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It’s been 24 hours since our Class B RV, “Das Bus” pulled out of our driveway for the final time, with her new owners behind the wheel.
If you’ve ever watched one of your RVs go, you know the emotional whirlwind it brings. It is like we’ve come to the end of another life chapter, and now it’s time to file away all our adventures and road trips of the past 5 years in the “Das Bus” folder. How strange it seems.
But while we’re nostalgically missing our sweet little Das Bus, we’re also beside ourselves with anticipatory excitement that in less than a week, we’ll pick up our one-of-a-kind yellow Travato 59G!
The Travato is an RV of our dreams, perfect for us and our active lifestyle, and we can hardly contain our eagerness to hit the road to Forest City, Iowa to meet him (yes, we’ve decided this RV is a “him”).
It’s funny, 6 months ago we had no clue we’d be replacing Das Bus. But then this wonderful series of fortunate events occurred, and suddenly, here we are.
The Back Story: How We Came To Purchase a Yellow Travato
On an ordinary day last December, a mere 6 months ago, I sat down at my computer as I always do first thing in the morning, coffee cup beside me, and opened my email.
Me: Oh how nice!
James (from the other room): Hmmm?
Me: Winnebago sent an email! The subject reads, “We love The Fit RV!”
Winnebago had noticed us, and wanted to let us know they appreciated our focus on leading a more healthful and active RV lifestyle. I was pleasantly surprised they took the time to reach out and say so, but now that James and I have gotten to know the “Winnebagans,” (our pet name for our WGO friends) it makes perfect sense. When they initially reached out, Winnebago was seeking out ways to do just what we were already attempting to do…that is, promote a healthy RV lifestyle.
That first email was the very start of our relationship with Winnebago. At the time, I don’t think they or we ever expected it to go as far as it did. But it’s funny how circumstances sometimes unfold.
Just a month later, a few Winnebago representatives came to Salt Lake City, our hometown. There’s a huge trade show in Salt Lake, called the Outdoor Retailer Show. The entire show is geared around products for outdoor enthusiasts. James and I attend the show as part of the press corp, and we use it as a way to seek out interesting RV products to highlight on our website. We were so impressed Winnebago showed up. No other RV manufacturer did, and I think that speaks volumes to their dedication to promoting healthy and active RVing. It was the first time we met the Winnebagans in person, and after filming a thorough video review of the Travato 59g during their visit, James and I couldn’t get that RV out of our heads. The Travato is an incredibly unique addition to the US Class B market. And James and I kept thinking if we could just raise the bed in the back, there’d be tons of space for a bike garage under the bed…something no other US manufacturer is offering! I think Winnebago somehow knew dangling the Travato in front of us during the show had affected us, because in March, they suggested we swing by Forest City and take a factory tour.
As we drove between buildings on our factory tour, there was a long line of ProMasters parked outside. Some red, some grey, and then smack dab in the middle of the sea of red and grey stood a solo bright yellow van. James noticed it first.
James: Oh how cute! Look at that yellow one! Why do you have a yellow one?!
We learned the yellow ProMaster was an experimental purchase, to check the color and see if it had any place in the future Winnebago line-up. But as it was, they had no plans for it. The next day over dinner, the topic of the yellow van came up again. As it goes when you get a bunch of RV nerds around a table, imbibing in some fine wine and merriment, an idea had been hatched. Would we be interested in buying the yellow ProMaster if Winnebago did some customization to accommodate inside bike storage (raising the bed!!!) as well as a few other experimental upgrades?
James and I are never quick decision-makers. We like to think, overthink, make lists, talk until we’re hoarse, and lose lots of sleep over big decisions, ideally procrastinating our way out of having to decide anything at all. But not this time. When Winnebago, out of the blue that evening, suggested they build us a “concept” Travato out of that screaming yellow van, suddenly everything seemed to fall in place. James and I looked at each other across the table. No pro/con lists necessary. We both instantly said, YES! Let’s do it.
So, now here we are. Just a few days away and both of us feverishly giddy for this new adventure to begin. I’m also excited to begin carrying over our Fit RV message over on Winnebago’s GoLife blog, so expect to see tips and healthy RVing inspiration articles from us coming soon. And if you’re one of the lucky ones attending the Grand National Rally, we’ll be hard to miss! Come on over and say hi, we’ll be excited to show off our new bright yellow baby.
Bring on this new chapter, “The Yellow Travato Years!” I’m so, so ready.
First time I’m seeing this. What a WONDERFUL story!
Hi, I really like that Winnebago configured Lance to accommodate bike storage. Do you know if they will do this for other customers (for a price, obviously)? Or was Lance a one off because of the exposure they got from your website and YouTube channel?
We’ve asked this of Winnebago for other readers who were interested in a setup like Lance. What they told us is that you’d have to buy a regular Travato. Once you take possession of it, you can schedule with Winnebago’s custom shop to have the bed area completely reconfigured with the raised bed and cabinetry config we have in Lance. I know, a total pain. Which is why no one’s bothered to do it. Do let us know if you do!!!