Travelling in a Motorhome? READ THIS earlier than you go! (2023 replace)


Are you going travelling in a motorhome? Need to know methods to enhance consolation on the journey or tricks to make your journey higher? Listed here are 20 issues to know earlier than you go, plus my SCARIEST second within the motorhome- and keep away from it!

Don’t neglect to seize your FREE motorhome upkeep guidelines under that will help you keep organised.

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Travelling in a motorhome- my story

I’ve been touring the UK and Europe in a motorhome for a number of years. As a whole newbie, the training curve on that first motorhome journey was STEEP and at instances felt completely overwhelming. But right here I’m, nonetheless touring and nonetheless studying issues, particularly now I’m travelling solo in my van.

I needed to share with you a few of the suggestions and methods I’ve learnt for travelling comfortably within the van, and straightforward methods you may make issues slightly simpler. 

For those who’re a whole newbie, and wish to do what to do in your first journey to a campsite, or pack your camper van, these posts will assist:

What to do in your first motorhome journey

How one can pack a motorhome or campervan for a street journey

So, let’s dive in to some useful suggestions and some methods to make touring and travelling in a motorhome as comfy as potential. 


Travelling in a Motorhome- suggestions for on the street

Earlier than you set off in your journey, and whilst you’re truly driving, there are some things you are able to do to make life simpler.

Earlier than you set off

I’ve a complete submit about establishing your motorhome in your first journey right here, however the vital issues to recollect are:

  • Get aware of the car earlier than you begin driving. This is applicable to each the cab and driving seat, and the habitation space.
  • arrange your wing-mirrors and rear mirror (until you could have a reversing digital camera. If it’s your individual motorhome, I like to recommend becoming wing mirror protectors.
  • Know the place the emergency hazards are, indicators and fog lights. Particularly in case your travelling within the UK the place the climate modifications incessantly!
  • Refill the water tank with contemporary water, until you’re going to a campsite.
  • Know your top, width and size, and weight. For those who don’t know the precise weight, assume it’s the utmost weight. 
  • If it’s an extended journey, plan a number of brief stops- driving a motorhome could be tiring
  • Arrange the seat to be comfy. I exploit a cushion on my driver seat to make it extra cozy

Once you’re on the street

Once you’re out and about having adventures, listed here are some issues to recollect:

Test your journey time fastidiously. Many motorhomes, particularly you probably have a towing car, will journey a lot slower than the pace restrict, which is how sat navs calculate how lengthy a route will take you. So don’t overestimate how far you’ll be able to journey, particularly in distant areas with slender roads. Smaller automobiles may not have this concern. 

Once you’re stopping for a relaxation break, watch out for small or tight automobile parks. Many are a nightmare for motorhomes. Companies aren’t often an issue however city centres and supermarkets could be. You’ll discover it simpler in lots of European international locations over the UK, however you’ll be able to often discover a spot in case you’re conscious. Many automobile parks have public bogs, that are helpful to make use of whilst you’re travelling. 

Once you’re in search of parking areas or an in a single day keep, your greatest guess is to make use of a campsite for the primary night time or two, particularly in case you’re model new to motorhoming or in a brand new motorhome. This may make it simpler to do issues like checking the water system, emptying black waste (bathroom) and persons are there in your peace of thoughts in case you get into issue. 

For those who positively wish to keep off-grid, listed here are some high suggestions for motorhome wild tenting for you. All the time have a backup plan, simply in case your first spot doesn’t work out. 


FAQs about travelling in a motorhome

What pace limits apply to motorhomes within the UK?

  • In case your car is underneath 3.5 tonnes, you are able to do 70mph on motorways and twin carriageways and 60mph on single carriageways (obeying every other pace limits, after all!)
  • If you’re over 3.5tonnes, you’re restricted to 60mph on twin carriageways, however can do 70mph on motorways.. You’re restricted to 50mph on single carriageways.
  • Decrease pace limits apply to all motorhomes of any weight.

And sure, you’re allowed to make use of the skin lane for overtaking on a motorway or twin carriageway the place protected to take action.

The place can I drive with my motorhome?

You’ll be able to drive your motorhome on most UK roads (not together with personal land after all). Keep in mind the gross car weight for small bridges, and in addition your car top and width. I like to recommend getting a motorhome sat nav to assist keep away from unsuitable roads. 

Are you allowed to sleep in a motorhome on the street?

Sure, so long as you’re correctly parked and the car is taxed/ insured

Are you able to legally journey at the back of a motorhome?

Provided that there are seat belts. Some facet seats are thought-about okay, however please seek the advice of along with your insurer.

Are you able to stroll round in a motorhome whereas driving?

No. You should be correctly belted right into a seat. Animals should even be correctly restrained.


Travelling in a motorhome- suggestions for parking up/ dwelling within the camper

So, when you’ve completed the journey half for the day, right here’s make your motorhome, campervan or caravan really feel like a house away from house.

Selecting the Proper Bedding and Linens

It’s a widely known indisputable fact that sleep is vital. And never having the ability to sleep effectively is without doubt one of the commonest causes of upset and frustration throughout a motorhome vacation. 

That can assist you get a great night time’s relaxation, it’s price getting some respectable, high-quality bedding. You will get some motorhome bedding which is particularly designed for caravan or motorhome use, as a result of it’s often extra compact, light-weight, and simpler to scrub than common bedding. 

Some folks select to make use of sleeping luggage, as they’re simpler to retailer and clear however I dislike sleeping luggage, particularly as I stay in my motorhome fulltime and wish it to really feel like house. Having fairly bedding is without doubt one of the greatest methods to make the house comfy and cosy. 

You too can add a mattress topper for additional consolation, and ensure that your pillows are of the proper firmness for you.


Create a Cosy Dwelling Area

Your motorhome or caravan ought to really feel like a house on wheels. Even when it’s a small campervan, creating a comfy and alluring dwelling house is a good way to make you are feeling comfy on the street, wherever you’re.

Snug seating areas with smooth furnishings like cushions and throws are a good suggestion, and will help the house really feel extra your individual. Including some ornamental touches, like photos or pictures of your adventures, is all the time going to deliver a smile to your face. 

You too can add rugs, desk cloths or mats so as to add color and create a cushty surroundings.

Tip: When selecting rugs or mats in your car, search for choices which are light-weight, sturdy, and straightforward to scrub. Contemplate investing in mats which are particularly designed for outside use, as they’re usually comprised of supplies that may stand up to harsh climate circumstances.

If in case you have pets, ensure they’re pet pleasant and sturdy. 

Most motorhomes are available some type of beige, gray, white and brown. Add some heat, inviting colors along with your cushions and throws and add smooth lighting to create a relaxed environment.

For those who’re new to motorhomes, you would possibly discover these posts helpful:

Alternatively, these guides would possibly reply all of your questions (and extra!)

Step-by-step information for brand new motorhome house owners
motorhome buying toolkit
Motorhome Shopping for- full information to purchasing the proper camper for you

Being conscious of your water utilization

One of many issues I really like most about dwelling in a motorhome is how far more conscious I’m of my assets, particularly water.

If you’re staying off-grid greater than utilizing campsites, be sure you handle your assets fastidiously by having shorter showers and turning the faucet off when washing up or cleansing your enamel.

And be sure you clear your motorhome water tank regularly- right here’s how.


Good Heating and Air flow System

The primary time you strive motorhome journey in a chilly surroundings, you’ll respect your heating system with a complete new fervour. It’s essential to have a dependable supply of warmth throughout chilly nights and chilly climate. Make it possible for your car has a great heating system, and that it’s in good working situation earlier than heading out in your journey. You’ll additionally have to be sure you have LPG or diesel to run it. 

Ample air flow is equally vital to make sure that contemporary air circulates all through the car and prevents condensation build-up.


A Nicely-Stocked Kitchen

There’s nothing higher than parking up in a brand new place, ideally in the course of nowhere, opening the fridge and realizing that you just don’t want something from the store or native markets since you’ve bought all the things it’s essential to cook dinner yummy meals. Be sure to have good motorhome kitchen equipment too, which might stand being shaken about on a bumpy street.

Replenish on non-perishable meals gadgets, similar to canned items, pasta and rice to just be sure you all the time have one thing good to eat. Oh, and biscuits. Everybody wants biscuits. 

Tip: For those who having fun with consuming outside, contemplate a transportable motorhome BBQ for outside cooking, and replenish on non-perishable snacks and drinks for lengthy journeys.


Maximising Storage Area

Perversely, the extra ‘stuff’ you could have in your camper, the extra claustrophobic it might really feel. Maximising storage in your campervan is essential. Options like shelving, baskets, and organisers will assist to maintain all the things neat and straightforward to entry.

By utilizing space-saving gadgets like collapsible containers and compact home equipment, you’ll be able to minimise the quantity of litter made by miscellaneous gadgets and all the things feels a lot calmer and simpler to seek out.

Tip: For those who’re struggling for house, get a motorhome storage field on the again of your camper. It makes all the things a lot simpler! Use vertical house each time potential, similar to hanging organisers or over-door storage to maximise treasured house.

Expertise 

Regardless of the dimensions, you’re working a cellular home on wheels. And good know-how can go a good distance in serving to that. A few of the know-how I believe are necessities embody:


our scariest moment in the motorhome

Travelling in a motorhome- our scariest second (to this point!?)

Proper, in spite of everything that, let me share a narrative about my scariest second on the street.

We took our first motorhome into Europe, by means of Italy and up into the Swiss Alps. On our second day within the Alps, we stopped at slightly place known as Gelmer for lunch and a visit up the terrifying Gelmerban funicular (a VERY outdated prepare which matches backwards up a mountain!)

Gelmer is midway up a mountain within the Swiss Alps. Whichever method you go, you’re instantly driving on tiny, hairpin, mountain roads. And as quickly as we set off, we realised there was one thing significantly improper with our brakes.

We’d been wild tenting within the Alps the night time before- which was MAGICAL. However we’d been going up and down STEEP mountain roads for the previous 24 hours and, unbeknownst to us, the brake fluid had boiled dry and utterly disappeared!

Gottard Go, Switzerland

Travelling in a motorhome- our mistake

After we purchased the van 3 months earlier, we’d been advised it had simply had a full service and MOT. We did our personal checks, however we by no means thought to test the brake fluid.

Seems, it hadn’t been modified for a lot of, a few years and was largely water- which meant it had evaporated over the previous 48 hours because the brakes bought sizzling.

All this led to us hurtling down a steep mountain, with a trailer pushing us even sooner… and no method of slowing down aside from our hand brake.

I’m ceaselessly grateful that Mr WB was driving, not me. Actually, I’m unsure I might have identified what to do. There was nowhere to tug over, nowhere to cease and turning round wasn’t an choice.

All we might do was proceed down the mountain, attempting desperately to decelerate as we approached every hairpin flip and praying we didn’t catch as much as a sluggish car in entrance.

I couldn’t even converse, I used to be that scared. I simply let my husband do his thing- which he did brilliantly. He used engine braking as a lot as possible- and the handbrake to complement that. Sure, it ruined the handbrake. No, we didn’t care.


Travelling in a motorhome- the great half

On the backside of the mountain was a small village (a reasonably frequent sight whenever you’re driving in Switzerland). Simply off the primary street was a storage, and we pulled into the forecourt in a cloud of smoke.

The mechanics didn’t converse a phrase of English (why ought to they?!) however they did converse the common ‘Oh’.

Oh certainly.

These guys have been sensible. They’d a number of vehicles and jobs already in, however they stopped what they have been doing to assist us. The proprietor known as his son, who got here to assist too, and so they shortly changed the brake fluid, modified the pads and checked wheels, tyres, handbrake (fortunately not broken) and stuck something which wanted fixing.

In addition they checked the oil and did a few different important checks for us, as we now not trusted the ‘service’ the motorhome had apparently had. Inside a few hours, it was all carried out and sorted.

Our first motorhome- again on the street once more

Travelling in a motorhome- our recommendation

Fortunately, this story had a contented ending. We have been okay. The van was okay. We purchased a giant crate of beer for the mechanics and headed off on the street once more.

Nonetheless, it taught us to not belief salesmen!

Please please PLEASE, earlier than you go travelling in a motorhome, get it totally checked by an impartial mechanic- NOT the folks you purchased it from.

Particularly in case you’re planning to take your van abroad into some pretty harsh terrain. There’s a full record of important motorhome checks it’s best to do HERE.

This story isn’t meant to frighten anybody from travelling, whether or not in a motorhome, a camper or a automobile. Heck, it didn’t put us off!

However I hope sharing our story (and mistake!) will assist you to keep away from being in such a terrifying state of affairs your self. If you understand anybody else who would possibly profit from a little bit of pleasant recommendation, be happy to share this with them on Fb or Pinterest.

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