Know someone heading off on an RV road trip? We recommend sending them off with something they can actually use on the road. To help decide what to buy, we’ve put together a list of practical gift ideas for RV owners.
After traveling in a camper van for over two years, we’ve found every one of these items useful. Our gift ideas are a mix of inexpensive stocking stuffers and larger items that will come in handy during the drive. You can rest assured nothing on this list will be left behind.
Gift Ideas For RV Owners
An annual pass to the National Parks should be the first item on every traveler’s list. You can purchase a pass for yourself or send as a gift to one of your friends. The “America The Beautiful Pass” gives you free entry to all of the US National Parks for one year.
You also get free entry to a number of National Monuments, National Historic Parks, preserves, battlefields and seashores.
The pass covers entry fees for one vehicle so you can bring the whole family along.
Along with a National Parks pass, then next best thing is a passport book. Each US National Park has a cancellation station located at the visitor center. This station contains free stamps that include the park title, location, and a changeable date. This is a great way to keep track of your travels and a timeline of where you’ve been.
We’ve been carrying our passport book around with us and have had a lot of fun collecting stamps and visiting new places. There is also a directory of parks in each region included in the book making it easy to decide where to go next.
A road atlas is a must-have item for anyone going on a road trip. We always recommend having a paper map with you even if there’s a GPS system in your RV. Our favorite paper map is this Adventure Edition Road Atlas by National Geographic.
The book is unique because instead of just covering the traffic routes, it also indicates activities to do in the area. Popular hiking, backpacking, climbing, paddling, biking, birding, and winter sports locations are all marked within the state.
This map has led us to a number of locations we never would’ve thought to visit like Catwalk Canyon in New Mexico.
- Read our post: How to plan for a long term road trip; for advice on how we like to use this map.
Harvest Hosts is a camping club with a twist. In most discount camping clubs, you pay a 1 year membership and get steep discounts on campgrounds and RV parks throughout the year. With Harvest Hosts, you pay for one annual membership and get free camping for the year.
Not only that, but travelers don’t stay at ordinary campgrounds. With the pass, you can park your RV overnight at farms, vineyards, breweries, museums, and even golf courses. This is a cool way to experience a new area and spend the night on-site.
What’s the catch? Campers must be self-contained. That means you’ll need to use your own toilet and shower within the RV, and electric hookups will not be available.
In the world of cell phones, why would you want a GPS system for your RV? For one, these will work even if you don’t have available wifi. They’re also less distracting because you won’t have messages popping up on your phone during the drive.
The biggest reason to gift a navigation system is because it has RV specific functionality.
A Garmin made for RVs and towable trailers lets you set driveable routes based on vehicle height and weight. That means you can avoid low hanging bridges, and you won’t end up on a narrow road with no turn-around points.
Space constraints are a big pitfall when it comes to RV living. That’s why having an e-reader rather than a stack of books is so much more practical on the road. e-Readers like the Kindle take a small amount of battery power and can last for weeks at a time.
They’re also designed with e-ink so the screen won’t glare in the sunlight.
If you know someone that does a lot of reading, consider pairing it with a subscription of Kindle Unlimited so you can download new books every month.
Before there were e-readers, a simple deck of cards was the go-to entertainment for travelers. This stocking stuffer gift is inexpensive and can provide hours of entertainment for campers of all ages.
Want to take the entertainment a step further? These road trip games are designed to be played in the car:
Comfortable camping chairs are easy to forget when you think about all of the seating inside an RV. But this item makes the perfect gift because people can always use more camping chairs.
Make sure to pick a chair with cup holders to secure a beer.
Hammocks are another nice to have accessory on the road. Chances are, most RV people are not going to want to spend all their time in the camper. Stringing up a hammock and relaxing with an e-reader is the perfect way to spend a weekday afternoon.
A quality BBQ set often comes as an afterthought to campers. But it’s actually one of the most important parts of a meal. Sturdy grilling tools are an inexpensive gift idea that will get plenty of use.
You can pair this gift with some grilling gloves and a couple of spices to make an outdoor grilling gift basket.
Marshmallow roasting sticks are a welcome gift for campers with kids. These sticks have extendable handles so they don’t take up much space in the motorhome. They also save you the hassle of finding and whittling your own sticks which can be difficult–especially if you do a lot of camping in the desert.
An Omnia allows you to bake bread, cakes and other dishes using far less fuel and heat than a conventional oven. This gadget is popular with campers because you can bake delicious recipes without heating up the entire RV.
You can also bake goods on a grill or stove top with the Omnia making it a versatile accessory a road trip.
We use our cast iron skillet every day; both at home and on the road. Along with a dutch oven, this is one of the most important pieces of camping equipment you can add to your kitchen.
With a cast iron skillet, you can cook food on anything. That includes a stove top, oven, grill or campfire. A properly seasoned skillet will prevent sticky foods and they’re simple to clean. We can’t recommend this item enough!
Just like the skillet on our list, we’d consider the dutch oven a must-have RV accessory. You can cook practically anything in a dutch oven from soup to roasts and non-knead bread.
This dutch oven comes with a lid that can double as a skillet–almost like giving two gifts.
A big part of RV maintenance is keeping the camper clean. That means washing off the solar panels, wiping leaves off the awning, and cleaning the giant windshield. Because campers are so tall it’s a hassle to try and climb up and down the ladder to navigate each section.
An extendable brush is one of the most practical gifts on our list. We like this model because it packs down small and has both a brush and a squeegee to make cleaning easier.
Another practical accessory is a collapsible step ladder. Most motorhomes only come with one ladder in the back which isn’t very convenient if you need to get up high around the sides.
We like ladders with this telescoping design because they pack down small and are easy to store. We also recommend these if you are traveling in a DIY camper van conversion because many times those don’t have built-in ladders of their own.
Preserving electricity on the road is something every camper is aware of. Biolite makes a variety of solar powered products that you can place around the campground to keep you from tripping in the dark.
Solar lanterns like these are extremely portable and safe to carry around. You also won’t have to pack any spare batteries which makes them a nice gift.
A portable bluetooth speaker is another accessory that we use daily. We like this speaker because it’s waterproof and durable enough to take on long hikes. This speaker also has a special feature where you can pair it with more than one to keep the music going both inside and outside the RV.
Having an extra power bank or two around the RV means you won’t have to be stuck inside with your laptop when the weather is nice. Portable power banks charge up quickly and you can use them later when there aren’t any outlets available.
We often find ourselves charging up power banks at a campground right before heading off on an all-day hike.
When you work on the road, having a useable phone signal is imperative. The weBoost makes the perfect gift for RV owners that need a strong internet connection.
Cell phone signal boosters amplify a cell phone signal giving stronger service in sparse areas. weBoost is the gold standard when it comes to signal boosters. We’ve used this device to stream Netflix in locations you would never expect and can’t recommend this product enough!
The last thing anyone wants to experience on a camping trip is getting stuck with a dead battery. Depending on where you’re located, there might not be other campers around to help jump-start the car.
That’s why we think a lithium jump starter makes a great travel gift. This accessory is easy to throw in the trunk and will turn into a major lifesaver if you accidentally leave the lights on while heading off on a hike.
Walkie Talkies sound old-school, but this is a great item to have when there’s no phone service in the area. With this gift you can keep in touch with your travel partner across the entire campground.
Two-way radios are reliable in all weather conditions and we’ve found them especially useful when driving multiple vehicles through the mountains.
This gift is one of the best things you can give for both personal safety, and peace of mind. A personal locator beacon works in any location–whether you’re at the bottom of a ravine or in the middle of the ocean.
You can use the beacon to send a distress signal or message through satellite and let your loved ones know where you’re located in case of emergency.
If an RV owner wants to go camping where electric hookups are not available, then a generator becomes a must-have accessory. We like this model because it is one of the quietest on the market and produces both AC and DC power.
It’s portable and can be paired with more than one generator to double the capacity.
Why use a portable power station? Electricity can be hard to come by if you’re doing free camping or any sort of boondocking. A power station like this one uses solar panels to collect energy then provides electricity to power your laptops, cell phones, televisions, vent fans, water pumps and more.
While the larger sizes don’t come cheap, one big advantage to a solar power station is they’re completely portable. That means the gift recipient can use them at tailgates, in the backyard, or any number of places outside the RV.
Other Gift Ideas
You don’t need to purchase something big or expensive to give the perfect RV gift. Small accessories like travel books and funny t-shirts are some of the best things you can give. Still looking for more ideas? Check out our other gift guides: