The phrase “caravan holiday” conjures up many different images for different people. Many will think of it fondly, as a ‘home from home’, the freedom to go where you please and happy holidays spent exploring the UK.
Some people will literally turn their caravan into a mini-version of their own home with lavish furnishings, a top of the range purpose-built bathroom suite and even installing satellite TV!
What you bring along with you will all be down to personal tastes, the size of your caravan and the size of your wallet!
One thing is certain. Going on a caravan holiday is a lot different to going on a package holiday or staying in a hotel. There are a number of essential items you need to take with you to the caravan, especially if you’re renting one and don’t know how equipped it is before you go.
Things to Take with You
Not all caravan holidays provide linen. Therefore, you should find out before you leave home. If linen is not provided, you’ll need to find out how many beds and what size each of the beds is so you take enough linen for the trip.
The worst thing is to arrive at your caravan in need of the toilet then discover that the toilet rolls have run out. Take at least a couple of toilet rolls with you just in case. After a long drive to your destination, there is nothing better than a nice cuppa. So, take some tea bags, coffee and a carton of long life milk with you and some sugar if needed.
Caravans may be warm during the day but it can lose their heat very quickly at night. Taking a small heater is a good idea as a caravan will lose its natural heat quickly after dark.
If you’re staying at a recreational campground which has a launderette – use it. Taking lots of extra clothes which you’ll probably not wear will only add to the burden of storage.
Don’t forget those rainy days. Books, DVDs or videos and CDs will come in handy and remember to bring along some board games or some other kind of entertainment for the kids.
Safety and Security
Whilst the majority of people who go caravanning are fun, law abiding citizens, a caravan is a far easier opportunity than a house for a thief. There’s no need to be over cautious in this regard but it’s useful to use your common sense and to take necessary precautions.
You should take a mobile phone with you in case of emergency and find out the numbers for the local police where you’re heading as well as the numbers of any breakdown organisations. Don’t keep large sums of cash in your caravan and keep all wallets, handbags, expensive electrical items such as iPODs, laptops, computer games consoles etc., out of sight when you’re not in your caravan.
Secure your doors and windows and any sunroof on the caravan every time you go out, even if it’s just for a few minutes. Some caravans these days do have intruder alarms. Criminals will run away if they hear an alarm. Remember to also lock your door at night when you are asleep. Don’t forget your car either. Use an immobiliser, steering lock or alarm.
If you’re on a large caravan site, in particular, take a map of the site with your caravan’s pitch number or location area marked on the map with you if you go out. If there are hundreds of caravans on site, it can be difficult to track yours down, especially after dark. Many caravan parks are off the beaten track and at the end of a tree-lined road so it’s useful if one of your party carries a torch with them so you can see where you’re walking at night. A mini-maglite is powerful and small, fitting into a purse or pocket very easily.
However, in general, you’ll be perfectly safe staying in a caravan and it’s important to just use common sense as you would at home and enjoy your holiday without being over cautious.