First time campervaning
We believe in keeping things as simple as possible so you can enjoy your camping experience. For this reason, we’ve come up with some guidance if hiring for the first time.
Collecting your camper
Firstly: relax, slow down & enjoy the journey. Leave yourself lots of time to get to your destination. If you’re collecting the camper at 2pm on a Friday then allow 1-2 hours to arrive, be shown around, complete paperwork, pack the camper, etc. before heading off.
Travel light: leave suitcases at home and take smaller, soft bags. Be aware that storage can sometimes be limited. Consider taking a small tent to pitch next to the van as an extra bedroom. Think ahead about your belongings and pack wisely.
Probably the most important step – choose a campsite close by! The New Forest has an abundance of great sites (https://www.campingintheforest.co.uk) and you’ll be there in under two hours. Getting to a site late afternoon, means you can take your time to unwind, get used to things and soak in the atmosphere of the great outdoors.
While younger children can go to bed at their normal time in a campervan with a pop-top roof, many families may find that it’s easiest just to share the same bedtime. Older kids tend to play outside until the usual 10pm campsite ‘quiet time’ in summer anyway, and it’s not worth fighting for an earlier bedtime. You are on holiday after all.
Take it easy on the first day while you get used to the driving style. The driving experience is different for starters. While modern campervans will feel similar to a car, classic campers are a different story altogether and you’ll need to treat them gently. The lack of power steering and engine power will often dictate your pace of driving so plan on doing fewer miles.
Battery powered LED fairy lights make the interior of a camper feel much cosier and are more soothing for younger children than torches. Wet wipes within easy reach are really useful. Audio books are great for getting children used to drifting off in the van.
Above all, switch off from the daily grind. Spend less time planning, more time reading, going for long walks and enjoying the outdoors.