10 Tips to Help Beginners Save Time Packing & Unpacking Camping Equipment

Camping, Packing & Organizing -

10 Tips to Help Beginners Save Time Packing & Unpacking Camping Equipment

Are you looking for a way to spend quality time with your family and friends? If so, you may be thinking about going on a camping trip. This is one of the best ways to disconnect from the hustle and bustle of the world around you. At the same time, you need to think carefully when you start packing and unpacking, otherwise you could spend more time with your packing supplies than you do with the people going on the trip. Take a look at the important tips below and invest in some camping equipment to make the process easier.

1. Always Have a Checklist 

The most important thing you need to remember during the packing process is to have a checklist. If you can stay organized, the process will get easier. Even though you may think you can remember everything in your head, this is probably not the best way to go about packing for a camping trip. You need to include all the important items on your checklist. This includes camping cooking gear, food, clothing, sleeping gear, and even your tent. That way, when it’s time to start packing, all you have to do is use the checklist.


You may also want to create separate checklists for your family members. You should not be responsible for remembering everything for your family. Help your kids develop a checklist in advance of the camping trip. Then, tell them it’s their responsibility to get their stuff packed up. This will teach your kids the importance of responsibility and make life easier for you.  

2. Roll Your Clothes 

If you’re having a difficult time making room for everything on your packing list, then you might want to consider rolling your clothes. Even though most people fold their clothes when they pack, you’ll create much more room if you roll your clothes instead. That way, you can make room for more essential items, and you won’t need as big of a pack, so won't feel as cramped in the car when you’re heading to the campsite. 

3. Take Advantage of Labels

As you go through the packing process, everything is going to look the same. You’re not going to remember what camping equipment you put in what box. This is where you can take advantage of labels. You don't have to go out and buy an expensive label maker. All you need to do is get a piece of tape, put it on the box, and write the contents on the tape. It’ll save you time when you start unpacking at the camping site and you’ll have an easier time deciding where to start.

4. Use a Camping Box

One of the best things you can do for your packing and unpacking sanity is use containers. Containers are crucial for your camping organization. You may be thinking about tossing everything in a Ziplock bag, but this is not going to be good enough. Ziploc bags tear easily, and you may end up with the contents of the bag all over your car. Worse, an animal may break into those bags and take away some of the most important items. Instead, make sure you have plenty of clear durable containers that you can use to keep your items organized and protected.

Another great resource is the Out-In-About Box™, a great product that can make transportation and setup of your camping equipment easier.

It’s lightweight yet durable, constructed from stainless aluminum and has rubber grip handles for easy carrying. It also comes with detailed instructions and it’s easy to assemble.

  • Perfect for camping, tailgating, RVing, and other outdoor activities
  • Have all your gear in one place, ready to go
  • Door acts as table when open
  • Sits below bed rails on full-size trucks
  • Easy do-it-yourself assembly
  • Comes with detailed instructions
  • Maximizing time with nature, family, and friends

The Out-In-About Box™ is a must for simple and compact camping organization for all your supplies and equipment.

5. Protect Your Most Important Items

Make sure you protect your most important items when you go camping. For example, you need to have a weather barrier that will protect your food from harm. That way, you don't have to worry about it spoiling. Are you planning on bringing a bunch of sports equipment with you? If so, you need something that can protect these items from harm as well. For example, there are a lot of camping sites that have disc golf courses. You need to make sure you bring something that can protect your disc golf basket from harm. That’s where this handy sleeve from Renlicon can be helpful. Make sure you protect the items that you bring with you on the camping trip.  

6. Take Advantage of a Carrier Rack 

Investing in a carrier rack that will attach to the roof of your vehicle will help you have an easier time transporting the largest items. It will also keep the peace in the car and prevent your kids from fighting in the back seat because there isn’t enough room. If you want to create more room in your vehicle, then use a carrier rack that will safely store your items on the roof. Be sure to find a carrier rack that will fit on the roof of your vehicle.

7.  Practice Setting Up Camp at Home

Doing a trial run at home can help alleviate any potential problems and anxiety. Practice setting up your tent, preferably in the yard if you can. Most tents come with setup instructions and YouTube is also a helpful resource.

Check any lanterns you’re bringing to make sure they’re working. Be sure to do this at night because you won’t be able to see the true brightness during the day. Test your batteries ahead of time and bring extras.

If you’ll be bringing a camping stove that uses propane, practice cooking on it ahead of time so you have a good feel for hooking up the propane tank and how quickly the stove will cook food. Also, be sure you have enough propane!

If you want to be extra prepared and sure that you’re covering all your camping organization needs, stage an at-home campout, either inside or outside, and treat it like the real thing – sleeping in your tent and sleeping bag, cooking on your stove, using your lanterns – and no going inside to use the bathroom!

8. Keep the Process as Simple as Possible

When in doubt, keep the process as simple as possible. You’re probably thinking that you may forget something important, but one of the best parts of going camping is that you don’t have to take everything with you. If you keep it simple, you’ll have more fun. Going camping is about surviving on the basics. You don't need to pack up your entire house, especially if you’re only going for the weekend. Think carefully before you add an item to your camping equipment.

9.  Arrive in the Daylight

If you’re new to camping and don’t have your set-up process figured out yet, make sure you arrive to your campsite while the sun is still up. Setting up camp in the dark makes it much harder. On average, give yourself about 60 minutes to unload, set up, and organize your campsite.

10.  Clean, Wash, and Organize Camping Equipment

Once you return from your camping trip, you’ll be tempted to toss everything in the garage and promise yourself you’ll put it away later. Resist the temptation! Unload you camping equipment, clean it, wash anything that needs it, and then organize it in your clear camping containers or Out-In-About Box™ so that it’s ready to go for next time. When it comes time for that next camping trip, as you survey your camping equipment, checklist in hand, you’ll be so glad you did.


These are a few of the most important tips to keep in mind as you get ready for a camping trip. While it may seem tedious or even stressful to go through these steps, it will make packing and unpacking your camping equipmentmuch easier and ultimately save you time. Once you get to your campsite, you’ll want every second you can get to enjoy the great outdoors.

Download are free Essential Camping Checklist so you’re organized and ready when you reach the campsite, making your outdoor recreation easy, fun, and memorable.


essential camping checklist