It is that time of year when we start looking for gift ideas! If you have a RVer in your life or are a RVer, it can be hard to find the right thing that adds to the journey but not to their limited storage capacity. After more than three years of full-time travel, here are a few things that have added to our travels.
Live Better Outdoors Gift Ideas
One of the reasons most people RV is to get outside and enjoy nature. That said, an RVers’ version of camping is pretty darn comfortable! We might not have all the luxuries of a brick and mortar (like a dishwasher), but we can still bring along a few extras to make the journey cozy.
Many of us prefer to cook outside due to the added heat and smells. While it takes up a fair amount of room in the basement storage, an outdoor grill is an essential and this is our favorite. It does a great job for a meal for two to four, fits in either our bin or towed car and hooks right into our rig’s propane tank. Many folks bring along portable propane tanks, but we prefer to use the one in the rig.
Adding light out on the patio section of the campsite can add a lot of ambiance and make your outdoor living area more livable. After several sets, we finally found these and are very happy. They add the right amount of light and can be hung from our awning or even over a picnic table with the right attachments. We use plant hooks on either side of the picnic table to string the lights across the table at a low height.
Speaking of picnic tables, most campgrounds provide tables. However, the tables are often in bad shape and having cushions would go a long way to being more comfortable and clean. These add nice cushion for the tush while being easy to pack up. You can get a matching a table cover, but I prefer our checked red washable tablecloth as it add cheeriness to our outdoor living space. With a cover and cushion, the picnic table easily becomes my work space for pretty days. And for those days without a picnic table, when we are boondocking or it isn’t offered, a simple foldable table or my lapdesk work well. Plus, I can personalize them with stickers!
Not Sexy, but Necessary Gifts!
If your gift recipient is new to RVing or planning to increase their camping in the coming year, these items can be lifesavers! They might not be the most fun items to give or receive; but trust us, they are necessary! Here are just a couple of our top picks for this Christmas. All are sold by our friends at TechnoRV. We are proud to be part of their affiliate program (you support TVC whenever you buy using one of our links) because we know their products are top-notch and their customer service is even better!
When you plug into a power pedestal at a campground, you are trusting that all goes well. Some RVs come with power protection built in, but it is still a great idea to consider guarding yourself against possible issues such as sudden surges that could fry your electronics. Using a Power Surge Protector to connect your power into before connecting to the pedestal can save you a lot of headache.
Speaking of tires, whether for your rig or tow, it can be hard to fill up those tires while on the road. This portable air compressor is a great addition. We can use it when we go off-roading in the jeep and use it for the RV as well.
And for those who are fairly new or just unsure about the care and maintenance of a RV, we have a course that can assist them in keeping their rig road ready. Fix It Yourself comes with eight downloadable sections covering the basic systems of the RV as well as a private Facebook group and a 30 day money back guarantee.
Consider Fun Gift Ideas
Sometimes you add items to the rig, just because they add some fun or beauty. These new finds were a joy this year.
A little pampering after a long hike or when you need alone time can refresh a person! However, with limited space, it is hard to keep many products handy. So I was excited to discover Happy Camper Nails sold by a fellow full-time RVer. Not only are there lots of great colors, but they come in fun patterns and themes. They are easily applied to your nails and all the necessary tools are included in the flat packaging. I am ready to break out my holiday themed nails soon! Added bonus, they fit well in stockings and you can request a free two nail sample to test before you buy!
New this year and a great addition for my apparently short legs has been this inflatable foot rest. While I can usually reach the floor when sitting, the footrest helps to elevate my feet and make me more comfortable in outdoor chairs or our couches. It easily blows up and is durable enough for outdoors. A great addition for RVers who like to relax!
All RVers like to track their journey. Usually we do it with sticker maps on the rig, but after some browsing on Etsy, I got lots of new ideas. I especially like this pillow as a colorful addition to our couch and a memento that I can take with me when we leave RVing behind. Plus the added bonus that I can color in the flowers as we visit the various states! You know, adult coloring is a big thing these days.
Gifts that Follow their Passion
This might take more sleuthing, but help them create great memories and a fantastic year by supporting their passions.
If they love craft beer and visit breweries, this book helps track their favorites and remember each brewery. They can also visit the Living a Stout Life website for suggestion on breweries to visit. Plus, by purchasing this book, you help fuel the passion of the full-timer RVers who produce the book and website.
For bookish types like me, the best could be a ereader so we can take as many books as we wish along the way and easily read outside. And you could make it more special by preloading a few great books to add to their journey. Consider adding a cookbook or a book to help plan their trip. One of my favorites is Secrets of the National Parks or for the truly bookish, Bibliophile which lists books to read and bookstores to visit.. Another option for readers is a membership to Libro.fm so that they can listen to great books while driving. By using Libro.fm, you can support their (or your) favorite independent bookstore. I also recommend a membership to the Modern Mrs. Darcy Book Club. Being part of this club allows even full-timers to have a bookclub where we can learn about new books and enjoy great discussions.
This year, we seemed to be near water a lot so finally got some water toys. We are enjoying this inflatable paddleboard which I learned to use at Flathead Lake Resorts. We have also added a two person inflatable kayak so we can explore together.For your adventurous Rver who might want to explore water as well as land, these can be great and easily packed additions.
And if your RVer is less into this past times and more into bourbon, birding, coffee or mountain biking, you can easily find gifts to fit all these passions on Etsy or Amazon , of course. But you might also think about destinations to fit their plans and passions. For instance, perhaps a whiskey tasting along Bourbon Trail if they will be in Kentucky or a gift card to a couple of highly rated independent coffee shops along their trail. Speaking of trails, a good hiking or off-roading trail book for a state they plan to visit. It might take you a bit more time to do the research, but that makes it even more special. Plus, RVers also appreciate someone else doing some of the planning! It makes our lives easier!
A Gift that Gives More Joy, Less Stuff
Speaking of items that support their travel plans, these add a lot of fun to the journey without taking up any space. And no worries about size!
Nearly every RVer will eventually visit a National Park and depending on their plans for the year (like visiting California or Colorado), they can often hit several. If you know they are planning to visit one or more National Park, consider an annual pass. For only $80, you can help them plan their journey and support the National Park system! Plus the pass can often get them into other attractions along the way like National Monuments. Or if they are planning to spend time exploring one or more states, a State Park Pass would be helpful.
RVers love a deal and eventually we will end up at a Cracker Barrel along the route. With nearly every Cracker Barrel offering free overnight parking for RVs and conveniently located off the highway, it is an easy and safe stopover. Cracker Barrel just asks that overnighters buy a meal or something from the store. By giving your RVer a gift card to buy their breakfast, not only is their stay truly free but you show that your insider knowledge of the RV life. And who doesn’t want to have those biscuits!
A Harvest Host membership is another insider gift! With this membership, you are giving them hundreds of options for free overnight parking at an interesting place where they can enjoy an experience. Most Harvest Hosts are breweries, farms, wineries, golf clubs or museums. They ask that the camper enjoy and purchase something from the host’s offerings so it creates the opportunity to meet great people and enjoy a wonderful evening as we are passing through an area. This is one of our favorite memberships and we highly recommend it to all RVers. Read more about why we love this membership here.
For Dreamers and New to RVing
Maybe your RVer is still dreaming of a RV but hasn’t committed yet. You could get a gift card to Outdoorsy for a RV rental or book them at the Flathead Lake Resorts where they can stay in a vintage Airstream and have lake access.
If you want them to laugh about the dirtier side of RVing, check out Tales of the Black Tank. For a strong introductory book, Living in a RV by Alyssa Padgett is excellent. And we recommend Create Space from Thin Air to help with organizational ideas.
There are so many ideas and we are happy to help you find just the right thing. Check out our other blogs, see below, on more products that every RVer needs or leave a note to ask about ideas for your gift recipient. And please share your favorite ideas in the comments below.
The Virtual Campground does get a small commission on all Amazon and TechnoRV items as well as some other links in this blog. Your purchases help support us without adding any cost for you. Even if the items mentioned are not the right ones for you, you can use one of our links to enter Amazon or TechnoRV and your purchases will still support us with your cart purchase. Think of it as a gift that gives twice! Thank you for considering this help.