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How to be a single caravanner
My articles about living simply are intended to have a wide appeal to anyone interested in concentrating on the good stuff and getting rid of all the clutter and stress in their lives. However I am a single British male caravanner, and as such there will be crossovers with coping strategies and thriving on your own and there will be crossover with caravanning as well so if you are an American married couple in an apartment please don’t go, please stay. Hopefully we will be able to share things together but of course because this is what I’m doing there will be crossovers with caravanning and strategies for thriving on your own. So today’s article is really aimed at single people who are considering a caravan as a means to achieving a simple life but also it should help out people who are on their own and also considering a caravan just for holidays.
I have always maintained that caravanning on your own sometimes is not as much fun as caravanning with a partner or a good friend. However it is a gazillion times better than not doing it at all and is also far far better than going away or staying with someone that you actually don’t want to be with so don’t discount solo caravanning at all. There is no doubt in my mind that for single person a campervan is far easier as regards to not having to tow and is easier to set up on site. However because I’m talking about full-time touring, if you’re in a campervan you are sacrificing living space in exchange for maneuverable vehicle or if you want a large amount of living space then you need to have a lot larger vehicle lumbering down the roads just when you need to go to the supermarket once a week so you have this compromise with a caravan full time. Also because generally you’re on a pitch for between two and four weeks you can site the caravan and of course you’ve got the vehicle for the freedom to go and do other things. Cost is another consideration. If you have a large motorhome you’re towing a vehicle you are running two vehicles. If you already have a car that’s large enough and powerful enough to tow a caravan you really need to purchase caravan. You don’t need to purchase something else with an engine, you don’t need to run something else with an engine and a caravan is much cheaper to run and maintain than a second vehicle. Either way whether you go for a caravan or motorhome or canal boat whatever it’s personal choice but I just wanted to tell you don’t discount a trailer caravan if you’re on your own and I will give you five of my top tips to make solo caravanning as easy as possible.
So number one is time. It takes over twice as long to do everything when you’re on your own then if you’re with somebody else. We’ve all seen it on site. A couple turn up, one of them takes care of the outside of the caravan, fills up the water, levels it off that kind of thing. The second one inside the caravan sets it all up and- bish bosh – it’s done in 15 minutes. When you’re on your own you have to set up the outside and then you have to set up the inside and- bish bosh – that’s taken 40 minutes. That’s the way it is. You just have to get used to it, it takes a lot longer so you just plan for that. You allow for that but what you have to be careful of is that if you’re with other people onsite and they are in a couple they may not understand that, so they might start setting time frames for going out or whatever that you can’t quite match because they just don’t understand it takes you so much longer to do everything. Nothing to stress about that if you suddenly feel ‘Well I can’t do all my chores and have a shower and be ready by seven o’clock just say ‘hey sorry I won’t be ready till half past seven ‘ It’s as simple as that and there are people trust me, it’s happened to me where I’ve tried to explain it takes me a lot longer and they actually turned around and said well you’re any cooking for one you’re only washing up for one surely that takes half the time seriously that happened just plan for it allow for it don’t get stressed.
Number two plan your route and transcribe the directions to your site if you’re towing a caravan or driving a larger motor home you cannot rely on your sat-nav because it may take you down a lane way you’ll get stuck so you’ll find that site directory will give you a recommended route which may not be the one in your sat-nav in this case you can’t look at that while you’re driving you need to transcribe it into large easily recognizable symbols that you can glance at while you’re driving and not take your eyes off the road you do not have the luxury of a co-pilot it doesn’t matter you just have to take your time plan your route transcribe it into easily readable and recognizable symbols that you can follow very easily without taking your eyes off the road for any longer than necessary but of course that takes time time that couples don’t need to take before you leave it’s just the way it is and if you transcribe your directions your life will be so much easier in the long run.
Number three is a reversing camera will make your life so much easier in your car granted you can get by without one and I did for many years but it involves a lot of jumping in and out the car or three inches 2 inches one-inch bingo with a reversing camera you can just reverse straight under the tow hitch if you are full time touring sometimes I have hitched up my caravan over 50 times in one year on one trip to Scotland last year I hitched up 30 times in three months you are doing a lot of hitching up if you can get a reversing camera to make that process easier than just do it you can get some quite cheap after-market ones now easy to fit I would recommend a reversing camera
Number four is a luxury but one to consider that is a motor mover a motor mover will allow you to maneuver your caravan on its own with a little remote control you can use it to hitch up the caravan that the car you can use it to spin the caravan on a sixpence if you’re very nervous about reversing you can even use it to reverse your Caravan onto a pitch but I would heartily recommend you learned to maneuver it’s a luxury it’s expensive there are about a thousand pounds for a single axle caravan but it will give you the confidence to go anywhere do anything and if you can afford it I would recommend a mover as I said you can also use them to hitch up the camera into the car however a reversing camera just makes life so much quicker because with a mover you need to engage the rollers and it just takes a little bit longer than if you can just reverse the car straight under the tow hitch and finally number five join the club in the UK we have two major touring clubs the camping and caravanning club and the Caravan Club you should consider joining at least one of these or do as most of us do and join both what I love about the two clubs is that they do not discriminate against the solo camper caravanner motor caravanner so the camping and caravanning club they charge on their sites per adult so you just pay for one adult then if you want a hard standing pitch or an electric pitch you pay a pitch fee on top of that Caravan Club very similar you pay a pitch fee for the pitch and then you pay per adult on top of that so you just pay for one adult a lot of sites out with the clubs will charge a flat rate for a caravan with a couple so I love the club’s they have very sensitive pricing policy on their sites and also joining one of the clubs will give you access to thousands of certificated sites, certificated locations small generally rural 5 caravan sites very quiet often cheaper in the summer months because they don’t have a little hook up some of them some of them do some of them a lot little caravan sites some of them are just fields but they’re great places to escape also caravanners campers motor caravanners in general are just the nicest most helpful people you could ever meet so when you’re on site people will respect your privacy they will respect your independence but if you need help you’ve just got to open your mouth and everyone will come and help you that support and the support you get from the technical teams at both the Caravan Clu band the camping and caravanning club is just worth its weight in gold, fantastic.
So these are my five top tips for solo caravanning I hope you found them useful if you have any tips you’d like to share or anything you’d like me to cover then you know what to do please leave them in the comments box below if you enjoyed this give us a thumbs up and if you didn’t then no bother and if you haven’t subscribed yet right now please do hit the subscribe button that we really really grateful and it just leaves me now to say thanks for tuning in! Do you think that went well, Dougal? He never smiles.