If you do a broad search for RV accessories online, you’ll be inundated with results. Head to a local Camping World, and you’ll be surrounded by option after option for gear for your trailer.
All those options are nice when you know what you want. However, they don’t tell you much about how they’ll change your camping experience. While some seem nice to have, you might not actually use them while you’re on the road. While others seem frivolous or like dreaded extra weight, they might actually be a relief to have at the campsite.
While on each camping trip, we’ve taken note of the things we wished we had for our trip. Some of these ideas came after conversations with local campers. Others came out of sheer need. These are the 5 things we continue to be glad we bought, and a few extras on our current shopping list.
1. An Outdoor Mat
No matter what you do, the inside of your trailer will get filled with dirt and dust. Whether you’re staying at a beach, surrounded by sand, or staying in the mountains, there won’t be a shortage of dirt coming inside your trailer. Get used to that.
However, you can minimize just how much dirt comes inside by having a good outdoor mat ready to layout as you hook up.
Outdoor rugs built specifically for RVs are lightweight and allow sand to sink through easily, avoiding how much gets inside. I avoided them at first because we had plenty of outdoor throw blankets we could use for the kids to lay around the campsite when needed. Finally, after a trip to San Diego where we stayed on the beach, we took the plunge on getting an outdoor rug and haven’t looked back since. Yes, it’s a little bulky, but it’s totally worth having once you’re there.
Before you pick the one for your campsite, consider the size of your RV, the size of the space where you’d like to put your outdoor mat, and the color scheme (because you’ll be glad when it fits in as an extension of your RV rather than clashing with your campsite).
2. Command Strips for Hanging and Organizing Your RV
I cringe anytime I think about adding something to the walls of our RV only because of how fragile they are. Hanging up pictures or accessories with screws just isn’t a great idea, in my opinion. The risks of having things fall while in transit or getting torn down by active kiddos stuck inside on a rainy day isn’t worth the added stress.
Enter: Command Hooks
While command hooks aren’t necessarily an RV accessory, they are nice to have for a few reasons:
- To hang our keys on so they don’t risk getting swiped by kiddos
- To hang towels on in the bathroom
- To hang up brooms (see above as to why this is so nice)
- To hang or store shampoo bottles in the shower
- To hang or store a toilet paper holder
- To hang or store remote controls for the TV
The more you can get off the ground or off your shelves inside, the easier it’ll feel to camp — especially with kids who inevitably make messes or scatter their own belongings around the RV.
3. A Water Filter
When we first started camping, we packed in bottles and jugs of water. I don’t have to tell you why that’s not a great idea. Not only is it bulky and heavy, it’s also bad for the environment and, over time, expensive.
After making this mistake on our first few trips, we opted for a water filter and haven’t looked back since. By the looks of it while walking around the campground, we’re not alone in that either. Here are some of hte more popular options available, but they pretty much all offer the same benefit — you get clean, drinkable water just by turning on the faucet in your RV, marking one item (water) off your grocery checklist.
4. Trash Cans
Like it or not, but when you’re traveling with kids, trash adds up around the campsite. From dirty diapers to snack wrappers and paper towels, it seems like there’s always something to toss out. Rather than hanging a plastic bag off our beautiful RV and trashing (pun intended) the look of our campsite, we opted for a lightweight, low profile trash can instead.
The nice thing about these is, they’re waterproof and seal up. You can get a second bin and have it double as a portable toy bucket for outside or laundry bin for inside. Here’s the one we’ve been happy having both inside and outside the trailer.
5. Our Grill
There’s something about firing up the grill at the campsite and smelling dinner cooking in the great outdoors. While it’s fun to try to cook over the campfire, it’s not always feasible. Between fire bans and anxious kiddos, we’ve opted for cooking on our grill far more often than we’ve ever tried cooking over a roaring fire.
Because we love to eat while we’re camping, we wanted to have a solid grill that’d be fast, easy, and allow us to cook three meals a day on it. While the RV kitchen is fine, it’s hard to beat making food outside while camping. These are the grills we considered. Our final choice: The Blackstone.
What’s On Our Wishlist (Reviews Coming Soon)
Camping is a lot like a sport — there always seems to be a new piece of gear to buy. While the above accessories are some of the ones we’ve loved having around, we know there are plenty of others out there. So, we’re compiling a list of accessories to add to our trailer. Here’s what tops that list right now.
A Leveler Kit
Anytime you can make rolling up and getting setup faster or easier, it’s a good thing. We’ve heard great reviews from fellow campers about leveling chocks, so they’re an easy add to our list.
A Higher-Pressure Showerhead
Even before COVID, we enjoyed the ease of showering inside the trailer. It’s one of the perks to camping this way.
Now that we know it’ll be part of our camping experience, we want to try upgrading the showerhead.
An Indoor Mat
We already have an outdoor mat, but having an indoor mat to catch even more of the dirt would be such a lifesaver for the floors.
Better Kitchen Knives
We already have a knife in our trailer, but I’m looking to upgrade.
These are a nice addition to any RV because they are covered (making them safer in case they fall out after transportation) and effective.
Your Turn to Talk RV Accessories
I'd love to hear what's on your wishlist for RV accessories? What would you love to add to your trailer, camper van, or fifth wheel to make it a little more comfortable. Head to Instagram and share your wishlist with me there. I love hearing what other camping families are up to and dreaming about!