Here we are, you’ve finished your build, or taken possession of your new camper, bet you’ve spent a bit more than thought but you’ve got it! Time to bug out and get on the road…. not so fast buddy. Chances are the previous owners stripped out all the extras to put into their new camper, all the actual essentials you need to be away in the camper.
You’re going shopping!
The beauty of owning a dedicated camper or caravan is that you can leave it set up with nearly everything stowed away inside. All you have to do is pack your clothes, some bedding and check your water tanks and get your groceries on the way out of town. But this does mean you’re fitting out your home away from home with a second set of kitchenware and essentials.
As recommended in our post on STORAGE, random rattles are an absolute pain and will drive you crazy on the road. So part of your camper refurbishment will be lining drawers and cupboard with some sort of non-slip surface. A good option is simply investing in a 10 pack [or more] of quality tea towels and use these as liners. Then if you need to, you can double purpose one back to its intended use. Rolls of non-slip drawer liner are readily available at hardware, kitchenware, marine and Rv shops.
There are plenty of camping dinnerware and cutlery sets available. Kathmandu make [well, brand] everything camping and invariably the chain is on sale very other week, wait for the sales!
Here’s a basic guide of what you’ll need to need to fit out a simple kitchen for 2 people.
- Caffeine maker! It’s up to you what device but get one that makes the best coffee for you.
- Stove top Kettle
- 2 plates
- 2 bowls
- 2 cups
- 2 travel mugs
- 2 sporks [or 2 spoons and 2 forks]
- 2 knives
- 1 large sharp knife
- 1 large cooking spoon
- 1 scissors
- 1 sauce pan
- 2 cutting boards
- 1 colander – collapsible is good as can work as a serving bowl with a plate under it.
- 2 mixing bowls, ideally with lids so you can double purpose them as left-overs storage
- Bottle/can opener
- Plastic wrap
- Aluminum foil
- Lidded Tupperware/Sistema/or collapsible storage containers
- Biodegradable dish soap
- Dish brush
- Some sort of surface cleaner
- Salt and pepper shakers – and other seasonings and spices
- Bin and bin liners
- Brush and dust pan
Kitchen sorted, so what are you going to sit on or eat off? As a Recreationalist the very reason you are there is to be outside…not couped up in a metal box. You need an outdoor set up… so back to the camping store for deckchairs, outdoor table and an outdoor mat. To all go under your awning [check out our Awnings post HERE]
Be the pain in the arse at the shop, try EVERY single deck chair you can. Avoid the cheap ones that have parts susceptible to rust and blow outs, they are a false economy. Figure out what’s going to work for you, you might like the simple low riders. Be mindful of whatever chairs you get the table has to match their height, so you can comfortably eat at the table. Then how and where is this outdoor arrangement going to be stowed. This single paragraph belays the depth of the topic and the amount of time and thought you can put into this.
Check out our Gear section review on Expander Chairs HERE
An outdoor mat. Sounds like an extra, but creating a zone between your indoors and outdoors helps you stop tracking water, dirt and sand into your living space. There are mats made by the companies that make awnings. They colour and dimensionally match the awning and have eyelets for pegging down.
Another really good option is interlockable EVA foam tiles which you can pick up from hardware and camping stores.
Want something a bit more Kiwi, with a bit of flare? Check out the cool Polynesian plastic woven mats at most 2 dollar shops nationwide. They don’t have eyelets for pegs, and in all probability are made in China. They are cheap, and being woven breathe a bit so the grass underneath doesn’t die as fast as it would under a non permeable membrane.
Not feeling great about adding more plastic yo the environment? WELL! Lifestyle Gear import recycled mats they are more expensive, but the hemming is better and there are eyelets… plus they are made from 100% recycled plastics. Check them out HERE
This is the stuff you can just lock and leave in the camper until your next adventure.