In fact, after only 3 months of being on the road full-time, we did some major switches on what we brought!
1. You don’t need as many RV supplies and tools as you think!
Avoid bringing the items you could easily just buy while on the road if you absolutely needed them, especially if your space is limited. It’s easy to go overboard buying all sorts of accessories for the RV. We recommend getting the bare minimum and then you can always purchase more as you, if there are items you wish you had. It’s much easier to do this then deal with the frustration of having too much crammed in!
2. Consider where you plan to stay/park most of the time.
However, RV parks might be more your style, in which case you’ll have space for other “bonus” items.instead of the traditional camping supplies. You might choose to bring a propane fire pit (many RV parks don’t allow any other kind of campfires, which we didn’t know!), a hammock, kayaks, or golf clubs!
3. Treat yourself to the comforts of home.
We all have those items that are our staples. You’ll sit there and try to justify whether you should or should not bring them along. Our advice: BRING THEM! Make room for them. Make it work! If they make your life easier/better, they deserve to make the cut. You don’t even have to justify it. We are so happy we chose to bring along the items that we love and have used for years, even though some of them may seem unnecessary when your space is limited.
4. And last, your “everyday living” items…
I know clothes are the hardest to pack, especially for us women! This tends to vary for each person and will depend on the length of your trip, but I will say that you need to pack for all weather types. No matter where you are in the U.S., the weather can change quickly! We were surprised by the temperatures in many places. It rarely seemed to be the weather we expected. Now, this doesn’t mean you need to bring everything in your closet.
Try to limit yourself to 1 or 2 of each of the following items: coat/jacket, swimsuit, sweatshirt and sweatpants, tennis shoes, etc. Find solid clothes that can pair well with many things. People often refer to this as the “capsule” wardrobe. While there are variations, the concept is to have around a dozen staple pieces of clothing in coordinating colors that can be worn often and interchangeably, thereby saving closet space but still giving you up to 30 or more different outfits. Google it and you’ll find tons of resources to help!
Other household items
When it comes to bathroom and kitchen items, my general advice is to bring 1-2 per person in the RV. So things like towels, plates, cups/mugs, etc you won’t need your standard full set of. Remember, there is not much sink space for dirty dishes and not much hamper space for dirty clothes and linens. Dishes are washed immediately after use and towels are washed weekly, so there’s really no need for spare items.
The rest is up to you!
Everything else is pretty much up to your own discretion. If you can find a spot for it in the RV and think it will get used on a regular basis, bring it! Just be cautious of your RV’s weight limits. You’ll be VERY surprised at how quickly weight can add up.
You also don’t want clutter. Make sure everything has a safe spot where it won’t get broken during travel. Invest in tubs, baskets, and storage items that will help you stay organized. You definitely don’t want your small space feeling even smaller because of all the items inside of it it.
I hope these tips help you minimize your items in order to maximize your adventure! If you need more tips or suggestions for what to bring along in your RV, here’s a FREE printable RV packing list we think will help as well.
5 items that improved RV life for us!
After a year of full-time RVing, we slowly added these items to our home on wheels and they greatly improved RV life for us. We never expected to want or need these items when we first started out and love sharing them with newbie RVers! If you’re interested in finding out what these items are, check out this post: 5 Items That Improved RV Life for Us!
Looking for more RVing tips?
Check out these posts:
- How Much Does It Cost to Full-Time RV (+ a FREE Download!)
- How To Find The Best (and even FREE) Spots to Park Your RV
- 6 Quick & Easy Remodel Projects That Transformed Our RV Into a Home!