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Summer’s here (sort of) – 11 caravanning hacks you need to know

It's one of life’s great pleasures – but it’s not without its pitfalls.

With thousands of caravanners expected to head off on their travels this weekend, it’s never been a better time to remind yourself of some top hacks to make caravan holidaying easier.

1. Invest in extending towing mirrors

Go big or go home! It’s pretty much a given that no-one has ever wished they’d bought smaller extending mirrors. Invest in a decent set to see you through. They’ll be a worthwhile investment.

2. Don’t rely on man-power

Picking up a decent adaptor for a hand-drill means you avoid the hard labour (and potential back injury) that goes with using a hand lever to lower the van legs.

3. Go old-school and bring a map

Technology is great. Until you get stuck in a country lane near Aberystwyth with a 2 mile journey to reverse. Make it an adventure in the best possible way by planning your journey and packing a map – ensuring that the sat nav doesn’t ruin your plans.

4. Awning erection survival kit

No matter how many times you do it, putting up the awning can prove to be a stressful situation. Head this off by packing a survival kit to occupy the kids – a large picnic and new colouring books often buys you some quiet time to set up.

5. Porch light

Don’t let the longer summer evenings lull you into a false sense of security. Remember to pack a light for the awning so when the kids are tucked up in bed (finally) you can enjoy card games into the evening without worrying about making too much noise.

6. Trug basket

Muddy shoes + enclosed space = hours of cleaning up after yourself. Invest in a large enough basket to chuck all outdoor shoes into at the door and help maintain your high standards.

7. The ‘know before you tow’ check

Towing rules depend on when the driver passed their driving test. If you’re planning on taking a trailer or caravan on holiday this summer you can find the latest advice from DVLA on what you can tow as well as guidance on towing safely and legally.

8. Laptop with pre-loaded films

For those rainy day emergencies. Handy for the child or adult in your life who needs distracting. Don’t forget the charger and headphones!

9. Hot water bottle

Fill it with cold water and freeze it – it will turn any sealed box lined with tinfoil into a cool box.

10. A flat hot plate will cook most things

Indoor or outdoor cooking is made easier with one of these electrical essentials. Most meals can be cooked on it, it’s easy to clean and doesn’t take up much space.

11. Baby wipes

Not just for those with babies. These pocket-sized miracles will mop up spills, clean windscreens, remove oil from hands, clean shoes….a ‘must’ for life, not just for caravanning!

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