If everything was shut down in the city you loved, would you buy an RV camper and go roaming the country? That’s what entrepreneur Jess Glazer and her husband, former bank territory manager Mike DeRose, did when New York City changed dramatically last year. When their favorite restaurants, theaters, and nightspots vanished, the city lost much of its sparkling allure. An entrepreneurial Zoom call hosted by an enthusiastic recreational vehicle buyer changed the course of their lives.
According to the Wall Street Journal, the couple purchased their motorhome just two weeks later and were soon ready to hit the road.
Traveling in RV luxury
The couple ditched lifeless NYC and hit the road in their $412,000 Tiffin Phaeton motorhome last October. Their new 40-foot mobile mansion offers approximately 450 square feet of comfortable living space.
It also offers luxuries they never experienced in pricey New York City apartments. Those amenities include heated floors, a central vacuum, and a washer and dryer. It also includes four built-in televisions, although Glazer claims they never watch TV in the RV.
Life on the road is cheaper than in Manhattan
In NYC, the pair were paying $5,800 a month in rent for a 1,100 square-foot two-bedroom apartment in trendy Hell’s Kitchen. By comparison, the loan on their luxurious new RV is a mere $2,000 a month. Their living expenses, including insurance, fuel, and parking fees of roughly $700 a month, are approximately half of what they were spending in New York.
What are the two things they’ve missed the most since leaving NYC? Reliable internet and authentic Thai cuisine. Glazer says they’ve tried Thai food throughout their travels but laments that none of it is ‘real.’
The freedom to explore while working
The young professionals became digital nomads, traveling down the East Coast and through Alabama before heading west to Texas and Arizona. They’re also planning a side jaunt north through Utah and Wyoming this spring. Their Jeep, which is hitched to the back of their RV, allows them to go off-roading while exploring mountain trails.
Between explorations, the couple work from their RV. DeRose has joined his wife’s expanding business-coaching service as CFO and COO. Unfortunately, the lack of reliable internet is one of their biggest challenges. They’ve managed to piece together a hodgepodge of internet services and backup devices to overcome the often spotty Wi-Fi at RV parks.
Where, oh where, can we park our RV today?
Life on the road hasn’t always been the scenic mountain streams and peaceful lakes they envisioned when starting out. They’ve had their share of national forests, beaches, and ghost towns. But right now, they’re stuck at an Arizona RV park that looks like a giant gravel parking lot for RVs. Albeit, a parking lot with amenities like a nice clubhouse and a pool.
This is due in part to the overwhelming number of RVs currently on the road and the consequent lack of available RV spaces. Many RV parks are fully booked well into the year. Another problem is their ages — they’re too young for the many RV parks that only welcome guests 55 and older.
A different vision of home
After months on the road, they still miss Central Park, nights out on the town with friends, and convenient food deliveries. Especially convenient food deliveries. Every trip for groceries, takeout, or errands now involves driving somewhere in unfamiliar surroundings.
Will they ever go ‘home’ to NYC? It’s unlikely, given what they’ve experienced in other parts of the country. For now, they’re planning an autumn return to somewhere on the East Coast. It’s there they plan to finally settle down again and start a family after their RV adventure concludes.