Must-Have Gear and Equipment for Comfortable Van Life

Living the van life is a unique blend of freedom, simplicity, and adventure.

However, to make the most of your journey, it’s crucial to have the right gear and equipment for van living.

This guide will walk you through the must have items that will make your van life experience comfortable, safe, and efficient.

Creating Your Home on Wheels

Your van is not just a mode of transportation; it’s your home on wheels, and having the right gear can transform it into a cosy and functional living space.

Here are some van life must-have items to consider if you want to live off grid:

Kitchen Essentials for Van Life

Camp Stove

A camp stove or induction hob is a must for van life.

The Eureka Ignite Plus is a fantastic option with an auto-ignition button, excellent simmer capabilities, and enough room for large pans.

Cooking Table

Consider investing in a portable cooking table like the GCI Outdoor Slim-Fold Cook Station to make outdoor cooking more comfortable and enjoyable.

Nesting Cook Set

A nesting cook set is an efficient way to save space in your van kitchen.

The Stanley Even-Heat Camp Pro Cook Set is compact and includes a pot, frying pan, saucepan, and utensils.

Coffee Maker

You don’t have to compromise on good coffee while on the road.

The Aeropress Go Travel Coffee Press is a compact and durable coffee maker that can deliver excellent coffee wherever you are.

Water Filtration System

Clean water is crucial, and a water filtration system like the Clearsource RV Water Filter can ensure safe drinking water, even when filling up from public sources.

Small Cooler

A small cooler like the RTIC Soft Pack Cooler is perfect for keeping snacks and drinks cool during your van life adventures.

Everyday Van Living Essentials

Durable Blanket

A durable blanket like the Rumpl Blanket is a must-have for those chilly nights at camp.

It’s machine-washable and perfect for van life, especially if you have pets.

Portable Shower

The Geyser Systems w/ Heater is ideal for those who don’t have a permanent shower in their van.

This system uses less than a gallon of water and has an internal hot water heater.

Portable Power Station

A portable power station like the EcoFlow RIVER Pro is a practical and efficient way to power your electronics.

It charges quickly and can serve as a reliable backup power source.

Emergency Toilet

A portable toilet like the Cleanwaste Go Anywhere Foldable Toilet is essential for those times when using outdoor facilities isn’t possible or appropriate.

Van Gear for Outdoor Living

Camp Chair

The Helinox Sunset Chair is a comfortable and lightweight camp chair that is perfect for relaxing outside your van.

It has a supportive high back and packs down for easy storage.

Outdoor Mat

An outdoor mat like the CGEAR Sand-Free Mat is helpful in keeping dirt, dust, and sand out of your van.

It’s more packable than a traditional rug and filters out fine sand and dirt.

Outdoor Table

An outdoor table like the REI Co-op Camp Roll Table is a great multi-purpose item.

It’s adjustable, easily stored, and provides a convenient surface for cooking, eating, or playing games.


An awning like the MoonShade Portable Awning is crucial for hot, sunny places.

It’s portable, can be set up on your side or back doors, and provides instant shade.

String Lights

Create some ambience at your camp with MPOWERD Luci Solar String Lights.

They’re solar-powered, brighten up your camp, and can be charged by the sun or a USB.

Portable Fire Pit

A portable fire pit like the LavaBox allows you to enjoy a safe campfire.

It’s compact, easy to clean, and perfect for safe campfires all year round.

Van Life Clothing Essentials

Hiking Boots

Reliable hiking boots like the Oboz Sypes Low Waterproof Hiking Shoes are essential for any van life adventure.

They’re lightweight, breathable, and perfect for all types of terrain.


Versatile and durable sandals like the Teva Universal Trail Sandals are a must-have for van life.

They’re perfect for hiking, water sports, and easily slipping on and off.

Packing Cubes

Packing cubes like the REI Co-op Packing Cube Set are essential for staying organised in your van.

They can keep your clothes neatly stored and easy to find.

Sun Hat

Protect yourself from the sun and keep your hair out of the way with a durable sun hat like the Wallaroo Sedona Hat.

Cosy Layers

Stay warm on chilly nights with cosy layers like the Selk ‘Bag Wearable Sleeping Bag.

It’s perfect for those who run cold and want to stay cosy at camp.

Outdoor Slippers

Outdoor slippers like the REI Co-op Camp Dreamer Booties provide comfort and warmth.

They’re perfect for walking around at night or during chilly mornings.

Must-Have Recovery & Safety Gear

Recovery Boards

Recovery boards like the Max Trax are essential for off-road adventures.

They can help you get out of a tricky situation if you get stuck in sand or mud.

Fire Extinguisher

A fire extinguisher like the one from First Alert is a crucial safety item.

It’s compact, affordable, and a must-have for any van life safety kit.

Carbon Monoxide Detector

Carbon monoxide is a silent killer, and a detector like the one from Kidde can save your life.

It’s battery-operated and will alert you if deadly carbon monoxide is present.

Hydraulic Car Jack

A hydraulic car jack like the Pro-Lift is an essential tool for dealing with flat tires.

It’s compact and can easily lift your van off the ground.


This comprehensive list of van life gear and equipment should help you prepare for your journey.

Remember, the aim is not to bring everything you own, but to thoughtfully select items that serve multiple purposes and enhance your van life experience.

Enjoy the freedom, simplicity, and adventure of your van life journey with these essentials in tow.

So, gear up, hit the open road, and let your van take you on a journey of a lifetime.

Happy travels!


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