by Ashlee Zotter
In becoming an RV owner, there are certain essentials that are more obvious than others; your sewer hose, electric cord, bedding, and toiletries. But some things you don't think of until you realize you need them, and maybe couldn't even really live without! Whether you're a weekend traveler or you live in your rig full-time, we've created a list of 6 things you'll want to consider having on hand.
This is important whether you're going on a short trip, for the long-haul or even storing your camper for the season. A dehumidifier keeps you from getting mold on your windows, mattresses, inside your walls, etc. There's nothing quite like waking up with a headache to find mold spots covering your windows, or finding that you've got a driving petri dish of black mold in your walls. A plug-in dehumidifier will require electricity. But if you plan to do more dry camping or plan to store your RV away for a bit, a bucket of Damp-rid should do the trick.
2. Pressure Cooker and/or Outdoor Grill
Using your oven or stove takes propane and heats up your interior, which can be less than desirable in the summer. A pressure cooker like the Instant Pot can cook virtually any meal in a fraction of the time without heating the camper or using propane. That's a game changer when you're traveling with potentially limited resources, limited refrigerator space and/or limited time. A grill, on the other hand, allows you to take your cooking, smells, grease, etc. outside, where a lot of people tend to prefer being so long as weather permits.
3. Dishes - Paper or plastic?
Ceramic, glass and other dishes of the like are not always going to handle bumps or stops well. They're also heavier, adding weight to your tow, push or pull. Disposable paper and plastic can be a good go-to for weekend trips. But some people prefer something that produces less waste and might be interested in reusable hard plastic dishes. They're light, cheap, won't break and you can hand wash them and reuse them as many times as you want. Collapsible plastic containers, strainers, measuring cups, etc. are worth having for space saving and easy use, too.
4. Wifi Booster
If you're going to be working from the road, or are simply someone who needs their internet, not only will having a hotspot be important but so will having a wifi booster. A hotspot is generally when you use your internet signal from your cell phone to use your computer, Smart TV, etc. Not all cell phone plans include this service so check with your provider to see what they can do for you. Depending on where you are you may have an iffy signal. A wifi booster is a device that boosts your wifi signal so that you can actually use your internet or watch your favorite Netflix shows without buffering.
Some driving RV's come with an onboard generator. This is amazing. Say you're driving all day and realize you won't make it to your destination before dark, or you're simply someone who prefers camping on public land to avoid the costs of being in a park with a bunch of other people. You can pull over and have power without ever having to hook-up or even get out of your camper. Other rigs don't come with a generator, generally speaking of fifth wheels and bumper-pulls. If you like to dry camp or simply don't want to be caught in a precarious situation without electricity, consider a generator.
Many RV's have a washer/dryer connection. Some are big enough that folks can stack a washer and a dryer in a closet or toy hauler. But for the smaller rigs or minimalists out there, they also make a small washer/dryer in one. There are also small load hand/foot washers that can be used outside of the camper. You can then choose to hang dry your clothes on a line inside, or outside of your camper. If you don't plan to be in your RV for long periods of time or mind the extra expense of using community washers, consider having quarters on hand for laundromats.
This list isn't essential for everyone in every situation. Before you hit the road on a short trip or long-term, sit down and consider what kinds of things are essential for you and your adventure. Happy travels!