Best portable washing machine for camping in 2023
Our roundup of the best portable washing machines for camping
There are SO many reasons to take a portable washing machine with you when camping.
Not having to wear your undies inside out? Check.
Not having to take a load of dirty laundry home with you? Check.
Not having to take a tonne of clothes camping with you? Check.
Need more convincing than any of those things?
Well then just keep reading…
In a hurry? Here’s our top 3 picks for the best portable washing machine for camping.
Giantex portable washing machine & spinner
Best electric portable washing machine
- washing capacity: 11lbs
- spin dry capacity: 6.6lbs
- can wash and spin at the same time
The Laundry Alternative WonderWash
Best hand-crank portable washing machine
- washing capacity: 5lbs
- available in tonnes of retro colors
Best for travelling light & backpacking
- weight: 5oz
- pocket sized
- can wash a full outfit of clothes
Things to know
How do I use a portable washing machine?
What detergent can I use in a portable washing machine?
All of the washing machines featured on our list are suitable for use with any washing detergent.
However, we recommend you use either dedicated camping laundry sheets or liquid detergent. Powder and capsules take longer to dissolve and you’ll likely end up with clumps left over at the end of the wash cycle.
Best portable washing machine for camping
Giantex portable washing machine
Best for groups and large families
The Giantex portable washing machine and dryer is the largest to make it onto the list and is perfect for groups, large families or if you are planning to camp for longer periods of time.
While it requires access to electricity, it doesn’t require access to a water faucet (though it can be hooked up to one if you do have access).
You can simply put in your load of clothes, fill with cold water, set the length of time you want your clothes to be washed for and sit back and relax!
In terms of washing capacity, you can pretty much do a full load of washing such as 3 t-shirts and a couple pairs of shorts or one pair of jeans per load. It’s also large enough to wash towels and queen sized sheets.
It comes supplied with a short drainage tube to easily drain the dirty water after each wash/rinse cycle.
While you can use any detergent, liquid detergent or dedicated camping laundry sheets work best as it mixes with the water much quicker than powder or capsules.
Costway Mini washing machine
Best for couples and small families
The Costway mini is an electric washer and spin dryer perfect if you want something compact or only need to wash a couple of smaller items at a time.
Its space saving element comes in its 2-in-1 design. The compartment in which you wash the clothes can be transformed into a spin dryer by inserting the spin basket.
Similar to the Giantex you literally just fill the compartment with your clothes, cover with cold water, set the timer and your washing will begin.
The drainage tube supplied means you can easily drain dirty water after each wash or rinse cycle.
In terms of washing capacity, you’ll easily be able to fit around 3-4 t shirts, a load of socks and a couple of pairs of underwear in one load.
Scrubba wash bag
Best for travelling light, saving space and backpacking
The Scrubba wash bag is perfect if you don’t want to pack something large and cumbersome or simply don’t have the space to store it.
Being pocket sized and weighing only 5oz, there’s no reason to have dirty clothes or inside out undies on your next trip!
While it requires a little more effort and involvement in comparison to the electric washing machines, it is actually really easy to get super clean clothes.
It basically features a flexible textured scrubbing washboard inside of the bag and all you have to do is add your clothes, fill with water, add detergent and get to work.
To wash a load of clothes takes roughly 10-15 minutes from start to finish; including filling the bag with clothes and water, agitating, rinsing and wringing them out.
Despite its tiny pack down size, this thing can handle a good amount of clothes. You’ll have no problem washing a whole outfit of clothes including t-shirt, pants and underwear. Anything bulky such as a sweatshirt or jeans would be best being washed separately for proper cleaning.
The Laundry Alternative WonderWash
Best hand-cranked portable washing machine
The Laundry Alternative WonderWash hand-cranked washing machine is, if ever there was one, a beautiful looking washing machine.
So, if you want to turn heads at the campsite while cranking your washing, you’re in luck.
But, besides its looks, it works wonderfully well at cleaning your clothes and can fit a decent amount in too.
With a 5lb washing capacity, you can fit about 3 t shirts, a pair of pants or shorts and your days socks and underwear.
While The Laundry Alternative state you can wash a load in a couple of minutes, it definitely takes much longer. To get your washing clean and rinsed out it requires around 50 turns of the handle to wash and 50 turns of the handle to rinse out. Roughly you’re looking at 15-20 minutes to complete a load.
It might sound laborious to hand crank the machine, but it is actually super easy and kids or the elderly wont have trouble using it.
Super Deal portable washing machine
A perfect mid-sized electric portable washing machine and dryer
The Super Deal electric portable washing machine is the perfect mid-ground choice if you feel like the Giantex is a little too big for your needs, but the Costway is a little too small.
Similar to the Giantex, the Super Deal allows you to wash and dry your clothes at the same time, saving you tonnes of time if you have lots of clothes to wash.
One of the neatest features it includes is its true rinse technology. The true rinse technology delivers the best rinsing results of all the machines on this list. Every cycle also includes 2 deep rinses, allowing you to spend more time enjoying your camping and less time dealing with your washing.
As with all of the electric washer dryers on this list, it’s super simple to use. Simply add your clothes, fill with water, add detergent and set the timer to start washing. The included drainage hose means you don’t have to spend time emptying out the tub, and instead can just drain dirty water through the pipe after each use.
In terms of washing capacity, you’ll easily be able to wash a full outfit such as a couple of t-shirts, shorts or trousers and your underwear.