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Personal Blog: Well I did It!

With the VW Kampervan taken out of the equation, It has taken me a while to get back on track to re-focus and re-evaluate where I was going to go with my plans for retirement. To say everything that was set in stone was now crushed into a million pieces was an understatement and I needed, for my sanity, to get focused and find my purpose, find my vision again.


Going back to the drawing board

I needed a new plan, a new vision. I had to go back and look at all my previous plan and change it.


I went back to my original budget and focused more on what I must have and need more so than what I wanted. I wrote down my wants and needs and researched ways I could achieve this. I also needed to be sensible and practical to suite my age and ability. Many of the options we not doable. See my other blog: You have to be practical....When planning for retirement and buying a van.


I searched the web for another local camping expo or show. Yes! there was another show at the Ekka grounds at the end of October! You could tell by the price of the tickets that the Let's Go Camping & Outdoor sale was a smaller than the Expo back in June. If nothing else, I may get inspired again and or I might find some excellent camping accessory.


The show was really small compared the expo, but on a bonus, there was less people! We parked in the Kings Car Park right next door to the grounds. Loaded with my new GoPro in hand and phone in my pocket we entered the gates hoping for something. I was hoping for something positive, to get my plans back on track, mum wanted me to find a van and start my journey to retirement again. She knew how important it was for me to do this for my mind, body and soul. Mum wanted to make sure I had my deposit available, just in case.


Horizon: The ultimate van

I have owned a 4x4 Dual cab Ute for over 15 years, so for me not to be able to have the convenience of a 4WD while I am travelling was one of the hardest things, I had to get my head around. I had to be practical. Being a baby boomer, for peace of mind, I wanted to buy a new van so hopefully I could travel a lot before any breakdowns. I wanted a new van, but I could not afford a 4X4 van at over $200,000 for the basic model.


Lots of handy accessories available outside and inside.

Like any accessory at the show, you need to know the prices to know you are getting a good price. What I love about these shows is there is so many handy items for van life all in one place! We will be going back to the expo in June next year to look at what items are on sale and to visit the tourism places for up-to-date booklets and to join a few camping clubs, even though my intention is to free camp as much as I can buy camping memberships will be good for those days when you need to use them.


We found more vans at the Kratzmann exhibit.

We liked this one... $152,000 on roads. On roads means that the government stamp duty and the first year's registration are included in the price.

Reliable motor, Mercedes-Benz Sprinter 416 CDI LWB RWD. 4 Seatbelts, shower, toilet and lots of space and ample storage. Comfortable seating front and back. Ventilation from sliding windows and a roof air vent. Aircon. Solar. Nice size awning. Room to move with GVM if I need to get it increased. Made in Australia.


Yes! I bought a van!

Well, I have paid the deposit on one! I am so excited that my plan for retirement is back on track. I ended up buying the van above, a Mercedes/Winnebago Bondi 4S. It is not 4x4 or AWD, but it was perfect for what we needed. With a toilet and shower, 4 seatbelts and enough space inside for Kahra and Nahla it was perfect. We managed to get one of the last orders for 2023 which was excellent and fitted in very nicely with my plans. They lowered the price by $3000 to make the deal. The difference in price I will use to add some optional extras, like fly screens and a 'Must' in the winter, a diesel heater. I also opted for an extended warranty from 5 to 10 years and complete RV guard to protect the van inside and out as part of my safety plan for the van. There are a few other options available, but I am waiting to see the prices as I could get them done later. I would like to keep the overall on roads cost at around $155,000.


Now the van was ordered, lets buy a 'MUST' accessory.

On the way back we bought my first environmental accessory for the van. My son uses one when he goes camping and I think they are brilliant! Such a simple no fuss, light weight item that will help so much on the road. Finding water is a 'Must' in van life. The Rain Saver Gutter is an easy and effective way to catch water when it rains. It clips onto the awning collects in the bucket then the water from the bucket can be feed straight into the water tanks or containers!

We had a very successful morning, and we were only at the show for about 2 1/2 hours! we were back at mums for lunch at 12 noon!

In a month's time I am hiring a 2015 Mercedes Sprinter for 5 days as a trial which is exciting, even more so now I will be driving the same vehicle as what I am buying. More on that in December. Now my plan is back on track I am back to feeling so excited for the future.


Let the journey begin...


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This blog is intended as an information only. Any opinions given are not meant to upset or insult anyone. Information given is correct at the time of publishing but may change at any time. Travel Adventures Australia or the author in no way accepts responsibility and/or liability for the facilities, actions and services of individual operators mentioned in this blog. In no way does Travel Adventures Australia or the Author endorse any specific venue.





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