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The Product

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The Problem

People interested in van life want reliable resources for their journeys so we created a centralized platform dedicated to all things Van Life

People within the van life community do not currently have a centralized platform where they can easily connect with others, share knowledge and resources, and find reliable information throughout their van life journey.

Design Process






Due to the sheer volume of information in this space, I really wanted to understand what the biggest needs and challenges were within this community to narrow down our focus. 


We conducted a survey through Google Forms to better understand broader needs and pain points members of this community face, but also understand who is all exactly a part of this community. This survey was sent to members of the most popular Reddit threads and Facebook Groups within this community. 


50 years or older


Have an income greater than $120,000 per year


Work while on the road 


Are Married or Dating


Travel by themselves

Key Survey Takeaways
  • While 68% of travelers on the road are dating or married, they travel primarily by themselves

  • 73% of Individuals are looking to connect with others on the road and meet other van lifers

  • 63% Of Individuals are looking for recommendations from others

  • Only 11.1% of surveyed individuals use apps for van life like Sekr and iOverlander

  • 40% of Individuals rely on Facebook for communication with other travelers

User Interviews

We wanted to understand the deeper why behind van life, how people joined it, what their interests are, and more. We conducted 5 different interviews with members of the Van Life community both past and present.

Sample Questions

  • What’s your van life status? 

  • Are you on the road? Planning a trip? In between trips?

  • What is your definition of van life? 

  • What does it mean to you? Why?

  • What is your ideal van life? (full time, part time, 6 months, years) Why?

  • When did you first start wanting to explore van life?

Key Interview Takeaways

Through our own research, we realized one of the hardest parts of van life is actually doing the research. Once people were on the road, they figured things out and could always resort to familiar apps and resources like Trip Advisor, Google, and Facebook.

  1. Travel style: Some live in their van full time, others only go for shorter trips

  2. Age: Ages range from young without kids to older retired couples

  3. Working: Some work on the road, others are just traveling

  4. Income: Some can afford professional custom vans, others make do with DIY

  5. Activities: Some like museums and towns, others prefer remote camping

  1. Everyone is Searching for sense of freedom and adventure

While this community is quite complex and diverse, there were 4 core shared commonalities among this community

2. Members are Avid outdoor enthusiasts

3. Benefits of a minimalist lifestyle outweigh the hardships

4. Community and centralization of available resources are scattered


I found coming out of the initial research and interviews a bit overwhelmed with all of the information that we had gathered. The needs greatly varied among the group, and while there were commonalities, finding the "right" next steps was a bit of a challenge. There are so many social media platforms that already exist, and the scope of work to create that type of social platform didn't align to time constraints. We really had to narrow down our focus on what problems we wanted to fix and think of the entire endeavor like a much longer project and think about a roadmap of immediate needs, future states, and nice to haves. 

Next Steps

While the information was overwhelming, we worked on combing through interview, research, and survey insights to tackle the next steps and narrow things down into manageable sizes of information. 


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We had a lot of different types of feedback, and narrowing things down into the right categories helped us visualize it all

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While the information was overwhelming, we worked on combing through interview, research, and survey insights to tackle the next steps and narrow things down into manageable sizes of information. 

Wireframe Sketches

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Style Guide

 I wanted to bring color choices that embodied key words taken away from both our user interviews and surveys as well as taking in some of the colors from the main regions of the united states (Desert, Ocean, Forest, Mountains). The colors I chose to focus on were colors that went along with the photos in our mood board that embodied these locations but also had a minimalistic sense of feel as that was a common trait that people looked for in van life. The UI of the website reflects a clean modern aesthetic with ample white space and bold typography. The website stylistically features inspiring lifestyle imagery of van life and aims to allow users to easily navigate the many pages of content. Additionally, you'll find topographical patterns repeated throughout the website.

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Final Designs


Overall this was a huge opportunity to push both my technical skills with Figma and take on prioritization, dealing with a large set of information, and more. This project pushed my limits in my ways, and overall despite some headaches and frustrations I really enjoyed building these designs, doing the research, and seeing how far I could go.

  • I learned how to push through large amounts of qualitative data in a limited amount of time

  • I had to navigate some unique challenges with team member's disagreement on prioritization and varying opinions on scope of work and time to complete it

  • I personally learned a lot about prototyping and took on a majority of the work on myself to learn and grow within my technical uses of Figma

  • Taking on the UI Design, there were unique challenges that arose and ultimately learned how to scale back my work and lean more towards the users needs/wants and why I went with a minimal and clean approach

  • I'm never going to please everyone in the first designs and iterations, but I needed to hold true to the data and insights as a north star and think stick to the roadmap and those goals.

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