Family camping next to a campfire with a tent and car nearby

Camping checklist

Get ready to pack up and sleep under the stars. This car camping checklist covers off the camp essentials, plus has some extras to make your campsite extra sweet – you may not need everything on this list, so adjust your camp checklist for what makes sense for your group and plans.

If you’re a first-time camper or are still building up your camp supplies, check out gear rentals at your local MEC store. Heading into the backcountry? See our backpacking checklist or canoe or kayak touring checklist instead.

See printable camping checklist pdf

Sleep and shelter

Dad reading to his kids in the tent

Campsite set-up

Group of campers playing cards around a camping table
Delicious spread of camping food

Outdoor essentials

Clothes and shoes

Check the weather forecast for where you’re going and think about what kinds of activities you’ll be doing, then adjust your packing to match. If you’re staying near the water or in the mountains, it can get cooler than you’d expect so be ready to layer.

Bring clothes made of quick-drying, moisture-wicking materials. Here are some ideas for where to start:

Personal stuff

Group of friends sitting around a campfire

Fun extras