Ways to Save Money While Camping
Posted on Monday, July 7th, 2014 at 7:00 am
Does your family enjoy camping? The gear, the food, and the fees can make what at first glance appears to be an inexpensive vacation into something pricey. Here are some helpful hints that you can use to save money while camping.
How to Save on Camping
Entrance Fee Free Days
The National Park Service has special days every year when the entrance fees to the National Parks will be waived. Visit a National Park (or camp there) on one of those days and you can save yourself the cost of the entry fee.
Save the Recycling
Start saving some items that you would typically toss in the recycling bin (or trash) in the months before your camping trip. You will need plenty of empty toilet paper rolls and old dryer lint. These make great fire starters!
Tuck some dryer lint inside each empty toilet paper roll. Don’t stuff it too full! Ideally, you want a loose fit in order to allow for optimal oxygen flow and the best burn. This saves you the trouble of searching for kindling and the cost of purchasing wood to bring with and burn.
Borrow From Friends and Family
Buying brand new camping gear can get expensive. Before you make a purchase, see if any of your friends or relatives would be willing to let you borrow some of their gear. Most people go camping once a year and then store everything away. It won’t trouble them to let you borrow it.
Make sure you take really good care of the camping gear that you borrowed. Return it in the condition it was when you borrowed it. Repay your friend or relative by letting him or her borrow your camping gear when you aren’t using it. Another option is to pair up with a fellow avid camper and split the cost of a new tent, cooler, or other camping gear.
This isn’t always possible, but can save you money. Instead of pre-paying for your campsite for an entire week, see if you can pay day-to-day instead.
This prevents you from losing money if you end up going home earlier than expected. The weather may get cold, rainy, or nasty. Someone you are camping with might get sick and need to leave. Pay by the day, and you avoid the potential of losing money on days you couldn’t stay at the camp site.