RV camping with kids? Totally do-able. Actually, totally amazing. We have learned a whole bunch of handy tips, tricks and hacks for camping with kids and share them all below.
Best Tips for RV Camping with Kids
We absolutely love camping with our kids. In fact, our two kids are what inspired us to trade in our tiny pop up camper for a bigger home-away-from home. When we bought our travel trailer a few years ago, we bought it with family travel in mind and made sure that it had features that would help us live comfortably on the road, despite the close quarters.
Over the years, we have camped with our kids as they ranged in age from baby to elementary schooler. We have picked up some tips and tricks over those many RV camping trips with the kids. From products that made our lives a little less stressful, to things that helped the kids to fall asleep a little easier, here are our best tips!
Keeping Kids Safe Around the Campsite
Glow Sticks: Glow sticks are always a fun addition to any after-dark party. When camping, glow sticks on kids also give you a little extra help when trying to spot your kids around the dark campsite. Increased visibility is helpful anytime, but especially after the sun goes down!
Telescoping Skewers: If your camping traditions typically include a campfire and roasting marshmallows, you absolutely MUST pick up a pack of these telescoping skewers. These skewers are easy to clean and do not take up a lot of space in your RV kitchen drawer. They ensure that kids don’t get too close to the campfire flames while roasting their marshmallows.
First Aid Kit: Bumps, scrapes, minor cuts, etc. are very real realities of campsite life. Have a first aid kit in your RV at all times, just in case. Go through your first aid kit each year and replace anything that is outdated or depleted in supply.
Bug Spray/Bracelets: If you are camping, there will be bugs. That is pretty much a fact. So make sure to keep bug spray in your camper. We also like to grab some bug repelling bracelets for the kids to wear when they are outside. These both help to keep the bugs at bay.
Rug Step Covers: If your kiddo falls on the camper steps, it’s going to hurt. Covering your metal RV steps with rug step covers can most definitely help to lessen that pain. We recommend covering every RV step with these rug covers.
Pool Noodles on Slide Edges: Walking headfirst into a camper slide out can be a painful experience. Take a pool noodle and put a slice down the length of the noodle. Then place the noodle onto the edges of each slide on your camper. Not only do the pool noodles act as a bumper on the hard camper edge, they also add some visibility to them.
EZ-Up Canopy Tent: When you are are camping on a non-wooded site, these EZ-Up tents offer some shade, in addition to your awning. Set the kids up with toys, a baby pool, etc under the tent and let them play the day away without getting too much sun.
Entertaining Kids While RV Camping
Games/Puzzles: We always keep some games, puzzles and simple arts and crafts supplies in our camper for those inevitable rainy days. They are also great for some entertainment as the kids unwind after a long day of driving.
Some of our favorite games include:
Movies: Pop some popcorn and kick back with your favorite family movie!
Construction Vehicles: Most campsites offer ample amounts of stone, dirt, twigs and/or pinecones. These are perfect spots for kids to set up a “construction site” with some toy construction vehicles. Our son absolutely loves doing this so we try to remember to pack some toy vehicles for him!
Mystical Fire Packets: Toss 3-5 unopened packs of Mystical Fire right into the campfire flames and watch as the flames “magically” turn colors!
Helping Kids Sleep in an RV
Bed rails: Assuming your kids are sleeping on a camper bed, as opposed to a Pack ‘n Play, it’s always a good idea to give them a bed rail to prevent middle-of-the-night tumbles out of bed. We used a bed rail in our pop up camper and also on the lower bunk of our travel trailer.
White noise: These handy little machines do not cost a lot and we always travel with one in our camper. This is because they really help to cut down on campground noises that are easily heard through the thin camper walls. A white noise machine also helps to muffle noise inside the camper, for example if you are staying up to watch tv after the kids go to bed.
Window tint/covers: Once that sun comes up over the horizon, our entire camper was flooded with light. We picked up cheap auto window covers and popped them over our camper windows. This drastically cut down on the sun light and helped the fam to get some more shuteye.
Lanterns: We picked up small, battery-operated lanterns, one for each kid, and allowed them to keep the lantern in their bunks with them. These work great for easy nightlights/reading lights.
Bathroom nightlight: Check out this easy RV bathroom nightlight hack. We installed a motion activated nightlight to our camper bathroom in minutes for just a few dollars! The light gives us just enough illumination to see at night, without turning on the bright overhead lights that tend to wake everyone up.
Other Handy Helpers When Camping with Kids
Fabric bins: Grab some cheap fabric totes and use them to organize everything from clothing to books to snacks. We found totes at the dollar store and they worked great for clothes in the bottom of each closet.
Pocket organizers: Hang a pocket organizer over an interior camper door and keep everything from shoes to toiletries off the ground and in one spot! We have one of these organizers on our bathroom door and use it for toiletries!
Do you have any helpful tips or tricks or must-have products for RV camping with kids? Let us know if there is something else we should add to our list! If you try one of our suggestions, definitely let us know and we just might add it to the post! We hope that these easy ideas help cut out some of your stress and lead to more enjoyable family camping adventures!