Van Life Gifts for 2020

Top 10 Camper Van Gifts

Even though it feels like 2020 never really started… ho ho ho it’s almost the holidays! Whether you are searching for yourself or a loved one, we’ve compiled a list of (compact and useful) van life gifts to fit every budget. In no particular order:

1. National Parks Pass

America the Beautiful Annual Pass

For $80 (plus $5 handling) you can buy your loved one access to all of America’s national parks for a year!  Now that’s what we call a screamin’ deal. Do we have any idea what travel restrictions will be for the next 12 months? Nope. Do we think national parks need our money anyways and it’s still a rad gift? Yup. Do we think you should read more about it before you buy or travel? Totally, and you can read more about it here.

2. 12v Electric Blanket

Electric Travel Blanket

As long as the van has a 12v outlet near the bed, this gift is a game changer, especially for winter camping. Turn on the blanket before going out for an afternoon of skiing or snowshoeing, and treat yourself to pre-warmed bed when you return. Does it get any better? 

3. Insulated Curtains

Cocovan Window Covers

You may never understand how cold single pane automotive glass can be until you have to sleep next to it during the winter. Our eco friendly Window Jackets are made with 100% recycled ripstop fabric and feature two layers of high loft insulation as well as a reflective solar fabric. Mmmmm cozy.

4. Gift Cards

*ask google

They aren’t the most original gifts, but they might be the most useful. Fuel, groceries, Amazon, REI. Buy what you want, when you want, that’s why gift cards will never go out of style.

5. Harvest Hosts Membership

Harvest Hosts Annual Membership

$79 buys a year of free camping access to over 1400 wineries, breweries, museums, and farms. Once again, due to COVID-19 we have absolutely no clue about upcoming travel restrictions and policies, so do your research and be safe and kind. That being said, this seems like a really cool gift because who doesn’t want to camp at a winery? 

6. Portable Jump Starter

DBPOWER 800A Car Jump Starter

This is the perfect example of a super practical and not-so-much fun gift that any dad would be proud to give. That being said, we couldn’t recommend this more. If you are off grid and your battery dies, you’re in one serious pickle. This tiny thing can jump your van (car / boat / motorcycle / snowmobile) up to 20 times, charge your iPhone and laptop, and be an emergency light. I had two in my van and made sure one was fully charged at all times.

7. Multifunctional Camping Blanket

Voited blanket / pillow / cape / sleeping bag

4-in-1 you say? Of course, because it was designed by a full time van lifer! These awesomely photogenic blankets were designed by Jess Deal, a full time van lifer who puts the “fun” in multifunctional. Voited uses recycled fabrics, and they’re donating 5% of the sales from their ‘Save Our Lands’ blankets to Earth Justice (because the earth needs some good lawyers). Cool brand, cool product, cool people.

8. E-Reader

Kindle Paperwhite

Life in a van (or in a pandemic) can be a little slow at times, and reading is the perfect way to pass time. A Kindle is a great way to save space and fill your brain up with a bunch of adventures and knowledge.

9. Collapsable Cookware

GSI Outdoors Escape 3L Pot + Frypan

Pots and pans take up a lot of space, but this handy dandy pot with a strainer lid and fry pan takes up less than half of the space of traditional cookware. They also claim that things cook faster and it saves you fuel. Not sure on those claims, but they’re cute, useful, and save space. We dig it.

10. Super Fast Coffee

Jetboil + Jetboil coffee press

Cold mornings in a van feel a whole lot better when you have coffee, trust us. Jetboil boils water in 100 seconds and the coffee press attachment means you can have your morning cup of joe in about 3 minutes. Space and time saving, plus the gift of sweet sweet caffeine. Happy Holidays indeed!

We know that this has been a hard year for pretty much everyone, so remember that the holidays were never really about giving things. The holidays are all about giving love and spending time with those that you love. So get yourself some crayons and draw up a few really terrible handmade cards, we could all use one of those this year. Or hop on a call or a video call with someone who wants to hear from you. Write a song for someone, or sing a song with someone. Just remember that gifts are great, but love is greater. So love each other well, stay safe, and know that we will all get through this together. Happy Holidays! 

Know of any great van life gift ideas that we didn’t mention? Tell us in the comments below!