Last Update: 7/09/2016

Is Living in a Van Lonely?

Vanagon on a lonely stretch of desert dirt road, sunset coming
A reader asked me if it’s lonely living in a van down by the river. He’s considering OTR (on the road) vanlife, and it worries him. But no, Vanholio don’t find it lonesome. Here’s 4 reasons why.

4 Reasons Living in a Van Ain't Lonely

You Can Meet Up With Folks All Over

One of my favorite things about being an OTR vandweller is spending more time with friends and family all over the country. I’m not tied down by place-specific work, obligations, or housing. So it’s easy to visit my peeps, staying a week or more at a time.

As for meeting new people, your best bet is to go to meetups and events designed for mingling. Bob Wells at started the Rubber Tramp Rendezvous for just that reason.

And I heard a couple on a “C-Realm” podcast, “Life on Tires,” say they schedule their travel around trail-running events. It’s a sport they’re into. So at the events, they’re around people looking to mingle and with the same interests. Makes conversation easy.

Finally, if you park your ass a bit, you’ll almost certainly get to know folks. I’ve been staying at a tiny RV park in the New Mexico mountains for a few weeks. Vanholio is an introvert, but little by little, I’ve gotten to know my neighbors and chit-chatted a bit, without even trying. It’s natural.

You Can Travel With Companions – 2 and 4 Legged

If you don’t have a significant other to join you full time, how about traveling with friends? Even for only short periods? Maybe your best buddy or BFF would want to fly out to meet you for his or her vacation and see a bit of the country?

And don’t forget about pets! Vanholio travels with two Chihuahuas, Ms. Barkley and The Gimp. They’re great company and good burglar alarms, too. No one is sneaking up on Vanholio!

Social Media Keeps You in Touch

Vanholio is in contact with his peeps every day, thanks to Facebook, Skype, email, Google+, and the rest. Plus phone calls. And you know what, Boys and Girls? We even still got such a thing as paper letters, sent via the Postal Service! Been keeping folks connected for centuries.

Solitude Ain’t Like Loneliness

Here’s the final kicker. Since Vanholio’s been vandwelling full time, he’s discovered that he ain’t hardly lonesome in the woods and mountains. Even when I couldn’t get internet, I’ve been happy as a pig in shit. The same weren’t ever true banging around the old apartment, which depressed the shit outta me.

I don’t know, but I figure the sounds, sights, and smells of nature are what we’re evolved for. Trees, wind, birds, running water, and the rest are kinda like company. They’re relaxin’, actually. In Japan, researchers have found that time in the forest makes you healthier. Whatchya know!?

No, Vanlife Ain’t Lonely (Unless You’re an Asshole)

So get the hell out there! Vanlife ain’t any more lonely than any other kinda life. It’s up to you! Oh, if you’re worried that living in a van will kill basically cut off your nuts, check out this video by Justin Credible, a longtime urban camper in Vancouver, B.C.

Hey, Beer Vanholio! He works hard on this blog.

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  1. Thanks for your perspective!

    1. Pleasure! It's one of the things that worried me, too, before going full monty on this thing.

  2. No, Vanlife Ain’t Lonely (Unless You’re an Asshole). You sir, have style.