Best Camping Mattresses Of 2018 (Reviews & Buying Guide)

The 10 Best Camping Air Mattresses

There are many camping air mattresses and choosing the best is an overwhelming task. Major brands including SoundAsleep, Intex, Coleman, Air Comfort, ALPS, and Insta-Bed among others have an impressive range of products in the market. If you are first time buyer, selecting the best camping airbed gets trickier. To buy the best airbed, create a checklist to compare different products. Main factors to consider include innovative design for durability, stability and best comfort levels, ease of inflation/deflation with a built-in pump, lightweight design for easy portability, products warranty and satisfaction guarantee, carry/storage bag and puncture resistant materials suitable for outdoor use. Using this checklist, it is easier now to choose a camping airbed that suits you.

SoundAsleep Dream Series Air Mattress with ComfortCoil Technology
Our Rating:
9.4 out of 10
Price:
$$$
Mattress Sizes:
Queen
Height:
Raised
Pump Type:
Built-In
Intex Comfort Plush Elevated Dura-Beam Airbed
Our Rating:
9.0 out of 10
Price:
$$
Mattress Sizes:
Twin / Queen
Height:
Raised
Pump Type:
Built-In
Coleman SupportRest Double High Airbed, Queen
Our Rating:
8.5 out of 10
Price:
$$
Mattress Sizes:
Twin / Queen
Height:
Raised
Pump Type:
External
Intex Pillow Rest Classic Airbed with Built-in Pillow
Our Rating:
8.2 out of 10
Price:
$
Mattress Sizes:
Queen
Height:
Low
Pump Type:
Built-In
Twin Sized SoundAsleep Dream Series Air Mattress
Our Rating:
9.0 out of 10
Price:
$$
Mattress Sizes:
Twin
Height:
Raised
Pump Type:
Built-In

SoundAsleep Dream Series Air Mattress with ComfortCoil Technology

Pros

Lightweight

Built-in EZ Pump

Comfortable & durable

Puncture-resistant, waterproof PVC

500 lbs capacity

Eco-friendly materials

Good warranty & great customer service

Great value for money

Cons

Not suitable for ordinary sheets

Needs to be fully inflated to reach Queen size

Check at Amazon

If you are looking for a high quality camping air mattress in the market, the SoundAsleep Dream Series Air Mattress with ComfortCoil Technology is exactly what you need. This is one of the top selling air mattresses on all online marketplaces making it even more interesting to assess. For a small amount of money, you get a 500lb-capacity airbed with the feel of a true mattress owing to the ingenious ComfortCoil Technology featured in the product. This system boasts 40 internal air coils for improved support and durability of your camping airbed. The air mattress maintains its shape throughout the night thus delivering the ultimate sleeping experience. The EZ-pump system automatically maintains the desired firmness level of your airbed throughout the night.

Unlike most air mattresses in the market, this product guarantees easy inflation/deflation through an innovative patented 1-click internal pump. Setting up your airbed takes less than 4 minutes owing to this fast inflating pump system. This pump system is quiet and operates fast. You do not need an external pump when setting up your airbed.

The SoundAsleep Dream Series Air Mattress with ComfortCoil Technology is a versatile choice as it serves both indoors and outdoors use. It is a lightweight airbed at only 19 pounds but still large enough (78″ x 58″ x 19″ inches) to comfortably sleep two people. The queen size fits standards sheets to provide your guests with an unforgettable sleeping experience. At a height of 19 inches, it is easy to get in and out of this raised double height airbed.

One of the most outstanding qualities of this airbed’s construction is the emphasis on blending comfort with durability. The construction design consists of dual chamber and a sure grip bottom to keep your air mattress in position throughout the night. On top is a multilayer and puncture-resistant material. The extra thick waterproof-flocked cover not only makes the bed more comfortable but also protects it from physical damage. This saves you repair and maintenance costs.

For easy transportation and storage, there is a durable nylon storage and travel bag provided. What’s more, you get a 1 year SoundAsleep satisfaction guarantee for this 5-star airbed. If you have been looking for a convenient solution to your home or camping sleeping arrangements, this air mattress is for you.

Intex Comfort Plush Elevated Dura-Beam Airbed

Pros

Excellent price

600-lb. weight capacity

Very comfortable & Solid construction

Quick inflation/deflation

Flocked, waterproof top and sides

Inflates quickly

More durable than a regular air mattress

Cons

Plastic odor when first unpacked

Low-quality carry bag

Check at Amazon

The Intex Comfort Plush Elevated Dura-Beam Airbed serves high maintenance guests and provides more comfort, stability and support than your ordinary airbed. This is another impressive product from Intex a brand that is now renowned globally for highly innovative sleep systems. This is a compact and lightweight bed measuring 60 x 22 x 80 inches and weighing only 11 pounds. With a weight capacity of up to 600 lbs, this airbed stands out from the crowd.

The most outstanding feature on the product is the built-in electric pump, which makes inflation/deflation bliss. Users have rated this aired highly owing to the fast and hassle-free inflation and deflation process, which takes approximately 4 minutes. You just need to plug in and set the desired comfort level and you are good to go. If the process of setting up an airbed has always turned you off, it is time you tried this amazing products by Intex.

For durability, this airbed features an innovative fiber-tech beam construction. This design consists of thousands of lightweight high-strength polyester fibers, which in combination deliver comfort, durability and support. This Fiber Tech technology also distributes weight evenly across the sleeping surface. The horizontal air chambers add to the stability and support of your airbed making this one of the best air mattresses in the market. The customizable comfort feature also stands out and it works through a one-touch button. You can set the firmness level you want and enjoy this throughout the night.

The raised height of 22 inches makes this one of the easiest airbeds to use. Getting in and out of bed is easy and your guests will appreciate the thought. For enhanced durability of the product, there is a waterproof and flocked top and sides. This material keeps your airbed dry especially when used outdoors. Better still, you do not have to worry about spills when you have kids in the house. The indented sides keep the sheets in place throughout the night and the vinyl bottom prevents the airbed from slipping.

For easy storage and transportation, a duffel bag is included in the package. All these features make the Intex Comfort Plush Elevated Dura-Beam Airbed good value for money.

Coleman SupportRest Double High Airbed

Pros

Support Lock™ reinforced construction for a comfortable sleep

Double Lock™ valve is dual-sealed and leak free

AirTight® system which does not allow leaks

ComfortStrong™ coil system technology for incredible support

Wrap-n-Roll built-in storage system for easy transportation and storage

Extra-high design makes getting in and out of bed easier

Soft plush top for enhanced comfort

Cons

No pump included - you need to buy one separately

The flocked top is difficult to clean

Check at Amazon

The Coleman SupportRest Double High Airbed (twin and queen size) has emerged as one of the most popular airbeds in the market. This brand specializes in high quality camping sleep systems and this extra-high design airbed keeps up with their tradition. The 18” height design makes it easy for the user to get in and out of bed and it also great in keeping you safe when camping. For enhanced comfort, there is a soft plush top which creates a luxurious velvet-like sleeping surface.

The ComfortStrong and SupportLock patented systems used here make this one of the most comfortable and durable airbeds in the market. The ComfortStrong™ coil system technology provides incredible support and distributes weight evenly across the bed while the SupportLock system provides stability to the edges. The two systems in combination give this airbed the feel of a regular bed and most customers give it a good rating for this reason.

The Coleman SupportRest Double High Airbed has received rave reviews over the innovative Double Lock™ valve. With the awareness that most air mattresses suffer air retention problems, Coleman has introduced this ingenious dual-sealed and leak-free valve. This system has one valve to prevent air loss when you finish pumping while the second valve in the system locks in air while you sleep. This AirTight® system has undergone rigorous factory testing to ensure it is leak free. The company is so sure about this system that is offering a 1-year limited warranty. The twin size airbed has a 300 lb weight limit while the queen size can support up to 600 lb.

Another feature that makes this airbed ideal for camping is the Wrap ‘N’ Roll™ built-in storage system. This attached storage bag makes is easy to travel with your air mattress. When you need to set out the airbed, you just have to open the storage bag and inflate. Likewise, folding up is as easy as deflating the airbed and rolling it into the storage bag.

While the airbed doesn’t come with a built-in pump, the company recommends a Coleman® 120V or rechargeable pump.

If you are looking for the best camping air mattress, the Coleman SupportRest Double High Airbed has everything you need and then some more.

Intex Pillow Rest Classic Airbed

Pros

High-powered built-in electric pump

Built-in pillow

One-touch super fast inflation/deflation system

Lightweight

Durable vinyl construction

600-lb. capacity

Cons

Uncomfortable pillow

Poor customer service

Check at Amazon

A good airbed comes in handy when you have guests sleeping over at your place. As such, you want to buy a high quality product that is strong, durable, comfortable and easy to use. This is exactly what you get with the innovatively designed Intex Pillow Rest Classic Airbed. This is an inflatable queen airbed that has received rave reviews due to its amazing features. The airbed comes with a high-powered built-in electric pump for easy inflation and deflation. You only need about 2 minutes to set up your airbed and without breaking a sweat. With so many people complaining about air mattress inflation systems, this Intex airbed comes as a godsend. You do not have to struggle with hand or foot pumps when setting up your air mattress for guests.

For added support and enhanced comfort, there is a built-in pillow, which is among the most outstanding features on this airbed. The one-touch inflation/deflation system is just one of the features which make this a good addition in your home. Unlike most air mattresses in the market, this luxurious flocked bed boasts lightweight but durable vinyl construction for an increased lifespan. This strong construction allows the bed to support up to 600-lb. The seams are also strong to guarantee minimal air loss.

The Waterproof flocked top also features vinyl beams for enhanced stability meaning the user enjoys a comfortable night. Comfort is a great consideration when buying an airbed and this is a quality you enjoy in great measure when using the Intex Pillow Rest Classic Airbed. The flocking is so soft and luxurious that many customers prefer sleeping without sheets. Considering the amazing air retention capacity of this airbed, you will enjoy an unforgettable sleeping experience. One other thing which makes this airbed a good buy for your home is the minimal off-gassing. Many airbeds in the market emit a harsh odor but this is not a problem with this Intex airbed.

If you are looking for a lightweight, versatile and easy to use airbed for both indoor and outdoor use, the Intex Pillow Rest Classic Airbed is the right fit for you.

Twin Sized SoundAsleep Dream Series Air Mattress

Pros

ComfortCoil Technology for ample support and stability

Highly effective 1-click internal pump

Premium puncture-resistant material

Raised double-height design & dual chamber construction

Extra thick waterproof flocked top

Puncture-resistant material

Excellent customer service

Cons

No color options available
Tight fitting storage bag
Frequently runs out of stock

Check at Amazon

When buying an airbed, some of the most important factors to consider include durable construction, comfort, easy and fast inflation, and good air retention. All these are qualities you will find in the amazing Twin Sized SoundAsleep Dream Series Air Mattress. SoundAsleep is renowned for its incredible sleep systems but with their Dream Series airbeds, they have clearly outdone themselves. Their twin size air mattress features the innovative ComfortCoil Technology which consists of 21 internal air coils to provide ample support and stability. This design ensures your airbed remains firm and the sleeping surface doesn’t collapse as happens with most airbeds. Your guests will thus sleep comfortably throughout the night.

For easy and fast inflation/deflation, this airbed features the highly effective 1-click internal pump system. This built-in pump is among the most outstanding features on this product as it allows the user to inflate or deflate the airbed in less than 3 minutes. While many consumers complain about air mattress inflation, this is not a problem with users of this Twin Sized SoundAsleep Dream Series Air Mattress.

The airbed’s dual chamber construction is another amazing feature on this airbed which gives it a raised double-height design. It is easy to get in and out of bed and your guests will enjoy the feel of a real bed. Better still, the Sure-Grip bottom retains the bed in position again ensuring a comfortable night’s sleep. If you have had a bad experience sleeping on a rough airbed, it is time to treat your guests to something different. The Twin Sized SoundAsleep Dream Series Air Mattress features an extra thick waterproof flocked top which is not only plush but also puncture-resistant. You don’t have to worry unnecessarily over damage to your airbed both indoors and outdoors.

Well, these features make this bed one of the most popular in the SoundAsleep Dream Series. You will get good value for money because the design and construction of this airbed focus on comfort, durability and convenience. Whatever your past experiences with air mattresses this airbed is going to dazzle you and your guests.

Coleman SupportRest Elite Double High Airbed
Our Rating:
8.6 out of 10
Price:
$$
Mattress Sizes:
Twin
Height:
Raised
Pump Type:
Built-In
SoundAsleep Camping Series Air Mattress
Our Rating:
8.3 out of 10
Price:
$$
Mattress Sizes:
Twin / Queen
Height:
Low
Pump Type:
External
Insta-Bed Raised Air Mattress
Our Rating:
9.2 out of 10
Price:
$$$
Mattress Sizes:
Twin / Queen
Height:
Raised
Pump Type:
Built-In
ALPS Mountaineering Rechargeable Air Bed
Our Rating:
7.8 out of 10
Price:
$$
Mattress Sizes:
Twin / Queen
Height:
Low
Pump Type:
External
Air Comfort Deep Sleep Inflatable Air Mattress
Our Rating:
8.0 out of 10
Price:
$$$
Mattress Sizes:
Twin / Queen
Height:
Raised
Pump Type:
Built-In

Coleman SupportRest Elite Double High Airbed

Pros

Antimicrobial sleep surface resists odor, mildew, mold & fungus

Swift Rise built-in 120V pump for quick inflation/deflation

Fits standard twin size sheets

Weight capacity 300 lbs

Leak-free AirTight system

Carry bag for hassle-free transportation

1-year limited warranty

Cons

Loud pump
No carrying strap for the storage bag

Check at Amazon

Buying a good airbed today is a daunting task. There are so many brands making similar products and you will find it hard selecting a quality airbed. Luckily, the impressively designed Coleman Support Rest Twin Elite Air Bed has everything you need in an airbed. Like all Coleman products, this airbed perfectly blends comfort, aesthetics and functionality. It features an extra-tall design which makes getting in and out bed easy. The double high design standing at 20 inches gives this air mattress the feel of a true bed and also adds to its comfort levels.

The company has used its patented Support Lock reinforced construction to build one of the strongest and most durable airbeds in the market. The airbed remains firm throughout the night which is something you don’t normally find with products in this category. With a 300 pounds weight capacity, this bed is ideal for both indoors and outdoors use.

For ease of inflation, there is a Swift Rise built-in 120V pump. You don’t have to grapple with hand or foot pumps anymore when setting up your air mattress. In less than 2 minutes, you can transform any empty room into a sleeping space with this airbed. The pump system allows you to set a desired firmness level for your guests. Deflating this airbed is also quick and easy.

Most consumers are concerned about the safety of air mattresses but the Coleman Support Rest Twin Elite Air Bed provides a safe sleeping experience. This airbed features an antimicrobial sleep surface which is resistant to odor and mold, fungus, mildew and other diseases causing products. This is one of the most notable features on all customer testimonials and it makes this airbed ideal for use by everyone in your home.

If you always have guests sleeping over and you don’t have enough space for a stationary bed, this fast-inflation air mattress from Coleman is exactly what you need. When fully inflated, it measures 75 x 40 x 20 inches and easily fits standard twin sheets.

Your guests will enjoy a stable sleeping surface and the safe and comfortable materials guarantee the best sleep quality.

SoundAsleep Camping Series Air Mattress

Pros

ComfortCoil Technology with I-Beam Air Coils keep the mattress flat and supportive

Heavy-duty rechargeable pump battery

Can be used both indoors and outdoors

Eco-Friendly PVC (TM)

Carry bag included

1-year limited warranty

Cons

Not so great valve design
It may require air refilling during the night

Check at Amazon

Looking for a good camping airbed? Of course there are so many brands making these sleep systems and selecting the best becomes a herculean task. There are also many features to consider but luckily, the SoundAsleep Camping Series Air Mattress contains all in one package. This is a standout airbed from one of the leading brands in sleeping solutions and it boasts the brand’s most innovative technology. It comes in queen or twin sizes to suit different types of outdoor lovers.

For comfort and stability, this airbed features the ComfortCoil Technology, which consists of I-Beam Air Coils to guarantee extra durability and stability. The inner coils distribute weight evenly thus guaranteeing a more comfortable sleeping experience. This airbed features a flocked cover that provides a plush and luxurious sleeping surface. This flocked top also prevents sheets from slipping at night.

The firmer edges will lock in the sleeper instead of collapsing as happens with most other air mattresses in the market. In addition, the proprietary Eco-Friendly PVC (TM) used on this airbed is tough and durable making this the ultimate camping sleeping solution. There is a Sure-Grip bottom is also important to keep the bed in position when inflated. This airbed also boasts low air loss compared to most products in the category and this is one reason more outdoor enthusiasts are opting for it.

There is an external patented pump for easy and quick inflation that is a great feature for outdoors use. The pump comes with a heavy-duty rechargeable pump battery that you can easily recharge at home or in your car. You do not have to struggle with external pumps anymore. Inflating and deflating your airbed takes less than 3 minutes and all this with the touch of a button. The battery operated pump system is also silent something you will not find on other camping airbeds.

With the SoundAsleep Camping Series Air Mattress, the brand has made a product which every camping enthusiast will love. It is easy to inflate, durable, and lightweight making it perfect for outdoors use.

Insta-Bed Raised Air Mattress with Never Flat Pump

Pros

Dual Pump System - “no deflate” guarantee

Auto Shut Off Feature

Customizable firmness

Excellent support due to the coiled design

High-quality & durable material

Suitable for fitted sheets

Included carrying bag for easy transportation and storage of the product

Great value for money

Cons

Heavy for an air mattress

Some users complained about the overall height

Check at Amazon

Whether you need a sleeping solution when camping or you have guests sleeping over, a good quality airbed offers an effective solution. The Insta-Bed Raised Air Mattress stands out from the crowded market due to the great craftsmanship and this is one of the many reasons it has emerged as the best seller. If you are looking for a high performance air mattress, this Insta-Bed product has everything you need. For this magnificent air mattress, you have the option of a twin size (78″ x 60″ x 19″) or queen size (80″x 60″ x 18″). These airbeds are compact and lightweight making them ideal for both indoors and outdoors use.

To guarantee stability, comfort and durability, this airbed features internal circular coils (Twin Bed -21 circular coils and Queen Bed-35 circular coils). These coils provide a comfortable sleeping surface, which remains firm throughout the night. The Insta-Bed air mattress also features vertical and horizontal reinforcements to keep the bed stable and provide the most comfortable sleeping experience for your guests. For enhanced comfort levels, there is a plush flocked top, which is also puncture resistant. This material also prevents your beddings from slipping.

One of the most outstanding features on this air mattress is the NeverFlat pump system, which consists of a two pumps. The primary pump inflates and deflates your airbed in less than 4 minutes. Once you achieve the desired firmness level, the secondary NeverFlat Pump maintains this comfort level throughout the night. This system works through sensors, which continuously monitor air pressure and activate the secondary pump automatically to maintain the desired comfort level. This innovative pump system makes it easy to customize a firmness level (plush, medium or firm) and maintain it throughout the night.

The Insta-Bed Raised Air Mattress features a raised height making it easy to get in and out of bed. This feature gives your bed the feel of a real bed and your guests will love the experience. For easy storage and transportation, there is a carry bag included in the purchase package.

The Insta-Bed Raised Air Mattress offers good value for money; it is durable, comfortable and easy to use. It also features sophisticated technology to enhance its performance.

ALPS Mountaineering Rechargeable Air Bed

Pros

Ideal for outdoors

Internal coil construction

Pump includes car and wall charger

Flocked top for a plush, luxurious and velvety soft sleeping surface

Reinforced construction to keep the sleeping surface uniform

Extra thick and durable PVC material (10% thicker than the competition) to prevent punctures

Welded seams prevent air loss

Carry bag for easy transport and storage

Cons

Rechargeable pump system

Poor customer service

Check at Amazon

Planning and adventure away from home? You need to think about your sleeping arrangements and this is where the versatile ALPS Mountaineering Rechargeable Air Bed comes in handy. If you love the outdoors but loathe the ideas of sleeping bags, it is time for an upgrade with this amazing airbed. You have a choice of a Twin and Queen Size ALPS airbeds depending on your sleeping needs. This airbed comes with a built-in pump system that enables you to set up the bed in about a minute. Better still, you can now customize the firmness level you want with the touch of a dial. Gone are the days when you had to sleep rough during outdoor expeditions. Like all products form ALPS, you have a guarantee of excellence in design and durable construction with this airbed.

If you are looking for the ideal sleeping solution when camping, the ALPS Mountaineering Rechargeable Air Bed has everything you need. The state-of-the-art pump system makes this one of the most convenient camping air mattresses in the market. You can recharge the pump system in your car or at home before or during your outdoor trip.

For enhanced comfort levels, this airbed features top-of-the line fabric and internal coil construction. These are features found on the best air mattresses in the market and this is another good reason to invest in this outdoors airbed. Unlike most outdoors air mattresses which can easily collapse during use, this one features reinforced bed construction to keep the sleeping surface uniform. The flocked top provides a plush, luxurious and velvety soft sleeping surface which every user will love. All these features in combination deliver the ultimate sleeping experience.

The top features an extra thick and durable PVC material (10% thicker than the competition) to prevent punctures and any other form of physical damage in the rugged outdoors environment. At the bottom is a thick fabric (17% thicker than the competition) which adds to the life of the product. The welded seams prevent air loss and add to the durability of the airbed.

The ALPS Mountaineering Rechargeable Air Bed also comes with a carry bag for easy transport and storage. This is without doubt one of the best airbeds for outdoors.

Air Comfort Deep Sleep Inflatable Air Mattress

Pros

Built-in electric air pump for easy and fast inflating/deflating

Durable and puncture-resistant PVC material

The soft, diamond coil suede top holds beddings in place

Flocked top for a plush, luxurious and velvety soft sleeping surface

Built-in storage bag

1-year manufacturer warranty

Cons

Some customers complained about mattress being too firm

Some pieces develop leaks

Check at Amazon

To make the best choice when buying an inflatable air mattress, you have to consider quality, portability, comfort level, heavy-duty construction and ease of inflation/ deflation. Well, the Air Comfort Deep Sleep Inflatable Air Mattress ticks all these boxes and many more. It comes with a built-in electric air pump for easy and fast inflating/deflating in less than 4 minutes and without breaking a sweat. With the turn of a dial, the air pump goes to work and your air mattress is ready for use. If you have been avoiding air mattresses due to the backbreaking inflating processes, it is time you tried this innovative product.

For added comfort and stability, this air mattress features durable and puncture-resistant PVC material construction. Most consumers have always complained about deterioration of these products but this is a problem the Air Comfort Deep Sleep Inflatable Air Mattress solves easily with its tough construction. In addition, the materials used are waterproof making this one of the toughest airbeds in the market today. The Deep Sleep Series of airbeds by Air Comfort comes in an 18″ multi-chamber height which offers added comfort and convenience. This design also gives this inflatable bed the feel of a true bed as when getting in and out of bed.

Another incredible feature which makes the Air Comfort Deep Sleep Inflatable Air Mattress so popular is the soft, diamond coil suede top. This not only provides added comfort but also extra cushioning and support for the sleeper. It also holds beddings in place and prevents sheets from slipping at night. A built-in storage bag on the bed adds to its convenience by making it easy to store your personal items. If you are planning an outdoor expedition, there is a carry bag included for easy storage and transportation.

This impressive array of features on the Air Comfort Deep Sleep Inflatable Air Mattress guarantees comfort, convenience and durability of the product. Your guests will enjoy unforgettable night and you will never have to worry about hosting visitors. The 1-year manufacturer warranty is also proof enough of the confidence Air Comfort has in their airbed.

What to look for when choosing the Best Mattress for Camping – Buying Guide

1.Mattress Types

1.1 Self-Inflating Mats

A Self-inflating mattress is a great addition to your camping gear as it is versatile and convenient. These pads feature an open-cell foam insulation and air to provide a firm and comfortable sleeping surface. To inflate, you just need to open the valve and the air fills the chambers to provide the desired firmness level. They are compact and lightweight and you can easily adjust the firmness level by letting it or releasing air. Most of them come with a carry bag for easy storage and transportation. The fabric used is tough and puncture resistant making this the best camping sleeping solution.

1.2 Air Mattresses

An air mattress is one of the most important items you can add to your camping gear. Over the years, air mattresses have grown more compact and lightweight for easy storage and transportation. They are small and easy to fit into your backpack. These sleeping systems require manual inflation with your mouth or an external pump. There are more refined products, which come with a built-in pump for easy inflation. These systems are easy to set up and very comfortable compared to sleeping bags. You can adjust the firmness level of your air mattress using the air valve or a knob on the air pump.

1.3 Foam Pads

Closed-cell foam pads are the most basic and rudimentary camping sleeping systems. Their construction design consists of dense foam filled with tiny closed air cells. They were once the most popular option for campers due to their affordability, compact and lightweight nature. Foam pads offer great insulation and the fact that they do not require inflating makes them ideal for outdoors use. Setting up a foam pad or folding takes little time and effort. Better still, you do not have to worry about punctures, which would lead to leaks. If you are looking for an affordable, lightweight and compact camping sleeping solution, a foam pad will do great.

2. Sleeping Mats vs. Airbeds

Most campers have a tough choice choosing the right sleeping system. The most common options in the market are self-inflating sleeping mats and airbeds. When making the choice, you need to consider the environment where these sleeping systems are required. A camping environment is rough and the sleeping solution you pick must be easy to carry around.

Sleeping mats are compact, lightweight, durable and easy to set up. You do not require an external pump to set up your bed. You just need to open the valve and the mat fills up. These mats also offer excellent insulation, which is crucial in the outdoors.

Camping blow up mattresses on the other hand are more comfortable and compact and give the camper a feel of a true bed. Most come with a built-in pump but some require manual pumping. Air pads are more susceptible to punctures and leaks and they are bulkier and heavier to carry.

3. What is a Sleeping Cot?

A cot is another ideal camping sleeping solution. The main advantage of a sleeping cot is the versatile design making it perfect for the outdoors. These cots come with a metal frame and a fabric that stretches over the frame to create the ideal sleeping surface.

The frame construction keeps the user off the ground and this elevation aids in air circulation to keep you cool during hot nights. The elevation is also ideal to keep you away from the rough surface and prevent bugs from crawling into the sheets. When it is raining, you do not have to worry about getting wet and this is one reason to buy a cot over other camping sleeping systems.

The best cots in the market are heavy duty and they sleep more than one person. The design also helps maximize available space inside your tent as you can store some of your stuff under the cot. These sleeping systems require no extra accessories such as pumps.

Check at Amazon

If you are backpacking, a cot might not be ideal as it is bulky and it can bog you down. The canvas surface might be too hard without a sleeping pad, which would again add to the overall weight.

4. Mattress Comfort and Thickness

When buying a camping mattress, you have to consider thickness, which determines comfort levels. While these sleeping systems offer a temporary sleeping solution, you still have to consider comfort levels for the best sleep quality. Camping is supposed to be fun and relaxing and it is thus important to choose the most comfortable sleeping system. A thicker mattress is definitely better in any situation but then you have to consider portability too when it comes to outdoors applications.

Thickness will depend on the type of camping mattress you choose. Self-inflating mats are thin and firmer which makes them more portable. They offer minimal comfort levels but they are ideal for backpacking. Closed-cell foam pads are also thin and tough which makes them less comfortable. These foam pads are also bulky which makes them less suitable for minimalist camping.

Blow up mattresses offer the best solution if you are looking for a comfortable night’s sleep when camping. When deflated, these sleeping systems can fit into a small carry bag but when fully inflated, you get a thick and comfortable sleeping surface. There are different mattresses thicknesses to choose from with some going up and beyond 20 inches. The thicker a camping mattress is, the more comfortable it is.

5. Size: Width and Length

Camping sleep systems come in a variety of lengths and widths. It is important to consider your own needs when determining the width and length of the mattress you are buying. The versatile range of sizes makes it easier to find a camping mattress that suits your needs. The last thing you would want is having your feet hanging off the edge of your sleeping mat. Likewise, a very long airbed is bulkier and bogs you down when hiking.

When choosing the width, you need to confirm whether you are camping alone or with a partner. You want to buy an airbed, which is wide enough to accommodate you comfortably, or the two of you.

Most camping sleeping mattresses offer a width of 20 inches but if you are a restless sleeper, go for 25 or 30 inches to avoid falling off. For the length, make sure your arms, shoulders and feet fit comfortably on the mattress.

6. R-Value – the Mattress Insulation

When sleeping outdoors, you need the most comfortable mattress and this is where the level of insulation comes in handy. Depending on the type of camping sleeping system, the air inside, foam or fabric used will keep you warm and insulate you from the cold surface. You might find a very thick air mattress in the market whose insulation capacity is very poor. This means you will freeze throughout the night, which is not only uncomfortable but also risky. Most camping mattresses have synthetic insulation while a few feature down insulation.

To determine the insulation capacity of any camping mattress, consider the R-value. This is the capacity to resist (R) heat flow when the mattress is in use. The higher the R-value of your sleeping pad the better the thermal resistance of materials used. A good camping mattress should have a high R-value not only to offer more comfort but also to keep you safe.

7. Weight and Packed Size

The best camping mattress should be lightweight for easy storage and transportation. If you are hiking for instance, you need an ultra-light sleeping pad which will not bog you down. Lightweight blow up mattresses are more expensive but they are worth every penny. Air mattresses are lightweight when packed and they always come with a storage bag for eased of transportation. A lightweight airbed transforms into a comfortable bed in minutes when fully inflated. Other lightweight camping sleeping systems include foam pads and self-inflating airbeds.

A good camping sleeping system is compact and lightweight. Self-inflating and foam pads are the lightest with most measuring between 5 lbs. and 10 lbs. Airbeds and sleeping cots are heavier due to the sturdy material used to construct them. They also have support systems to maintain the shape of the airbed when in use. They range between 15 lbs. and 25 lbs. though some are heavier.

8. Durability

When shopping for a camping mattress, you have to consider the durability (measured in Denier) of the materials used. The higher Denier indicates better tear resistance of the material.

Closed cell-foam pads last long because they feature tough materials and there is no risk of puncture.

Self-inflating mats also feature heavy-duty fabrics, which guarantee longer life spans.

Air mattresses on the other hand are more vulnerable to punctures because the material used has to inflate for the system to function. The air pump systems can also fail and for these reasons, camping enthusiasts only buy from the best brands to guarantee they find a durable product. The lightweight construction is a plus for camping purposes but it also affects the lifespan of airbeds.

Sleeping cots feature sturdy aluminum frame construction, which makes them durable. There is no risk of punctures and for this reason; disciplined forces around the world use cots in the roughest of environments.

9. Valve Type

It is important to consider the valve type when buying a camping mattress. For self-inflating mattress, the twisting valve design is the most common and all you need to do is open the valve to inflate. High performance air mattresses come with the best valves from premium brands in the market. These products are designed and built to perfection and the last thing such sleeping system brands want is for a valve to ruin a user’s experience. You will find the best valves on the premium camping mattresses and you might have to pay more.

The best valves not only make it easier to inflate your mattress but also prevent air loss. Air loss is one of the major complaints consumers make about these products and it is thus important to invest in a high performance valve. Some airbeds come with two valves to ease inflating and deflating of the unit.

If you have had a bad experience inflating a camping mattress, it is highly likely you chose the wrong type of air valve. Whether you are using an external pump or there is a built-in pump on your camping mattress, the right valve will make work easier and add to the lifespan of the unit.

10. Ease of Use

Before buying any camping sleeping system, make sure you assess how easy it is to use. Foam pads are the easiest to use and for this reason, most campers prefer them. You just have to unfold your mattress and enjoy the night.

Self-inflating mats are also easy to use because they do not require energy sapping inflating processes. With the turn of a knob, an air valve opens and air rushes into the mat providing a firm and comfortable sleeping surface.

Camping airbeds can either have a built-in pump or require an external pump to inflate. With a built-in pump, you just turn a knob and set the desired firmness level. External pumps require lots of energy to inflate your bed and also take time.

Sleeping cots require assembly and dismantling. For most cots, this is easy but some are complicated and users have a hard time setting them up. Before buying a camping sleeping system, assess its ease of use.

11. Warmth – Quality of Insulation

If you are going camping, you have to consider your comfort first. When choosing a camping mattress, one of the main things to consider is how warm the sleeping system is. You also have to consider the type of mattress construction to assess how comfortable the sleeping experience will be. The quality of insulation determines warmth levels. It is thus important to check the thermal resistance of the materials used. Go for a camping mattress with a high R-value as this retains more heat when in use.

camping air mattress

There are camping mattresses specifically singed for use in cold areas and it is thus important to determine the environment before buying a camping mattress.

It is also advisable to buy a camping mattress built using warm natural tops. A flocked top for instance is not only smooth to sleep on but also ensures you stay warm throughout the night. Whatever you do, make sure you confirm the warmth levels of the camping mattress you buy.

Best Camping Air Mattress Comparison Chart

Model
Mattress Sizes
Height
Pump Type
Our Rating
Price
SoundAsleep Dream Series Air Mattress with ComfortCoil Technology
Queen
Raised
Built-In
9.4 out of 10
$$$
Intex Comfort Plush Elevated Dura-Beam Airbed
Twin / Queen
Raised
Built-In
9.0 out of 10
$$
Coleman SupportRest Double High Airbed
Twin / Queen
Raised
External
8.5 out of 10
$$
Intex Pillow Rest Classic Airbed with Built-in Pillow
Queen
Low
Built-In
8.2 out of 10
$
Twin Sized SoundAsleep Dream Series Air Mattress
Twin
Raised
Built-In
9.0 out of 10
$$
Coleman SupportRest Elite Double High Airbed
Twin
Raised
Built-In
8.6 out of 10
$$
SoundAsleep Camping Series Air Mattress
Twin / Queen
Low
External
8.3 out of 10
$$
Insta-Bed Raised Air Mattress with Never Flat Pump
Twin / Queen
Raised
Built-In
9.2 out of 10
$$$
ALPS Mountaineering Rechargeable Air Bed
Twin / Queen
Low
External
7.8 out of 10
$$
Air Comfort Deep Sleep Inflatable Air Mattress
Twin / Queen
Raised
Built-In
8.0 out of 10
$$$

Conclusion

If you are looking for the ideal sleeping solution when camping, you can choose between an airbed, self-inflating mats, sleeping cots or foam pads. All these have their unique qualities and a good comparison will help you make the right choice. You have to consider durability, ease of use, warmth, weight, comfort and thickness. Foam pads and self-inflating mats are the easiest to use but they are not very comfortable. Airbeds provide a comfortable sleeping experience but they are too heavy for backpacking. Sleeping cots on the other hand are versatile and suited for the roughest camping environments but they are not very easy to set up. To make the best purchase, you have to make a compromise and pick the sleeping system that is comfortable, easy to use and one that best suits your needs.

Scroll Up