The Complete and Only RV Essentials Checklist You’ll Ever Need

When wanderlust calls, it’s hard not to answer! However, the stress associated with booking hotel rooms and scheduling flights can take away the magic of traveling the country.

If you’re looking to see the country, one of the best ways to do so is to rent an RV. Not only do you have transportation, but you also have the unique experience of sleeping in amazing locations.

RV Essentials Checklist You Need for Your Trip

RV essentials tips
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However, you’ll need some RV essentials to make the most of your outdoor adventure. Keep reading for a complete list of everything you’ll want to pack.


While RV travel is a great way to explore, you have to remember that it is essentially a portable home. This means you’ll want to make sure you have essentials to make your trip safe and comfortable. For your RV, you’ll need to pack:

  • A sewer kit
  • Electrical extension cords
  • Windshield wiper and other vehicular fluids
  • Jumper cables
  • Hoses for drinking water and expelling used water
  • Emergency roadside kit
  • Leveling blocks
  • Wheel chocks

Don’t forget to have your license, vehicle registration, and proof of insurance with you before you hit the road. RV ownership requires a lot of preparedness and attention to detail!


Similarly, you want to pack any safety items that you would use in case of an emergency. These include:

  • First aid kit
  • Flashlights and batteries
  • Portable chargers or generators
  • Duct tape
  • Fire extinguisher

Safety should always be you’re number one priority going on the road away from home. Taking time to ensure that you’ve packed all necessary items helps prevent serious situations and helps you have a good time on your travels.

Always have the name and phone number of a local RV park available should you need a place to spend the night.


Unless you plan on wearing the clothes on your back for the duration of your trip, you’ll need to bring enough options with you to help you stay clean and comfortable.

While factors such as destination, time of year, and access to a washer and dryer can influence what you pack, as a general rule of thumb you should bring:

  • Undergarments
  • Socks
  • Tee-shirts
  • Shorts
  • Long pants (leggings or nylon pants)
  • Long-sleeve tee-shirt
  • Sleepwear
  • Hiking boots
  • Sneakers
  • Raincoat
  • Sweatshirt
  • Baseball hat

Warmer destinations will call for a bathing suit if you plan on swimming, while cooler climates require additional outwear like gloves, scarves, hats, and a heavy jacket.

RV Covers

RV covers are essential for keeping your RV in top condition. They help to protect the RV from the elements, as well as provide a barrier against dirt and grime that can build up over time. RV covers come in a variety of styles and materials, so you can find one that suits your needs. For example, if you live in an area with severe weather conditions, you may want to invest in a heavy-duty cover that can withstand high winds, heavy rain, and snow. If you frequently take your RV on long road trips, you may prefer a lighter cover that is easy to store and transport. Whichever type of RV cover you choose, make sure it fits your vehicle snugly and that it is made from durable materials.


As you will likely be in the wilderness or on long stretches of highway, you may not have access to restaurants or grocery stores. Also, stocking up on supplies is less expensive than ordering out every night.

In terms of food, you’ll want to stock up on:

  • Pre-cooked frozen meals
  • Fruits and vegetables
  • Frozen meat
  • Dry goods like pasta, rice, and bread
  • Condiments
  • Canned foods, like tuna or soup
  • Snacks

While fresh ingredients are great in terms of flavor, they can spoil quickly. Try not to splurge on food that can go bad, and opt for canned or frozen options instead.

Similarly, you can cook your own meals to freeze before going on your trip. While most RVs come equipped with kitchens, you may not have the space or tools you need to cook your favorite dishes.


Depending on the size of your kitchen, as different types of RVs have different kitchen options, you’ll need to bring some cookware with you in order to prepare food.

For cooking, you’ll want to have

  • Utensils like forks, knives, spoons, spatulas, and tongs
  • A cutting board
  • Cups, bowls, and plates
  • Dish soap, a sponge or rag, and a dish towel
  • Pots and pans
  • Paper towels and napkins
  • Garbage bags
  • Tupperware or plastic bags

Be sure to check the size of your kitchen. Many campers will have floorplans and specifications listed right on their website for your convenience.

You won’t need to bring your complete set of pans, but rather one or two. Also, try to pack versatile cookware that can be used for different tasks like skillets or cast iron pans, as this saves space.


If camping is on your agenda you’ll need to bring other items to help you enjoy your time in the wilderness. Before you head out on your adventure in the woods, be sure to include:

  • A tent, pillows, and blanket
  • Portable stove
  • Portable chairs and table
  • Garbage bin
  • Lantern
  • Mattress pad
  • Cooler
  • Firestarters

This list doesn’t include the clothing and food you’ll need, as all of those items are already on your RV. Instead, it focuses on the additional gear you’ll need to pack before hitting the road on your trip.


Though you’re exploring the outdoors, your time spent in the RV doesn’t have to be rugged! You can enjoy luxurious RV camping by bringing the following items to make your home away from home as comfortable as can be:

  • Bedding
  • Pillows
  • Bath towels and washcloths
  • RV-approved toilet paper
  • Clothes hangers
  • Laundry bag
  • Electronics and chargers
  • Video game consoles
  • Board games
  • Cards

Though you’ll be spending plenty of time exploring new places, you’ll also be inside of the RV on the road. You want to ensure that you’re comfortable and entertained during your trip.

Personal Care

Finally, you’ll want to remember to bring personal hygiene and toiletries products with you. These will help you look and feel your best while keeping you clean.

To stay squeaky clean after a long day hiking, be sure to grab:

  • Soap, shampoo, conditioner
  • Toothbrush and toothpaste
  • Deodorant
  • Menstrual products
  • Hairbrush and hair ties
  • Razor
  • Nail care
  • Glasses and contacts
  • Sunglasses
  • Medications and vitamins

Also, be sure to pack for your destination. If hiking during warmer seasons, be sure to bring sunscreen to prevent sunburns, aloe vera gel, and bug spray.

RV Essentials to Make Your Trip Memorable

While packing for RV travel is often minimal, it doesn’t have to be uncomfortable. Keeping all the necessities on hand can make your trip more enjoyable, as you won’t have to worry about trying to get by.

Remember, safety is the most important thing when on the road. If traveling alone, be sure to give someone your travel plans. This ensures someone has an idea of your location in case of an emergency.

If you found this RV essentials packing list helpful, be sure to visit the rest of our website for more great auto tips and tricks.

Jasper has been an enthusiast of the automotive and IT industries since the age of 16. He independently writes on the auto industry's recent happenings.