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How Do You Figure Out Your Van Layout?

This post was updated on June 11th, 2021

If you’ve bought a camper van, you know that it is important to study the distribution of spaces to try to make the most of every corner.

This especially concerns those who choose to set up a van, which is not very spacious compared to other types of RVs. In this case, forget the convenience of performing normal daily actions in an upright position, since the size of these vehicles do not have a height that can meet this need. Also for this reason, it is essential to pay attention to every little detail to be able to obtain sufficient comfort in normal movements.

van layout
Designing your van layout – Photo via Shutterstock Standard License

Our van layout

We, in this regard, have equipped ourselves with a folding ottoman, useful to perform many different functions, such as sitting to cook or eat, being able to stretch our legs when we are sitting on the sofa, and last but not least, the convenience of being able to make it a container in which to store many accessories, especially the most cumbersome (blankets, sheets, bags, etc.)

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We live in a small Multivan, and being a couple with a dog, we initially arranged it in the way that we thought was best suited to our needs. Then over time we made some useful changes to move better and have a functional home on wheels.

We certainly do not have the freedom of movement and space as a single person would, so we had to organize small dedicated and personal spaces. It’s important that everything is in place so we don’t have to compromise the organization. We have a mirror dividing the different sectors and personal effects. Each of us has our own corner to store our wardrobe and different accessories.

We try to leave the spaces divided even for more movement between us, so at the same time that one is preparing breakfast, the other can have a space to do their morning routine. This is very important for two people who share such a tiny space, to avoid the different inconveniences that can be created (possible collisions between roommates, including cups of coffee tipped over everywhere… )

Van camping with a dog

Even our four-legged friend has his own corner with its various items and food. He also has a space that would be his “sleeping area” where he takes his long naps in the middle of the day.

The sleeping space is not much, but just right for a double bed. At first, our puppy slept with us, but then with time, we realized that we didn’t have enough room and we couldn’t rest well. It was always a waste of time in the mornings because we were buried by pet hair and dirt that needed to be cleaned.

Initially, we wanted to keep the cabin together from what would be the living area, to be able to have communicating areas and pass from the front to the back with ease, without having to get out of the vehicle. But after having personally tested it, we think it’s a nice advantage to have separate areas because it makes more effective use of the living area. This of course depends on different tastes and needs.

Storing easy access items

It is always important to have the things you use most often at your fingertips, so put them in certain departments that are easily accessible without having to carry out too many maneuvers. We have found hanging pockets to carry objects very useful since they’re easily applicable to the ends of walls as a function of space-saving.

These can be used for many different purposes. One thing we’ve found useful is to have one hanging at the entrance to store our shoes, so we do not leave them on the ground or bring dirt inside the house.

You can hang them in different areas of the van, from the windows to the car seats, to the walls, to have everything at your fingertips. However, it is important to keep the different spaces always in order and in a logical way. Once you find the best accommodation for your van, it is important to keep everything tidy so it will not create confusion quickly.

For more tips on designing your van layout, check out this video from Sara & Alex James:

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