Last-Minute Holiday Gift Guide for RVers
Last-Minute Holiday Gift Guide for RVers
Practical present ideas for the Winnebago owners in your life!
By: Heath & Alyssa Padgett
Every year I get a dozen texts from my parents, in-laws, and siblings: “What do you want for Christmas that can fit in your RV?”
Buying gifts for RVers can be tricky. We don’t have a ton of storage space and we tend to only carry what we need, which is why finding the perfect gift can be a bit of a dance. But don’t worry! This holiday gift guide for RVers is broken down into four categories to help you find the perfect gift for the RVer in your life, no matter their interests.
These lists were inspired by our past seven Christmases as RVers. Almost every single thing on this list has been gifted to us or by us to a friend who lives in their RV full-time. These gift ideas are practical, useful, and can all fit into a tiny home on wheels.
For the New RVer
A few practical gifts that RVers really can’t travel without! These are great for new RVers who are looking to have their RV ready for adventures as soon as possible.
Water filter: Finding clean, fresh-tasting water isn’t easy on the road. Using at least one water filter is a MUST, even though many RVs come with built-in water filters. This one attaches straight to your hose and will keep dirt and other contaminants from getting into your RV. Filters need to be replaced about every six months, so RVers could always use a new one!
Headlamp: “The most useful thing I own,” according to my husband, you cannot set up your RV at a campsite after dark without a good headlamp! Most campgrounds aren’t well lit and you don’t want to handle your sewer hoses in the dark, trust me.
Hammock: Camping is all about relaxing, is it not? We always bring this hammock along in the RV for afternoon naps, star gazing, and as a makeshift fort for kids! Bonus points if you can find a hammock with a collapsible stand for camping in areas without sturdy trees.
Outdoor Chairs: There are endless options for camping chairs. They can rock, recline, collapse, hang—and these lightweight chairs take up almost no room in the RV. But my favorite outdoor chair is this one for our one-year-old! It’s my go-to gift for RV parents with little ones.
Camera: To capture every beautiful moment of life on the road, you’ll want a great camera. We love the tiny Canon G7X for both video and photos of adventures. Camera gadgets like a crane (great for YouTube) or a small tripod are great accessories, too!
Outdoor rug: The easiest way to avoid sitting outside in the dirt, mud, or gravel is an outdoor rug. We love this reversible one that rolls up easily and can be staked to the ground.
New RVer Basics: For the new RVer, there’s a whole host of things you need before your first road trip. A drinking water hose, sewer hose, water pressure regulator, electrical adapters—you can’t go wrong with buying something the RV really needs. We have a full list of RV basics here and many of them are small enough to stick into a stocking!
For more beginner RVer gear, check out this article with additional helpful accessories.
Decor: Buying decor for a friend can always be hit or miss. But did you know Winnebago actually has lists of ideas curated by a professional interior designer to help decorate your RV based on your style? We used them to decorate our Forza when we picked it up last Christmas! Just choose the preferred design style to shop ideas:
We loved the ‘Up North’ list, inspired by cozy cabin vibes. Be sure to also pick up some command strips, which work great for hanging anything on RV walls and are easy to remove.
For the Remote Worker
More people than ever are opting to work from their RV while traveling the country. After running our business on the road for much of the past seven years, I know all of these items make working full-time from the RV possible and much, much easier!
Cell Booster: To stay connected on the road, many RVers rely on cellular data. And to have enough signal to stream video calls, a cell booster is a must for working on the road. We love this one for under $50.
WiFi Extender: We LOVE the King WifiMax on our Winnebago Forza. It repeats and extends RV park WiFi into the RV so we can use public WiFi easily. If it isn’t already built into your Winnebago, this is a necessary boost for connecting to public WiFi.
A Mobile Workspace: Most RVs don’t come with a dedicated office space. Well, except for ours! To make a comfortable home office in an RV, little things like a laptop stand can make a dinette into a perfect home office. Add a wireless mouse, wireless keyboard, and some wireless headphones and you’re in business.
Back support pillow: Working from a couch or dinette for many hours a day can be tough on your back, which makes a small back support pillow an easy, but life-saving gift for remote workers! Bonus points if you can find a pillowcase for it to match the RV decor.
Kindle: When we started RVing, I told my husband all I wanted to do in my free time was read books on the beach. But you can only pack so many books in an RV! We both switched over to the Kindle Paperwhite (which doesn’t hurt your eyes like a phone screen can) and haven’t looked back since.
For the RV Chef
Yes, RV kitchens can be small. But that doesn’t stop us from cooking most of our meals from our home on wheels! This gear helps too.
Stainless steel coffee mugs: After breaking a few ceramic mugs, we switched to all stainless steel. And as a bonus, stainless steel insulated mugs will keep your drinks warmer for longer.
Unbreakable wine glasses: Maybe I’m just clumsy, but most RVers I know opt for something other than a glass for their happy-hour wine. Stainless steel or plastic wine glasses are a great way to enjoy wine on the road without the stress of shattering.
Shatterproof dishware: Okay there’s a little bit of a theme here. But in addition to being really difficult to break, I love Corelle dishes because they are lightweight and really easy to clean.
Grill: For the RVer who loves to cook in the great outdoors, a small, portable grill is a perfect gift! We love the Blackstone Griddle, so we can grill bacon and pancakes in the morning. But any propane grill is great on the road, especially if your RV has a dedicated propane hook-up for grilling.
And you can’t forget the accessories! A grill table, grill cover, spatulas, connection hoses—everything you need to start your next meal. Plus, a charcoal chimney to accompany a charcoal grill or tiny propane canisters to make your gas grill more mobile.
Nesting bowls: Make the most of your limited cabinet space with bowls that nest together. We love these stainless steel mixing bowls for everything from marinating meats, mixing up cookie dough, or enjoying a bowl of popcorn. Stainless steel makes it really easy to clean and the silicone base keeps these bowls from sliding around your cabinets or fridge, too. Or you can grab a full set that includes silicone nesting measuring cups and spoons for the baker!
For the Adventurer
Hiking, biking, kayaking, fishing, hunting—we all love going on outdoor adventures in our RV. It’s why we bought them in the first place! Here’s some great gear for the traveling adventurer in your life:
Hiking boots: One of my favorite and most used Christmas gifts ever! For the RVer who loves hiking around the country, good waterproof hiking boots are a must. (Tall, waterproof fishing boots are great for the fisherman in your life, too!)
Waterproof/resistant jacket: Especially when hiking in the mountains in the west, hikers always like to have a light jacket on hand. We like this one that zips up into a small bag and can be tossed into a backpack.
Socks: Is it ridiculous that this is what I most want in my stocking this year? Hikers know the value of a good pair of socks to keep your feet warm and dry no matter where you’re hiking. So, while you hated this gift as a kid, it’s incredibly useful for adventurous RVers. Plus, a good set of hiking socks can easily run $20, which makes it a great stocking stuffer.
Garmin: For backpackers and hikers attempting longer trails, a Garmin GPS handheld satellite communicator is the best way to stay in contact with friends and family. This is a way to call for help if there is an injury, get a tow if your RV gets stuck and you don’t have cell service, and let authorities know your location for rescue.
Inflatable Kayaks: Hard-bodied kayaks can be difficult to bring in the RV—especially if you’re bringing more than one. This is why we’ve always opted for inflatable kayaks for water adventures. They only take a few minutes to inflate, they store easily, and they are much lighter than a traditional kayak. (Read tips for using them from fellow GoLifers here).
Lightweight backpack: Adventurers need a good place to store water, snacks, a jacket, first aid, and anything else they might be carrying along. We use a hiking backpack like this that folds into itself to save room in the RV.
Hiking Poles: For the serious hiker, lightweight collapsible poles can make longer or more strenuous hikes doable.
Lightweight fishing shirts: While they market to fishers, fishing shirts often have SPF in them to protect your skin from UV rays, making them great sun protection no matter how you’re adventuring. My husband wears his anytime we are in the sun (and wears it so often he wants more for Christmas this year!).
Cooler or portable fridge: For fishers and hunters, a small cooler or even a portable fridge can make all-day adventures easier. We’re big fans of the Dometic coolers that don’t require an extra trip to the store for ice!
Fitness Tracker: A fitness tracking watch or band can track your workouts and your heart rate, but the GPS tracker inside can also catalog your hikes and bike rides. Many will connect with your phone so you can get notifications or play music without keeping your phone on you all the time. Plus, some fitness trackers even have fall detection technology and can alert police if you crash on your bike or take a hard fall.
Mountain Bike: Bikes sales went through the roof in 2020, so it isn’t so easy to find mountain bikes right now. But for the adventurous RVer, a good mountain bike or even an electric bike is a great way to explore longer trails. Just don’t forget a helmet!
Buying a gift for an RVer can be a daunting task. We hope this list of useful gifts helps you find something that fits easily into your RVer’s tiny home. And when in doubt, gift cards to a gas station is always a crowd pleaser or check out these passes and memberships for RVers (perfect if you want to send an e-gift)!