12 Useful Pop-Up Camping Tips For First Time Pop-Up Campers

Rilor Staff
Update: April 12, 2021
Table of Contents

Pop-up camping is a great way to travel. It's economical, environmentally friendly, and flexible. It's like hotel hopping without leaving your home. 

But of course, we are all aware that these pop-up campers are not as big as your standard motorhomes. They fall in between RVs and tents. While they provide convenient advantages, there are still some things that you need to do to ensure the overall success of the trip. 

For many experienced pop-up campers, the following tips should be followed religiously.

Pop-Up Camping Tips

Tip 1: Get The Right Pop-Up Trailer

Pop-up trailers, also known as camping trailers, are small portable travel trailers that are made for camping. There are several different kinds of pop-up trailers, such as travel trailers, toy haulers, and folding camping trailers. They are also referred to by other names such as pop-up campers, collapsible campers, folding camping trailers, and folding campers.

So what makes a pop-up trailer great? Well, it should have the basic amenities. It should contain a shower, toilet, and air conditioning unit. You may want to install heaters, but they will add to the cost of operating the trailer. 

Don't buy a camper that has leaks and signs of water damages. You don't want to be drenched in water if precipitation falls in. Always inspect the structural integrity of the camper. Don't take for granted any hints of deterioration. That would certainly manifest once you are camping already. 

Tip 2: Mind The Space 

It is quite challenging to manage the space of a pop-up camper. After all, they can only hold a limited volume or weight.

On average, a pop-up camper is capable of holding up to 300 to 600 pounds of weight. Hence, you may only want to bring in your essential clothing and amenities. 

Of course, just like backpacking and camping, you don't need to bring all things that come to your mind when doing a pop-up. Just prioritize the essentials. Of course, I recommend that you leave your expensive and luxury items behind the safety of your home. 

Toiletries should be limited, too. If you want to take photos, bring a smartphone instead. You don't need to bring a point-and-shoot or a professional DSLR camera. 

Tip 3: Have A Camping Checklist

The first time I went camping, there were lots of things I needed to consider on my camping checklist. One of the most important factors is to remember to bring all the required camping items. You do not want to be caught in a situation where you need an item you do not have. There are many other essential factors that you should add to your camping checklists, such as first-aid supplies, food supplies, firewood, campground rules, and more.

A well-designed checklist can help you make sure you have everything you need and reduce the stress of forgetting something vital on your trip.

Tip 4: Park Your Camper In A Stable Ground

You don't want to park where the ground is uneven. Otherwise, it could pose inconveniences and damages to your camper. Specifically, camping in these places can tilt your pop-up camper. It could disorient the placement of your appliances and other camping amenities. 

Stability is a key factor when choosing a place to set up a camper or other outdoor shelter that you are going to live in. If your ground is too soft, muddy, or uneven, you will be uncomfortable during your stay. The ground should be firm enough to support your camper so that it does not sink too far into the ground. If it is too soft, you will have a hard time setting up your shelter and will find yourself tripping over things.

Tip 5: Follow The Leave-No-Trace Principle

Leave no trace. It's a mantra preached by hikers, campers, and naturalists, and for a good reason. It's the principle that guides us to live more responsibly in the wild and to take care of our surroundings so that we can enjoy nature for years to come. What is a leave-no-trace principle?

A leave-no-trace principle is an ethical guideline to minimize the negative impacts that you and your group members can make while in the backcountry. The seven principles are as follows:

  • Plan ahead and prepare, travel and camp on durable surfaces.
  • Dispose of waste properly.
  • Leave what you find.
  • Minimize campfire impacts.
  • Respect wildlife.
  • Be considerate of other visitors.

Tip 6: Plan Your Meals

Pop-up camping presents a different set of challenges than preparing food at home. While out in the wild, you have to deal with less-than-ideal cooking surfaces, unpredictable weather, and limited refrigeration. As such, meal planning is an integral part of the overall camping experience. 

Still, you want to have a wide variety of foods to choose from, some of which are quick and easy to prepare, others that will require a little more effort. You can always plan your meals in advance to ensure that you know what to cook, the ingredients you should bring, and the right cooking tools you need.

Interestingly, many pop-up campers recommend that you should just pre-make your food. In this way, you will not require yourself to bring many cooking tools, utensils, and food ingredients, which could take up the space of your camper.

Tip 7: Dry Your Pop-Up Camper After Rain

It is common for pop-up campers to develop mold and mildew after a night of rain. The same thing happens when you camp in an area where it is highly humid. To prevent this sticky predicament from happening, you have to make sure that the awning and canvas of your camper are dry. 

Tip 8: Do Fun Camping Activities

The thought of spending a night in a pop-up camper isn't everyone's idea of a good time, but if you think about it, this is a really easy and cheap way to have a lot of fun! You can take your time to find the perfect campsite, and after a long day of hiking, canoeing, or biking, you'll be glad to have a place to rest your head and enjoy the quiet of the wilderness. 

Surely enough, your options to have fun are not limited to these activities. There are a lot of fascinating and delightful things that you and your family can do while you are off-the-grid. In fact, the activities that you can do are limited to your preferences!

Tip 9: Make Your First Pop-Up Camping Trip Close To Home

Pop-up camping is an activity that can be enjoyed by anyone, regardless of your level of experience. While it may seem like a daunting activity to try for the first time, you can make it easy on yourself by camping close to home.

Since the majority of your time in the camper will be spent outside, you will want to make sure you have an area that has nice weather and is close to home. Make sure to bring an extra sleeping bag with you if you want to sleep outside. Always make sure to have a back-up plan in case the weather does not cooperate. 

Camping close to your home will let you have a good time. It will eliminate the need for you to travel long-distances (which is an exhausting matter for first-time campers). Furthermore, it lets you head back on cases of emergencies. 

Tip 10: Bring A Portable Generator

If you have a pop-up camper who owns a pop-up camper, you already know how hard it is to keep your appliances running while you are away from home. This is where portable generators come in. 

Portable generators are one of the most important accessories for anyone that wants to go camping. They have many uses, including powering large appliances, air conditioners, lights, and much more. These generators can maximize the convenience of your trip by having reliable access to clean electricity.

Tip 11: Use A Pop-Up Lift System

If you want your pop-up camper to be lifted properly, you should consider investing in a pop-up lift system.  Pop-up systems are easy to use, affordable, and can be installed in a few easy steps. 

Tip 12: Check The Weather Forecast

When camping outdoors, even in the most beautiful and scenic places, people still have to deal with Mother Nature. It's entirely possible that your camping trip will be amazing, but you will inevitably have to deal with some kind of weather. That's why it's essential to plan ahead by checking the weather forecast and making sure you're prepared for whatever comes your way.

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