Meet Jinti Fell - Sells everything for van life
Jinti Fell is one big ray of inspiration and sunshine. With her partner Chris and daughter Ayana they sold their things and moved into their van full time in 2016. Simplifying everything, finding what’s truly important to them and living their dream. We had a little chat to her and I hope it inspires you to do what’s hidden in your heart.
We love how you’ve had the courage to do what you feel is right for your family at this moment in time. Has this been a struggle for you to focus on what you guys feel like you need, and not focus on what people think you should be doing? (eg. settling down, setting yourselves up as a family etc)
Thank you! I wouldn’t say it has been a ‘struggle’ – but we have certainly learnt and grown a lot from this decision. Mostly people have been very supportive and curious about our lifestyle because I think a lot of people are not satisfied with the 9-5 grind. We have had people criticise and not understand why we do what we do, but this has never been about pleasing other people. I see a lot of parents working long hours to earn money to support lifestyles that do not make them happy and that’s why I think its incredibly important to question everything in life - rather than do things based on what you feel you ‘should’ do.
What propelled you into making the move to sell everything and move into the van?
We spent the first 6 months of Ayana's life living a more regular lifestyle. Chris worked and studied whilst I stayed home with Ayana. We loved being a family so much but Chris felt like he was missing out on a lot. We decided there had to be a way we could spend more time together. We have always been travellers and the idea of van life was born from our desire to explore and be together, without have the stress of weekly rent, work and bills.
What’s the best thing about living life in the van?
Being together and living the simple life. We have less than ever before, no ‘titles’ or ‘credentials’ to our name but we are happier than we have ever been. The simplicity of this lifestyle has allowed us to explore ourselves more and has taught us about what is truly important in life.
What would be your top tip for travelling with a toddler?
Take it slowly. Include them in everything. Immerse yourselves in nature. And importantly – if possible, prioritise some time each day to be alone and recharge so that you can show up and be present with your child.
Do you get tired from living on the road? How do you keep fresh?
Yes, sometimes! We occasionally stay with friends and family or get an Airbnb when we need some time out of the van. We also make sure to eat really well and this helps us stay motivated and energised. We do have a shower set-up but I won’t lie – I do miss hot showers! We make sure to spend a bit of time tidying the van each day and taking time alone to relax and re-charge. Living in a small space can be difficult at times – but it’s very manageable. We also usually travel along the coastline and a swim in the ocean can do wonders!