How to live out of your car's boot

Jana Joubert
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You’ve just graduated from university and no longer stay in res or the nice little flat for which your parents paid. The time has come for you to move to the big city, find a job and a place to stay.

Sounds easy enough, right? Not so much. Take it from this self-proclaimed nomad – living out of her car and occasionally crashing at her sister or boyfriend’s place (both an hour or so out of town) - it's not easy!

But, after doing this for almost a year, this particular gypsy has become quite the pro. So here are a few things to remember:

1. Don’t carry extra baggage. 
Leave your bad attitude behind and make peace with the fact that your circumstances aren’t ideal. You won’t be sleeping on your friend’s couch or in your niece’s bunk bed for ever. It’s a solution to a temporary problem. We hope you’ll be up on your feet in no time but you’ll need a good attitude to get through this.

2. Seriously, don’t carry extra baggage.
You need to leave your second pair of high heels at home and don’t even think about tagging along more than one pair of boots! Take only what you need. This means not packing all four of your jeans and jerseys but having to make do with one or two. Remember, you can always go back home and swop them around for the next few weeks. (This will also get your parents to stop nagging you to come for a visit.)

3. Make Wet Wipes and waterless hand sanitiser your best friends.
 Not having your own shower or bath isn’t great but try to make life easier (and cleaner) by keeping these items in your handbag. Especially if the next place you’re crashing at isn’t exactly what you would call spotless.

4. Invest in a small but sturdy suitcase. 
If you’re in this for the long haul make life easier by getting a suitcase that will keep all your possessions together. There is nothing worse than having three or four different bags each carrying something different. Don’t go for the floppy duffel-bag vibe, they don’t work. You need something rigid and strong that can act as a mini-cupboard and keep your clothes neatly stacked. And once you get that top job for which you’ve been searching you can use it on all your business trips or exotic getaways.

5.  Keep your car clean!
Although you’re not technically going to sleep in your car, you might have to carry around a pillow and blanket or two. Don’t get messy. Keep them clean and neatly packed, preferably in your boot. Stash a few plastic packets in the cubby hole for emergency clean-ups.

Do you have more tips for couch-crashing, car-inhabiting gypsies? Share them with us in the comment section below.