When it comes to camping, nothing is more essential than a good night’s sleep. While some brave souls might opt for a sleeping bag straight on the ground, for most of us, an air mattress offers the perfect balance between comfort and convenience. With countless options on the market, however, it can be daunting to find the best air mattress for camping. That’s where we come in.
In this comprehensive guide, we’ve compiled a list of the 10 best air mattresses for camping. These mattresses promise not just a comfortable sleep but also the durability and ease of use necessary for outdoor adventures. So, let’s dive in!
1. Therm-a-Rest NeoAir Xtherm
The Therm-a-Rest NeoAir Xtherm is a top-of-the-line air mattress featuring superior insulation and comfort for all four seasons. Its reflective ThermaCapture technology traps radiant heat, while the Triangular Core Matrix minimizes heat loss – perfect for those colder nights under the stars.
This air mattress is also incredibly lightweight and compact, with the regular size weighing only 15 ounces and packing down to the size of a one-liter water bottle. The convenience, combined with its durability and warmth, makes it an excellent option for backpacking and multi-day hiking trips.
2. SoundAsleep Dream Series Air Mattress
Next on our list is the SoundAsleep Dream Series Air Mattress. This mattress sets itself apart with its ComfortCoil Technology, featuring 40 internal air coils for added support and durability. The Sure-Grip bottom ensures the mattress stays in place, even on slick tent floors.
Although slightly bulkier than some other options, the SoundAsleep mattress offers a built-in, rechargeable air pump for quick and convenient inflation. This makes it a great choice for car camping or other situations where size and weight are less of a concern.
3. Sea to Summit Comfort Plus Insulated Mat
The Sea to Summit Comfort Plus Insulated Mat offers a dual-layer design, allowing you to adjust the mattress’s firmness to your preference. The Exkin Platinum and Thermolite insulation provides excellent warmth, making it suitable for all seasons.
Additionally, this air mattress is incredibly compact when deflated, and it comes with an efficient hand pump integrated into the stuff sack. Lightweight, versatile, and warm, this mat is an excellent choice for those seeking comfort and convenience in a small package.
4. NEMO Tensor Insulated Sleeping Pad
The NEMO Tensor Insulated Sleeping Pad impresses with its quiet, supportive sleep surface. Unlike other air mattresses that often crinkle loudly with every move, the NEMO Tensor is designed for a silent night’s sleep. Its Spaceframe baffles offer stability and weight distribution comparable to a home mattress.
Weighing in at just under a pound, it’s incredibly light and compact. Plus, it includes a Vortex pump sack, making inflation quick and easy. Perfect for lightweight backpackers, the NEMO Tensor doesn’t compromise on comfort or convenience.
5. Exped MegaMat 10
The Exped MegaMat 10 is the ultimate choice for car camping or basecamps, offering unrivaled comfort and support. This self-inflating mattress provides the feeling of a real bed, thanks to its generous dimensions, 10cm thickness, and foam padding.
Despite its larger size, the MegaMat inflates and deflates quickly with its included mini pump. While it may not be suited for lightweight backpacking trips, it is the perfect choice for campers looking to maximize comfort and don’t mind sacrificing some portability.
6. REI Co-op Camp Dreamer XL Self-Inflating Deluxe Bed
The REI Co-op Camp Dreamer XL is another excellent pick for those who prioritize comfort. Its 4-inch thickness, soft and stretchy jersey top, and horizontal-cored foam promise a comfortable night’s sleep, even on rough ground.
One of the best features of the Camp Dreamer XL is its speed valve, which allows for remarkably fast inflation and deflation. It is an ideal choice for family camping trips, providing a sleep experience that’s as close to your bed at home as possible.
7. Klymit Static V2 Sleeping Pad
The Klymit Static V2 Sleeping Pad is a fantastic budget option that doesn’t skimp on quality. Weighing just over a pound, it’s extremely lightweight and packs down smaller than a water bottle, making it great for backpacking.
The V2 features a V-shaped design and side rails to keep you comfortably on your pad all night long. And with its easy-to-use valve, inflation and deflation are a breeze. This is a top-notch pick for cost-conscious campers and backpackers who still want a comfortable night’s sleep.
8. ALPS Mountaineering Outback Air Mat
With the ALPS Mountaineering Outback Air Mat, you’ll feel like you brought your bed camping with you. The plush, foam-filled design provides unrivaled comfort, while the large, 30-inch width offers plenty of rolling space.
Although it’s a heavier option, the Outback Air Mat includes a built-in foot pump for easy inflation. The mat’s durable construction and comfortable design make it a good choice for car campers and basecamp expeditions.
9. Big Agnes Insulated AXL Air Sleeping Pad
The Big Agnes Insulated AXL Air Sleeping Pad is a super lightweight and compact air mattress option, perfect for backpacking. Its proprietary patterned design minimizes weight and provides consistent stability and comfort.
It’s insulated with PrimaLoft Silver and includes heat-reflective technology to maintain warmth. Plus, with its high-volume valve, inflation and deflation are speedy and simple. The AXL Air is a top contender for those on long-distance treks seeking minimal weight without sacrificing comfort.
10. EnerPlex No Outlet Needed Luxury Series Air Mattress
Rounding out our list is the EnerPlex No Outlet Needed Luxury Series Air Mattress. This is a larger, more luxurious camping mattress, perfect for glamping or use as a guest bed at home. It offers a built-in pump with a rechargeable battery, allowing you to inflate it anywhere in just 90 seconds.
Although heavier and bulkier than other options on this list, the EnerPlex offers a coil-beam construction for excellent support and a waterproof, puncture-resistant PVC material for durability. It’s a fantastic choice for those looking for the highest level of comfort in their camping sleep setup.
Tips for Choosing the Best Air Mattress for Camping
1. Consider Your Camping Style
If you’re a backpacker who needs to carry all your gear, you’ll want a lightweight air mattress that packs down small. Look for options that weigh around 1 pound or less and are compact when deflated.
On the other hand, if you’re car camping or setting up a base camp for several days, weight and size won’t be as crucial. In this case, you can opt for a larger, thicker, and more luxurious air mattress that might weigh a bit more but will provide superior comfort.
2. Check the Insulation
When camping, it’s essential to keep in mind that you’ll be sleeping on the ground, which can get quite cold, especially at night. Therefore, it’s crucial to choose an air mattress with adequate insulation. Some mattresses feature an R-value rating, which indicates their ability to resist heat flow. A higher R-value means better insulation, so look for this if you plan to camp in colder conditions.
3. Don’t Forget About Durability
A camping air mattress needs to be tough enough to withstand the rigors of the outdoors. Look for a mattress made from durable materials that are resistant to punctures and tears. Some models feature reinforced seams and anti-slip surfaces to prevent damage and enhance longevity.
4. Evaluate the Inflation and Deflation Process
You don’t want to spend a ton of time setting up your sleeping space after a long day of hiking or exploring. Therefore, the ease of inflation and deflation is an important factor to consider. Some mattresses include a built-in pump, while others require an external pump or manual inflation. Choose an option that suits your needs and preferences.
5. Test the Comfort Level
Finally, and perhaps most importantly, the mattress should be comfortable. Consider the thickness of the mattress and whether it offers enough cushioning from the hard ground. Some mattresses also feature chambers or coils to distribute air evenly and provide better support.
Frequently Asked Questions
Which Air Mattress Is Best for Backpacking?
The NEMO Tensor Insulated Sleeping Pad is an excellent choice for backpacking. It’s quiet, supportive, and lightweight (just under a pound), and it includes a Vortex pump sack for easy inflation. Its Spaceframe baffles offer stability and weight distribution that are comparable to a home mattress, making it comfortable despite its lightweight.
I’m Planning to Camp in Colder Weather. Which Air Mattress Should I Consider?
The Therm-a-Rest NeoAir Xtherm is designed for all four seasons, making it an excellent choice for camping in colder weather. It uses reflective ThermaCapture technology to trap radiant heat, and the Triangular Core Matrix minimizes heat loss, ensuring you stay warm even on cold nights.
Which Air Mattress Is Best for Family Camping?
The REI Co-op Camp Dreamer XL is an ideal choice for family camping trips. Its 4-inch thickness and horizontal-cored foam promise a comfortable night’s sleep, even on rough ground. Its speed valve allows for remarkably fast inflation and deflation, making it convenient for setting up and packing up when camping with the family.
I’m Going Camping but Don’t Want to Sacrifice Comfort. Which Air Mattress Should I Choose?
The Exped MegaMat 10 offers unrivaled comfort and support. It’s like bringing your bed with you when camping, thanks to its generous dimensions, 10cm thickness, and foam padding. While it’s not the most compact option, it’s ideal for situations where comfort is a priority and space isn’t a concern, like car camping or base camps.
I’m on A Budget. Is There a Cost-Effective Air Mattress You Can Recommend?
The Klymit Static V2 Sleeping Pad is a fantastic budget option that doesn’t compromise on quality. It’s lightweight and packs down small, making it great for backpacking. The V2 features a V-shaped design and side rails for comfortable sleeping, and it’s easy to inflate and deflate.
I Prefer a Luxury Camping Experience or “glamping.” What Air Mattress Should I Consider?
The EnerPlex No Outlet Needed Luxury Series Air Mattress is a larger, more luxurious camping mattress, perfect for glamping. It offers a built-in pump with a rechargeable battery, allowing you to inflate it anywhere in just 90 seconds. Its coil-beam construction provides excellent support, and the waterproof, puncture-resistant PVC material ensures durability.
Choosing the perfect air mattress can significantly enhance your camping experience. Whether you’re a solo backpacker, a family of outdoor enthusiasts, a fan of winter camping, or someone who enjoys a touch of luxury while stargazing, there’s a perfect air mattress out there for you.
Remember, the right air mattress for you is the one that meets your specific needs and preferences. Factors such as your camping style, weather conditions, budget, and personal comfort requirements all come into play. We hope our comprehensive guide and tailored recommendations help you find the perfect air mattress for your next camping adventure.