What To Take RV Camping?

A camping trip can last days or weeks, and if you’ve never hit the road in an RV before, you might not know where to start. Whether you’re heading out for a weekend or the rest of your life, there a few things that you need to turn your caravan into a home and save some headaches along the way.

Packing for any trip can seem extremely daunting, especially a camping trip. Whether you are new to the RV life, or you are just trying it out for a weekend, certain essentials can make the experience an incredible one.

RV Checklist:

1 – RV Camping Essentials

2 – The Galley(Bed & Bath)

3 – Tools and Repair Essentials

4 – Kitchen Essentials

5 – Clothing Essentials

6 – Extras/Miscellaneous

7 – Pet


RV Essentials and Tips

You can’t just park your RV anywhere. You have to plan this first.

Parking Spots & Leveling Blocks 

The first thing you will find, in an RV, is that you need to be able to fit into a variety of parking spots or more accurately, parking sizes. In massive parking lots or large sites, this is not so much a problem, but you are bound to have a tight squeeze or sharp corner somewhere along the way. Be sure you know how to maneuver the RV and which side the hookups are on. Backing up can be more difficult than it looks, especially if you are towing a camper trailer. Be patient and take your time, accounting for where the door will end up as well as where the power, water, and sewer lines will go, if applicable.

After that, you need to make sure the RV is level. If you’re not level, many things in your RV simply won’t work. Your fridge and your propane system can fail to operate if not level and will ultimately be damaged. Not to mention how hard it is to sleep in a bed when you keep rolling onto the floor. There’s a good chance that at some campgrounds, the ground is most likely going to be uneven. Having leveling blocks will make sure that the fridge stays running, your food doesn’t spoil, and you won’t have other unpleasant surprises.


RVing isn’t always glamorous. If you’re staying in the RV for long periods of time, you’re going to have to know how to hook up the power, water and empty the sewer. If you are renting an RV, everything you need should be included and you will be shown how everything works when you get started.

Before you leave, check all connections and make sure you have any additional attachments necessary. For example, if your RV is a 50 amp camper, it is pretty much essential to carry a 30 amp converter as many sites are not compatible with 50 amp. You do not want to arrive at a full hook-up site only to realize you cannot access it because you have the wrong connection.

For water, most hoses are standard. If you are new to RVing or plan to travel around a lot, it can be beneficial to have multiple lengths of a water hose. As well, a water regulator is often required when hooking up to a municipal water source.

A small attachment that goes on the end of the hose, it regulates water pressure going into the RV. This protects the RV plumbing from being damaged by high-pressure lines. A quick tip if you do not have a regulator is to turn down the water tap at the source. Just be sure no one accidentally turns it back up and be aware of the pressure on your taps. You also have the option of simply filling the water tank and having access to running water wherever you are on the road.

The most important and unpleasant RV essential is the sewer hose. Or the sewer system in general. Manage it properly and you will have a smooth holiday with all the benefits of your own private bathroom. Pull the wrong valve and things can get messy very quickly. So first things first, check that you have all of the sewage hoses and fittings you need before you go. You probably want to get a pair of rubber gloves you can designate for just this purpose (something you will not have a problem throwing away).

Usually, there is an elbow-shaped pipe that attaches to the RV sewage tank. The hose attaches to this elbow and then gets put inside or attached to the sewage dump (often just a pipe sized hole in the ground). Every RV has a black water tank (from the toilet) and a grey water tank (from sinks and shower). Always open the black tank valve first and then the grey water tank. Also, be sure to use enough water in your toilet so the black water tank has enough liquid in it. Do a practice run of this process before you go so you’re not running around trying to figure it out when it’s too late.

Overall, with utilities, the RV is versatile and can adapt to your purpose. If you are looking for a warm shelter for a wilderness camping trip, you may not require all the bells and whistles. If you like a few creature comforts or are heading out for a long road trip, set off with everything you need, and you will be a self-contained oasis. Everyone is different, and you will quickly find your comfort level in your RV, especially if you prepare in advance.

Pack a Mechanic 

Only kidding! Most RVs do not require you to be a mechanic to drive them, they are much like any other vehicle. Still having some mechanical knowledge and some basic tools can come in handy. This one probably seems pretty obvious, but RVs are more likely to run into emergency situations because of their size. Having an emergency kit along with jumper cables will help you be prepared just in case you find yourself stranded during the middle of your vacation. In the kit, you might also want to include a whistle, flashlight, tire pressure gauge, extension cords, and more.

The benefit of renting an RV is that they often come with roadside assistance so that you do not have to handle any mechanical problems. If you do not come equipped with a personal mechanic (or the equivalent) on the trip, seriously consider adding insurance that covers your RV so you have peace-of-mind no matter where you travel to.

Rent Your RV From Outdoorsy

Kitchen supplies 

One of the best parts of having an RV is being able to use the kitchen. From garbage bags to dishes to soap and towels to cleaning products. You’ll want versatile pots, pans, dishes, and utensils to suit your cooking needs. One-pot meals work great in an RV. The top three items that RVers forget to pack are garbage bags, condiments and sauces, and a can opener. It really is the little things that make for an easy and relaxing trip.

rv checklist

RV Kitchen

There is usually a good amount of storage space in the kitchen so here is where you want to indulge. Pack your favorite meal options as well as some additional treats. If you take time to stock up at a grocery store and prepare with the food in mind that you will eat, you will save time and money and allow the trip to run smoothly. In the end, you’ll want to be as stocked for the road as you would be at your home. After all, an RV is your home away from home.

Campfire goodies 

What’s better than starting a campfire after a long day of travel? Many times people choose to cook their meals over a campfire and it can be the center of the evening after a long day of sightseeing. You can’t start a fire without firewood. You will also likely need an ax, some type of firestarter, and matches or a lighter. If you will be preparing food, you will need to pack a grill and utensils. You’ll also want a pot and pan, skewers, flame-resistant gloves, and cooking implements. Use one of the side storage cubbies as the go-to spot for campfire supplies so you can pull out the chairs, light the fire and start cooking.

Emergency Kit 

If you’re going to spend your days out and about in the outdoors, you’ll want to have a first-aid kit. You never know when you might take a tumble or get injured. If you’re pretty far out in the forest or desert, you might be pretty far from a doctor. Being prepared will help keep you safe and help buy you time in case of an emergency.

Since you will be on the road with an RV, you will want to bulk up your emergency kit a little bit. Pack extra flashlights as well as oil, windshield wiper fluid and coolant. Be sure to have pylons and flares, simple tools, as well as a spare tire and tire jack. Even with roadside assistance, you may have to help yourself, or at least properly protect yourself until help arrives. In that regard have a set of emergency phone numbers, a backup charger for your phone, as well as a detailed plan of where you are headed left with a friend or family member. These essentials ensure you can have peace of mind while you explore new horizons.

Food and Water 

Plan your recipes and meals before you leave so you know exactly what you need to bring. Packing food is always a good idea to reduce the overall costs of your trip. You’ll want plenty of water and items that won’t perish easily. Canned foods, meats, peanut butter, crackers, cereal, and other munchies will help keep you satisfied without going bad quickly.

Water could have a category of its own. You use it to drink, wash, bathe and flush the toilet yet it is often forgotten. The great thing about RVing is you have a built-in water tank. The difficulty can be in knowing where to find water. If you are not staying at a campsite with a freshwater hook-up, you might need to fill up before you go. It is also important to pay attention to where your water is coming from, make sure it is safe to drink before filling your water tanks.

As with any vacation or road trip, the main two issues are what are you going to eat and where you are going to sleep. In an RV, you have that covered and everything else is simpler because of it. Being able to stop, whenever you want or need, to eat, rest, or use the bathroom takes a lot of the stress out of a holiday and allows you to really relax and see the sights at your own pace.

Galley(Bed & Bath) Essentials

  • Outdoor rug
  • Picnic/beach blanket
  • Backpack(s)
  •  Fitness equipment
  •  Office supplies
  • Cards, games, crosswords, puzzles
  • Walkie Talkies
  • Suntan lotion
  • Mouse Traps
  • Toiletry kit
  • Soap
  • Shampoo
  • Nail clippers
  • Hairbrush/comb
  • Toilet Paper
  • Dental Floss
  • Scissors

Tools and Repair Essentials

RV Kitchen Essentials

  •  Roasting sticks – For m
  • Lump charcoal

Clothing Essentials

  •  Hiking pants or shorts
  •  Sunglasses
  •  I


  •  Cellphone or Smartphone


  • Favorite toy from home
  • Familiar blanket or bed from home
  • Extra collar
  • Dog tags
  • Sturdy leash and harness
  • Pet first aid kit
  • Medications or supplements
  • Motion sickness remedy
  • Rawhide or chew bone
  • Portable food and water bowls
  • Waste removal bags
  • Puppy pads
  • Disinfectant spray
  • Paper towels
  • Copy of health/vaccination papers
  • Paper towels



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