All Things Travel

Camping Life Hacks – What Works and What Doesn’t

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There are a ton of awesome Life Hacks for just about anything. Here are my top 5 Camping and RVing hacks I have given a try (at least once), and if they actually worked or not. Some of these may seem simple enough, and we have adopted a few of them into everyday life – such as the frozen water bottle hack. Read on for my results of the tried and tested ideas, so you don’t have to waste your time or effort. This is just a small handful of solutions, if you have a favorite please share in the comments!!

Frozen Water Bottles as Ice-packs

Hack: Freeze potable water in their original containers, any size for your cooler

Result: WIN! This is a fantastic idea! This keeps you from having to purchase and store freeze packs. Water bottles come in a wide variety of shapes and sizes from a round gallon or a square gallon. This is awesome, allowing options depending on the shape and size of your cooler. This keeps your items nice and cold. Then when you arrive, you have your drinking water handy too. Saves on space to store and transport your drinking water also. At my house, we have a dedicated handful of smaller 16 or so ounce bottles that we keep in the freezer at all times. This way they are small enough to go into any cooler and enough of them fill the space as needed. I have lucked out in that none of my bottles busted the caps while in the freezer, but just make sure there is enough room to keep it from doing so.

Pre-mix Pancake Batter in a Squeeze Bottle

Hack: Pre-mix all the ingredients for Pancake batter and transfer and store in a squeeze bottle with a lid for use at a later time.

Result: FAIL! Such a total and complete FAIL! If you have done this successfully, please share HOW! The pancake batter expands and though I only filled the squeeze bottle half way, it soon was like a science project and erupted all over the place. I’m not a quitter, so after I cleaned up the mess from transferring from the mixing bowl to the bottle, then the explosion mess – I went on to try this theory out. It continued to fail after I got all the batter in the silly bottle. The opening wasn’t large enough, and it looked like I was trying to make Pancake Picasso Art, and not the intended blobs of golden goodness. I eventually cut the opening more, and it still wasn’t a large enough for the volume of batter to flow. I ended up just taking the top off and dumping it out of the bottle neck opening. What a mess.

Pool Noodles for Everything including the Pool

Hack: Cut Pool Noodles to size to cover sharp edges and anything that someone could run into, trip over, or bonk their noggin on

Result: Brilliant! For just a buck or two, these are a must have for any outdoor trip. For RVers, these are perfect to cut to size, and make a slit in. Then snap onto the edges of a slide/pop out and even awning arms. For tent campers, these make for fantastic markers on tent strings to keep folks from tripping on them. For all outdoor activities, it’s nice to have these on hand for when you are near water for their intended uses, but also to protect any sharp edges you did or didn’t foresee having to deal with. And who can resist a pool noodle sword fight?!

Johnson & Johnson Lotion as Mosquito Repellent

Hack: Lotions from companies such as Johnson & Johnson or Avon’s’ Skin So Soft act as a Mosquito Repellent

Result: Meh – Fail. I didn’t notice a difference. Of anything the mosquitoes moved to an area that didn’t have any lotion on, such as my legs that were covered with pants. If you have a sensitivity, or age restriction and want to use this option…. You are better off just staying in side. I have found other non spray or non lotion solutions such as the bracelets and candles.

Foam Floor Tiles

Hack: Connect Foam Floor Tiles to line the tent or areas that you need a soft landing for

Result: Win – This is a great idea, even in an RV or developed camp site. In the tent, it made areas around the sleeping bag easier to get in and out of.  I put them under the bag too, just for the added comfort. Especially in a tent when walking around in socks or barefoot, it helps to avoid the annoyance of stepping on twigs or little rocks, or if you have a little one crawling and rolling around. In the RV, we have a set that I use for areas that don’t have carpet and when I need to get on the ground. That could be for any reason, a repair, loading and unloading, and the occasion when I might want to do some yoga indoors. They come in a variety of colors, and they all lock together to make a footprint for the space you need.


Hope this article helped save you some money, effort and time trying out various hacks, purchasing or better yet, not purchasing items to test out these hacks. I hope to try out a few more this summer and look forward to reporting the findings back to you. If there is a Camping Life Hack you want Erika or I to try please let us know. If you have a Camping Life Hack you know works or doesn’t work, feel free to share in the comments below!

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