After I was packing up my first Sprinter Van in 2016 for my first massive journey, I struggled with determining what sort of van life gear I actually wanted to convey with me on the highway. It’s really easy to overpack when you find yourself dwelling in a small area, and in case you aren’t utilizing one thing not less than as soon as every week, it’s probably not well worth the valuable area that it takes up.
7 years and three Sprinter vans later, I’ve actually acquired my gear and group dialed. On this weblog submit, I share one of the best van life gear I’ve gotten from REI that I nonetheless use on the highway.
Sponsored by REI Co-op
REI Co-op is our favourite outside gear retailer and a long-time supporter of our work right here at Bearfoot Concept. We recognize their 1-year return coverage, their Member-only coupons, and the truth that REI Members obtain 10% again on their purchases yearly. We solely suggest merchandise we actually love and suppose you’ll love too.
Van Life Kitchen Gear
Eureka Ignite Plus 2-Burner Camp Range
Despite the fact that I’ve a small induction range within the van, I favor to outside as a lot as potential to have extra cooking area, reduce energy consumption, and keep away from overpowering meals smells within the van.
I’ve had the Eureka Ignite Plus 2-Burner Camp Range for a number of years and extremely suggest it. It has superior fine-tune temperature management, is extraordinarily fast to arrange, suits two 12″ pans, and straightforward to wash.
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YETI Rambler Mug
An insulated vacuum mug just like the YETI Rambler Mug is a must have van life merchandise for these early mornings on the highway. It should hold your espresso scorching for hours, forestall it from spilling in your sprint, and prevent from utilizing disposable cups when getting your morning repair on the fuel station.
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AeroPress Go Journey Espresso Press
Discovering the proper espresso maker for van life generally is a problem – your conventional espresso maker might be too cumbersome and a glass French Press is a recipe for catastrophe. That’s why I like the AeroPress Go Journey Espresso Press. It’s tremendous compact, light-weight, and straightforward to make use of, making it the proper addition to your van life setup.
The AeroPress Go comes with every part you could make a scrumptious cup of espresso, together with a scoop, stirrer, and filters, all of which match neatly contained in the press for straightforward storage. Plus, it’s comprised of sturdy supplies, so it will possibly face up to the wear and tear and tear of life on the highway.
Dr. Bronner’s Gentle Liquid Cleaning soap
Do you know you should utilize Dr. Bronner’s for dishes? Regular dish cleaning soap incorporates loads of nasty chemical substances that may hurt crops and animals the place you’re tenting.
We use Dr. Bronner’s Gentle Liquid Cleaning soap for our dishes and located that it cleans simply in addition to Daybreak. And having physique cleaning soap that doubles as dish cleaning soap means you solely have to hold one cleaning soap bottle within the van.
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Van Life Furnishings & Equipment
Helinox Sundown Chair
A stable camp chair is a should for van life, and the Helinox Sundown Chair has been our favourite for a few years. I like how supportive they’re and the excessive again permits you to actually sit again and loosen up, which is good in comparison with among the chairs on the market with decrease backs.
At lower than 3 ½ kilos, it’s very light-weight and packable. The opposite factor I like is that even when it’s put collectively, it’s not too cumbersome and we will retailer two of them on our mattress in chair kind. Meaning we by no means actually need to pack them down after we are shifting campsites and our chair is all the time able to go.
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GCI Outside Compact Camp Desk
Should you planning on doing a bunch of off-grid tenting, then a lot of the campsites you keep at received’t have a picnic desk. This GCI Outside Compact Camp Desk is a cinch to arrange, breaks down flat, and provides you a spot to place some appetizers and a drink whilst you benefit from the sundown.
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I’ve been utilizing Rumpl Blankets since I acquired my first Sprinter Van again in 2015, and I’m totally satisfied they’re one of the best van life blanket on the market. The two-person authentic puffy may be very heat and is barely bigger than a queen measurement.
It spans the width of a Sprinter Van, so that you received’t be preventing together with your touring companion for covers. They arrive in a bunch of vibrant colours, however even higher, they’re mechanically cleanable and the fabric is ideal for many who have a canine that sheds. The canine hair doesn’t stick and you may shortly give the blanket a great shake exterior for a fast clear in between washes.
EcoFlow RIVER Professional Transportable Energy Station
The EcoFlow RIVER Professional is a compact moveable energy station that gives a dependable and environment friendly supply of energy for van lifers. With 720Wh capability and a number of charging ports – together with USB, USB-C, AC, and DC – you possibly can energy every part out of your laptop computer to your roof fan. BFT group member Courtney makes use of the RIVER Professional in her van to cost all electronics and it makes a fantastic backup energy supply even when you’ve got home batteries.
The RIVER Professional is extremely straightforward to make use of and may be charged utilizing photo voltaic panels, a cigarette outlet whereas driving, or a wall outlet. What units the EcoFlow other than different energy stations is that it will possibly cost from 0-80% in 1 hour if plugged right into a wall outlet – so in a pinch, you possibly can simply recharge at a espresso store very quickly!
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Van Life Clothes at REI
REI Co-op Expandable Packing Dice Set
Packing cubes are a straightforward technique to keep organized when you find yourself dwelling in a van. In my Sprinter Van, Ryan and I every have two of those REI Coop Expandable packing dice units in numerous colours for our clothes. Pants go in a single massive dice, shirts in one other. Underwear, bras, and socks go within the small cubes. Get the gist?
Packing cubes imply every time you could seize a brand new pair of socks, you aren’t digging by means of an enormous messy duffel bag or drawer. One other massive benefit is when you find yourself packing up your van for the primary time, the packing cubes provide help to set limits for the quantity of garments you will convey. I like that they’ve handles so if you’re staying with household and pals, you possibly can simply carry them into the home.
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Patagonia Nano Puff Jacket
Having a packable, light-weight, but heat jacket is a should for van life. I’ve worn Patagonia’s Nano Puff jacket for years and love how versatile it’s for climbing, lounging at camp, and on a regular basis put on. It packs down tremendous small so it doesn’t take up a ton of room in your van, both.
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Selk’Bag Wearable Sleeping Bag
The Selk’bag wearable sleeping bag is a must have for van life as a result of it gives each heat and mobility, permitting you to remain comfy and comfortable whereas additionally with the ability to transfer round freely. It’s good for these chilly nights across the campfire and it packs down sufficiently small to simply stash away whenever you don’t want it.
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Van Life Toilet & Hygiene Staples
Cleanwaste Go Wherever Transportable Rest room
Should you’re the form of van lifer that wish to arrange store for a couple of days in a single location, this Cleanwaste Go Wherever Transportable Rest room is an alternate resolution for going #2. It’s a foldable bathroom that you would be able to arrange behind a bush, and it makes use of a easy wag-bag system to gather waste. When you’re again on the highway, you possibly can merely throw the baggage into the trash, fairly than having to search for a dump to empty your moveable bathroom.
By finishing up your waste, you possibly can decrease your affect on high-use areas. The wag luggage are form of costly, so it’s not an on a regular basis resolution….however we feature this in our van simply in case.
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REI Co-op Fast Dry Multi Towels
It doesn’t matter what else you pack in your van, quick-dry towels are a must have piece of van life gear. Now we have 5 or 6 of them stashed all through the van in numerous sizes. We use them to dry dishes, our canine, our our bodies, and to stash in our day packs for lake hikes.
They don’t get a cool musty scent like common towels, and if you could clear them, you possibly can rinse them with a bit Dr. Bronner’s cleaning soap and they’re pretty much as good as new. Additionally they fold actually small, so that they don’t take up a bunch of room like a cumbersome seaside towel.
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No Rinse Bathing Wipes
No bathe, no downside. I had an indoor bathe in my first Sprinter Van, however I discovered I not often used it…so I scrapped the indoor bathe in my second and third vans.
At the least as soon as every week, we discover ourselves at a campground with scorching showers and swimming in lakes and rivers in between retains the grime at bay, however these No Rinse Bathing Wipes are additionally a great van life staple to have round for in-between showers. They’re light in your pores and skin whereas wiping away the grime and dirt, making you are feeling simply contemporary sufficient whenever you’ve gone a couple of days and not using a bathe.
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Geyser Techniques Transportable Bathe w/ Heater
Should you don’t have a everlasting bathe arrange in your van however need the luxurious of scorching water waters, look no additional than Geyser Techniques Transportable Bathe w/ Heater. BFT group member Courtney has used the Geyser for over a yr and loves how versatile and straightforward to make use of it’s.
It may be used for quite a lot of functions, from washing dishes to rinsing off gear to bathing your self or your pets. And with an inner scorching water heater, you don’t want to fret about chilly showers!
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Different Van Life Favorites at REI
Garmin InReach Mini 2
Probably the greatest elements of van life is placing your mobile phone away and going to areas distant from service. The one subject with that’s what when you’ve got an emergency – whether or not that be a mechanical breakdown or a medical emergency – and your mobile phone doesn’t work?
My accomplice Ryan is a Sort 1 Diabetic, so being ready after we are within the van or climbing is all the time one thing that’s on my thoughts. Considered one of our most vital items of van life gear is a Garmin inReach Mini 2. It permits us to ship customized textual content messages regardless of the place we’re or to name for medical assist if we’re in a severe state of affairs. It additionally has a GPS and a few useful navigation instruments for when your navigation apps in your cellphone received’t load.
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Journey Medical Kits Mountain Collection Hiker Medical Equipment
Together with the Garmin InReach, having a fundamental first support equipment in your van is vital. The Journey Medical Kits Mountain Collection Hiker Medical Equipment is an efficient place to begin with fundamental meds, blister remedies, and wound dressings. It additionally comes with a pocket information for fundamental wilderness first support.
Whereas this equipment most likely received’t save your life, it may get you thru a pinch till you drive your van again to civilization. As well as, it’s all the time a good suggestion to complement your store-bought first support equipment with something that you simply may want to your private medical wants.
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America The Stunning Annual Park Move
An America the Stunning Nationwide Park Move permits you to entry to over 2,000 federal recreation websites, together with nationwide parks, forests, wildlife refuges, and extra, making it a wonderful benefit for van lifers who like to discover and spend time in nature.
Moreover, the go can prevent some huge cash in entrance and tenting charges, which may add up shortly in case you’re visiting a number of parks. The go is legitimate for one yr, so in case you plan to go to 3 or extra Parks, this go is one of the best deal.
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Gerber E-Instrument Folding Spade
Instruments for Leaving No Hint whenever you go to the toilet are important items of van life gear. I’ve not had a everlasting bathroom put in in my final 2 vans, so this begs the query, the place do you go #2?
In an effort to ensure you are following Depart No Hint when pooping exterior, you could dig a cathole utilizing a trowel (a shovel) and pack out any used bathroom paper. I just like the Gerber E-Instrument Folding Spade as a result of it will possibly double as a shovel for digging your self out in case you get caught or placing out campfires. Because it folds down, it’s straightforward to retailer in your van.
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Nationwide Geographic Street Atlas Journey Version
Google Maps tells you the quickest technique to your vacation spot, however in case you’re trying to take the scenic route, it’s good to have a paper atlas in your van. This Nationwide Geographic Street Atlas reveals facet roads, public lands, tenting, and different websites of curiosity to van lifers and is one other good device to have when you find yourself out of cell service.
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What are your favourite van life gear must-haves? Or what questions do you’ve got about van gear? Depart a remark beneath and tell us!