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Camry, how to sleep? - arhly - 09-09-2019

The car I have is a 2015 Camry sedan. It is fine for daily use. Over the last 2 1/2 years its average mpg is just above 30. I want to camp in it occasionally in preparation for an extended road trip. The major issue yet to be solved is finding a way to sleep in the car.

The rear seats do fold down. Folding the larger passenger side creates an opening into the trunk of about 12 1/2 inches high by about 29 inches wide. The problem is that when the back seat is folded over, its height is almost half as high as the top of the pass-through. Leaving the back seat in normal position with moving the front seats forward and filling the back footwell, creates a diagonal of about 56 or 58 inches. The center console notches into that.

I hesitate to just remove the entire back seat as I frequently carry passengers.

Can anyone think of a solution? Either renting a different vehicle or using motels is beyond my budget for the long road trip I dream of.

Thanks for your help.


RE: Camry, how to sleep? - Kaylee - 09-09-2019

How tall are you?
Have you tried sleeping on your side, partially curled up, along the back passenger seats? If you're tall, that probably won't work. It barely worked for me (in a compact stationwagon) and I'm about 5'4".

Good luck!
Car dwelling is possible, just "more challenging".


RE: Camry, how to sleep? - arhly - 09-09-2019

I am primarily a side sleeper, and about 5' 9". I don"t sleep too tightly curled. Thanks for yout suggestion.


RE: Camry, how to sleep? - PODebbie - 09-09-2019

I slept in my Honda Civic and Ford Fusion. On both cars, when the back seat was lowered, there was very little room to the trunk thru-pass. I would build the trunk up with my canned goods, etc. then use a lounge chair cushion that I custom fit to place on top. I then used a thin hiking Thermarest on the whole bed. So, now I had an even bed. If I didn't position myself correctly, it was difficult to sleep on my side, as the metal on top was low. But it worked for sleeping on my tummy and on my back. Sometimes, I would push my front seat up, and build up the area on the floor of the back seat. Then I could sleep on my side.


RE: Camry, how to sleep? - Joe Dirt - 09-09-2019

Maybe, you could fully recline the front passenger seat and put a small mattress on it............... Filling the foot well with something and using extra clothing and whatnot to fill in gaps under the mattress might possibly make for a relatively long, and flat bed


RE: Camry, how to sleep? - ckelly78z - 09-10-2019

A sturdy tent will solve most of your problems while leaving the car intact. If you fold down the rear seat, and sleep in a stretched out psoition, where will all of your luggage/supplies be stored...they must be moved every day for comfort.


RE: Camry, how to sleep? - Kaylee - 09-11-2019

(09-09-2019, 08:17 PM)arhly Wrote:  I am primarily a side sleeper, and about 5' 9". I don"t sleep too tightly curled. Thanks for yout suggestion.

This is pretty much the most awesome time of the year to experiment at your homebase Smile
Take a few naps, trying different setups, and progress to some full nights at home then at nearby legal urban boondocking places (e.g. Walmart & the Usual Suspects).

For well over a decade I would sleep in my car during long trips (i.e. just one nighters), and did try several ways.
The most sustainable for me was curling up in the backrow. I would occasionally stretch my legs into the front compartment.
Last summer & fall, when I did my prolonged Feasibility Study, I slept that way for weeks at a time.
I was doing that until late November.

One of those inexpensive (~~7$) closed cell (blue) camping mats helped a lot.
A good pillow also makes a huge difference.
As a privacy shield, I used a standard fitted bedsheet "hooked" onto the backs of the front seats & the rear seats, and propped a daypack between the front seats to block that "hole". That was much simpler than curtains. Smile

Can you tell us more about your proposed trip?
Be as general to specific as you feel comfortable with.
There's several experienced car dwellers here, and we Can Help. Smile
Suanne's blog was the single most helpful resource I found when I was getting ready:
http://suanneonline.blogspot.com
Scroll down to the list of "How-To Articles" on the right, for the real gems. Smile


RE: Camry, how to sleep? - Kaylee - 09-11-2019

Forgot to mention:

Pre-dwelling travelling, I always just slept in my clothes.
After I started living in my car, I quickly realized how much better I slept if I changed into pajamas. Smile
I normally wear t-shirts, so I would only change from trousers to PJ bottoms.

When you do sleep in your day trousers, remove most items from your pockets, and designate a place to store those items (for easy reloading in the morning).
In urban settings, I was less likely to change into PJs, so would do that.
Long ago, I standardized on cargo pants, but keep the cargo pocket items in baggies, so removal is easy.

As always, experiment, and go with whatever works best for you. Smile


RE: Camry, how to sleep? - skyl4rk - 09-11-2019

Can you remove the passenger side rear seat back?


RE: Camry, how to sleep? - arhly - 09-11-2019

Thanks all for the good suggestions. Last night, I slept across my full bed. That's about the same length as a diagonal across the back seat area to a pushed forward front seat. That worked ok, which was encouraging. Woke once with my feet hanging off. Next is to actually put totes and pillows in the back footwell. Maybe tomorrow night. The center console doesn't move forward with the front seats, so the sleeping area will be "C" shaped. If that doesn't work, I may try raising the bed up to the console level by stuffing stuff under it. That might put it too close to the roof.

Your suggestions are encouraging me to actually Try a few things.

My original goal was to mosey from the central U.S. to the west coast, if I could find a way to do that cheaply. If I can't find a way, I will just make a fast trip. My goal is to travel next summer, so there is time to find a way.