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The complete checklist: How to “live life on the road”

world map in the car

Living life on the road is a dream for many people (including us)! We know that most homeowners have big plans to travel around the world full time, but they are too scared to make the big leap into the unknown. 

Living life on the road full time isn’t easy, and some sacrifices need to be made along the way. But more than ever before, we’re starting to see families getting sick of waiting for the perfect circumstances or the suitable income to arrive in their bank account before taking their next big step, which is very exciting! With this in mind, we’ve put together a complete checklist that contains many golden gems and tricks on how to live life on the road that we’re sure will be of great help when you start packing for your next big adventure! 

Why do people love to live life on the road? 

Most people feel stuck in their jobs with no prospects of a raise or any other exciting options on the horizon. This is how the need for a significant life change strikes in. When dreams seem to perish and monotony starts to settle in, people begin to feel the need to reinvent themselves. 

But when it comes to knowing how to live on the road, there is no secret formula that you can apply, unfortunately, which could ensure that everything will go well. However, there are a lot of good reasons why living on the road is such a popular choice nowadays, such as:

  • It’s a very inexpensive way to live
  • You get to see the world and try new things
  • In a tight job market, temporary work is available, whilst full-time jobs aren’t
  • Adventure and new experiences add a lot of value to your life and resume
  • It gives you the much wanted and needed flexibility 
  • You can do it in all and any stages of life
  • … and much more 

So, with these been said, let’s dive into the main things you need to consider if you’ll ever decide to live life on the road and become a nomad travel enthusiast. 

Start planning early

Before starting to wander off into the world, you must begin planning for your big trip.

But planning your routes and deciding on the places where you will stop and sleep isn’t enough! However, we know that you don’t want to start planning every step of your journey, as things will most probably change. A good idea would be to start downloading travel apps like “On the way” or “Roadtrippers” to plan your routes, along with options for restaurants, tourist attractions, and B&B’s. But keep in mind that having your plans as loose as possible will allow new and unforeseen experiences into your life, and the best part of living on the road is the unexpected!

Start making a detailed list of the places you want to visit, figure out the best routes, and think about who you will take along with you. Is it your best friend, your family, your pets, partner, parents? There is a lot of planning involved if you want to commit to living life on the road. You will have to consider how to finance that once in a lifetime journey to make sure you won’t have a care in the world when you are away from home. A vital thing to consider is the small variables such as the health needs of you or your partner, what caravan or motor home you will want to buy, and making sure that your friends and family will be kept up to date about your journey at all times.

We know that a prevalent choice amongst people is living on the road with a dog, as your pet can be one of your best companions, so we fully understand why you would like to take them along. But note that taking your pet with you will create a lot of challenges on the way, so make sure to research all the animal-friendly sites thoroughly before you set off on the road. Ensure that you are on top of all your pet’s vaccines, flea, and worm control medication, and whatever your means of travelling, either by caravan or car, you should slowly start getting your pet used to it before you head off on your trip. 

Think about your budget

As much as we would love to tell you how to live life on the road with no money, we can’t. Money will surely be a considerable component of your travels, so first, start thinking about the length of your trip and how much it will cost you. 

Budget your food over this period, any potential caravan or motor vehicle breakdowns, accommodation, and rough entertainment costs. Keep a close eye on your spending and try to stick to your budget as much as possible, so you don’t get short-changed near the end of your travel, which would only cause you a great deal of stress. And keep in mind that while you will be away enjoying your adventures, your bills won’t stop back home! In case you still own a property, you will have to pay all your taxes and bills. Our recommendation would be to move all your payments online if you can or use mail forwarding to your best friend or a family member. 

Declutter your house and possessions

And here is where the significant concerns start to kick in for most people. Considering you can only take so much with you on your trip, you need to take a lot of precaution before travelling. Most people will have difficulty deciding if they should keep their home, rent it or sell. 

People that will choose to keep their homes will have to figure out if they will get a house sitter or if they have any family or friends that could keep a close eye on their home whilst they will be gone. If you intend to rent your property, you will need someone to check on it, so the easiest way to do so would be through a rental management company. However, this is where a little bit of fun could come in – decluttering your home. We have a great article on our ten top tips to declutter your home that you might find helpful before even considering getting rid of your possessions and start living out of a backpack. Once you’ve decluttered your home, there are numerous things you could do when it comes to getting rid of all that you no longer need, such as: 

  • Post your items for sale on eBay and Craigslist
  • Donate to charities
  • Sell your belongings to coworkers 
  • Ask friends and family if they would like to have any of your items
  • Give your belongings to homeless people
  • Contact used furniture stores, consignment and pawn shops in your areas, and see if they would be willing to buy your items

And once you’ve done all of that, if you still find yourself in a challenging situation with too many things to store in your home, the best solution is to start looking for self-storage companies that could give you a hand! Self-storage containers are a lifesaver when it comes to storing your belongings, so all you have to do is to create the best self-storage inventory list and to put yourself up to date with what not to store in a storage unit, and why

When choosing a self-storage facility, ensure that the area is clean, well-reinforced with elements like water, closed off from rodents, and whether your chosen provider has good security in place, like CCTV cameras. For more valuable information, we have some great articles on how to store items in self-storage units and what size self-storage unit you need for a helping hand. We know that most people will start asking questions about the self-storage cost, however, all we can tell you is that it is worth the money! On average, storage units can cost anywhere between £100 and £300 per month, but pricing boils down to self-storage sizes and availability. A top tip from us would be to consider that the best storage unit companies like BoxpodSpace are much cheaper when renting online!

Pack your essentials well

There is nothing worse than staying in a stuffy car for hours as it feels messy and sometimes quite suffocating. The first step to becoming a pro road tripper is to learn how to pack lightly. 

Try to use a duffel bag instead of regular luggage to save some space whilst you will be packing, as this option is much more flexible, and it takes very little room. Also, instead of folding your clothes, roll them! When you start packing your car, try to use all the available space strategically. Maybe it will be worth considering investing in an overhead carrier to store all that you won’t need while being on the road. If you have any room underneath the seats, stuff some items there as well. We assure you that travelling with plenty of legroom in a clean car will make your journey much more comfortable and enjoyable. 

To make your journey a whole lot better and to help you pack your essential, we’ve put together a small list with our top 15 items to pack along:

  • Comfortable mattress (if you travel in a van) 
  • A spare pair of tires for your vehicle and any other utensils needed
  • Portable universal power bank 
  • Smartphone apps like “Campercontact” and “Par4Night”
  • 250W Solar Panels if you travel in a campervan 
  • Reusable bee wax wraps to store and cover food (a much more eco-friendly option of the traditional cling film or foil)
  • Thermo mat set to fit the exact model of your vehicle
  • Storage baskets to keep everything tidy 
  • Gimble fan for the hot summer days
  • Solar shower 
  • WiFi 4G box
  • Pocket tool roll to keep your tools organised 
  • Non-stick pans to make your life easier when cooking 
  • Laundry bags
  • All-purpose liquid soap

Of course, there are many more things to think about when packing to live life on the road, and people’s needs will significantly vary from person to person. However, hopefully, our tips will give you some guidance on what items to expect to add to your dream trip. 

Before you leave

And now we can move onto the last things to tick off from your to-do list before starting your big adventure! You should start making all your medical and dental appointments ahead so that you can have a full assessment of your general health. 

If you have any illnesses, make sure to have all your relevant documents ready with you, and put them aside if any emergency pops up along the way. This will also greatly help you when trying to find doctors while travelling. If needed, keep all your medication stored in cool areas, and make yourself aware of what cities and towns you will be visiting that have access to pharmacies, as well as their open hours. The same goes for food and drinks, and in case you have any allergies or diets that you must stick to, make sure you will be able to access the healthiest food products possible whilst travelling. After all, you want to be healthy and fit to enjoy your dream coming true, right?

After you’ve finished all your packing, make sure to bring along a first aid kit, and do the final checks on your car or caravan to avoid any unexpected vehicle issues whilst being on the road. And last but not least, leave your contact details with your loved ones so that they will know about your whereabouts at all times and if they will need to reach you in case of an emergency back home. An excellent idea would be to have your insurance details stored safely and to leave a copy with your loved ones, too, just in case. 


And there you have it! Our complete checklist for how to live life on the road, aka, the best periods of your life!

If you will ever decide to take a leap of faith and go on the adventure of a lifetime but are not sure what to do with your belongings, rest assured that we’ve got your back! At BoxpodSpace, you can benefit from secure self-storage facilities in a variety of locations throughout the UK, where we offer self-storage units and yards, as well as self-storage for business to cover all your needs whilst being on the road. Our self-storage sites are located in gated compounds, being monitored 24/7 by CTTV equipment whilst offering competitive rates for all our services. To find out more about our flexible terms and how could self-storage make your life easier, please get in touch with us today, or simply call us on 0116 279 1570, and one of our friendly staff will be happy to help with their best advice and support. In the meantime, check out our self-storage FAQS and self-storage cost vs savings articles for more information.