You probably see them on Instagram, the photos of beautiful camper vans with the bed in the width. You can sleep well in this if you are shorter than 1,70 meters tall, but if you are almost 2 meters that is no fun. In addition, the average bus has a standing height of 1,95 metres. So motorhome life doesn't always seem to be made for tall people. But we have recently done research into the perfect bus for giants and here we share our experiences with you!
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Camper with lifting roof
From November to April we – from Vandemics – traveled through Southern Europe with a Ford Nugget camper. A fantastic experience and the corona crisis made it even more special because we were able to visit major tourist attractions such as Alhambra (Granada) and Sardinia almost alone.
The camper we used for this was 5 meters long and approximately 1,70 meters high (inner size). That doesn't sound big at first, but because the bus was equipped with a lifting roof, we had an extra "floor" on the bus that ensured that Adriaan - almost 2 meters tall - could stand upright in the kitchen when the lifting roof was raised and the bed 2,10 was XNUMX meters long. Highly recommended for tall people!
The DIY adventure
Despite its fine dimensions, we recently decided to sell the bus and exchange it for a DIY adventure. We have come across so many DIY campers in Southern Europe that this has inspired us to take on this adventure ourselves. However, the sale of our own camper went so quickly that we had not yet realized that finding a bus that is suitable for someone of almost 2 meters is still quite a challenge.
Finding the right size
Vans come in all shapes and sizes. The most common size for motorhome builders is an L2 H2, or Length 2, Height 2. It soon became clear to us that H2 – on average around 1,95 meters high – is not high enough for us. If you make a floor and ceiling in the bus, standing upright is not possible.
So height 3 is what we were looking for. The market for this height is smaller than Height 2 and it is common for it to be advertised as Height 3 but in reality it turns out to be a Height 2. In addition, despite the same name, the size differs per brand and year of manufacture. For example, height 3 of a 2013 Iveco Daily was too low for us, height 3 of a 2013 Opel Movano was good.
We were eventually quick about the height, then the question came about the length of the bus. As we already started article, many camper beds are built in width. Due to Adriaan's long legs, that is not an option for us and we soon knew that we wanted a bed in the length. But how much space do you need for the rest of the installation in the motorhome?
After a tour of all kinds of dealers, we soon found that a Length 2 is too short for the desire to build a (largely fixed) bed in the length and also to have room for a sofa, kitchen and table. That is why we ultimately opted for a Length 3 and arrived at an Opel Movano L3H3 from 2013. The bus is 6,30 meters long and has an internal dimension of 2,15 meters. The bus is therefore just too long for a "standard" parking space, but ideal for tall people!
“Hidden costs” when buying a bus
If you also intend to buy a bus and convert it into a motorhome, keep in mind that most buses are advertised (by dealers) without VAT and that you still have to pay the rest of the BPM. This is because you change the function of the bus to camper. These amounts can add up considerably, for example we had to pay approximately € 1.400 rest BPM, so take that into account in your budget.
We are now busy converting the bus to a camper, more about that in a next article.