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About Sam Shapiro

Hi, I'm Sam. During the COVID pandemic I built my first camper van (converted a Chevy Express 2500 myself) and traveled all around the country in it for several months. I recently started a new job in Seattle, in-person, meaning I couldn't travel full-time and work remotely anymore. That's why I decided to rent out my van.

4.8
Outdoorsy memberHost since November 2020

Communication
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Memories made on trips with Sam Shapiro's RVs


Ariel F.

4October 2021

Sam's van has everything you'll need if you're going on a weekend trip that's not rainy! It definitely has character and will need some time to get used to, no matter how experienced you are.

Zonelis C.

5August 2021

The van was great. It does have its quirks so you just have to treat it right. If you drive carefully and never go above 60/65 mph this van can do wonders for you. It was an awesome trip. Sam was a great host and checked in on us while on the trip. If you’re looking to just be around the parks and be able to not worry about leaving and finding a place to sleep, this van is really great. The bed was comfy and Sam had a lot of gear to help you have a comfortable trip. All in all if you’re renting this van, drive carefully and you’ll have a great trip. Thank to Sam for letting us use his rig!

Bart B.

0August 2021

Sam Shapiro canceled the booking 4 days before departure. This is an automated posting.

Eli T.

5August 2021

Really great trip! Sam was a great host.

Claire P.

5July 2021

My friend and I rented this ambulance for our annual girls trip! Overall we had a blast and Sam was very receptive during our trip regarding any questions or concerns we had about the vehicle. It's definitely a large diesel truck, so make sure you're comfortable driving a vehicle like that before renting. During our trip we received a lot of comments from passerby's regarding the built out ambulance and how neat it was :) It was a very fun experience!

Stefan K.

5July 2021

The Dodge van was the perfect vehicle for a few days around Olympic National Park. It is a little older and with a few dents and scratches on the exterior it gave us the perfect 'Seattle vibe' to travel around the Pacific Northwest - the advertised "stealth mode" played out nicely and we were able to pull over on road shoulders or parking lots to take a quick nap. The van drives smoothly and has enough power to handle steeper inclines (something that older Westphalias sometimes struggle with by comparison). The brakes were satisfactory even though Sam makes a point to keep a safe distance from the traffic ahead of you. The gas mileage was ~ 15 mpg for us. The van has a pretty comfortable sleeping area (memory foam layer on top of a futon). There was a bit of 'upward sloping' of the mattress toward the passenger side (where the storage cabinets are) but we counteracted that with strategic parking, taking advantage of uneven campsites. The kitchen was fully stocked with pots plates, silverware (plus extra disposable items), a gas-powered camping stove, a pull-out sink (!), water for that sink and an excellent fridge which is powered through a secondary battery that gets recharged from the alternator (but doesn't drain the main battery). With that set-up we were able to fry steaks, salmon, eggs and veggies with no problem.
'Offline-electricity' from that second battery would recharge our phones and go-pro batteries smoothly (there was a capacity monitor for the secondary battery that we sporadically checked, but even with the ceiling fan and the fridge on as well as recharging a few batteries overnight, the charge level never went below 92 %). Our main objectives were scuba diving, trail hiking and beach combing in the area and we showed up with three suitcases full of gear which was no problem to stow just behind the driver's seat area (we would pull them out on campsites though for easier access to the bed).
Sam's 'bi-modal' set-up in which you convert the sleeping quarters into a work area with a seating bench/table combo is kind of neat but we did not take advantage of that as we were driving or visiting the outdoors every day.
Sam was super easy to work with (we texted back and forth a couple of times with pretty much 'instant feedback' from his end). Sam also set up a written manual/tutorial in google docs as well.
Bottom line: The van was exactly what we wanted for the area the host (Sam) was super nice and we were lucky to hit the area two days AFTER that monster heat wave!

10 Photos submitted by Stefan K.

Katelyn B.

5June 2021

Wow what an incredible trip exploring the Cascades in this bad boy! This van was exactly what we were looking for. Easy to drive, it's good and broken in so we didn't have to stress about accidentally scratching something, absolutely LOADED with amenities that really helped us be comfortable, dry, and warm. We flew to WA for this trip so brought limited gear with us, and that worked out fine because this van came stocked with the rest. We didn't get to use the portable shower which would have been a cool experience, so I guess we'll have to rent again 😉 The van had lots of storage, the refrigerator works really well, we never even came close to depleting the batteries driving every other day. The sink is so convenient and the drain pipe directs the water away from your feet which is a must. The bed is SUPER comfy, and made for many late starts because we just didn't want to leave that cozy camper home. We cooked all our meals with the camp cook set and Coleman stove that come with the van. There were rain ponchos (the good kind), lanterns, plenty of flashlights, masks, sani, benadryl, calamine lotion, bug spray, cooking oil, nice big tarp and rope to make an awning, camp chairs, pillows, blankets, sheets, even a tent, inflatable rafts for the lake, water shoes, I mean the list goes on. He also has a Discovery pass so we got into all the parks for free!!

1 Photo submitted by Katelyn B.

Evan R.

4June 2021

Great van for roughing it at nearby camp sites. Has everything you need. Owner was very helpful and responsive. Would recommend.

Blake G.

5June 2021

Great van! Drove well and had all the camping supplies we needed. Water & electrical system were both very easy to work and Sam did an excellent job walking us through both. Van was a bit disorganized when we picked it up but was an outstanding, affordable option.