Alison & Max in a VW Camper

Square Feet: 80

Take the unknown road.

Where are you currently living?

I'm currently in Chico, California.

Name the make, model and year of your home.

I own a 2002 VW Eurovan Camper.

What were you doing before you went mobile and why did you make the change?

I was working in advertising sales and wasn’t happy. I decided to quit my job and head out in a teardrop trailer. After traveling in that for most of the year, I downsized to a tent. And three years ago, I bought my van.

How long have you been living in your home and do you live there full time/part time?

My van, named Campy, is where I live most of the year, but I have a home base in Long Beach, California, that I rent through Airbnb.

What was the process like to move into your mobile home?

Since I don’t live in the van full time, it’s always ready to go anywhere I want to go.

I would say that the first year was the hardest. Once you figure out how to live while on the road, it becomes easier.

How do you balance work and living in a small space?

I work on assignment and usually have time to prepare, so I just make plans to travel to the area of my assignment.

What are your hobbies on or off the road?

I take lots of photographs and play with my travel partner, Max (my rescue dog).

What are your top three go-to items in your tiny home?

iPhone: I carry my iPhone wherever I go, and this worked in my favor when everything I had was stolen from my rental van in New Zealand last year. Since my phone was in my pocket, I was able to document my trip. It’s my little pocket computer that I have with me no matter where I go.  I would be lost without it. Well, I can be lost and still have it, so there’s that.

GoPro: The GoPro is the best wide-angle pocket camera around, in my opinion. I like to travel light, and when I want a good photo that’s better than my iPhone, I have the GoPro in my pocket. It’s great for dramatic shots.

Coffee: It’s what I look forward to every morning. My favorite part of waking up in the middle of nowhere is making coffee. It’s my luxury item I suppose.

What has been the most rewarding thing about living small?

Stuff no longer owns you, and you have time to do things that enrich your life.

Max hates to travel when I go off road, but I’ve found some of the best spots this way. Get off the main road and explore the unknown.

What is the most challenging thing?

Social interaction. Not having friends when you need them can be hard at times, but with technology, it’s easy to keep in touch.

What is your advice to future homeowners who want to live small or hit the road?

Do it. Take half the clothes and twice the amount of money you think you’ll need.

The best feeling in the world is doing something you didn’t think you would be able to.

What's next for you? Any news you want to share?

I have some things on the horizon but am not yet in the position to share.

This is on the top of my ‘favorite things’ list. Laying with Max in campy, feeling the ocean breeze on my face and listening to the sounds of the waves. When writing in my journal and recapping the day, I always start with some of the small things that happened that I am thankful for. Sometimes, it’s the moments we overlook or take for granted that mean the most.

Follow Alison & Max and their adventures on Instagram @alisontravels. You can also visit her website or follow her on Twitter.

Edited by Kate MacDougall.
All photos credit to Alison Turner.