My my, is it time for the annual Buslifers wrap-up already? We say it every year, but this year has surely gone faster than the last (and much, MUCH faster than 2020). Now, those pandemic days seem far behind us as we can finally say that the world is back to normal for the first time in almost three years. Well, kind of. Russia has picked another fight with Ukraine, Iran has been hanging citizens for wanting basic human rights, and Taylor Swift commandeered all top 10 songs on the Hot 100 charts at once. Yet, just as we think the world might be falling apart, the global community comes together to show support, encourage, protest, and protect — and it is paying off. 

The world is a much better place when we come together for a common interest, and that is exactly why we have created this brilliant Buslifers community. As we celebrate our fifth anniversary this year, we have seen over 10,000 new people join us on Instagram, we now have over 60 Buslifers in our ambassadors’ program, and there are over 20,000 of you using the resources on our website. We have been so humbled to see many more Buslifers becoming a part of our community in 2022 and we can’t wait for you to see what we have in store for 2023 (spoiler: it’s going to be a big one).

Before we rush into the new year, let’s take a moment to reflect on this year’s journey and all of its highlights. After all, if there’s one thing we’ve learned this year, is that Buslife is all about the journey, not the destinations, right?

But first! 

We are so proud to announce that our first annual calendar is now available for purchase! Each month is paired with a stunning photo taken by our ambassadors from around the globe to inspire your own travel plans year-round. It is the perfect small gift for anyone with a passion for VW Buses. Or buy it as a gift to yourself so that you have somewhere to record future travels and VW Bus events.

How the Buslifers Year Began

To kick off 2022, we asked Buslifers ambassadors Mygrations NL to give us some inspiring tips on how to immerse in new cultures on road trips planned for the year ahead. Having spent the year on the Silk Road in their VW T2 crossing culturally contrasting countries in Europe, the Middle East, and Asia, they did not disappoint. We hope it gave you as much momentum to explore further, wider, and with more curiosity than ever before in 2022. Most of all though, we hope it allowed you to prove that when you have a VW Bus and a vision, the world is your oyster.

Delving into the Buslife journey

Of course, our inspirational pep talks didn’t stop there. We believe the phrase ‘life is what you make it’ is even truer for us Buslifers who have been blessed with more possibilities and greater opportunities in life thanks to our homes on wheels. That’s why we really wanted to show you how to delve deeper into the Buslife journey and make it even more rewarding this year. To do this, we shared our best advice for doing so in our article ‘How to Really Enjoy the Buslife Journey’. If you missed it, we discussed the power of allowing yourself to be more spontaneous and curious, and to rest more frequently.

Our overriding message, however, was about allowing yourself the space to be more present during your travels in 2022 in order to enjoy them to the fullest. Hopefully, this advice will go a long way in helping your find community on the road, but in case you wanted more advice on the topic, we made a guide for that too!

Inspiring Presence on the Road

To further inspire a sense of presence on the road, we also wrote about the power of travel journaling. Not only does it give you a physical and tangible place for you to store your memories without the risk of them being accidentally deleted, but it also gives you a time capsule to reflect on your experiences and personal growth as an adventurer. We hope the article inspired some of you to take up the practice and we would love to hear from you if it did!

Finally, we learned about the extraordinary journey that life can take us on if we are willing to travel off the beaten path. Our article about how to avoid tourist traps and find hidden gems gave you all the top tips and tricks for finding and embarking on alternative Buslife experiences. We hope it encouraged you to be more daring and adventurous and create a 2022 full of pleasant surprises. The aim was to help you discover new places, try new things, make new friends, and make life a little more unexpected this year. Did it work?

Photo by Bich Tran from Pexels

Sharing our practical knowledge

Ok ok, enough of the drippy mush about enriching your Buslife journeys. The fact is, they wouldn’t even be possible without some knowledge and insight into how to build and maintain your VW Bus. After all, how can our tips about how to travel off the beaten path help when you’ve broken down and don’t know how to jumpstart your engine? To give you the best of both worlds, we have been developing our library of practical resources in 2022 as well. 

Now, not only can you rely on Buslifers to bring you closer to the VW Bus community, but you can also rely on us for all of your practical VW Bus matters. We are now creating useful and easy-to-follow step-by-step guides like ‘How to Jumpstart your VW Bus’, ‘How to Install a Skylight in your VW Bus’, and ‘How to Maximize Space in your VW Bus’. We also help you choose the best gear to buy for your VW Bus including fridges, carbon monoxide detectors, and essential tools. With these practical guides now in your toolbelt, we are excited to see how your builds and modifications develop! 

To give you a bit of inspiration on how you could modify your old VW Buses to make them better suited to you, we even took a virtual trip to the Philippines in April to meet Al Aguila. In our interview with this formidable resto-modder, we learned just how limitless the possibilities are when restoring and modifying your VW Bus. 

Continuing the fight against climate change

As we reach the end of 2022, it is becoming more likely that this isn’t the year we resolve the climate crisis, despite world leaders flying to a remote castle in Germany for the G7 Summit on their private jets to discuss it. As a result, the summer came in really hot this year as temperatures in Europe soared to unprecedented highs causing some of the biggest droughts and wildfires the continent has ever seen. Meanwhile, Pakistan suffered from the deadliest flood in history.

The devastating environmental impacts climate change has had on our beautiful planet this year have made us at Buslifers more determined than ever to encourage our community to curb our individual impacts too. That’s why we highlighted some of the best ways of becoming more environmentally friendly as a Buslifer. Through our guide for installing solar panels on a VW Bus, we hoped to encourage more VW Bus owners to produce renewable energy rather than relying on mains power or gas. We also highlighted the benefits of embracing minimalism by downsizing and decluttering our VW Buses.

Most promisingly, we opened an exciting new discussion on how we as Buslifers can reduce our environmental impact on a larger scale by converting our VW Buses to electric. This was in the wake of Volkswagon unveiling the long-awaited and much-anticipated I.D. Buzz, the first electric zero-emission VW, in March of this year. It has made huge waves, not just in the VW community, but in the world of automotive development. Now, we don’t know about you, but we are already waiting at the edge of our seats for the VW I.D. Buzz California camper to debut in a couple of years’ time.

Volkswagen Electric ID. Buzz Side View

What you can expect from Buslifers in 2023

Now that we have reviewed this year’s highlights, it’s time to decorate the tree, stuff the turkey, and wrap Buslifers up for 2022. We really hope this year’s content has helped to make your Buslife smoother, more relaxed, and more enjoyable! More than anything, however, we hope you’ve enjoyed being a part of our incredible Buslifers community. As we said before, people who come together for a common cause can achieve great things, and this is just the beginning for us Buslifers. 

In 2023, we have big plans to connect our community even more. Expect to see bigger community initiatives and more Buslifers resources including the world’s first global guide for VW Bus events! We will also be announcing dates for our highly anticipated VW Bus tournament for all our followers on Instagram. More on this in the first months!

To make sure you don’t miss out on any of the exciting happenings within the Buslifers community in 2023, be sure to join us on Instagram and Facebook for updates and write them down in your very own Buslifers calendar. While you’re there, tell us what you would like to see from Buslifers in 2023. After all, it is YOU we are here for.

We wish you a wonderful holiday season.

Yours faithfully,
Buslifers

Emily Draper
Author: Emily Draper

Having visited over 70 countries across all seven continents, it's safe to say Emily has the voice of a true traveler. She has lived with the Hare Krishnas in Chile, an Amazonian tribe in Peru, and a retiree named Jerry in a Wisconsin trailer park. Now, Emily has embarked on the coolest adventure yet: across Europe in her self-converted bus.

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