Avoiding the Knock—Stealth Parking Tips and Tricks

Avoiding the Knock—Stealth Parking Tips and Tricks

Many nomads are still working, and because most jobs are in cities, there are a whole bunch of us Stealth Parking in cities. Most of us dread the “The Knock” in the middle of the night from a cop telling us to move on—but how can we avoid it? Fortunately there is a great deal you can do to avoid the issue and in todays video we meet Jarrod Tucci who had been Stealth Parking in some of the most anti-nomad cities in California and has managed to never get the Knock on the door. He shares his secret tips and trick about the best ways to stealth park in places where it’s very difficult.
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  1. Mehdi Z on January 1, 2023 at 2:46 am


  2. Rondo Cat on January 1, 2023 at 2:46 am

    I have camped 2 times now in 2 different places in a small town in norway parking totally legal and just 30 min after parking people came knocking on my door… And before I managed to get to the door to find out what they wanted they was gone.

    I am a beginner with camping and have social anxiety, I now never wants to do any parking where there is people for miles. I only did park in the city because I had trouble with internet and needed wifi, normally I find desolate spots miles from any people… Normally people in Norway do not go knocking on peoples doors for no reason like this, this is no fun… From now on it will be wilderness camping only for me.

    I can go totally stealth with my car but then I have no windows and no light other then artificial light… I did not think I would have to go stealth to avoid getting the knock when parking legally.

  3. OpenYourEyesBedding.com on January 1, 2023 at 2:47 am

    Whenever I get my car fixed at a car dealership I think, wow, it would be easy to stealth camp here if you have the same van they sell and if your car is new and very clean! Maybe to make it more legal, park just off the street near the dealership parking lot, would look like they ran out of spaces and needed to park one van on the street 🙂

  4. JT JT on January 1, 2023 at 2:48 am

    I have a huge tip as well- (which won’t apply to most ‘van life people’)- is the aspect of sobriety. Especially drinking guys. I have once lived in my suv due to mental illness and substance use, I had become homeless. Not driving anywhere when I did use/ drink (mostly drinking and smoking weed)- THIS can get you in a lot of trouble!!!!! when you are forced to socialize/ exit the vehicle (shit happens) things can go down with the law. Stay sober y’all. It’s hard when you first start off living a more nomadic lifestyle- maybe you are escaping a life being unable to pay the rent and grind all your life…..one may feel stressed still from societies standards of living (the American dream) in general and drinking during times of transition from a stressful life aren’t uncommon. The danger is, whenever we are not sober- there is room for our stealthy thinking processes to dwindle- making us more obvious to the public.

    I wrote this bc if this is a sign for anyone navigating recovery atm- whether it be it mental health/ trauma/ substance use/ or physical disability- becoming sober means becoming free.

  5. peace and love on January 1, 2023 at 2:48 am

    Can you show his van

  6. Edward Eighth on January 1, 2023 at 2:49 am

    I got a knock so hard it broke out my window😡

  7. Sandy Smith on January 1, 2023 at 2:50 am

    Thank you for some great tips.

  8. A Thompson on January 1, 2023 at 2:51 am

    The best line on this video " just don’t go inside, and use their complementary breakfast! " 😉😉👌 💓

  9. busterthe2 on January 1, 2023 at 2:52 am

    I prefer stealth camp videos where the person makes do with what they have…not buying new vans for the purpose of stealth camping.

  10. Larkinchance on January 1, 2023 at 2:54 am

    always keep a couple of hazard cones to place outside as if your van is on there on official approval.

  11. Julia Giles on January 1, 2023 at 2:56 am

    I’d bet good money your asthma was really an indoor mold allergy…

  12. Tony de la Riva on January 1, 2023 at 2:56 am

    Wow. Dude. Thank you for all the valuable information. What do you to finance your van life? What do you if you do if you have to see a doctor? Or need medicine?

  13. David Moore on January 1, 2023 at 2:57 am

    The White Van club… fact or fiction? (lol)
    I have been living in a white Dodge Ram van for over a year. Many times, I’ve seen white RVs converging overnight. I have started doing the same – frequently. I can’t explain why, but I get along better with people in white vans.

    Jarrod is right about van markings. The ‘nondescript white van’ is a little creepy. If you put skulls on your van, the authorities will assume that you are a troublemaker, and you will be treated accordingly. If you have a trade or profession, consider decorating your vehicle accordingly.

    I travel in Oregon, and I use ORMAP to download Assessor’s Tax Maps for free. They show the exact positions of the Oregon State Highway right-of-ways. There is probably this kind of website in every State. Inquire at a nearby County Assessor’s office or County Surveyor’s office for Assessor’s Tax Maps in your State. For the most part, it is legal to stay overnight in a State Highway right-of-way. In fact, that’s where there has been a convergence of white vans all Summer on the Central Oregon Coast.

    Jarrod is also right in that you are not unnoticed by the authorities. You are. They are trained professionals. They make mental notes and lists. Be as polite as possible, and they will help you. If you get the knock, use it as an opportunity to inquire where you may park overnight. If you cross paths with local authorities, strike up a conversation. Be cheerful, and don’t let them leave until you ask about overnight parking places in the area. If there is trash where you park, pick up a small bag of it. Frequently, the authorities will notice that you are good to have around. I have seen litterbugs being tossed out of highway right-of-ways. It’s a beautiful thing: They detain them for about an hour, run their criminal histories, and Dispatch loudly announces any bad parts for all to hear.

    If you drink, drink only vodka chased with water or juice. It is the hardest of any alcohol to smell on the breath. You don’t want to smell like a brewery if you get the knock. Always have breath mints and air fresheners handy.

  14. Ricardo DJR on January 1, 2023 at 2:59 am

    It might be legal to live in your car in the California area but here on the East Coast down near Florida and some States nearby you can only rest in your vehicle up to 6 hours I believe and then you have to move your vehicle unless you are in a area a WMA wildlife Management area or you’re on a water management area which then those two type of water and wildlife areas are no bathrooms no clean water and nothing like that you’re totally going to be out camping being close to the wildlife and off-road…
    There are some areas like Walmart or cracker barrel let you park but you can only do it at night time at cracker barrel and you have to leave in the morning I think the only time you’re allowed to stay there is if you are a customer every day for lunch and breakfast…

    Also you definitely want to make sure that you are not in city limits here because they actually have an ordinance that gives you a ticket they are very clearly into putting a spotlight on the vehicle and most of the areas like lakefronts near me they usually don’t have much cars and if you are the only car within a good block they’re going to definitely check you out run your plate

  15. Busta Joy on January 1, 2023 at 3:00 am

    How about van life after covid-19 no such thing as a 24-hour business. If you don’t have solar and you have to idle in the summertime getting oil changes on time are vital and all the mechanics are extremely busy. There are 24 7 gyms but very few. How about a new video about covid and the way the world operates after 2020

  16. J Lorde on January 1, 2023 at 3:00 am

    If they do knock is not answering a crime?

  17. K Chara on January 1, 2023 at 3:00 am

    I kept wondering why all the white vans were featured on websites. I get it now….

  18. RosieWilliamOlivia on January 1, 2023 at 3:01 am

    Residential area with air b & b places often have random cars in front of them, houses under construction are often safe.

  19. Marc Clement on January 1, 2023 at 3:01 am

    Very interesting. I have had asthma my whole life too. Once I chilled out and dropped the stress I use my inhaler now maybe twice a month.

  20. Mystery and Meaning on January 1, 2023 at 3:04 am

    Know that theres always a person that knows your in that van sleeping. No matter where i use park someone in morning at times let me know they knew i was in there at times. People are very observant and noisy.

  21. butch maritato on January 1, 2023 at 3:06 am

    Mr. Wells I have a 34 ft Pace Arrow motorhome and would like to live and travel on the cheap. I am 79 years old and alone, would you recomend this type of vehicle for a nomad ? thank you Butch

  22. chris nunley on January 1, 2023 at 3:10 am

    Hi Bob! I’m about to begin my mobile journey, but my vehicle is black. I’ve noticed a lot of people have white vehicles… are they less conspicuous than black vehicles? Any help/tips from you or others is greatly appreciated. Thanks!

  23. Christy Wilson on January 1, 2023 at 3:12 am

    I’m re-watching this video! So much great information! Jarrod continues to bring great build ideas and tiny living lifestyle advice to his followers! Note his advice on being lawful and courteous in the cities you’re overnight parking in!!! So many channels are encouraging people to park in expensive, beach property neighborhoods, and that’s ridiculous!

  24. Holiday Tinn on January 1, 2023 at 3:13 am

    Great video! This video helped me a lot! I use my van to go to pro baseball games and avoid the high costs of a hotel room by sleeping in my van. My friends think that I am nuts. I made two videos, I’m leaving the links: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lbTPu7V8J1A. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=X0FhTSaGAmo&t=840s

  25. Denise Severa on January 1, 2023 at 3:13 am

    So… I need to get a magnetic car sign? Im just trying to cover all my bases

  26. Raindog's House of Oddities on January 1, 2023 at 3:14 am

    I live in the South. There’s a WalMart on every corner. I’ve never known them to turn away travelers sleeping in their parking lots. They allow commercial trucks as well as RVs to park there at night without hassling them.

  27. SunVenusMoon on January 1, 2023 at 3:18 am

    This lifestyle is probably GREAT material 😀😅

  28. Christine Strider on January 1, 2023 at 3:20 am

    I will be ‘stealthing’ shortly!! 😊

  29. Miss Adventures on January 1, 2023 at 3:20 am

    Snow removal and trash pickup are also signs to pay attention to.

  30. lynn craig on January 1, 2023 at 3:22 am

    That guy is very smart and has a lot of common sense.

  31. Jay Stew on January 1, 2023 at 3:23 am

    The video quality is amazing. What camera did you use to shoot this?

  32. Miss Adventures on January 1, 2023 at 3:23 am

    I have advanced degrees and have a good job. I have experienced some very traumatic events and injured some major dept. Housing costs have increased stratosphericly. This has led to me moving into my Jeep. I prepped for 7 months and have now been live in it for a week. I am in Utah, and am figuring it out each day.

  33. Lisa Chennault on January 1, 2023 at 3:23 am

    I love that he’s saying just be respectful to law enforcement! Amen 🙏🏼

  34. Larkinchance on January 1, 2023 at 3:25 am

    If you can maintain your job or ability to earn a modest income and your eviction is in the near future, stop paying rent on your apartment. A down payment on a strip down, inconspicuous van is probably no more than 2 or 3 months rent. You do not need a custom built camper. Any handy carpenter can build a bunk.
    Forego the desire to have a jazzy vehicle.. not even a modest racing stripe

  35. Rondo Cat on January 1, 2023 at 3:25 am

    White cars rust a lot faster…

  36. PKNBIT on January 1, 2023 at 3:26 am

    What about parking at Walmart or Lowes?

  37. Petros Bechet on January 1, 2023 at 3:28 am

    Some casino parking lots are free and security will rarely bother you. Also, most Lowes Hardware parking lots are pretty much open to boon-dockers, especially whenever third-party merchandisers are parked there overnight as well.

  38. Gypsy Belle on January 1, 2023 at 3:33 am

    Bob and Jarrod together?? I don’t know about y’all, but I am taking notes! These two gentlemen are a Huge Wealth of knowledge in the nomad world. Van Life Jedis.

  39. Shawn Mann on January 1, 2023 at 3:34 am

    24 hour laundromats are often good for a night. I try to patronize them when I do though.

  40. Larkinchance on January 1, 2023 at 3:35 am

    You are right about a cheap, white, inconspicuous van.. In LA, not a problem but venturing to the wetter areas, initial "Rust Proofing" a must!.. Cheap white vans are real beers cans and rust out 4 or 5 years.

  41. Harry knutts on January 1, 2023 at 3:36 am

    trouble is u need a address for so many things and being homeless makes u a outlaw

  42. elfan on January 1, 2023 at 3:37 am

    I don’t know what it’s like in the States but say if you are sleepy while driving, where are come from they always say pull over and get some sleep! So can’t you just say that? Surely that can’t be illegal anywhere!

  43. Trace Rocks on January 1, 2023 at 3:37 am

    I check maps for unincorporated areas.
    They are free of any city ordinances and city cops.

    County Sheriffs are less numerous and usually easier to get along with.

  44. Charla Ville on January 1, 2023 at 3:37 am

    What happens if someone is sleeping in their van but NOBODY can see in and you get ‘that dreaded knock’ on the door? If they can’t see in, you surely would be under no obligation to own up to being in there trying to sleep would you? Wouldn’t it be better just to be as quiet as a mouse and pretend the van is empty rather than to open your door and risk being fined? You can also have a fake uniform polo shirt in your wardrobe to match each of your fake signs LOL. You can also put a car rental sticker on the van and park outside the rental yards after hours as people often drop off their vans after office hours & put the keys for the rental company in a key return hatch. You just whack on a fake magnetic sticker for AVIS or whatever and when security or the police go past, they’ll just think it’s one of the company’s fleet vans that’s been dropped off after hours. Then get out of there before the office staff get to work. You can also get a 24/7 emergency plumber sign and you can stealth camp on any suburban street with that. How would anyone know you’re not inside one of those houses fixing a burst hot water system or something?

  45. RESTLESS ERRANT on January 1, 2023 at 3:38 am

    Hey Bob! Where did you get that jacket? Thanks for the videos!

  46. AnnSue Matthews on January 1, 2023 at 3:38 am

    Signage is an absolutely great idea to being stealth. I’m not doing the van life. But what a great plan!!👍🏽

  47. roaming gnome on January 1, 2023 at 3:39 am

    The signage idea is brilliant – love it! Most of those vans tend to have phone numbers or some other contact info. on them though, so I’m not really sure how you’d get around that. You couldn’t put a fake number because people could check. If you put a web address, you’d prob. have to create a fake website so it looks legit. Then again, most people may not even think about such details. I guess you could also get a vehicle wrap and advertise for someone while also getting paid. Seems like a win-win situation.

  48. Katie Beals on January 1, 2023 at 3:42 am

    As a Registered nurse in a suburb of Chicago I worked an entire summer 11pm-7am and then drove to the forest preserve parking lot and lived in my old Dodge Caravan and had no air conditioning at all.
    I used to hack up into the parking space under the shade if a tree and gave breakfast then would sleep with the rear hatch wide open.
    The police patrolling the place got to know me and watched out for me while I slept keeping an eye on my van during their frequent patrols.
    I never once had a problem.
    Place closed at 7 pm so after going to take shower etc I would drive back to work park in the parking lot, on more than one occasion I overslept and the security guard would come tap on my window and ask if I knew what time it was!🤣🤣🤣
    On ocassions he would bring me out a cup of coffee! I really enjoyed my summer.

  49. Tara Almond on January 1, 2023 at 3:44 am

    His asthma is probably better because he’s not living in a house or apartment. Indoor air/forced air heating is some of the worst air you can breathe.

  50. Michael Sanches on January 1, 2023 at 3:45 am

    I have had no problems in Southern Californa.
    Apartment complexes is where I always stay. They have a lot of big ones which have many parking spaces.
    I never get out of my van when I park. I get ready in a store parking lot, drive to an apartment complex, lay down and sleep, get up in the morning and drive away.

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