Best Car for Long Term Traveling?

Travel Forums Travel Companions Best Car for Long Term Traveling?

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1. Posted by zariel.rose (Budding Member 5 posts) 4w Star this if you like it!

Hi, I'm planning on going on an at least one year long travel spree across the US. I'm looking for ideas for an affordable, reliable car with good gas mileage and space available for sleeping. Does anyone have any cars they have either lived in or long term traveled in before? Thanks in advance!
~K

[ Edit: Edited on 19-Jan-2019, at 16:33 by zariel.rose ]

2. Posted by zariel.rose (Budding Member 5 posts) 4w Star this if you like it!

Whoops, just realized I posted this in the Travel Companions thread. Oh well. :D

3. Posted by Beausoleil (Travel Guru 942 posts) 4w Star this if you like it!

We have a Toyota Prius. It gets good gas mileage and the back seat fold down so you could sleep in the back if you didn't pack too much. We have a tent so have never tried sleeping in the car. You might think about investing in a small tent. It would give you more room for a long trip. Our car holds a lot of stuff, clothes, camping gear, etc. It gets great gas mileage and is very comfortable.

Enjoy your trip. Sounds like a fun adventure.

4. Posted by 55vineyard (Budding Member 14 posts) 4w Star this if you like it!

Sleeping in your car is illegal in many places, agree with buying camping gear if you cannot afford cheap motels.

5. Posted by Andrew Mack (Respected Member 663 posts) 4w Star this if you like it!

You really have to define what you consider to be 'affordable'.

Personally I'd go for a small RV and a small motorbike, but that would rather depend on the budget.
If I couldn't have the bike then I'd look for a small SUV.
There are Lots of YouTube vlogs about 'RVLife/VanLife' etc etc maybe some about living in your car as well.

6. Posted by road to roam (Full Member 50 posts) 4w Star this if you like it!

yeah, vanlife has become quite the movement recently. I cannot mention which car is best, however 55vineyard mentions it is illegal to sleep in your vehicle in many place and that is true to a point. However, if you are being budget-minded and want to sleep somewhere legally (and free!) there are PLENTY of options.

  • Truck Stops - Many have free wifi and are open all night. Private showers cost about $12 - a lifesaver. They allow 2 people to share, which really helps with the budget!
  • Casinos - Usually open 24 hours. Many offer free coffee and soda
  • Wal Mart - Most allow RV (or car) parking overnight - always check with management.
  • National Forests - Dispersed camping is free in designated spots and beats paying $15 to sleep next to a tree.
  • Streets - Cars park overnight on streets in every town and city - nothing illegal about that, unless it is posted as "no parking." You will blend in rather well with all the other cars.

These may not sound like the most glamorous places to bunk for the night, but they are, quiet, safe, free, legal. We have been traveling in our van for almost 2 years and have only been moved along twice. And there is a difference between overnight parking and camping in your vehicle, if you want to get into the semantics of it!!

Finally, check out http://ioverlander.com/ or https://www.allstays.com/ . I overlander is loaded wiith free informal camping spots (boondocking) and plenty of useful info from the overlander community - this website has been a lifesaver.

7. Posted by Cottonwood (Budding Member 78 posts) 4w Star this if you like it!

I camped in a Subaru Outback once on a 2 week road trip thru the Southwestern states and was pretty happy with that. just myself on that trip. 2 of us on another shorter trip. We liked it and the Subaru got good gas mileage.

8. Posted by goodfish (Full Member 154 posts) 4w 1 Star this if you like it!

Kaeylee, the text behind your name on your profile is " ( 16 / Female )". Does that 16 refer to your age?

A couple of comments, as I see you've also posted your query on Thorn Tree:

If you are indeed a 16 -17 year-old female traveling solo (you don't say exactly WHEN you plan to take this trip), I'll question the wisdom and safety of car-camping just any old place. From your TT thread:

I can't afford to always pay to stay in expensive campgrounds (National Parks), especially if I'm staying for multiple days. As for my plans, I'm going to try to hit as many National Parks/National Forests/Points of Interests as cheap and efficient as possible.

Understand that if you intend to stay IN a National Park/Monument, you will be required to stay in a designated, fee-based campground. Period. While it is possible to rough camp in the National Forests, those could be a long drive from where you WANT to be, you must be completely self-contained, camp without, say, without a fire, restroom or water, and without 'friendly' neighbors as well.

Camping in a van is also a different animal that in a car. Street camping is widely illegal but it would be easier to get away with in a van or van-type than a standard car. Your age could very likely be an additional complication if you are a minor.

According to your profile, you've recently returned from a trip to the Utah parks. Can you tell us a little about that trip? Did you go alone? Where/how did you stay? What did you do in the parks?

[ Edit: Edited on 22-Jan-2019, at 02:20 by goodfish ]

Post 9 was removed by a moderator
10. Posted by goodfish (Full Member 154 posts) 4w Star this if you like it!

manishdelhi, the OP is not going to India, is not asking about India, is not interested in a driver, and this thread has nothing at all to do with India. And advertising is forbidden.