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5 Special Items That Improve Full-time Vanlife

Full-time vanlife has its perks, and if you add these 5 special items to your vanlife set up, I promise it will even moreso improve full-time vanlife for you.

When Jake and I started living in our campervan full-time, we had to make some cuts to our belongings. But, shortly after adventuring for a few months, we felt like we needed to add a few items that would advance our tiny home on wheels.

So we added in these 5 special items that improve full-time vanlife to really take our adventure-mobile to the next level. 

One of the special items that improve full-time vanlife

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Inflatable Kayak or Paddleboard:

Jake & Emily in Intex Inflatable Kayak

First thing on the 5 special items that improve full-time vanlife is an inflatable Kayak or paddleboard. It’s one thing to park down by the beach and enjoy the view while maybe getting in for a quick swim. But one thing that has improved full-time vanlife for us is being able to actually get out on the water. Our Intex K2 Inflatable Kayak has changed everything! 

The Intex K2 Explorer packs down pretty small (16.65″ X 13.98″ X 23.54″) and weighs only 37lbs. When fully inflated it is 10’3″ X 3′ X 1’8″ with a maximum weight Capacity of 400 Pounds. It even fully inflates in less than 10 minutes. And it even fit into our backpacking packs, so we brought it along on a hike with us to Great Basin National Park (pictured above). But ultimately it fits well in our cargo box above the van, so we can adventure on the water and stow it away easily above the van when not in use.

Or if an inflatable kayak isn’t your thing, check into inflatable paddleboards. It’s another great way to get on the water and get in a little exercise too!

Add in a nice RTIC Soft Cooler and you are set up for the day with cold beverages flowing and chilled snacks to fuel your adventure. It’s clearly one of our favorite items that improve full-time vanlife. 


If you’ve read any of our previous posts, then you probably know we love our WeBoost. I’m even using our Weboost now, as I write this post! It saved our butt’s when we were working in Northern Idaho this summer where cell-service is far and few between. We were lucky enough to be able to work with only 1 to 2 bars LTE. So the Weboost was essential to keeping us connected.  

The WeBoost is a device that boosts your cell-signal from nearby cell towers. Unfortunately it doesn’t work in super remote locations, but it does work in many of the places we off-grid camp.

Which then allows us to get work done without having to find a library or coffee shop (although we still like to do that occasionally). To say the Weboost is one of our favorite items that improve full-time vanlife is an understatement. 

Learn more in our in-depth review on the WeBoost Cell-Signal Booster.

SandFree Mat:

CGear Sand Free Mat

An item that changed the amount of living space we have in our campervan is the CGear SandFree Mat. It’s easy to stake down right outside your van, so when you step out, you now have an extra 88 sq ft living space. It’s great for those extra sandy or dirty campsites so you don’t have to get your yoga mat all dirty to get in a quick workout or lay down a towel to soak up the sun.

We love using it so we can kick off our shoes and enjoy the sun to grab some vitamin D. It even made a great dance floor for our recent two-person dance party. They come in 3 different sizes: small (8′ X 11′), medium (8′ X 14′), and large (8′ X 20′). 

Use code tworoamingsouls at checkout for 10% off your order at CGear.

Bug Net Canopy:

One problem that is inevitable when you live outdoors are bugs. Especially in those moist climates, often near ponds, lakes or rivers. So having a bug net canopy so you can still enjoy the outdoors without getting annoyed by those pesky little bugs is a MUST! It also doubles as shade on those hot summer days. Our Bug Net Canopy has considerably improved full-time vanlife for us!

We have the Ozark Trail Bug Canopy which is very affordable and packs down relatively small. But if budget isn’t an issue I would suggest the Coleman Instant Screenhouse, Alvantor Screen House Gazebo or REI Screenhouse Shelter.


Campervan kitchen with a snake plant on the counter and mountains in the background

It’s proven that having plants can make you happier. Looking at something green and something that is living just gives off good vibes. And besides improving your mood, they also can improve the air quality by filtering out harmful chemicals. So adding a plant to your vanlife adventure will be something that changes your tiny-home on wheels. 

Takeaway | 5 Special Items That Improve Full-Time Vanlife

These 5 special items that improve full-time vanlife have changed the comfort level of living in a vehicle full-time. You want to advance your living space when living off grid, and these 5 items have made comfort a whole new “thing”. Space can be limited inside your campervan, but I promise these 5 special items that improve full-time vanlife will be a game-changer to your tiny home on wheels! 

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