The VW Wave

Nobody really seems to know where the
customary “VW Wave” originates from, but as
much as we might like to think, it is not exclusive
to VW’s. A cursory nod or wave amongst
same classic vehicle types is commonplace.
Maybe it’s because we own them, but the
acknowledgment shared between owners of
VW’s feels friendlier and more genuine. The
wave seems to further connect us as owners
through shared experience and therefore
respect. There are different types of wave to
consider, some of the more popular ones are:
 The Shaka (Hang loose dude VW wave) –
Originating in Hawaiian Surf culture, this one
is reserved for the super cool, laid back types
who are confident enough to pull it off!
 The “I have the same!” – Reserved as a
note of respect for owners of the same
types, a “Good choice! I feel your pain but
I get it” level of recognition.
 The “I love all VW’s” – An unashamed
acknowledgement of all VW’s no matter
what type.
 The nod – For the slightly non-committal
 The afterthought day dreamer’s wave –
The one that happens as the other vehicle
is already passing you and you realise that
they had waved.
 The overly enthusiastic wave – Coming
from non VW owners who love your VW and
the life they think you have because of it, or
those of you who have forgotten that for
whatever reason you are not driving your
VW that day!
 And finally, the “non-wave” – For those
moments when you realise mid-wave that
there has been no response from the other
vehicle and you try desperately to nullify
your embarrassment by pretending it
never happened!
Despite the differing types of wave available
to us, there seems to be a developing trend
that has classic VW owners worried, the VW
wave is dwindling. Some call it snobbery,
some think it’s the growing number of
work/play transporters (those that make it
increasingly difficult to discern whether you
are waving at a slightly bemused tradesperson
or a campervanner!) However, as daft as the
wave may sound to some, it is all part of VW
ownership. There’s nothing quite like the little
smile that spreads across your face as you share
a moment of recognition with a fellow traveller,
or watching the look of surprise as your non
VW owning passenger tries to ascertain what
just happened as you share a wave or a flash of
lights with another driver.
We already feel pretty special driving our VW’s,
no matter what age, shape or condition they
are in, so we are encouraging you all to put
aside the snobbery, leave the air-cooled verses
water-cooled and new verses old differences at
home and drive and enjoy your VW’s, waving
manically at every owner you pass!
What’s the worst that could happen? Maybe
you’ll be left hanging, maybe you’ll wave at
a person who subsequently thinks you’re
nuts, but we guarantee you’ll leave a smile on
their face.
So keep waving and we’ll be helping to keep a
tradition alive that is yet another reason these
vehicles are so special! If you see us on the
road, give us a wave, we’ll be the ones waving
manically back at you!
The opinions expressed here are the personal
opinions of the author and do not necessarily
represent the views and opinions of The
Volkswagen Type 2 Owners Club.

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About Nick Gillott

Website Manager and General Committee member of the Owners Club. Owner of Eric the Viking (converted panel van with Viking roof) undergoing complete restoration. Tinkerer to Poppy the camper van (1972 Crossover dormobile).