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05.31.2021

Enjoying the road trip lifestyle: the green way!

Open fields, sleeping under the stars, not being subject to mass tourism…

Imagine yourself being flexible of where, when and for how long you want to go. Traveling in a beautiful campervan for weekend trips or while working remotely. This could be your new lifestyle!

It is probably not the first time you’ve played with the thought of such an experience. Since it is THE trend at the moment, it wouldn’t be surprising. Many young individuals dream of such a lifestyle. Especially, after having been inspired by thousands of social media posts. Influencers worldwide, portray it as a unique and sustainable way of travelling, without destroying our beautiful planet.

But is this type of travelling really the best for our planet? Or could this unsuspicius campervan trip, be even more harmful than the traditional way of vacationing?

Maybe, try researching sustainable travelling. It won’t take you long to find shocking information about the carbon footprint we leave behind on each trip. A sample of over 4000 travelers has shown, that 80% of the pollution caused by a trip occurs from the flight itself. So wouldn’t it be wonderful to simply stop using airplanes?Let’s use campervans instead and cut 80% of the emissions, right?

As usual, it is not that simple. In order to enjoy this lifestyle the right way, one must pay attention to more details. In general, the main idea for a sustainable travel van lifestyle is as follows: Organize your travels in order to minimize your footprint.

Now let’s look at some of those details.

Evaluate the right means of transport for your trip:

First of all, always keep in mind that depending on your final destination, different means of transport might be more or less harmful than others. Click here to double check which means of transport is the most sustainable for your dream destination.

Choose the right campervan model:

If the campervan is your chosen mean of transport, the second point you should consider is the model of the campervan vehicle you want to purchase, rent or already drive. Let’s illustrate this idea:

  • When using a family of four as an example, calculations of an average traditional vacation make up for 2.61 tons of CO2. This includes the flight, the transport to the accommodation and the stay at the hotel.
  • Compared to this traditional vacation, the family of four would only impact our planet with an average carbon footprint of 1.69 tons when using a type C motorhome.

But why stop here if it could be better?

The most eco-friendly trailer one could pick is a folding camping trailer. Applied to our example it only releases about 0.80 tons of C02.

Coming back to the current trend, this illustration can also be transmitted to the most desired type of van.

Here, we can conclude that our bulli-van lovers are on the right path. Using vans with eco-friendly engines are the least harmful alternative.

In order to ensure a minimized footprint of your travel vehicle, keep your eyes open for vans labelled as Euro 6c or Euro 6d-Temp models. A study has revealed that these are the lowest polluting models on the market. They also emit up to 85% less greenhouse gases than the Euro 5 diesel for example.

These examples highlight that not all campervans are equally “green”. The impact of your choice of vehicle on our planet is enormous.

Regardless of the fact, that travelling with a van is more eco-friendly than long distance trips, one can no longer argue with the luxury aspect of such travelling.

Over the past years the industry has come up with extremely elegant and comfortable solutions for this type of travelling.

As for the bulli-like campervans, several platforms such as Road Surfers offer to rent the hippie vans.

But also the car trailer industry is permanently evolving. The latest hype on the market is clearly the battery powered mobile home designed by Polydrops. Even though, it covers every aspect from solar panels to low consumption, it also requires an electric vehicle to drag it.

Pay attention to the tire pressure

This leads us to the third piece of advice: In order to minimize your footprint, you should always check your tire pressure and make sure you have no leaks. Those act as unnecessary CO2 drivers.

Organize yourself

Last but not least, here are some concrete tips on how to follow our main propositions and how to organize yourself. If you want to call yourself a sustainable camper, these aspects are a must:

  • Plan your route to minimize backtracking
  • Inform yourself about the type of campervan you drive and their pollution level
  • Make sure that using the campervan is the right choice for your trip
  • Check your tire pressure and make sure you have no leaks
  • Respect the environment and don’t litter
  • Travel light
  • Plan your meals

Implement these tips in the organization of your trip. A “green vanlife adventure” no longer has to be just a dream. To find more inspiration on how to minimize your footprint for your enjoyable van life adventure, check out our article on Sustainable Travel!

  • Are you a bigger fan of the bulli-like van or of a bigger campervan model, what advantages do you see in each one of these two options?
  • Is the campervan lifestyle a dream of yours, why or why not?
  • Will you consider booking a van instead of a flight for your next trip? Why or why not?
  • Have you ever heard of Slow travel and would consider this way of travelling with your van?
  • What aspects do you value the most about travelling with a van?
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2 Comments

  1. Tim

    Great idea to simply rent a Camper van for our next trip instead of buying our own! Since we only use it for vacation it would not be worth buying one that would just sit around most of the year !

    Reply
    • Komoneed

      Thanks for your comment! We are also wishing and dreaming about our next vacations!

      Reply
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