What Should You Pack for a Camper Van Holiday? Top 10 Packing Tips

Are you planning a camper van holiday? Have you got the urge to hit the open road and see where it takes you? Nothing beats the sense of freedom and adventure of a camper van or motor home holiday. And, the key to a successful road trip is packing the right gear. 

That's right, planning is crucial. If you want to get the most from your road trip, you need to pack the right gear. Below we cover the top 10 tips on what you should pack for your camper van holiday. From essential gear to thoughtful extras, we'll help you get the most from your camper van holiday.  Here's what to take on campervan holiday.

1: All Weather Clothing

Want to know how to pack a campervan? First up, you need to make sure you pack the right clothes. When planning a camper van adventure, versatile clothing is a must. With the UK weather known to be temperamental at best, you'll need to prepare for all seasons. 

hiking up a hill
Layering is the best approach. This is the easiest way to ensure you're prepared for a range of weather conditions. Pack lightweight breathable fabrics for warm days and add thermal layers for cooler nights. 

A waterproof jacket is essential for unexpected rain showers. And, great for blustery days along the coastline. And, don't forget, you'll need sturdy walking shoes for hikes and comfortable loungewear for cozy evenings inside the van. Lastly, pack something comfortable for sleeping in at night.

2: Kitchen Essentials

If you plan on eating or cooking in the camper van, you'll need some basic kitchen essentials. A compact stove is a great choice if you're van doesn't have a built-in cooker. Then you'll need a selection of pots, pans, and utensils depending on your cooking plans. Multi-functional items work best and save space.

What about a portable coffee maker for those morning brews? If you're a coffee lover, we think this qualifies as an essential. That way you can have quality home-brewed coffee round the clock.  An essential camper van packing tip.

Stock up on non-perishable basics like pasta, rice, and canned goods to keep meal planning simple. This way you'll not only save money on eating out but also have the freedom to cook up your favourite meals wherever the road takes you.

3: Camping Gear

Are you planning to camp? If yes, you need to make sure you pack all the essentials. A reliable tent, sleeping bags, and camping chairs are a must. And, a compact camping stove for outdoor cooking adventures will enhance any camping adventure. Nothing beats cooking in the great outdoors.

camper van on a desert road
You'll need a durable cooler to keep your food fresh. Especially perishable food. And, a good flashlight or headlamp is essential for navigating campsites in the dark. You can't rely on your phone torch unless you bring a power bank. Packing these essentials ensures a comfortable and well-prepared camping experience.


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4: Blankets & Bedding

When it comes to bedding, prioritize warmth and comfort. Pack cozy blankets for cold nights and good quality sleeping bags suitable for the expected temperature conditions. Your local outdoor store will be able to advise you on which sleeping bag you should choose.

They stock sleeping bags for all seasons and climates. All you have to do is pick the one that meets your needs. Don't forget your pillows. Pillows are essential in our book! They add that extra touch of homey comfort that helps you drift off and get some quality sleep.

And, a good night's sleep is essential for an enjoyable holiday. So pack wisely. Choose quality blankets, sleeping bags, and comfy pillows. This way, your camper van feels like a home away from home.  Essential campervan packing!

5: Outdoor Activity Gear

What about outdoor activities? Are you planning any hiking or adventure sports on your holiday? If so, you'll need to pack the right gear. First up, some sturdy walking boots are a must. These will open many doors. Whether it's a long hike up a mountainside or a stroll on the beach in blustery conditions – hiking boots are your friend.

kayaks on a river
Weatherproof clothes and an all-purpose backpack are also essential pieces of kit. Then you should tailor your gear based on your preferred outdoor activities – cycling, fishing, or kayaking.

What to take in a campervan will depend on what you're into.  You'll need to pack fishing rods and tackle, some bicycles and cycling gear, or a set of kyacks and oars. Planning is key to getting the most from any outdoor pursuit.  Another key camper van packing tip.

6: Compact Toiletries

Then there are your toiletries and personal care items. Essentials for any motor home or RV holiday. You can't leave home without them, so make sure you've packed all you need. Travel-sized toiletries work best for road trips. And, a camper van holiday is no different. Your vehicle has limited space, so packing small and packing wise is critical.

You can pick up travel-sized shampoo, conditioner, and toothpaste in most pharmacies. Quick-dry towels are practical and great for saving space. And, mini toiletry bags are essential for keeping everything organised. Travel light while including all your essentials is key.  Packing cubes for campervan work well for organising personal items.

7: Electronic Devices

Don't forget your electronic devices. Your smartphone, tablet, iPad – whatever they may be, if you intend on using them on your road trip, they need to find a home in your camper van. This way you can stay tuned in and entertained throughout your trip. Connectivity may be an issue, so we recommend downloading some of your favourite music and films before you set off. 

vw camper van

And, then there are the chargers. Don't forget to pack a charger for each device. Staying charged on the road can be difficult. Especially if you venture off-grid and don't have an electric hook-up to rely on. Power banks and rv solar panels are a great solution for keeping all your devices and electric appliances ticking over without interruption.

8: First Aid Kit & Medications

You should always pack a first aid kit and any vital medication you'll need throughout your camper van holiday. A good first aid kit should contain plasters, bandages, antiseptic wipes, and all the essentials for bumps and scrapes. They'll be the first thing you reach for in the event of a minor injury. Keep the kit well stocked and in a place where it can be easily reached when needed.

Then there's medication. Prescribed meds are essential. If you or any of yours are on prescription medication, make sure they're packed. And, make sure you have packed enough for the duration of the holiday. Some other meds that may go down well include painkillers, antacids, and allergy treatments.

9: Maps & Navigation

Maps and navigation are key for any road trip. Especially a motor home holiday. Make sure you've equipped yourself with reliable maps and navigation apps before setting off. We recommend packing an old-school paper map in case your phone dies. If you're relying on Google Maps and your battery or connectivity fails, you could be in a spot of bother. 

maps with red pins

Reliable maps and navigation tools will help you navigate unfamiliar routes and find interesting spots along the way. They take the stress out of plotting a route and finding your destination. And, they'll help you get the most from your time on the road.  An often overlooked camper van packing tip. 

10: Storage & Organization Solutions

The thing about packing all this gear is, it takes up a lot of space. And finding what you need, when you need can be tricky. This is where creative storage and organization solutions come into play. Packing and organising all your gear so you know where everything is, is key. 

Space-saving storage options and colour-coded packing containers are the answer. Modular packing cubes are one of the easiest and most efficient ways of packing all your gear in an organised and easy-to-find manner.

They compartmentalise all your equipment making it a breeze to find what you need, when you need it. And, collapsible containers are great for kitchen items. They save space when not in use and can be expanded when needed.


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