News, Culture & Society

California couple on their van life in a converted Transit

A female couple have opened up about life on the road in a van they converted to tour the US.  

Breanne Acio, 30, from Thousand Oaks, California, and her wife Lacey Mayer, 28, from West Hills, California – both teachers – bought a 2016 Ford Transit 250 high roof van and spent three months converting it into their ideal home at a cost of $10,000 (£7,700).

Lacey explains: ‘Living in the van gives us time away from the society that oftentimes, just by residing in it, pulls unnecessary stress into our lives.’ 

A lesbian couple (Lacey pictured) have opened up about life on the road in a van they converted to tour the US

Breanne, a San Diego State University lecturer and Lacey, a 5th grade teacher in National City, saved up in advance to fund their travels.

The married couple has since clocked up 10,000 miles as they travelled through Los Angeles, San Francisco, Arcata, Oregon, Crater Lake, Bend, Portland and Seattle among others.

The adventurous duo explained why they packed their lives up into a van and the fun they had doing it.

‘Last year we decided that we wanted to spend the following summer on a road trip in the US,’ says Lacey.

‘We had explored more countries that we had seen US states, so we thought we should see the beauty in our own country next.’

Breanne Acio, 30 (bottom), from Thousand Oaks, California, and her wife Lacey Mayer, 28 (top), from West Hills, California, bought a 2016 Ford Transit 250 high roof van

Breanne Acio, 30 (bottom), from Thousand Oaks, California, and her wife Lacey Mayer, 28 (top), from West Hills, California, bought a 2016 Ford Transit 250 high roof van

Lacey (pictured) explains: 'Living in the van gives us time away from the society that oftentimes, just by residing in it, pulls unnecessary stress into our lives'

Lacey (pictured) explains: ‘Living in the van gives us time away from the society that oftentimes, just by residing in it, pulls unnecessary stress into our lives’

The married couple has since clocked up 10,000 miles as they travelled through Los Angeles, San Francisco, Arcata, Oregon, Crater Lake, Bend, Portland and Seattle among others

The married couple has since clocked up 10,000 miles as they travelled through Los Angeles, San Francisco, Arcata, Oregon, Crater Lake, Bend, Portland and Seattle among others

She adds: ‘While living in the van, life becomes very stress free and simple. We really enjoy our morning routine of waking up together, making breakfast and coffee, and sitting outside enjoying the ambiance of the morning.

The problem lies in society placing labels on nomadic peoples that they are dirty and helpless 

‘Having a lot of time to spend with each other and on activities we like to do really helps to improve our quality of life and so we feel very grateful each day that we get to live in our van.

‘We really enjoy journaling, reading, taking naps, hiking, exploring new areas, and working on other life goals.’

Breanne and Lacey converted the van themselves but did enjoy some help from close relatives.

The couple spent three months converting the van into their ideal home at a cost of $10,000 (£7,700). Pictured before (left) and after (right)

The couple spent three months converting the van into their ideal home at a cost of $10,000 (£7,700). Pictured before (left) and after (right)

Breanne and Lacey converted the van themselves but did enjoy some help from close relatives

Breanne and Lacey converted the van themselves but did enjoy some help from close relatives

Lacey says: 'We really enjoy our morning routine of waking up together, making breakfast and coffee, and sitting outside enjoying the ambiance of the morning'

Lacey says: ‘We really enjoy our morning routine of waking up together, making breakfast and coffee, and sitting outside enjoying the ambiance of the morning’

The couple hope to take more weekend trips and day trips to beaches in and around San Diego and LA as well as attending Descend on Ben, a yearly vanlife gathering in Ben, Oregon. They also hope to travel to Baja for a winter break with a few friends.

The pair hope that by documenting their adventures they can help end the ‘stigma’ associated with van life and show people it is a choice rather than a necessity.

‘Lots of people are looked down upon because of the fact that they live in a van,’ says Breanne.

'Having a lot of time to spend with each other and on activities we like to do really helps to improve our quality of life,' Lacey remarks

‘Having a lot of time to spend with each other and on activities we like to do really helps to improve our quality of life,’ Lacey remarks

She adds: 'We really enjoy journaling, reading, taking naps, hiking, exploring new areas, and working on other life goals'

She adds: ‘We really enjoy journaling, reading, taking naps, hiking, exploring new areas, and working on other life goals’

The couple hope to take more weekend trips and day trips to beaches in and around San Diego and LA as well as attending Descend on Ben, a yearly vanlife gathering in Ben, Oregon

The couple hope to take more weekend trips and day trips to beaches in and around San Diego and LA as well as attending Descend on Ben, a yearly vanlife gathering in Ben, Oregon

‘The problem lies in society placing labels on nomadic peoples that they are dirty and helpless in the context that it wasn’t their choice and therefore they are “homeless”.

‘Having the vanlife gathering up in Neah Bay really helped because we realized there is a huge community of people that love living a nomadic lifestyle and we could all relate to each other and the problems that life on the road hands us sometimes.

‘The best part, though, was the blessings we got to share that life on the road hands us for the majority of the time: freedom, happiness, love, and time to just be ourselves.’ 

The pair hope that by documenting their adventures they can help end the 'stigma' associated with van life and show people it is a choice rather than a necessity

The pair hope that by documenting their adventures they can help end the ‘stigma’ associated with van life and show people it is a choice rather than a necessity

'Lots of people are looked down upon because of the fact that they live in a van,' says Breanne - but she hopes to prove otherwise

‘Lots of people are looked down upon because of the fact that they live in a van,’ says Breanne – but she hopes to prove otherwise

Read more at DailyMail.co.uk