before setting off. Although you want to travel free from any schedules, you have to take into account the places where you will be able to park your camper van, as well as where to get fuel, drinking water and to empty the grey and waste water tanks. In this type of vehicle, the water tank is essential and it has to be filled up approximately every two days in service areas or petrol stations, which is not usually a problem if your are travelling around France or Spain, but it can become difficult when, for example, touring Canada or New Zealand.
What do you need to take for the journey?
As for any trip, the most practical idea is to opt for taking the least luggage possible to be able to move around freely. In the case of campervans, there are a series of elements that must be taken: for example, a hose and several tap adapters are very useful for filling the water tank. It is very important to ensure that the vehicle has a spare wheel (vans are not always rented with one) and a hydraulic jack in case we have a breakdown or a puncture in a remote are, as well as cylinders for gas.
Where to park?
One of the most important points is where we can stop to spend a few hours or overnight. In the case of parking, the same traffic regulations as for a normal vehicle apply, but if you want to visit a city, it is advisable to leave your van on the outskirts, as many cities do not allow these vehicles to driven in their centres. When stopping for the night, you must take into account that you can only camp in the spaces and areas set up for this purpose. The most practical idea is to choose campsites where there are communal bathrooms, surveillance and basic products may be purchased.
What are the particularities about driving a campervan?
Both campervans and caravans only require a B driving license suitable for driving cars, whenever the campervans do not exceed 3500 kilos in weight and nine seats and in the case of caravans, if the trailer does not exceed 750 kilos in weight. When choosing a vehicle that exceeds these weight limits, a B96 or B+E driving license is needed to drive one. It is important to take into account the fact that, as they are heavier vehicles, they require longer braking distances than when driving a car.
How to choose the destination?
Splendid beaches, remote cliff tops, lush forests or impressive desert landscapes… travelling in a campervan allows you to immerse yourself in nature and to leave your schedules behind and just enjoy it. In Spain, some of the most attractive routes can be those that travel along the coast of Asturias or L’Alt Empordà, both full of charming villages and relaxing seascapes, or the arid, spectacular Cabo de Gata. The Norwegian Fjords, the German Black Forest or even Alaska are some of the most popular routes on a worldwide scale for more adventurous travellers.