Outdoor Connection

Working While RVing

More from Outdoor Living Newsletter May Outdoor Living Newsletter
Philip may sits at a picnic table next to his RV and works on his laptop
Philip May is the master of working on a camping road trip

It's probably many people's dream to be able to work while traveling this wonderful country in an RV. It would be like getting paid to go on vacation, right? You get to see the country, travel, and have fun in an RV and work from "home" - which in fact means work from wherever you are parked

Like those people, it was my dream too. Now, after having spent almost seven years traveling in our motor-home with our children, five years of which were working, I now dream of those care-free vacations that we used to take.

What has changed? First of all, me. Having worked for myself from the motor-home for a number of years does change you, and for the better I think. Compared to how I was in my corporate life, I'm much less stressed, more fun to be around, and actually looking forward to my working day, because it gets incorporated into what we do. For example, right now my wife is driving our rig and I'm writing this article while occasionally looking up at the vast expanse of Florida orange groves on our way down to the keys. From there we'll get to hang out in the Keys for a couple of weeks before heading back up to Georgia for a show.

But there's the rub. When we used to take a vacation I was able to completely switch off. No email, no cell phone, just a couple of weeks relaxing. Now, there is time for that, especially because when I take a break, I step out the RV and we are already in a wonderful place. But there is always that looming specter of work, wherever we are, whatever we are doing. Working anywhere can become working everywhere. It's hard to get away from your work because your home (the RV) becomes your office, so it's hard to not get reminded of what needs to be done because it's looking at you when you wake up and looking at you when you go to bed. But honestly, I wouldn't have it any other way. It's really down to you and how well you can manage yourself, your time, and the "work guilt".

So if you want to try it, what do you need? First of all, unless your employer is exceedingly understanding, or you have a job that requires you to travel extensively, you'll probably end up working for yourself. Secondly, you'll need reliable connection to the internet. There a number of ways to get WiFi on a camping road trip. Advances in internet cell phone technology (air-cards), satellites, and WiFi mean that it is much easier to stay connected and operate a "virtual office" from a motor-home. A WiFi booster and cell phone booster such as those sold by TechnoRV are a great help. But mostly you'll need to develop a frame of mind that enables you to switch off and enjoy the moment. To take time to look up and see the orange groves.

Philip May and his wife have been towing a Jeep behind their motor home for the past three years while touring the US and then more recently, a Sprinter van for the last 18 months while running their company, TechnoRV. During that time they've driven almost 70,000 miles and visited every contiguous state of the US at least once.

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