You love camping, your buddies love camping but your wallet?... not so much. Well summer is here and you don’t want to just stay home and whine about not having enough money. We have the best tips for cheap camping without breaking your wallet.
1. Save Up!
In order to start budget camping, you got to start saving. Before you start packing your car for the road trip. If you are planning a long term trip you could consider setting up a GoFundMe to ask for support from friends and family. If you are a photographer or artist you could promise a gift in return for the donation.
2. Pick a place close by.
Adventure doesn’t mean you have to travel to far-off places. Finding a local spot! Depending on the type of car you own, you can calculate how much it would cost you for tank of gas. Here is the link that you can use to calculate miles per gallon. As mentioned earlier, shorter the distance the better!
3. Camp sites
The next trick is to the find a camping site that is cheaper or even free. Many National and State Parks will run you around $35/night, however if you find a Wilderness Area you can camp for free, but they are first come first serve so a level of flexibility is required. Travelling on weekdays can be a lot cheaper, plus you avoid the crowds. We love using HipCamp to fine the perfect spot.
The best way to gear up is getting used items or even hand me downs. It might take a while to find good equipment but it’s always worth it. You can always find pots, pans and hiking boots in thrift stores and online. Also buying multipurpose items would be a great way to save a buck or two! A great multipurpose combo that won’t break the bank is our Single Parachute Nylon Hammock and the All-Terrain Hammock Shelter – whether you want to bring an extra hammock for a buddy, or need some protection from the elements, you’ll be covered!
Not only is food one of the costliest parts of camping, but it is also arguably one of the most fun. You could estimate around $5 per person per meal. Making your own trail mixes would be a start. Not only would it be inexpensive but also fun to combine different flavors together rather than buying from a store. You can also grab some energy bars if trail mix isn’t your preferred snack. We love Clif Bars!
Pack whole fruits like apples , bananas, and oranges which will keep longer and are packed with energy and nutrients. Peanut butter and Jelly sandwiches are a classic and wallet-friendly on the go meal that will give you lots of fuel for your adventure. Don’t forget all the fresh fish you may have caught if you are camping by the lake! We suggest always packing a back-up meal in case the catch doesn’t happen.. trust us, we have been there.
Here is some more camping food inspo. As for cookware – make sure to bring along your old pots and pans that you don’t mind getting blackened by the fire and DO NOT FORGET to bring aluminum foil! Foil is by far the most versatile and easy to use cooking essential you will bring on your trip.
Have some other camping hacks? We would love to hear from you. Happy cheap camping guys.