Living on the road is an amazing dream. That said, for those who cannot yet retire, the only way to make this dream a reality is by working while traveling. While for some, this might mean traveling from one gig to the next, but for most non-retired full-time RVers, this means working remotely from a computer.
In this day and age, the possibilities are endless when it comes to the types of work that might be done over the internet. However, one thing remains the same no matter what kind of online job you may have: the need for a workspace.
Sure, you could just work from the dining room table or even a picnic table outside. These spots are less than ideal, though. After all, think of all the distractions that might pull you away from what you’re doing. Additionally, you may want to consider the hassle of moving your work set-up every day and the pain it might be to clear a suitable workspace on the dining table each morning.
A dedicated office space is the way to go, and while it might take some creativity, in most cases, creating this traveling office space is 100% possible. Here are some of the best options we’ve seen in our travels.
We’ve seen countless couples and single people convert their RV bunkroom into an office space. This is a wonderful idea if you don’t have kids, and can be used even if you do have kids if you find that they only use one side of the bunkroom.
We love that the bunkroom conversion sets your workspace apart from the rest of the RV, and in most cases, gives you the option of shutting the door to drown out the noise from the living area.
Living room nook
Don’t have an extra bunkroom sitting around? That’s understandable. After all, most people don’t purchase an RV with a bunkroom if they don’t have kids to put in it. Lucky for you, there are plenty of other options. One popular option is to create an office nook in the main living area of the RV.
This option provides less privacy, something you may want to consider before jumping in. That said, if you don’t use your dining table or your couch much, pulling one or the other out and replacing it with a desk should be simple enough.
Obviously, you can’t convert your entire master bedroom into an office. However, we have seen many people put small workspaces into their bedrooms with much success. This option is great because it still allows you to close a door, separating yourself from whatever else might be happening in the rig.
In order to get around the fact that there is limited space, we’ve seen people create fold-down desks that mount to the wall, as well as desks that live in the closet. Some people have dedicated office chairs, and many others use folding chairs that can be put away, but other people simply use the edge of the bed as their seat.
That’s right, a bathroom office. This one is hilarious and pretty clever. The lady that used this set-up happened to have a second bathroom off of her master bedroom. She rigged up a small folding desk that was the correct height and used her toilet (with the lid down, of course) as her office chair. Here, she was able to work in peace without interruption from her husband and baby.
Tent office setup
On more than one occasion, we’ve seen someone set up outside in a Clam or something similar, typing away. A tent workspace is a great option if you prefer to leave the RV in order to work. It also ensures you still get to spend time in nature despite your need to bring in an income.
Unfortunately, this option does have downsides:
- For one thing, you cannot leave important work documents and equipment in a tent for fear of weather and thieves messing things up.
- For another, very warm or cold temperatures will render your office useless.
Lastly, we must mention the vehicle office. For some, this is a lap desk put to use in the passenger seat of their motorhome. For others, it’s a full-fledged office set-up in the back of their tow van. Both options are something to consider when figuring out your on-the-road work groove.
Tips for setting up a mobile office
Once you’ve picked out your favorite office idea, use these tips to get everything just right:
Chances are, you’re going to need an internet connection. While it is sometimes possible to use in-park WiFi, and satellite internet is available, we’ve found that a cellular hotspot is by far the best option. Use this in conjunction with a WiFiRanger SkyPro and you should be able to connect wherever you roam.
- Monitor safety
If you’ll be using a traditional computer monitor, make sure it is securely mounted to a wall. Otherwise, you may want to consider using a laptop that can be put away on travel days.
- Secure your chair
Honestly, rolling chairs aren’t the best ideas in an RV. However, if you insist on having one, make sure to secure it with a bungee cord before driving anywhere.
- Wall organization
You likely won’t have space for a filing cabinet. A hanging wall organizer can be a lifesaver for keeping papers organized and within reach.