To have nothing to guide you but a map, a map that is usually battered and ripped by the time you’ve finished. To sit and write, read, or just watch the world go by. To wake up by sunrise and be ready to drive off in to the day, unaware of the adventure that awaits you.
Yes, road tripping is pretty sweet.
The USA is the perfect place to fulfil this fantasy and personally, unless you plan on buying a vehicle when you arrive, Escape Campervans are the best company to choose.
Ok, so I did have a couple of problems with them. I arrived in Los Angeles after an 11 hour flight from London, to be greeted by a 2 hour queue in border control so was pretty tired and irritated by the time I reached the Escape offices (which are located a $20 cab ride from LAX).
A slightly grumpy man greeted us, looking a little confused as to why we were there, asking if we were dropping off a van. After looking at him with a face that probably said ‘Do I look like I’m dropping off a F***ing van? I’m pale and angry and I hope that is not how you expect people to return vans’.
In reality, I explained to him we were actually here to pick up but they had no record of my booking and to make it worse, no vans available. Long story short, a computer glitch had booked us in for 2014, meaning we were not on the system.
I felt like crying and honestly I’m not sure how I kept my cool but he did some dialling, some walking around and 20 minutes later we were given the keys to ‘Miss Pacman’.
Now if you are going to drive out of Los Angeles, BE PREPARED! I was jet lagged, had not slept in over 18 hours and was actually frightened by the amount of lanes these people have in America. A sat nav or GPS in their language, is pretty much essential if you want to know which lane to be in and which exit to get off on.
The campervan itself is pretty cool. The two front seats (driver and passenger) are big and comfy. There is a cd player/radio with a place for an aux cable so you can play all those cheesy road trip songs.
I think the layout is genius. The vans are not huge, but they fit so much inside. The back has seats and a table, you could probably fit four people comfortably. This then also transforms in to the bed, just make sure you ask first how to assemble it as it’s not that straight forward.
There is also a decent amount of storage space for your suitcase or backpacks.
The kitchen though, is my favourite! The back doors open up and there you have your stove, sink and FRIDGE! Yes you can keep those cheap American beers cold and the fridge will keep cool for a couple of days without turning the engine on!
The stove has 2 hobs and Escape provide you with 2 gas canisters, which lasted us just about the 3 weeks we were in it.
Escape also provide plates, bowls, cutlery, pots & pans and a bottle opener! Which was ideal because as you can see, I like to drink wine and America doesn’t seem to favour the screw top.
Miss Pacman was the perfect choice for the two of us. The van had everything we needed without the van being to big to manoeuvre, which made it so much easier for us to find free camping spots.
This is actually my 2nd time with Escape Campervans and even though there were a few glitches, I will 100% use them again.
Click here to check out my post on cheap places to camp while in California!