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What To Bring To A Picnic | Picnic Essentials Checklist

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A young couple having a picnic at the beach | What To Bring To A Picnic | featured

Deciding on what to bring to a picnic could be a major hassle. When pressed for time, option paralysis creeps in and the picnic becomes panic. Keep calm and get organized with these practical excursion must-haves.

RELATED: Camping Made Simple: Camping Hacks

15 Ultimate Picnic Picks You Can’t Do Without

For Toting and Seating

1. Collapsible Picnic Basket CoolerCollapsible-Market-Basket-Reusable-Grocery-Shopping-Bag-Picnic-Tote-with-Strong-Aluminum-Frame-and-Handles-What-To-Bring-To-A-Picnic

Designed to hold more items than your typical outdoor compartment this basket is unique. When you’re done getting all the goodies out, conceal this spacious container with a flip of a dual snap enclosure.

Or you can use it to store and cool up cans of beer for some refreshments later. A cooler and picnic basket in one, this item is no doubt a must-have.

2. Water-Resistant Blanketpicnic-basket-products-bottle-wine-on | what to bring to a picnic

Instead of the usual picnic cloth, opt for a water-resistant and insulated one. This will allow you to sit anywhere you want without worrying about getting your bottom moist.

Made to withstand wetness, a water-resistant blanket has a special underside built with insulated liners preventing moisture from seeping through.

3. Portable Tables and ChairsPortable folding picnic table and chairs-What To Bring To A Picnic

A portable table and chair set is is another indispensable item on your list. This is perfect if you want to keep the kitchen mess away from the picnic blanket.

Choose lightweight picnic tables and chairs designed for outdoor activities.


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For Cooking and Dining

4. Portable GrillSummer Weekend Picnic Conceptual Scene On The Lawn With BBQ And Grill. Hamper, Blanket and Hat In The Background-What To Bring To A Picnic

This device allows you to cook tasty meals outdoors without the need to take the whole kitchen with you. It cooks like a legit grill but folds and travels like a cooler.

Note: Portable grills are usually made of cast iron alloy with aluminum insulation. Most types function on profane yet there are also models that can be powered by a car cigarette lighter.

5. Eco-Friendly Dinnerwareeco paper utensils on green grass. Summer sunny day with disposable tableware for a picnic-What To Bring To A Picnic

Disposable utensils are convenient to use. It’s cheap and you can throw them away after use. The environmental repercussions though cost a lot.

Enjoy guilt-free outdoor dining with eco-friendly dinnerware which may include biodegradable paper plates, wooden spoons, or bamboo sporks.

Durable yet lightweight,  this type of tableware won’t easily break, unlike plastic spoons and forks.  Earth-friendly yet convenient to use, using eco-friendly dinnerware is a sustainable alternative to conventional cutlery.

6. Utility KnifeClose up of Victorinox Swiss Army red folding knife-What To Bring To A Picnic

Instead of the traditional bottle opener, bring a utility knife. It’s a versatile tool that you can even use for self-defense.

Note: Utility knives are either foldable or retractable to provide user safety. Some are even built with multiple blade types and sizes suitable for a variety of tasks.

7. Food, Beverages, and CondimentsSmall summer picnic with lemonade and hamburgers in the park-What To Bring To A Picnic

The life of a picnic lies in good company and of course the food you prepare. It ain’t no picnic without good food, refreshing drinks, and savory condiments.

Here are some suggestions on what to prepare:

  • Food – sandwiches, chips, pizza, fried chicken, burritos, salad, and burgers.
  • Beverages – fruit soda, ginger beer, homemade lemonade, sparkling wine, and champagne.
  • Condiments – mustard, ketchup, relish, mayonnaise, dips, chili sauce, salad dressing, sugar, and salt.

RELATED: Start Cooking Outdoors To Prepare For Off Grid America

For Cleanup:

8. Reusable NapkinsPile of natural linen towels, napkins on white wooden background-What To Bring To A Picnic

Reusable napkins are made of pre-washed single-layer cotton flannel and they can be used for serving and cleanup. Compared to ordinary napkins, they are more absorbent and durable.

And since this type of napkin is reusable, you won’t have to shop for rolls of paper towels every time you go out for a picnic. You don’t only reduce your waste footprint but you also save money.

9. Sustainable Trash BagsThe girl collects trash from the forest in the trash bag-What To Bring To A Picnic

Sustainable trash bags are eco-friendly waste disposal containers perfect for outings. It is manufactured using reclaimed plastic scraps.

This special waste bag has the same durability as regular trash bags but is biodegradable and costs less. It helps you go green while you enjoy the outdoor scene.

Note: Sustainable trash bags are made of 50% recycled plastic diverted from landfills.

For Entertainment

10. Board Games

caucasian-family-playing-board-games-picnic-what-to-bring-to-a-picnic-ss

A great way to enjoy picnics with friends and family is to play board games or card games. This is a perfect way to bond and enjoy a beautiful day.

11. Books

summer-girl-reads-book-on-picnic-what-to-bring-to-a-picnic-ss

Another amazing way to enjoy your picnic is by reading books. You can either choose a quiet time reading your favorite novel or this could also be a perfect outdoor story time with your kids.

12. Portable Bluetooth SpeakerModern trendy girl listening to music by wireless portable speaker-What To Bring To A Picnic

With a portable Bluetooth speaker, you can experience total mobile entertainment anywhere. If you want to spice up your picnic, this is what you need.

Note: Some portable Bluetooth speaker models could last up to 12-hours of non-stop playtime.

Other Essentials

13. SunscreenYoung woman a bottle of sunblock outside on a summer day-What To Bring To A Picnic

Picnic is fun until you get your skin harassed by the sun. Protect your skin from harmful UV rays by using sunscreen.

Sunscreens which may come in spray, gel, foam, or lotion form,  is your skin’s first line of defense against ultraviolet radiation. It is specially formulated to absorb or reflect sunburn-inducing radiation from the sun.

Aside from protecting your skin from heat, a high-quality sunscreen also helps your skin be hydrated and prevent the development of dark spots and wrinkles.

14. Insect RepellantWoman-applying-insect-repellent-onto-arm-outdoors-What-To-Bring-To-A-Picnic

Nothing ruins a perfect picnic than a swarm of insects hovering over your food. Using a bug spray is a fine solution but the mist could contaminate your edibles.

An excellent alternative to chemical sprays is a handheld bug zapper. It gets the job done minus the toxic hazard.

Portable bug zappers are highly advanced electric bug swatters. It eliminates insects fast upon contact. These devices are either battery-powered or rechargeable through a USB port.

15. First Aid KitFirst aid kit on green grass outdoors-What To Bring To A Picnic

A basic first aid kit includes aspirin, antibiotics, bandages, hydrocortisone creams, and disinfectants. Picnic or no picnic, it should be in your bag anytime.

If you still don’t have one, you can build a DIY medical kit from scratch. There are awesome articles online that can help you with this project.

Need more picnic hacks? Check this awesome video by Emily Norris:


There you have it. With this no-nonsense checklist, you can now relax and stop worrying about what to bring to a picnic. Stay safe and enjoy your time with your friends and family!

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When was the last time you went on a picnic and why do you think it’s memorable? We would love to hear your story in the comment section below!

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