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The RV Checklist: How to Ensure the Perfect Road Trip

This year, you and 8.9 million other RV owners will pack up their RVs and hit the road for a great adventure.

Getting ready for a trip in your RV can be stressful. You have to make sure you have everything you need for your planned activities and that your RV is all tuned up.

Packing up for an RV trip can be particularly stressful for those who are new to the RV world. Those who are seasoned RV veterans find it easy to quickly compile their list, check their vehicle, and get on the road.

Whether you’re new to RV tripping or just need a refresher, we’ve compiled an RV checklist for you to help you quickly get ready and on your way.


Before you start tossing things willy-nilly into your RV, you need to figure out where you’re going and what you’ll need. Answering these questions will help you prep your RV checklist.

Route & Timeline

The first question you need to ask is where you’re going and what time of year it is. Knowing the answers to these questions will give you a base for what clothing you’ll need.

Next, decide how long you want to take to get there. Do you want to get there as fast as possible or take time to explore the route? This will also help you decide on clothing as well as the amount of food you’ll need.

If you opt for a more relaxed trip, map out your timeline for how far you want to drive each day and places you want to see along the way.

For those who want to get where they’re going quickly, map out the fastest route before you leave. If you want to avoid tolls, you might need to take a longer route.

Clothes & Laundry

Some people think if they’re going to be on the road for a month that they need to pack clothes for a month. This can be especially true of RVers who think they have tons of room.

When planning your trip, plan time to stop at a laundromat or hand-wash your clothes at a campsite. Planning to do laundry on your trip will reduce the number of things you take with you.

Do consider the pros and cons of each.

If you hand-wash items, you’ll need to dedicate the day to be in one place so everything has a chance to dry. However, you can go off and do other things like hike or fish.

If you choose to use a laundromat, you’ll need to spend a few hours there. The upside is that you can put in several loads at once and pick up groceries while you wait.

You also need to consider what kinds of activities you’ll be doing on your RV trip.

Will you be hiking and fishing? What about eating out at nice places? These activities will dictate what kind of apparel and footwear you need to bring.

There are some other wardrobes tips to keep in mind when compiling your RV checklist.

First, stick to the rule that if you don’t wear it at home, you won’t wear it on the road.

Second, stick to a simple color palette in your wardrobe and accessorize with hats, belts, and scarves. It will be easier to throw outfits together when you stick to one set of colors.


Building a budget for your trip can help you determine how much you can spend on groceries and eat out. It also forces you to have an emergency fund in case a critical part of your RV stops working.

Gas will also make up a large portion of your budget. If you want to travel far and are on a tight budget, you might need to cut back on eating out and opt for ramen in the RV.

You also must have RV insurance before you take your vehicle on the road. It will cover damages to the RV and any medical bills incurred from injury.

Packing Up the RV

Now that you’ve planned out where you’re going, how long you’ll be gone for, and what activities you’ll be doing, you can start compiling your RV checklist.

What we’ve found to be the most straightforward way to go about packing is to break the RV down into parts.

Basic RV Essentials

If something goes wrong in the RV, you don’t want to be stranded without a way to get yourself out of the situation.

In case of a breakdown, you’ll want a toolkit, road flares, leveling blocks, jumper cables, a tire pressure gauge, and maybe gloves.

For basic RV living, you should have a flashlight, batteries, scissors, a fire extinguisher, trash and recycling cans and liners, propane, light bulbs, and extension cords.


For those of you who plan to cook a lot in your RV, you want to have a well-equipped kitchen.

For cooking, you’ll need a pot, pan, knives, mixing bowls, a bottle opener, can opener, cooking oil, and condiments.

To eat, make sure you have plates, cutlery, cups, mugs, napkins, and Tupperware for leftovers. And, for cleaning up, sponges, dish soap, and a dish towel.

Bedroom and Bathroom

One of the luxuries of having an RV is you get to sleep in a bed.

You don’t need much for the bedroom. Make sure you have pillows, blankets (extra if you’re going somewhere cold), and sheets on your RV checklist.

For your daily hygiene, pack soap, shampoo, conditioner, toothpaste, toothbrushes, towels, toilet paper, and any other toiletry items you might need.

Relaxing and Outdoor Activities

For those of you going on a scenic and relaxed trip, you’ll likely have plenty of downtime once you get to your campsite. If that’s the case, you’ll want items like lounge chairs, books, lanterns, and board games to relax with your family.

For the more active traveler, pack relevant equipment for your chosen activities. In most cases, you’ll need a first aid kit, water bottle, sunscreen, hat, bug repellant, backpack, and comfortable shoes.

Make an RV Checklist Like a Champion

By adequately preparing your RV checklist, you won’t feel as rushed when you’re packing. You also won’t worry as much about leaving something behind.

Something important to remember is if you do leave something behind, you can always buy a new one on the road.

If you’ve realized through reading this article that you don’t have insurance for your RV yet, don’t worry. You can request a quote through our website and have insurance in no time.

To start the RV insurance quote process, get in touch with us today.

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