Ah, the holidays. A time when full-time RVers grin with gratitude while unwrapping bulky sweaters, heavy kitchen appliances and giant tins of popcorn gifted by well-intentioned friends and family – all the while thinking about how the heck that stuff will fit inside the RV.
If this sounds like your holiday festivities, how about giving an early nudge to your loved ones to let them know about these great space-saving camping gadgets for full-time RVers?
Go Ice Free!
Ice can sometimes be a luxury for full-timers without an on-board automatic ice maker. But forget the bulky ice machines made just for RVers, the Tilt Chilling Spheres do a far better job without watering down your drinks. Made with 100 percent mirrored, seamless stainless steel and filled with medical grade non-toxic freezer gel, these little chillers freeze in just 2-3 hours and will keep any food or drink cold for up to 45 minutes. Another bonus: they take up far less room than a bag of ice. Just $34.99 for a set of two. Available at http://soireehome.com.
Better than a Hide a Key
The Hitch Safe by Corporate Travel Safety is a tiny safe that looks like a normal hitch plug cover but does so much more than just hide your keys. You’ll be able to fit emergency credit cards, cash, even prescriptions. The sold steel, rustproof vault slides into a 2” hitch receiver and is secured with two bolt retaining bars inside the hitch cover. Anyone can install it and with over 10,000 possible lock combinations you can choose, this device is far safer than any magnetic hide-a-key box that can fall off on the highway with the slightest bump. Cost: $54.95, available at CorporateTravelSafety.com.
Smores without the Smoke
My husband would put this in the “unnecessary crap” category but I need chocolate fixes more than he does. Plus, I don’t particularly enjoy stinking up our home with campfire aroma. The Tabletop Smores Maker at Plow and Hearth.com is a hassle-free way to enjoy smores without the smoky mess of a campfire. The kitschy little campfire is lit with sterno fuel and includes 4 sticks for toasting and 4 plates. At $24.95, this is a bargain way to enjoy smores anywhere.
Go Green with DIY Fizzy Water
Carbonated beverage makers are all the rage, but the SodaStation® Hand-Held Carbonated Soda Maker by Hamilton Beach is one of the only ones that come in a compact, space saving package. I own the previous version of this, called the Fizzini, and can vouch that it makes excellent sparkling water for cocktails, soda, energy drinks and more. The best part is this little carbonation maker will fit inside even the smallest RV galley drawer. Another reason to love it: unlike competing carbonation makers, this one uses zero electricity and non-proprietary, generic 8 gram CO2 cartridges that you can find on Amazon and cost very little when purchased in quantities of 30 or more.
RV gadgets are getting better as people become more aware of the practicality of living lightly in your home and on the planet. If you have favorite RVing gadgets that you think full-timers would love as gifts, do tell!
Rene Agredano and her husband, Jim Nelson, became full-time RVers in 2007 and have been touring the country ever since. In her blog, Rene chronicles the ins and outs of the full-timing life and brings readers along to meet the fascinating people and amazing places they visit on the road. Her road trip adventures are chronicled in her blog at LiveWorkDream.com.