This Young Couple Built an Affordable Camper Van To Travel Across 48 States in a Year

Not many people dream of trying out the van life. But even fewer act on their dream and actually start building or buying a camper to travel around. One inspiring example is this couple, Lita and Dylan, who acted on their wishes and decided to live in a van without hesitation. Today, I'd like to shortly present their story and take a closer look at their tiny home on wheels.
Ram ProMaster Camper Conversion 12 photos
Photo: YouTube Screenshot / Tiny Home Tours
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It all started with Dylan casually mentioning it would be fun if they designed a van to live out of it. Most people would brush this thought off. However, it triggered something in Lita that made her fully dedicated to this idea.

We're looking at a Ram Promaster van engineered for full-time living. Since Dylan graduated in Mechanical Engineering, he was excited by the idea of developing the design for a tiny home. It took the couple just a few months to set up the camper.

At first glance, you'll probably notice that the interior is quite full. Even though some people prefer a minimalist design with all things hidden away, achieving this look is challenging when living full-time in a van, especially when you opt for a smaller one. I enjoy a bit of chaos regarding interior design, as it gives the space more personality. Even though you see stuff hanging from everywhere, each has its purpose, and it's a realistic indicator of how messy van life is most times - and there's absolutely nothing wrong with that.

Interestingly enough, the entire color scheme for the interior was inspired by a pillow case the couple bought in Ecuador. The van features white walls with broad blue accents and a wooden ceiling, and various small decorations that make the space feel like a home, such as a small mirror, a scratch-off map of the US, and a cross-stitching of a van that reads "Home is where you park."

Ram ProMaster Camper Conversion
Photo: YouTube Screenshot / Tiny Home Tours
I'll start from the front and move to the rear. The van is equipped with a useful feature you can find in many campers: swivel seats. Turn them around, and there's a table for each of the seats where the couple can work on their laptops. The one for the driver's seat is a swivel table, so it can be adjusted, while the other can be folded up.

Above the driver's cabin is a spacious storage space where the duo fits anything from games to a first aid kit, towels, shirts, and more. You'll notice a Maxxair fan beside the ceiling that keeps the inside airy and cool when dealing with hot temperatures. It's also used for proper ventilation when cooking.

The kitchen is relatively small, but the couple fits the essentials they need to cook a nice meal. It features a sink and a small countertop right across from it. There's also a pretty sizeable oven, complete with a three-burner stove. The couple said that a single propane tank lasted them a whole year.

You'll notice many storage spaces in the form of drawers and cabinets, where the two store utensils, plates, snacks, and other non-food stuff, such as clothes, accessories, hygiene products, and electronic equipment. After all, this is not a huge van, so every storage space had to be used to the fullest.

Ram ProMaster Camper Conversion
Photo: YouTube Screenshot / Tiny Home Tours
Besides the two swivel seats, there are two other small seating areas, one right beside the countertop and the other next to the bed. What's more, a dual-sided fridge box is housed underneath the cushions.

Given that the owners work remotely, each was designed to also serve as additional seating space for when they have to work on their laptops. To have access to remote connectivity at all times, there's a WeBoost cell booster and Starlink equipped on the van.

One aspect of van life that prevents people from embarking on this journey is taking care of their daily hygienic needs. Not everybody can enjoy the luxury of having a dedicated space for a bathroom, as you can also notice in Lita and Dylan's case. Instead, they fitted a slide-out cassette toilet and an outdoor shower.

Toward the van's rear, you'll find two sliding windows that let plenty of light get inside. When it's hot outside, Dylan and Lita can open them both to circulate air. Moreover, they also fitted a small fan in a corner.

Ram ProMaster Camper Conversion
Photo: YouTube Screenshot / Tiny Home Tours
The bedroom features a fixed, almost full-size bed. Since they didn't have enough space to fit a TV, the couple instead used a small capsule projector and a projector sheet, which they hung from the ceiling.

Like in many other camper builds, you'll discover a small garage underneath the bed, accessible from the rear. Besides being a storage space, it also integrates many of the van's utilities. About that, the camper is equipped with a propane tank, a diesel tank connected to a heater, a 33-gallon (125-liter) water tank, a water heater, a water pump, and an electrical system.

It's inspiring to see how a seemingly insignificant comment sparked this adventure of traveling across the United States. Even though it's not the most deluxe build, it's enough for them to live comfortably and enjoy van life. Even though Dylan and Lita don't mention anything about how much it cost them to build this van, it was probably a rather affordable conversion – it shows that as long as you have the desire to explore (and maybe a bit of technical knowledge), you can succeed in this endeavor.

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About the author: Mircea Mazuru
Mircea Mazuru profile photo

Starting out with a motorcycle permit just because he could get one two years earlier than a driver's license, Mircea keeps his passion for bikes (motor or no motor) alive to this day. His lifelong dream is to build his own custom camper van.
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