Your Next Home Office Could Be a Camper Van

Living and working from a mobile home is easier than you might think

  • The biggest challenge of working on the road is having good internet access.
  • You can build out your own van or buy a pre-built home office camper. 
  • Security isn’t as big a concern as you might fear.
white and blue van parked and open in a field

Stephen Leonardi / Unsplash

Ventje modifies VW camper vans into tiny mobile homes, ready for living and working. But is it really possible to live and work in a van?

Van living is tempting, especially now that remote working is becoming more typical. You can go anywhere, it’s way cheaper than buying a house, and it’s just plain cool to be on the move. On the other hand, how do you exist without an address? And can you really live and work in a tiny van for months or years on end? We asked some #vanlifers how they manage. 

"It is possible and rewarding to work on the road. Imagine going where you want and working when you want. Playing when you want while still turning in projects on time. The nomad's life is also filled with inspiration, and that's good for all careers in any industry," van dweller and van life blogger Martin Beetschen told Lifewire via email.

On the Road

Ventje campers are built on VW campers, so they’re small enough to fit in a car parking spot. They also come with a neat indoor-outdoor kitchen, and are kitted out with everything you need to work remotely, from a diesel generator or roof solar panel for off-grid power, a roof that raises to let even tall people stand, and an ingenious Tetris of chairs and cushions that cover sleeping, lounging, and even outdoor seating.

It’s also common to build out your own mobile home to address your own needs, and there’s no shortage of guides and inspiration around. Search the #vanlife hashtag on pretty much any social network to get started. 

Surprisingly, managing your day-to-day living is the easy part once you get used to it.

"The challenge [is] balancing travel, work, and the complexity of living in a car instead of a house," Josephine Remo, who lives full-time in her van in South America, told Lifewire via email. "I spend many hours a week filling up my water tanks, cleaning, organizing, running for supplies such as food, and planning the road trip ahead. Balancing Van Life so that it becomes a pleasure and not a problem is a fine art and practice that only comes with time and discovering exactly what works best for you."

Staying Connected

The number one concern for working on the road is—you guessed it—a good internet connection. 

Ryan Nelson, who has been on the road for six months while working as a sales development manager for travel service Cloudbeds, agrees. "The only really important thing you need is a solid internet connection. A hotspot is the best investment," he told Lifewire via email. 

"Chances are, if you're working on the road, you'll need power and the internet," says Beetschen. "Fortunately, there are a number of ways to get power in your camper, from portable batteries to solar energy. Wi-Fi may seem to present a stronger challenge, but even in the most remote places, it may be possible. I do recommend having multiple internet connections, so you're not just relying on one."

5G won’t help with coverage, though—it’s pretty short-range compared to other wireless technologies—but it can certainly speed things up when you want to grab the entire series of Severance to watch later. 

Home Address

Another problem of the nomadic life is not having a fixed address. 

"It can be tough to access and receive important pieces of mail without an address," van dweller Lauren Keys told Lifewire via email. "However, our workaround for that has been to forward our mail to a friend or family member to screen it for us. If we need something, we have them overnight those pieces of mail somewhere we can simply arrange to be."

yellow Ventje van parked with rear open


This solution reveals another part of van living that may or may not appeal to some people: interaction with others. You’re more independent, but paradoxically, this can make you more reliant on others. It’s also easier to meet and talk to strangers when you’re living in the open. 


But maybe the number one fear for potential nomads is security. It’s easier to break into a van than a house or apartment. The reality is less scary, however, especially if you are careful. 

"We've never worried about security or the safety of our items in our van. Our van has storage underneath the bed, which is where we keep our professional camera equipment, drone, and laptops. We purposefully never leave anything within view from our van's windows," says Keys. 

Ryan Nelson agrees. "Safety is not a huge concern for me. My RV fully locks, and I always put in the research before I go anywhere to know what to expect."

The van life is certainly tempting, and it seems entirely feasible to work while on the move. Now you just have to do it.

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