First Person: 4 Camping Supplies I Will Only Buy from the Dollar Store

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My husband and I love to spend time camping. In fact, we love it so much we go several times a year. However, camping can be quite costly when you take in account all the supplies you need to take with you and cost of gasoline it take go get to the camp site. On average we spend around $150 for a weekend of camping if we restock our supplies. I decided to look for ways to lower that cost, and found I could save money by shopping at the dollar store instead of a sporting goods or big-box store. Here are four camping supplies I only buy from the dollar store to save money.

Bug repellent

Anyone that has spent any time outdoors will tell you that bug repellent is a must. It will not only help keep the mosquitoes at bay, but will also help prevent ticks from climbing aboard. I have a huge fear of bugs so I do not go camping without bug repellent. It costs me $5 to buy a can of repellent at the sporting goods store, and just $1 for the generic at the dollar store. The generic brand saves me $4 a trip or about $20 a year, and works just as well as the name brand.

Wet wipes

Okay, I admit wet wipes aren't essential for camping, but I never leave home without them. The way my husband and I camp there just isn't enough water to waste washing your hands, so wet wipes come in handy. If I buy my wet wipes at the big-box store I can get 500 wipes for $3, but by shopping at the dollar store I can buy two packs of 500 for a total of 1000 wipes and it will only cost me $2. That is a total saving $1 per trip or $4 a year.


We take several things that uses batteries when we go camping, including a weather radio, flashlights, and a small fan. Shopping at the big-box store I spend around $20 a trip or $80 a year on batteries alone. Buying our batteries at the dollar store costs me around $8 a trip or $32 a year. That is a total savings of $48 a year.


I'm a fair-skinned redhead that is covered in freckles, and I start to burn the moment I set foot into the sunlight, so it is a must-have for me. When I bought my sunblock at the big-box store I was spending nearly $5 a bottle for it, which is about $20 a year. I now buy my sunblock at the dollar store. It costs $1 per bottle or $4 a year, which is a total savings of $16 a year.

All told, I save around $88 a year on these four generic camping supplies by shopping at the dollar store.

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