Camping is one fun activity that allows families to bond, it is relaxing and allows you kick back and enjoy mother nature in all her glory. But being one with nature comes with its risk, you would be at the mercy of the elements and it is important that you are kitted with a communications radio to interact with people in your party, friends or family, and be able to radio for help if the need arises.
There are many radio options on the market, each with its own perks and downsides, this makes choosing a brand and model a difficult task if you do not know what to lookout for. This review is to help you decide which of the walkie talkie manufacturers you want to patronize, which radio does better in all weather conditions, which one is heavier and which two way radio would allow you communicate across long distances without the need for licensing.
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Considerations choosing camping walkie talkies
Choosing a walkie talkie when you intend to explore the outdoors is not an easy task, because the right radio might be the difference between a hitch free trip and a problematic one. The following factors have been highlighted to make your choice easy. They are:
The dimensions of the walky talky does not only affect how good it looks, it also affects the handling and the ease to which it can be bagged when travelling. The bulkier models offer longer battery life because the batteries fitted to such units often have more capacity. So if your adventure takes you somewhere where you would be unable to charge the radio, it is best to go for bulkier options with longer battery life and if you would have access to electricity, a smaller radio would do the trick.
The device would be used in demanding places and locations, so the radio should be up to the task, it should be able to be used for long periods on end without having any technical issues. The higher end radios often offer protection against dust, water and shock.
It would not matter if the radio has all the functions to make your stay outdoors memorable, if it is never on, or the battery is always low and you constantly have to swap batteries or look for a charging station. This is why radios with more battery capacities are highly sort after, and also, radios with more than one power source are the go to outdoor radio. The best radios can often be powered by a rechargeable battery pack, aa or aaa batteries, can be charged using a charging station or USB charging cable.
There are some features that make some radios better suited for outdoor use. These are:
Waterproof radios allow for flexibility, it ensures that you can get more from the radio and if you encounter water or any other fluid, you would not be phased due to the waterproof feature. Different radios offer different levels of water resistance, some protect against splashes (like rain) and some can be fully submerged.
Some radios are fitted with weather emergency features that notifies the user of the changes in the weather in the environment. This is an important feature that prepares the users against severe weather.
Like every other thing on sale, how much it retails for is very important, so when you make that choice you have to put your budget in mind, There are many walkie talkies on sale, and many radios would fit into whatever budget you have seamlessly.
15 Best walkies talkies for camping
1. Motorola T100TP
Talkabout T100 is a walkie talkie for every member of the family with a design that’s colorful and easy to use. This features of this quality communication device includes 22 channels and transmissions that cover a 16 mile range making it ideal for hiking, camping or other activities in- and out-doors. With this model, users enjoy clear sound quality regardless of the conditions with the auto squelch feature.
The technology guarantees high performance.
The keypad and call tone are some of its qualities.
It includes belt clips and a user guide
Range is limited by interference and weather.
2. Ansoko Radios
These manufacturer of these two way radios went for quality, reliability and durability. The FRS/GMRS 16 channel walkie talkies utilize UHF waves which penetrates through obstructions to ensure you have no problem keeping up conversations over a long range. The LED flashlight, VOX and voice prompt functions are some of the reasons these brands are ideal for outdoor activities.
The device is easily programmable and ultra-portable.
They have less interference in built-up areas or when communicating indoors.
The 2 watt radio has long lasting battery life.
The gadgets are rechargeable and come with a charging base.
The device is not suited for extreme working temperatures.
It takes hours to recharge batteries.
3. Motorola T200 Talkabout Radio, 2 Pack
These products are the best walkie talkies for outdoor communications. The two way radio has 22 channels with 121 privacy codes so you have ease in scanning for an available channel. The units can be powered using AAA batteries or NiMH rechargeable battery. Its compact design enables you build quality connection over up to 20 mile long distances in open field and get great value for your money.
It has an LCD screen and built-in speaker.
The belt clips and required battery packs are included in the pack.
It has a customized call tune feature
The device is not waterproof.
The weather conditions and terrain affect the range.
4. Cobra ACXT1035R
This easy to use walkie talkie has great sound quality and helps you build quality communication over a long range during camping, hiking and other activities outdoors. The model uses NOAA weather so you can stay updated with weather alerts. In case of flood or work in wet environments, this radio floats and has a waterproof design.
The device is precharged and has a lasting battery life.
It has belt clip and built in led flashlight.
It has VOX function and can be utilized hands free.
The range is limited by Interference and terrain.
5. Midland T51VP3
Users of this walkie talkie can access 22 channels each with 38 privacy codes to build quality communication and can get weather alerts so they can be well prepared for nature’s changes using NOAA weather. The voice activation using eVOX transmission and channel scanning features make for easy use of the devices by the user.
The radio is waterproof and splash resistant.
The sound quality provides clarity and audibility.
It is unsuitable for use by children under 3 years to avoid risk of choking.
Range is limited by terrain.
6. DEWALT DXFRS800
This 2 watt heavy duty two way radio is the best walkie talkie for communication on a business site or during outdoor activities. It is a handy talkie that can also be operated hands free. The radio is pre-programmed with 23 channels with privacy codes and the radio signals over a long range making it a great decision for camping.
The device has a total of 2662 combination of channels.
The radio is protected from damage by dust or water.
Its rechargeable battery has lasting battery life.
It can be utilized hands free with keypad lock and the VOX function for voice activation.
The belt clip is fragile and has to be removed for charging.
7. Arcshell Long Range Radios
The products are the best walkie talkies to use when you need top performance over long distances with obstructions. It utilizes UHF waves for transmissions over up to a 5 mile range. The units are light weight and small sized to fit easily in your hands, however these two way radios can be operated hands free with the VOX function.
The radio frequency covers a long range for effective communication.
The earpiece and charger are included in the package.
It can be powered using a li-ion or lithium ion battery.
The battery can be charged alone or installed.
The presence of obstruction reduces range.
The product requires a licence for legal use.
8. Midland – X-TALKER T77VP5 FRS Two-Way Radio
Keep up communication and keep up with weather reports on NOAA weather using this two way radio. The reliable device provides high performance at an affordable price. The 36 channel radio has 121 privacy codes and transmits up to a 38 mile range without obstructions. The design is water resistant, easy to use and accommodates headsets and the belt clip.
The product has durable battery life and dual power function.
It helps you stay informed and alert about changing weather conditions.
The channels are scannable and can be operated with eVOX hands free function.
The device is not suited for excessive exposure to water.
It takes hours to fully charge the radio’s rechargeable battery pack.
9. Uniden SX507-2CKHS
The design of these two way radios allows clear communication without interference over long ranges, hands free operation and NOAA weather channels and scan feature for weather alerts. The high performance two way radio use rechargeable battery and has 22 channels with 142 privacy codes which function up to a 50 mile long range.These are definitely one of the best walkie talkies to purchase for your camping trip and other activity outdoors.
The frequencies of the channels are industry standard
It has private group mode functions with direct call features.
The product floats and can be submerged in water for up to 30 minutes.
Range varies based on terrain and is limited by obstructions.
10. Motorola Talkabout T801
The waterproof T801 walkie talkies have long range transmissions, the push to talk button and emergency alerts to have quick and clear communication with people in your group. The two way radios have the weather radio feature to stay aware of changing weather conditions. When your smartphone is Bluetooth connected to the two way radio, you can do more like send messages and locations over the radio frequencies with your Motorola Talkabout app features.
It uses AA batteries and has a lasting battery life
The radio transmissions reach long distances.
A desktop charger is included in the box.
The radio is available at an affordable price.
Range is limited by terrain.
11. BaoFeng BF-F8 FM Ham Radio
The Baofeng BF F8 radio is one of the bulkier options compared to other products on this list, and it is for good reason. It might not be the most aesthetically pleasing radio but it does a little bit of everything so you never have to worry on your camping trip. These two way radios transmit on two radio bands; UHF and VHF, and the performance of the way radio can be improved with the the option of toggling the power levels to either high power or low power. This two way radio features over 100 memory channels, a time out timer, OFFSET and VOX functions, a lithium ion battery pack that promises the most battery life out of the device.
In the package is an antenna, desktop charger, manual, wrist strap, belt clips, battery pack, the Baofeng BF F8 communication radio and earphone mic/headset.
The power output can be increased for a better transmission range
It has a clear, crisp, LCD screen
The Baofeng radio has a busy channel lock
It is bulky compared to most other radios
12. Midland GXT1000vp4
The Midland GXT1000VP4 walkie talkie is one of the better options on the market today, its simple lightweight design makes it a favorite with campers, it is an essential when going on trips to remote places. The radio aids communications with its 50 channels, its voice activated transmission with nine sensitivity levels and water resistance means you can take it anywhere and everywhere. When you purchase this receiver unit, you would have access to noaa weather radio alerts that would keep you informed of the changes in the weather in your environment.
Included in the box are ac and dc adapters, 120V desktop charger, boom microphones, battery packs, headsets, and two walkie talkies.
The midland gxt1000vp4 allows for hands free transmissions
The batteries offer a long battery life
It has privacy codes that blocks interference when you are on a call
The receiver is noisy
The battery capacity is limited to under 800 mAh
13. Retevis RT45
The Retevis RT45 is an affordable piece of tech that because of its simplicity can be used by all members of the family. The toughness and durability of the device makes it the go to radio for any adventure, and the simple layout means it can be uaed by people with little to no experience handling walkie talkies. The build means it can fare well when used in any weather, any terrain against all the elements. The VOX feature means it can be activated using the voice and this is essential when climbing, cooking at the camp or when your hands are coccupied generally. The unit can be powered using the rechargeable NiMH battery or three double A batteries. One other feature that makes this a good buy is the LED flashlight that allows you keep goign even when it gets dark.
The unit has a display, allowing for a easy learning curve
It supports USB charging, and the 2 radios can be charged at the same time
The Reetevis RT45 offers clarity of sound
The battery life can be better
14. Motorola Talkabout T460
The Motorola 460 is the option for amateur radio operators that want a unit that offers a lot of functions and functionality that gives confidence to go anywhere and do everything. This model is small, lightweight and can easily fit into your pocket or be packed in luggage. The radio pair offer ranges that allow for communication across long distances and the aesthetics adds another layer to their intrigue. This Motorola model has a flashlight that allows you enjoy your camping experience when it gets dark. Each radio pair features IP54 waterproofing that gives you seome protection against slashes, each unit is an amazing piece of tech that is designed to get the most out of your camping adventures.
Each unit has dual power and ptt power boost
The radios have a micro USB charging port
The audio quality can be better
15. Motorola MR350R FRS/GMRS Radio
The Morotola MR350R is one of the best walkie talkies on the market, not just because it offers water resistance due to its IP51 rating, not just because of the iVOX hands free feature or the VibraCall alert or 20 call tones that come installed, but rather how the manufacturers managed to combine all these and give the user access to these impressive functionalities in a small, portable body that can fit easily in your pocket. The unit like many others on the list allow for very easy operation, top shelf audio quality and long lasting battery life.
- The iVOX feature means the radio can be activated and operated with your voice
- You can be alerted with vibrations with the VibraCall feature
- The receiver can be noisy
Best Overall Walkie Talkie for Camping
Midland GXT1000VP4. Picking out which of these radios would be the best buy was a difficult discussion, but after much deliberation, the Midland GXT1000VP4 stood out as the clear and obvious winner for the following reasons. First and foremost would be the styling, it is small and compact, with an easy to read LCD display screen that lets you know how the radio is doing at every point in time. It offers the user a 36 mile range, sound and voice activated transmission with the eVOX feature, over 3,000 channel and privacy code combinations to prevent against interference on calls. These and many other awesome features makes this radio undoubtedly the top pick.
Best Budget Buy
Baofeng Bf F8. This is one radio I did not expect to be the budget buy because of all the features it offers, this Baofeng radio allows you transmit on both UHF and VHF frequencies, you can adjust the power output for longer transmission ranges, it offers the user 128 memory channels, 104 DCS tones and 50 CTCSS transmit tones. All these under $30.
What is the strongest walkie talkie?
There is no one answer to this question as it depends on your definition and understanding of the word ‘strongest’. The strongest for me would be any none with a tough exterior and waterproofing features. One device that fits this description the best on this list is the Midland GXT 1000VP4.
Where to buy walkie talkies?
You can buy walkie talkies for camp at any electronic store, if you are confused with the many options on the shelves, you should call the shop asssistant to help. If you want more options at competitive prices, it is best you shop at online stores. This option reduces the number of physical interactions you would need to have to secure the purchase. Ensure that you shop only at reputable stores with a vibrant online platform.