Who has slept in their car for quite a few nights?
Thanks a bunch for all the replies, some very interesting responses!
For the peopler asking why I would rather sleep in a car than camp, I guess others have answered – simply the ease; not having to find somewhere suitable to camp, but can just park up somewhere and kip.
Big van or similar would be tempting, but as we plan on scrapping at the end of the trip (in E.Europe, and then fly home), really don’t want to spend too much.
So after reading the stuff on here and chatting it over a bit with my flatmate, thinking of 3 or 4 of us (instead of 2), to reduce petrol/car costs, and then get one or two pop up tents (I have a decent 2 or 3 man one but pop up would be nice, plus if it’s a cheap one can bin it at end of trip) to sleep in when away from cities/hostels. I guess even in cities we can find campsites, but not sure on practicality if we plan to hang around for a few days.
Thinking that an estate or similar will still be best even if we don’t plan to sleep in it, as there’ll be more of us so lots more kit, plus vaguely spacious in the back if someone wants to sleep on the road.
Oh and roadtrip isn’t bike related 🙂Posted 4 years agoandrewhMember
RHD is fine in Europe, I had no issues at all. In fact I would say it’s better as I didn’t fancy trying to get to grips with an unfamiliar car as well as unfamilar roads and signs all written in foreign. Take an RHD and you can just think about the road, not the car.Posted 4 years agostevemtbMember
Spent a long weekend in the back of my Volvo 850 estate. Reasonable sized car but I was happy to be out of it after a few nights.
Need something to put down under you as the back of a car isn’t all that comfy and plenty to keep you warm (summer keeping cool might be more of an issue actually).
If you’re going for it van would be top choice for me, failing that go for a people carrier with the rear seats out. The more room you have the better you will get on.Posted 4 years agothisisnotaspoonMember
I’ve done it in my C-max’s boot with the rear seats removed the load bay is about 6ft long so enough space to sleep with bikes and kit.
I’d not do it sat in the seats though, done it once and unless your shattered falling asleep is almost impossible, and you’re still knackered and stiff the next morning.
Decathlon do folding tents, I’d get some of those, I’ve got one, a self inflating mat and a duffbag for the sleeping bag/tent stuff. Throw up the tent, throw in the mat and bag, sleep. Just park up somewhere on the outskirts of town, walk in and get pissed, walk out, throw up the tent (not the drink), sleep, wake up, fold up tents, drive off before you attract at(tent)ion.
“somewhere suitable to camp” – any empty (ish) field out of the farmers sight, lake shore, or wide verge. I’ve never really thought about it for more than a few minutes each day.Posted 4 years agotomhowardSubscriber
Did 5 nights in the back of a people carrier with a mate in scotland in September, by the end we (and the car) stank so bad it would gag a maggot, to coin a phrase. That and it was f**king cold!
Though we were just kipping in lay-bys rather than campsites so no real hygeine facilities.Posted 4 years ago
OK, so following on from this, who has camped for 30-40 nights? With the odd stop off at a hostel.
Not sure if we should get one big tent, or smaller individual tents so we don’t annoy each other too much.. we’re good mates but who knows after a month in close proximity!Posted 4 years agoalpine girlMember
I’ve done quite a bit of camping (10 months was longest trip) but mostly in my own tent. From the camping I’ve done with people I would definately say get as much space as possible! Maybe two large 2 person (or 3 person) tents at least. You don’t want to be cramped in there with all your stuff or if the weather’s bad, that also means you can swap around a bit or go off separetely for a few days if you want.
If you’ve not done much camping before make sure you occasionally turn the tent inside out and shake it for a clean, and when the weather’s nice open up your sleeping bags and put them out for a bit of an airing!Posted 4 years agokonabunnyMember
That was going to be my next thread
Driving a RHD car in Europe for 5 weeks vs hassle of finding a LHD car in the UK vs potentially having to pay more for a LHD drive vs potentially being able to sell a LHD car at the end of the trip
There’s tons of LHD cars on eBay and Gumtree. In fact, if you were planning on leaving it in Poland or CZ, you could quite easily buy one that’s already got those plates on it and sell it to someone local…Posted 4 years ago
With a LHD car, which have presumably been imported from Europe, insurance will be an extra faff/more expensive won’t it?
Any thoughts on European breakdown cover? I’m assuming it’s a good idea to get it, but it’s not cheap.. seems around £100 for annual (one trip is normally max 31days).Posted 4 years agomaccruiskeenSubscriber
RHD is fine in Europe, I had no issues at all
Its a considerable issue with a van though – lots of junctions, overtaking, motorway slip roads etc can be pretty dicey. Better if you have a passenger, so long as they’re awake when you need them. (I took someone all the way to Paris with me on a job once, just so they could guide me on one junction, that would have been a blind leap into traffic with them)Posted 4 years ago
I’m sorry but that’s a terrible idea, it’s just plain skanky. What about washing, and the toilet ? You will honk after a couple of days. Why not just go the whole hog and sleep in homeless shelters ?
Where will you park – laybys ? In a lot of countries you will get moved on by the Police, or worse robbed by the locals. You need to leave a window open a bit too or the condensation builds up, especially with more than one person. Shell out the extra 10 euros a night for camping for goodness sake.
I travelled Europe extensively in a right hand drive it is no problem at all, esp if there are two of you (tollbooths were an issue when I was on my own esp the unstaffed ones) just remember to park carefully so you can see to pull out.Posted 4 years ago
P.S and don’t bother with European breakdown for a £500-600 car. It will cost more than the car… Most wee towns in Europe have a proper mechanic garage.
I never had a problem with motorway junctions in my van, just plan ahead, indicate properly make clear movements. European drivers are much much better at motorway driving and will pull into the middle lane to let you on, cos generally they don’t middle lane hog like British drivers.Posted 4 years ago
Breakdown cover looked to be arond £100, was thinking more if we get stranded in the middle of nowhere, or on a motor way, and needed towing? But maybe winging it is the way..
Oh and hels, re: your first post, woah, calm down! That was the point of this thread, and as you can see, we’ve changed our plan, to camping/hostels 🙂Posted 4 years agoandytherocketeerSubscriber
I wouldn;t compare the cost of breakdown cover to the price of an old banger, but factor it in as a cost of the entire trip.
I have ADAC (German equivalent of AA), which is less than €100 for 1 person pan-Europe, and the extra insurance that comes with that is worth it. It’s not just being towed or getting a man in a yellow car to get you going again, but it’ll cover all kinds of things like travel back to the UK if you trash it, or if you break a leg MTBing they’ll repatriate the car, etc. etc.
Oh and I’d take 2 tents.Posted 4 years ago
Right, so moving on, assuming we camp/hostel rather than sleep in car, sensible choice for £5-600 would be to get a Volvo estate – big, comfy, fairly reliable etc.
However, what if we got something silly like a fairly old Mazda MX5 convertible? Would we hugely regret it? If it’s that cheap will it likely die before we get out of the UK? Will we fit anything in the boot?
Or will we be in love with it once we get down to the French Riveria/Italian coast?Posted 4 years ago
Ach yeah, hadn’t thought of break-ins, I’m guessing an old convertible would be a simple slash and grab job…
Any recommendations for roadtrip cars which would be a bit more fun/different than the standard options? Looked into a Daihatsu Hijet (microvan), but apparently repairs are horeendously expensive.Posted 4 years ago
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