8 Weeks of Rental Van Life

My Complete Packing List for 8 Weeks in a Rental Van

What was I supposed to bring to stay comfortable and live for eight weeks in a van I had never seen before? I spent a week before we left making an extensive list in Google docs. Every time some new necessity occurred to me, I jotted it down. Three weeks into our adventure, I’m very pleased with my selection of items.

Most of the items on this list are the ones I use in my everyday life or on shorter camping or hiking trips. This list condenses all the research I’ve done on the best products, many that I have used and been happy with for several years. Please check them out!

This post contains affiliate links at no additional cost to you. If you use these links to make a purchase, I may earn a commission, allowing me to produce more great content. Thanks! 

Here is my COMPLETE list of items I flew with to outfit our rental van:

Two camp chairs in front of a glorious pink sunset

California trip packing list


Swim trunks

12 underwear

6 sports bras

2 binders

11 pairs white socks

4 pairs gray socks

10 t shirts (1 buttoned shirt)

2 fleece jackets (1 heavy, 1 light)

Blue pullover hoodie

Hiking pants (2)

Cargo shorts (2)

Jeans (wear day of travel)

Exercise shorts

Leggings (as a warmth layer)

Warm hat

Fingerless gloves (+ regular gloves)

Pajama pants

Knee sleeves

Black belt


Hiking shoes


Photo of the inside of a BART train near San Francisco

Electronics and chargers


Airpods and cable

Kobo E-reader

Usb A to usb C cable

Micro USB cable

Battery pack x2

Usb bricks

Car USB adapter

Car inverter

Car phone charger holder (2)

Phone tripod holder

Wireless charging pad

Bluetooth keyboard


2 led lanterns

Battery powered fan

Big bug mesh

Metal salad bowl

Small scrubby brush

Metal coffee cup

Big coffee cup for dollar coffee


Camping pot and saucepan

1 lid for pot

Propane 1 burner stove attachment and base

Headlamp and extra batteries

Swiss Army knife

Athletic tape



Hydrocortisone cream

Packable jacket

Pillowcases (2)

Thin sheet

Pillow packed and tied

Second pair of glasses

Contacts, case, and travel size solution


Camping towel


Light backpack

Few brown paper bags

Bug net

Sun hat

Sunglasses clip on

Small plastic water bottle

Rain jacket



Drivers license

BART card(s)

Covid vaccine card

Covid rapid tests

3M Aura N95 masks

Cloth mask


Inflatable travel pillow

Photo of the inside of a BART train near San Francisco

Cosmetics / personal care

Dr Bronners soap




Hair ties

Travel toothpaste

Coconut oil (in small jar)

Hair trimmer

Face cleanser, serum, moisturizer

Bag containing nail clippers, tweezers

Benadryl cream


Medications for 60 days

7 day pill case

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