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How to find water as a vanlifer?

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We all know and have the same problem, the truth is that it never really stops being a problem – Finding water!

But fear not, there are many ways depending on where you are located, so quit being annoyed and read on!

Let’s distinguish between drinking water, and water used for flushing your toilet, washing, and cooking, and water you only use for drinking.

For some people the two will be the same, for others, it will be different. In Olivia, we can actually drink the water from the tap, but we chose not to, so we don’t have to worry too much about what we put in the main tank, and we then have 2×10 liter containers with our drinking water.

Because of this, we can also use a purifying filter to get water from almost any source, but not everybody has filters and advanced setups, so what do you do?

Gas stations:

Many gas stations have outside taps, now they might not always be for you to simply use, but if you take your time to fill up your tank and then ask kindly if you could take some water for your van, they will likely say yes.

We have often had success in doing this. We, of course, carry a few different connectors in our kit, so we can always lock on to any kind of tap we come across.

We actually have never been denied water at a gas station come to think of it, so if you have that option, then give it a go.


Always leaves room for discussion this one. We have been in the unfortunate situation twice in the last year, it is not something we are proud of.

Cemeteries should only be used as a last resort, I mean, stealing water from the dead? Then again, I am sure that if Jesus was there and I asked him for water, chances are that he would most likely say yes.

But seriously though, last resort guys, last resort – And leave the tap running for at least 30 seconds, you never know when it was last used, and still pipe water does not taste nice.


Whenever you are in a cafe, you could always bring in your water bottle, ask them for a refill from the tap.

You should never just walk in of the street, but if you are in there anyway having a coffee, then simply ask them. This won’t fill up your tank in the van, but it will keep you going for another day.

Public restrooms:

Let me show you this unique trick that we picked up from Mark and Tracy from Edge of the Grid – Check out their fb page here.

Backpack with a 5-liter bottle and a short hose inside, on the tip of the hose they put a small rubber funnel that will fit on top of almost any sink you come across.

Simply attach to the tap and fill up the bottle – Stealth – Once again, this is not something that will fill up your tank, but at least it will keep you going for another day.


You can always choose the vanilla way out and go to a campsite. At the campsite, you pay a small fee and you can use their facilities, empty your toilet and fill up your water.

Just don’t tell the other vanlifers that you caved in:)

People you meet:

Why not ask the friendly people you meet on your travels whether or not they have a tip for you?

We often end up talking to locals wherever we are, and if they seem nice enough, then ask, you’ll be surprised how friendly and understanding most people are.

But don’t be annoying, and only if you feel like you have a real connection with them, otherwise you will most likely either get an uncomfortable yes or an even more uncomfortable no.

Don’t wait until the last moment:

Fill up when you have the chance, don’t wait until your dry! This is probably the first rule of VanLife!

If you don’t know where your next water will come from, then fill up whenever you see a tap, don’t wait!

Don’t forget to leave a comment with your best water tips, help the community grow and let’s all help each other out!

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1 Comment

  • Reply
    March 22, 2020 at 9:25 am

    Incredible! This blog looks just like my old one!
    It’s on a completely different topic but it has pretty
    much the same layout and design. Outstanding choice
    of colors!

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