What better way to chill with friends and family than camping? Who doesn’t love a cozy fire on a chilly evening while eating s’mores and sharing stories? Hiking? Swimming? Sleeping under the stars? Sign me up! And even though it tends to be much cheaper to camp than to fly to some exotic paradise, it can still end up being pricier than you expected. Here are 5 tips to help bring down the cost, without cutting on fun.
1. Camping Tent
If you are a first-time camper, or only go once each season, don’t buy a tent! Instead, borrow a tent from a friend, or see if the friends you’re going with have room to share in their tent. Really want to buy a tent? There is a ton for sale on Kijiji or Facebook Marketplace.
A lot of campers choose to buy their firewood on site. It’s often very convenient, and some campgrounds will bring the wood directly to you! However, they know it’s convenient, and charge you for the convenience. You can save a bit of money by buying your firewood ahead of time, and bringing it to the campground with you.
3. Reusable cutlery
If you are a big camper and go many times during the season, don’t buy paper plates and plastic cutlery! It may seem cheap, but if you buy it every time you go camping, it adds up super fast. Instead, buy a set of plastic plates. Not only is it better for the environment, it’s better for your wallet.
4. Camping Snacks
What is camping without lots of tasty treats? While essential, we often buy more than we can actually eat. Most of the time everyone is out doing fun activities, not snacking on all the tons of chips and cheese puffs that are on every campground picnic table. When you’re grocery shopping for campground snacks, put the chips in your cart, then remove one or two bags and you’ll probably have enough.
5. S’mores: Camping’s bff!
Speaking of camping snacks, often I’ve gone camping and have seen people with s’mores kits. These kits are ridiculously overpriced! They look great, but it’s much cheaper to buy the marshmallows, Hershey bars, and graham crackers separately. Don’t waste money on the pretty kit! You’re already at the grocery store, just get the items separately and save a couple bucks.