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  • Writer's pictureRania Hannan

Choosing Your Van, RV, or Skoolie Bed Layout

Choosing your bed setup is one of the biggest decisions when designing your home on wheels. Whether you decide to go with an option as simple as a fixed platform bed or something as complex as an electrically controlled elevator lift, your bed design will play a huge role in your overall layout.

The first place to start is deciding whether you want a fixed or a convertible bed.

Fixed Platform Bed

Fixed beds are permanently assembled, so you’re able to just plop down whenever it’s snoozetime (or ‘watch Love Island for three hours’ time). There’s no stowing away process so you can also just hop out of bed and get your day started without having to move things around in order to access other parts of the van. This style allows for tons of storage you can access from the “garage,” or you can use that space for drawers, pull-out benches, a toilet, etc.

The biggest drawback is that fixed beds take up the most space.

If you have a lot of large gear you’d like to store inside or are looking for a no-fuss setup, this is a great option.

Convertible Beds

Convertible beds are a great choice if you want a more dynamic space. Converting from bed mode to non-bed mode gives you a larger area to work, eat, lounge, and hang out with guests. If you’re the only person with this design in a group of vanlifers, everyone’s probably packing into your van to play cards and talk about which insulation material is best, or whatever it is van people talk about all day.

While both a bed and lounge area might seem like the best of both worlds, it’s important to remember that convertible bed layouts have their own downsides. Converting it in and out of bed mode on a daily basis can be a pain. Plus, you typically lose some storage space.

Convertible beds are an especially great option for those with smaller rigs. If you love the idea of a more open layout and are willing to commit to taking an extra step or two before getting into bed, a convertible design could work for you.

There are a ton of different types of convertible beds, check out some examples from our tour videos below:

Murphy Bed

Bench To Bed

Dinette To Bed

Elevator Lifted Bed

To watch a full tour of any of the rigs shown here, click below:


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