I traveled in a campervan last year sleeping in it. Over the road truck drivers sleep in the back of their cab. Others stay in motels/hotels. Touring bands often travel in motorhomes and camp in them at the venue they play at.
But when you get to the point of sleeping in a car often skepticism seeps in and you feel you have crossed a line of acceptability. I understand there is a stigma about what I am doing by sleeping in my Prius but I am interested in helping to change the image in my own small way. I think the image of sleeping in your car goes to the image of homelessness for many people.
Certainly I am not homeless but choosing to do my traveling this way. If I was to tell everyone I was traveling in my Prius and was camping it would be ok as the image would be a tent in a campground and this is acceptable to most, although not what many think of their life on the road. The image is also towards younger people doing this.
Now let's lake a leap. If I had a choice of sleeping in a tent or in a fixed bed in my car the fixed bed is much more comfortable, and why not be the most comfortable. Therefore why not sleep in my car in a bed I made for the trip?
My bed in the Prius is off the ground, warmer, more secure, better in rain, nothing to pick up in the am and have to find a way to dry from dampness.
I have a fixed seat and a bed in the Prius and I don't have that in a tent. Oh did I mention I have no setup time with the Prius. I can plug into electricity to power a heater and other items. If I don't have the ability to plug in I can get power from the Prius for those things other than the heater.
I drove in my campervan last year and and slept in it. Now I have converted the Prius to do the same. It's just so much smaller. Everything in it had to be smaller. I know this kind of travel is not for everyone, but try to rearrange your limits of what is acceptable and include this kind of travel.
Many people are vandwellers but choose not to discuss with family and friends as they know the reaction they will get. Officially what I am doing on my trip last year and this year is vandwelling as it is a generic term for those that live for extended periods of time out of a vehicle. Many also do it full time, some by choice and others by necessity.
Wikipedia definition ofVandwelling.
Vandwelling is a lifestyle of living full or part-time in a wide variety of vehicles, mainly cargo vans that have been modified with basic amenities like house batteries, a bed platform, 1some form of toilet, 23 sink and storage space. Although the term can apply to living in other types of vehicles, it is mainly associated with vans because the word vandwelling is a portmanteau of the two words van and dwelling. Some vandwellers live this lifestyle by choice; seeking freedom, self-sufficiency and mobility by living outside the normal life of paying into conventional housing. Vandwelling may be done using a 4Campervan, Recreational vehicle, Travel trailer, or a mobile home. However, SUVs and larger station wagons can also be lived in.
I met a lot of nice people that are vandwellers and there are a large variety of vehicles.
I hope as you follow my travels you will open yourself to vandwelling and although you may never do it, include it into what is acceptable at some level.
I welcome you to check out Suanne's blog about traveling in a Prius.
Over the course of my 2015 travels I will be comparing costs of traveling, including my last year costs and how the my Prius camper compares to the Coachman campervan.