Whether you are choosing to live in a van to travel the world, packing up a van for a long trip, or choosing to use a van as a moving vehicle, you might wonder how you are going to put all your stuff inside of one van. However, there are plenty of ways to make your van seem bigger on the inside, and pack everything up while still having enough room to drive and move around comfortably. Well, somewhat comfortably.
You just need to think smart, take advantage of the space you have, and pack effectively. Here are some of the best space saving ways to pack up a van, no matter the size!
Treat A Van Like A Jar Of Rocks
There’s an old story where a person needs to put several large stones and several smaller stones into a jar. They try to put the smaller rocks on the bottom first, but the larger rocks won’t fit effectively. It’s only whenever they put the large rocks into the jar first, and then allow the smaller rocks to fit into the spaces the larger rocks naturally leave behind, that everything fits.
For a van, you are going to have large rocks. Boxes, bins, and other non flexible items that have a distinctive shape and that cannot be moved around effectively. However, you will also have bags and other flexible items that can be shoved around these larger items as well. Put all the boxes and bins inside first, and then fit the bags around them. It’s a great way to pack twice the stuff into half the space!
Use Collapsible Gear
One of the best ways to save space in a traditional house is to stack boxes or cookware inside of one another, instead of on top of one another. You can do the same thing with a van by sliding items inside one another, and you can also take it one step further with collapsible gear. This allows you to have gear that can be easily folded up and tucked away, giving you more space and storage.
Plus, despite being collapsable, most of the gear is pretty durable. The top or the bottom of the products are typically made from a solid material, while the middle is made from the silicone that allows it to fold in on itself and collapse. Meaning that you get storage and functionality all in one package.
Use The Walls And The Roof
For vans, sometimes the best space is space that you don’t consider as storage space. You can hang things on the walls using simple hooks tightened into a piece of wood, attach things to a strong magnet strip, or mount items to the wall using simple shelving.
A sprinter roof rack can be a great way to store some extra bags and items on the roof of your van as well. Just make sure to tie everything down and make sure that the roof is secure, and then you won’t look out the rearview mirror and see all your stuff trailing behind you on the highway!
Make Sure To Keep Everything Organized
One of the best things you can do to save some space is to have a place for everything, and to put everything in its place. Keeping all of your items organized while packing and placing like items together will prevent you from going crazy when it comes time to unpack or you need to rummage around for a specific item.
If you choose to live out of your van then organization is even more important. Having multi-use storage units and other items to ensure that your van stays organized and that everything has a place is going to ensure that your space isn’t overtaken by a lot of clutter, leaving you feeling very hectic!
Don’t Be Afraid To Get DIY
While placing all your things in the trunk and around the backseats of your vans can be a temporary solution to packing your van up, getting DIY and breaking out the hammers and the nails can be a way to give yourself some extra packing and storage space. Having the ability to build shelves, tables, and storage containers with a couple sheets of plywood and some imagination can really improve your storage.
Additionally, it can be fun to start building and watch your creation serve its purpose without falling apart the second your van hits a pothole. That will cause you to have an unexpected burst of pride, that is for sure!
Save Space and Get Back On The Road
Packing a van for short or long term use can be a hassle and will certainly cause you to break a sweat, but with these tips you can pack up, save space, and then get back to your destination.
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