RV life has a lot going for it. It’s not a surprise that it continues to grow in popularity as singles, couples and families heed the call of the open road and embark on full-time RV living adventures by the hundreds and thousands.
But as we have detailed extensively, RV life is not all roses and rainbows. It comes with its own unique set of challenges: from winter struggles, to fears you must face, it can make you wonder if it’s worth it.
One part of the struggle that we have not discussed quite as extensively is the daily grind of dealing with your stuff.
The ultimate goal is finding a place for everything (or just getting rid of it). We don’t want to feel like our stuff is sending us over the edge.
Overall, managed fairly well through this struggle, but we look back now and realize that we really missed the boat in the bedside storage category.
Bedside Storage Ideas for Your RV: Bedside Caddy, Shelf and Pocket Options
RV storage ideas can be kind of challenging to discuss because every RV is so unique. Every setup and floor plan is different. Oh, and each individual has their own particular triggers, pet peeves and preferences also. In this category, one size most definitely does not fit all folks.
Because of this reality, the best way I can see to tackle this issue is by breaking bedside storage down into three sub-categories:
- Bedside Caddies
- Bedside Shelves
- Bedside Pockets
Odds are that at least one of these alternatives will be the right fit for you and your situation.
And when you find the right solution, you will be miles ahead of us. Because the truth is that for some reason we did not even truly seek out any bedside storage options during our travels.
Instead, we just kind of gutted it out and assumed that our ongoing bedside mess was just “part of the struggle”.
Did I know that a bedside caddy was even a thing? Nope…not until last month as a matter of fact.
Your life is about to get infinitely better as I lay out the truth of the bedside storage options available to you in the age of the internet. Prepare to be amazed…
Bedside Caddy Options
So, here’s the first thing that you need to know about the bedside caddy category: Many of the options out there simply will not work in most RV setups.
What you will find is that quite a few of the choices out there are specifically tailored for the college dorm room crowd.
When you’re looking for a good bedside caddy, you will come across the type that uses two or three straps to secure it to the bed.
These are probably great for the rail of a dorm bunk bed or hospital bed. And if you happen to have kids in bunk beds with rails (uncommon) in your RV, then it might be the right type of design for you.
However, those chances are pretty slim.
After looking at a LOT of RVs over the past few years, my best guess is that a bedside caddy design like the one you see below will be a better fit.
If you have the typical RV bed design with a wooden platform and a mattress sitting directly on top of that, then this design should work. Secure the caddy by sliding the flap underneath the bed mattress. It’s so easy.
This Lib Bedside Caddy offers a few pockets with enough space to hold a tablet, phone, magazine, and pens. It can hold headphones and notebooks.
It has a compact and slim design that helps to ensure it doesn’t get in the way. This is important given the lack of extra space in an RV.
This one might even handle a lightweight 13-inch laptop, like a Mac Book or a Chrome Book – though possibly not much else at the same time.
With its two mesh pockets inside the large compartment, located closest to the bed, it allows you to keep your essentials as handy as possible while in bed.
Now, here’s one last option in the bedside caddy category that is really for the “I need everything I own right here and right now” crowd (no judgment).
The Kozy Designs Bedside Organizer has enough pockets for just about anything you would need at your fingertips.
This option will hold just about everything you could possibly need. Yes, it is targeted toward the college dorm crowd, but it has the same “flap under the mattress” design that we discussed above. So it might work just as well.
We don’t have this design so it’s hard to say for certain, but something this large could be a hassle in a smaller RV.
Consider walk space around bed when selecting caddy.
It’s possible the caddy will stretch and start to lean out away from the bed if it gets loaded down with many items. So consider your walk area that possibility before making a purchase.
We all know that in the RV living space, less can often be more. This situation is probably no different.
Bedside Shelf Options
As I said earlier, there are so many different RV configurations and floor plans out there that I don’t want to avoid covering this option with the possibility that it could be exactly what you need.
This particular bedside shelf option is all the rage on Amazon right now. This was a crowd-funded project on Kickstarter that shifted over to Amazon and it seems to have really taken off. There are thousands of 5 star reviews.
They offer several different styles, but for most RVs the “Slide” option is going to work best because of the flat base, which can hold drinks as well as notebooks or digital devices.
And here is another variation of the bedside shelf. This one is unique because the shelf can be raised up to the top of your mattress.
This makes it easier to place your iPad or laptop on top to watch a movie.
- Metal base and Thermoplastic Polymer top
- Compatible with flat base or foundation (box springs, platform, plate)
- USB and cable organizer, Slot for digital device
- Simple assembly required
- 11.1″ x 17.1″ x 1.2″
If you have a bit more space on the sides of your bed and really like not having to dig into pockets to find your things, this bedside shelf approach might be the perfect fit for you.
Or there is this very low-profile adhesive shelf option you might want to consider as well:
And here is one final variation of this shelf product that is more compact, but still provides quite a bit of storage space and anchors snugly under the mattress:
It’s a bit on the pricey side, but it does come with USB ports to make it easier to recharge your digital devices. That convenience alone may make it worth the higher price.
If you fall into the “minimalist” crowd and are just looking for something to hold the bare essentials (phone, glasses, pen, earbuds), you could either consider one of the small shelf options shown above, or you might also consider a smaller bedside pocket that can also hang on the wall.
Bedside Pocket Options
Let’s assume for the moment that you just don’t like the idea of having something on the side of your bed, stuck underneath your mattress. Maybe you’re concerned that you will bump it in the night, or kick it while getting out of bed for the (inevitable) middle-of-the-night bathroom run. Yeah, I feel ya.
If you have some empty wall space right next to your bed that would make your items very easily accessible, then a hanging bedside pocket organizer like this KINGREE model might be the answer.
It is an inexpensive option, but keep in mind the pockets are fairly small and built more for pencils, reading glasses, pad of paper, and a phone rather than a laptop.
It is really up to you whether you want to try using an adhesive hook option for hanging a pocket organizer like this on the wall.
My personal opinion is that if you are just holding your phone, glasses, pen and notebook, and maybe earbuds in the organizer, then an adhesive hook option that holds 5 pounds might work just fine.
If you use the Command hooks, keep in mind that you need wall space that is big enough for the caddy (13.75″W x 17″H) and within reach of the bed.
Also, the adhesive for the hooks need to be placed on a clean, smooth, non-porous surface.
If you are not overly concerned about putting a small hole in the surface, however, then the most secure option would definitely be a small hook that screws into the wall.
Just so you know, I wouldn’t screw or nail anything into my travel trailer’s walls. We used adhesive hooks exclusively and were very pleased overall with the results.
They’re removable and there was no damage to the RV.
And last but not least, here is a bit more decorative take on the bedside pocket organizer if this design seems to be the best fit for your situation.
You won’t have any problem finding a pattern and color scheme that fits your particular preferences.
A few extra minutes surfing around Amazon and you should find everything you could ever hope for. I mean, it is Amazon after all.
Which of These Bedside Storage Ideas Will Work Best for You?
We have covered quite a few different options here that you should consider for your RV or tiny living space.
Any of them will provide you with the organization and accessibility you are looking for…it’s just a matter of how they fit your particular living situation and preference.
If there is another option in this bedside storage arena that we have not covered, feel free to educate us in the comments below.
Let us know what has worked the best for your RV or tiny living situation and why. We love to keep learning as much as we can about the options out there for staying organized and stress-free in small spaces.
Because heaven knows it isn’t always easy with how much we love our stuff.
Todd loves a competitive game of table tennis, a breathtaking hike, and exploring new places. He lived and traveled in an RV with his family as they traveled throughout much of the US and parts of Canada. Todd has extensive knowledge about RV travel, safety, and accessories and has shared many of his stories here on TREKKN. When he’s not busy launching and building small businesses, you may find him staring at pictures of Glacier National Park (probably his favorite spot on earth).