Shopping IKEA: Your Budget RV Superstore

23Feb
Shopping IKEA: Your Budget RV Superstore

ikea

I know when you think about stocking your RV on a budget, IKEA may not the first place that comes to mind.

But it should.

With over 40 stores in the United States, there is probably an IKEA within driving distance of your home. And if you need to purchase products for your RV, a day trip to IKEA should be on your calendar.

The Great RV Budget Stock Up

Growing up in a (maybe) once-a-year camping household, I witnessed a common phenomena. Whenever a new gadget arrived in the kitchen, the old one would get stuffed in the camping bins stacked in the garage. That wobbly can opener might not have been good for daily use, but it would do just fine for that one long camping weekend in September.

I adopted this habit when we bought our first pop up camper, stocking bins and cabinets with the worn out relics of our 10-year domestic history. Our pop up bins were full of mismatched bowls, warped cutting boards, and the blender that barely blended.

It took me a few years to realize that we spent quite a bit of time in our RVs and maybe I needed to stop acting like our travel trailer was a recycling center. 

But the budget. We love to travel as much as possible, and I always hated spending our money dressing up the camper instead of actually using it to go camping.

If you listen to our podcast, you know that Jeremy is the shopper in our family, which means the RV is well stocked with flashlights and air compressors and wood splitters, but not so much with any decorative finishes. It took seventy nights in the RV one season to finally convince me to start sprucing up the joint a bit.

(You can read about my no-mod makeover here.)

Enter IKEA. The whole premise of this store is to combine affordability with function and design. Since the company was founded in Sweden, there is a small spaces sensibility behind many of their products.

That means you can find great RV products in every area of the showroom, and the price tag will be a heck of a lot lower than in many of those big box camping stores that shall remain nameless.

We recently made a trip to our local IKEA for non-RV related items, i.e. $15 easels for our budding young artists. But I was in big time reconnaissance mode. I was ready to bring a bit of budget-friendly style to our RV space.

Here are some of my favorite ‘odds and ends’ products…from that great RV budget superstore, IKEA.

RV Budget Items from IKEA

  1. Grundtal Magnetic Knife Rack, Stainless Steel, $14.99
  2. Grundtal Magnetic Containers, Stainless Steel, $7.99/3 pack 
  3. Vareira Drawer Mat, $3.99 per roll 
  4. Bestaende Dish Drainer, 2-tiered with water-collecting tray, $24.99 
  5. Kusiner Wall Pockets, $3.99 
  6. Svartsjon Hook Rack, $5.99, with Nordrana Hand-Knit Baskets, $9.99 
  7. Antilop Highchair with tray, $19.99 (amazing inside the camper and out) 
  8. Pressa Hanging Dryer with 16 clothes clips, $4.99 
  9. Kalas Plates $1.99/6 pack, Kalas Bowls $1.99/6 pack, Kalas Tumblers $1.99/6 pack (Color code your kids!!!!) 
  10. Lattjo Play Together Book, $9.99 (and many other assorted games) 

And don’t even get me started on the Marketplace items: kitchen scissors, can openers, dishtowels, straws…you name it, there is a budget option at IKEA.

So if you are one of our many listeners and readers who just bought their first RV or upgraded to a brand new rig, seriously consider a trip to IKEA before heading to the big box camping store. You will save a fortune on all those odds and ends.

And let us know what your favorite RV budget item from IKEA is. Our next trip is never that far off…

18 Comments

  1. jerseycamper

    Don’t forget to stop by the café for some Swedish Meatballs! Love, love, love to outfit the RV with IKEA. Now, if they’d only market an RV…I’d buy one.

    Reply
    • RVFamilyTravelAtlas

      We ALWAYS get a healthy portion of Swedish Meatballs when we visit! Watching the planes take off and land is a highlight for the kids. Let’s face it–a trip to IKEA is an event.

      Reply
  2. JP

    Which IKEA has a view of the planes taking off, I’m in! Ours is just in a crappy industrial park with a Sam’s Club and Home Despot.

    Reply
    • RVFamilyTravelAtlas

      We go to the one in Elizabeth, New Jersey which is right across the highway from the Newark Airport. Hardly a beautiful view for most people, but of course the kids love it!!! We had to drag Wes away from the cafeteria last time, as he cried, one more plane…one more plane.

      Reply
    • Wendy

      I believe it’s the one near San Francisco, California

      Reply
  3. April

    I want to visit IKEA so bad but the nearest one is a full days drive from our house. I hope Nashville will get one soon!

    Reply
    • RVFamilyTravelAtlas

      Sorry April…I didn’t mean to rub it in:-/
      But I do feel like more and more are opening these days, so a girl can dream. Also, keep it in mind when you travel. There is an IKEA a couple of miles away from the Cherry Hill RV Park outside of DC. Not a bad activity to tack on during a trip.

      Reply
  4. jerseycamper

    Plus this store is in an Urban Enterprise Zone so the sales tax is 3.5%

    Reply
    • RVFamilyTravelAtlas

      Yes!!!! So you can buy more stuff!!!!

      Reply
  5. BoxyColonial

    That Ikea was our first ever Ikea…back when they were few and far between, we’d go to that one when we visited my in-laws when they lived in NJ. We just made an Ikea trip and came home mostly with trailer stuff….the lamplig cutting board fits perfectly over an RV stove….like it was made for it!

    Reply
    • RVFamilyTravelAtlas

      Just added the Lamplig Cutting Board to the list…

      Reply
  6. Bonni McKinney

    Thanks so much for this post. I will be running to Ikea this week for the Pressa Hanging Dryer and the Kusiner Wall Pouches. I have been looking all over for similar items and would NEVER have thought of Ikea.

    Reply
  7. SMJerry

    Just doing our initial “stocking” of the new trailer… this post is super timely for us. I live about 8 miles from Ikea.. heading there Saturday!
    Thanks

    Reply
  8. Mary Ann Christensen

    Ikea’s pop-up children’s laundry basket makes for some great garbage cans/recycling bins while camping. They fold down flat and can be easily stored until the next trip.

    Reply
  9. SMJerry

    Thanks for the terrific tip. We are heading out this weekend for our first trip in our new Travel Trailer.. hit the local IKEA on Sunday to stock the rig. $96 later and we had a truck full of what we feel is everything we need from cups and plates to ways to keep things from shifting… I was happily surprised to see how far the dollar could stretch.. especially at Ikea.
    Anyway.. great tip!
    Jerry Schleining

    Reply
  10. Anne

    Our RV has bins for dry food and bathroom goods as well as high quality, lightweight, low profile, stylish and CHEAP bedding from Ikea.
    And yes, the food is amazing. If the kids are good, we always get a $1 soft serve cone on the way out. 🍦

    Reply
    • RVFamilyTravelAtlas

      I’ll be looking for bedding for Penny the Pop Up on our next trip!

      Reply
  11. Jennifer Sharak

    We just remodeled a vintage travel trailer, Ikea was top on my go to list I purchased a small kitchenette with induction cooktop. went to the clearance mark down room for counters and shelving the furniture department had a great sofa bed and I found a rail system for hanging my shower curtain directly to the ceiling that actually followed the curve of the shower, accordion doors for bath to cut down on foot print of a standard hinge style door and so many other items budget friendly.

    Reply

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