Photo Credit: Empowell

RV Computer Desks | Working on the Road

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Can I just start with a prelude to this post about RV computer desks… I’m hoping that it goes without saying that this post is only going to apply to those people who will be either wanting or needing to use their computers from their RVs, and are therefore looking for an appropriate computer desk.

There is an ever-growing number of people (us included!) who have made the leap into living in their RV full-time, but before they’re retired. So they still need to make an income somehow. Here in Australia, there are lots of people who will travel until the money runs out, and then get casual/short-term jobs as a nurse, carpenter, bartender, administrator, camp host or a station hand out on one of the remote cattle stations in the outback… or any one of a gazillion other jobs that can be found. Work for a couple of months, refill the coffers and then head off again.

But then there are others that would rather not be tied to one location, even if it is only for a few months, and work online at their computer. This may be someone who is able to work remotely for their current company, bloggers, internet marketers, youtubers (I don’t think that’s a real word, but you know, it’s the people who make videos and post them on youtube), developers, designers and more. The point is, they need somewhere to work on their computers.

A shocking number of these people, will sit at their laptop for a full working day (and longer!) hunched over a too-small screen. Most likely you’ll find them at their dinette, plonked in a camp chair or perched at the picnic table outside.

Ergonomics? Who has the time, budget or space for a decent size screen at eye level, comfortable chair with adequate back support and an ergonomic keyboard and mouse?

Okay, if a stiff neck, numb backside, tired eyes or aching wrist is starting to bother you, you may need to prioritise getting a suitable work station set up for yourself.

RV Computer Desk | Permanent

If you have a rig big enough, then you’ll probably want a dedicated work space that you can leave set up all the time. You may have already seen the awesome renovation that Technomadia did on their vintage bus and the made-to-fit-them-exactly office space. If you haven’t seen it, here’s a link to the photos and video of their RV office.

Personally, if I had a rig big enough to dedicate a whole area to desk space, I would measure the space and have something custom made. I’m not a fan of fussy furniture with shelves and nooks and crannies up the wazoo, so I’d love a piece of reclaimed timber as the desk top and a shelf, and custom made drawers/cupboard.

Technomadia also gathered a series of different workspaces from their readers, you can have a look at those workstation set-ups here.

RV Computer Desk | Non-Permanent

I suspect it will be more likely that you need to share your computer desk space with other competing priorities like eating dinner, or it needs to be put away for travel or when the slides are in. With that in mind, the following suggestions might be more appropriate solutions…

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Origami Foldable Desk

How about this, it’s a foldable desk which can be stored behind a door, under a bed or in a closet. Ummm, but you might be hard pushed to find spaces like that in an RV… but it would definitely fit in a storage bay or maybe tucked up beside the bed or dinette while travelling. It’s height adjustable so you can use it as a sit-down or stand-up desk or work space. You can buy this awesome Origami Foldable Standup (or Sit Down) Desk here.

Tangkula Convertible Desk

This tucks away into a nice wall unit when not in use. And can hide all your messy paper work! You can buy this Convertible / Fold-out Desk here.

Convertible Credenza

This credenza might be too large for most, but it’s a great way of making the most of storage and having a decent size and dedicated desk to work at. Check out this awesome Secretary Desk with Keyboard Tray that converts from a credenza.

Portable Desk

Now here’s a useful work space. I can see me using this desk for working yes, but also for watching Netflix while reclining on the couch. If you have a look at this portable laptop desk on Amazon you’ll see that it’s quite adjustable, it’s light, and it does compact down so that it can be put away when you’re not using it.

RV Computer Desk |No Space

If you don’t have room to create a dedicated work space, here are a couple of ideas that will hopefully help to make your work space more comfortable.

Standing Desk

I had one of these when I worked in an office (not this brand though, a much heavier one), and I loved it. It gave me the option of sitting or standing, and being able to switch between the two is what made things so much more comfortable for me. This sit/stand desk needs to be put on top of a table or desk that you already have.

Laptop Stand

If you’ve only go your laptop to work from, just being able to get the screen up to eye level is a great start in getting rid of a sore neck. This Roost laptop stand is a popular one especially among the digital nomads that I follow online. It’s so small and light, but does enough to get the laptop up to eye level.

And if you do this, then you’ll need to get a seperate keyboard (and mouse, if you don’t already have one).

So those are just a couple of ideas that will hopefully help those of you who are working on the road and need some kind of RV computer desk set-up.

Are you working on the road, and what does your set-up look like?

Since we’ve stopped in Dubbo (NSW Australia) while we save up for a caravan, I’m sat in the kitchen at our plastic camp table on a dining chair. You do what ya gotta do, right! 🙂

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  1. My husband just bought that laptop stand and likes it so much he was able to return his external monitor to the store!

  2. That’s gonna be a biggie for us as well. Right now, we’re not living in our Airstream, but eventually we’ll need to figure out the workspace situation.

    1. Hi Sarah, Yeah, when you spend so much time at your computer, you’ve gotta find a reasonably good solution. When we do finally get our caravan/travel trailer I think I’m going to be limited to siting at the dinette with the laptop on a stand and a wireless keyboard and mouse. (But it’s a small price to pay, cos I can’t wait to get back out on the road!) 🙂

  3. I’m trying to figure this out too. Currently using our bedroom with the tv as a monitor and the keyboard on the dresser. I use it standing. Doesn’t work the greatest, but like you say, you do what you’ve got to do.

    1. Oh yeah, that doesn’t sound the greatest. Good luck finding a permanent, and comfortable(!) solution. 🙂

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