Best Inflatable Tents Of 2020
If you’re looking to shed a few pounds from your pack without compromising durability, an inflatable tent (sometimes called an air tent) may just be the solution! Instead of traditional fiberglass poles that are fed through the lining of a tent to give it structure, inflatable tents have an, you guessed it, inflatable structure. This makes set-up incredibly quick and easy (don’t forget the pump) and you don’t need to worry about accidentally leaving a piece of the tent behind. These tents haven’t taken over the camping world yet, but we think traditional tents will soon be obsolete. Get ahead of the game, check out our best picks, and see why these may just be the next big thing.
In a Hurry? The test winner after 13 hrs of research
Sturdy construction quality
Best Inflatable Tents
1. Vango Odyssey Air 600
Sturdy construction quality
No insulation, not ideal for colder environments
Vango is the first thing you hear when looking for inflatable tents. It has revolutionized the inflatable tents technology and each and every other brand that came afterward was copying or perfecting that same Vango technology. The brand has a wide collection of tents that impress with their designs and technology implementation. And the best of all, there is a Vango tent for every budget. Vengo tents’ popularity comes from their feature of easy assembling that could be done by only one person without taking one much time or effort to do so.Read more
The unique design of this tent was made to stand up against the wind. The air beams are specifically angled to not only provide more room inside but also to protect against side winds. As an added bonus, this tent also features Vango’s Tension Band System II. This system has an adjustable slack that will brace your tent for high winds and keep it in place.
It’s the little things that all work together to enhance the durability of this tent. All of the seams are taped and the included groundsheet is 4000mm waterproof. The Protex 70D Polyester flysheet is waterproof, weather-resistant, and designed to keep you and your tent safe.
This air tent is made from Sentinel Active Plus Fabric. This fabric is lightweight without compromising durability. The guylines are highly visible and easy to see in dim conditions. The material is doubled and keeps the inside of the tent slightly darker in the mornings and also keeps the tent from getting too hot inside as well.
Speaking of the weather, there are also ventilation panels located on the top and bottom of the tent. The mesh door provides even more ventilation and keeps out bugs. This 6-person tent has adjustable dividers inside, allowing you to create your own sleeping arrangements. There are also plenty of storage pockets and multiple points to hang a lantern from.
Vango’s website claims that this tent takes eight minutes to set up, but reviewers claim that its more like ten to fifteen minutes. Either way, set up and break down are very simple and the pump is included. The total weight of the tent 38.5-pounds. This is a pretty heavy tent but if with six people, it shouldn’t be extremely difficult to handle. The packed size of the tent is 27.5” x 14” x 14.5”.
2. Heimplanet Fistral
The geometric design adds to the stability
No pump included
Not fully weatherproof
This unique tent features a geometric design paired with strong materials that aid in the durability and stability of the overall tent. The dual chamber system allows you to create privacy or have a designated space for gear. Perhaps the best feature of this tent is the fact that it weighs only 5.5-pounds.Read more
The geometric shape of this tent makes it stable in strong winds. The beams are made from strong material and won’t flail in windy conditions. To keep the tent even more stable, you’ll need to use the ground pegs.
There is also an integrated multi-chamber safety system. If for any reason, the elements get the best of the tent or a hole forms, only that half of the tent will deflate.
The Fistral features double layer construction which provides it with durability, stability, and keeps the weather inside the tent a bit fresher. This weatherproof tent is a great 3-season option and includes a groundsheet and rain fly. The flysheet is made from ripstop polyester and the groundsheet is made from Nylon Taffeta with a 5000mm waterproof rating.
The outside of this tent is made from stiff and resistant polyester. The inside is made from nylon 40 D 210T ripstop.
It is made to house one to two people and features two separate vestibules. You can each have your own vestibule or you can use one for storage. There are two doors that provide great ventilation when they are open. However, when closed, there isn’t much breathability. Additionally, there is a decent room for gear storage and also a small gear loft at the top. This can be used for shoes or even a lantern or flashlight to create a dimmer and softer ambiance.
The total square footage of the tent in 45 square feet and the highest point is 44-inches.
This tent is very lightweight at only 5.5-pounds! We must mention that there is no pump included, but there is an adapter. This allows you to use any pump you wish, including the one you may already own. Don’t forget to factor in the weight of the pump when planning your trek. When collapsed, this tent measures 13.3” x 7.8” x 7.8”.
3. Heimplanet - The Cave
Suitable for most weather types, even in the winter
Unique and sturdy design
Can be erected in 1 minute
Might be too warm for hot climates
Comparing to most outdoor gear manufacturers who have decades of experience, Heimplanet is relatively new on the market. However, in the short time of them being present, they have managed to launch various successful products on the market and the Heimplanet Cave inflatable tent is one of them. The design of the Heimplanet Cave inflatable Geodesic tent resembles a spider or an igloo to some people. It is warm enough to keep the temperature comfortable even during the winter and it is stable enough to endure strong winds. Most parts of the tent are replaceable, including the air beams which are completely exposed and placed outside the tent shell.Read more
The unique structure of this tent adds to the stability of the entire construction. The geodesic construction of this tent also means that collapsing is a bit more difficult because of its material and volume ratio which is perfectly balanced. The superior stability is due to the air beams that are also harder to damage or puncture. This increases the lifespan of the air beams, therefore, of the whole tent.
Regardless of how much you take care of your tent or the quality of the materials, products get damaged. For this reason, the company offers a replacement for each and every one of the parts the tent is constructed with. You could simply change the tent parts instead of buying a new tent after many years and it will be as good as new.
In the package, you have included a repair kit, pegs, a packing bag, gear loft, guy lines, and a pump adapter.
The outer layer of the tent is made from resistant and stiff polyester, and the inner layer is made from flexible thermoplastic polyurethane. The structure of the tent is a dome and can be erected in less than a minute which is exceptionally impressive. The structure of the tent is so well designed that it is safe to claim that it is weatherproof. It is designed and able to endure low winter temperatures which make it a four-season tent.
The multi-chamber safety system is allowing the user to inflate it with only one step. In most cases, this means that airflow is allowed between chambers and if one air beam punctures, this results with deflation of the others as well. However, this is not the case with Heimplanet Cave. Once the tent is inflated and erected, the airframe should be separated into chambers that will protect the other chambers if one gets punctured. Since the air is divided into many chambers, the detection of the punctured beam would be very easy and the replacement as well. This emergency multi-chamber system is patented and is unique to Heimplanet Cave inflatable tent only.
The valve system is also outstanding. It has an integrated 2 in 1 valve and each one of them has two closures. One valve is for easier inflation process which is the main reason why the inflation time is shortened. And the other one is for faster deflation.
Inside the tent, there is space for three people to comfortably sleep inside. The height inside the tent is 40 inches which is not high enough for an adult to stand inside. The size of the tent when packed is 40 x 32 x 23 cm which is smaller than similar competitive models. The weight is only 10.6 lbs and this makes it suitable for camping and backpacking as well.
4. Moose Outdoors
Three minutes to setup
Can fit up to 10 people
Not as wind-resistant as advertised
This inflatable tent from Moose Outdoors is a great tent if you want to get away from using and carrying around poles on your next camping expedition. This tent is easy to set up and if you decide this is the tent for you, you will be spending less time setting up your tent and more time enjoying it.Read more
This tent is a great inflatable tent but could be a little more stable. There are ten included stakes to secure the tent to the ground. Moose claims the tent is windproof up to 33mph, but customer reviews reveal that maybe 25mph is a more accurate number. It easily sets up in three minutes but if put in heavy weather conditions could run into stability issues. If you are looking to invest in this tent, it may work best for summer days and overnight camping trips.
Overall, this tent is built with quality in mind but may come up short if put in heavy conditions. As fas as punctures, there have been no complaints. If this tent could hold up in higher winds, we would be much more impressed.
This tent is made with double ripstop tenting fabric. It is built to be water-resistant up to 3,000mm. It is also is breathable to allow great air circulation so you are not breathing in stale air while sleeping in your tent.
Included with your purchase, you will receive a patching kit, air pump, instructions, tent stakes, and a carrying bag.
This family tent is quite heavy, at about 36-pounds. When in it’s carrying bag, it will definitely be an extra bag on your shoulder. Unless you are an extremely light packer with a huge backpack, it’s not going to fit. This tent is best left for driving expeditions, not full on hiking.
5. Vango Capri 400XL
Inflation point is at waist height
3 season tent
Could use more mesh windows
Over the years, the price has continued to increase
If you are tired of cramped camping trips, this tent from Vango's XL series may be the answer to your problems. This luxury tent has three rooms and plenty of organizational space. It is a bit on the heavier side, but if you are driving to your campsite, this won't be an issue.Read more
Like most Vango air tents, the Capri also features the Tension Band System II. This is a great feature that gives the tent a strong triangular internal structure that will hold up in adverse weather. This tent has a tunnel shape and must be staked down.
The outer layer and flysheet are made from Protex 70 denier polyester, making them very durable. All of the tapes are seamed and the materials are fire retardant. The tent itself is 4000mm waterproof, but the 2 layer floor is made from polyethylene is provides us with 10000mm waterproof.
As mentioned, the Protex 70 denier polyester provides great durability and weather resistance. There is a darker fabric on the inside of the tent which helps to regulate the internal temperature and also allows you to sleep in later. There are PVC and mesh windows strategically placed throughout the tent.
A great feature of this tent is the angled beams and clear PVC windows provide more living space and make space feel larger. There is an outdoor porch area, living room, and a large bedroom that has an optional fabric to divide the room into two. Each room has small organizational pockets built in and there are multiple places to hang a lantern. The tent is tall enough to allow most people to stand without issue. The total floor space of the tent is 143 square feet.
At 44.3-pounds, we wouldn’t exactly classify this tent as lightweight. This is a four-person tent, so thinking about it as ten-pounds per person hurts a little less. The inner tent is attached and could be removed to shed a couple of pounds. When compressed, the measurements of this tent are 28” x 16” x 15”.
6. Coleman Valdes FastPitch
Solid construction will hold up to the elements
Innovative blackout feature blocks out light
Packs down compactly
Coleman is an outdoors company that has created outdoor equipment and tents for over a century. Not many brands have this in their resume. This makes it a highly reliable brand that has solved most outdoors issues with their products. They are constantly evolving and delivering on the market new and improved items, such as this inflatable tent that is among the best ones out there.
This Coleman Fast Pitch inflatable tent is intended for 6 persons, although Coleman offers smaller inflatable tents as well. The construction in tunneled in order for the tent to get a firmer structure that is not easily collapsible if there are strong winds in the area. However, this only goes if you place it with the pitched end is turned toward the wind. Otherwise, it is much less stable. The shape also ensures greater interior space usage and increases privacy.Read more
To ensure the stability of this tent, the inflatable poles are wider than usual tent constructions and they are enclosed well in the PE shell. The poles are made from TPU material which is strong enough to hold the entire construction and stand stable in windy and rainy weather conditions.
The tent has a water column of 4000 mm which is actually the hydrostatic head indication. This means that the tent can hold up to 4 m column of water before any leaks occur. This only applies to the surface material. However, this Coleman tent includes more waterproof features. It is manufactured with water-resistant material with flysheet seams that are completely leak-free. The water resistance comes from the treatment which is being done on the material in order for it to be able to protect you and your equipment from moisture.
The tent has a stable structure with replaceable air beams that are more convenient than an open airflow structure. The groundsheet included in this package is welded and very well integrated into the whole structure. It is completely waterproof and it will ease your packing a great deal. Most campers assume that if you have a waterproof tent, you don’t need a groundsheet. Although this is somewhat true, a groundsheet will help you have a perfect pitch every time you are erecting your tent. This is the main reason why this tent classifies for a fast pitch one as its name suggests.
The blackout feature is able to block most of the daylight that would otherwise come inside your bedroom and wake you up. It is a revolutionary feature if you really want to get rested on your camping trip, even if you are a light sensitive sleeper. The blocking of the sunlight causes your bedroom to be 5 degrees cooler compared to outside temperatures. However, the high-quality material is also not allowing fast cooling inside, so the night temperature inside would be 1 degree warmer. This is done by the thick fabric which is storing sunlight energy in its surface, therefore, keeping you a bit warmer during the night.
The tent packs to a size of 31 x 23 x 16 inches which is pretty compact comparing to other tent models on the market and the size of the tent. Its weight is only 58.6-pounds which is also pretty low considering the fact that it can accommodate 8-10 people. A carrying bag is included in the package, as well as a pump and a manometer that will show you the optimal pressure of the air beams, therefore increase their durability. All things considered, this is a great inflatable tent choice for a larger group of people who will not be walking to their campsite.
7. Easy Camp Tempest
Easy to setup
Great open design
Easily sleeps 5 people
Not much information about the stability
As the name suggests, this tent is very easy to set up and break down. A two-way pump is included and even features a meter to show you the PSI. This tent is said to fit up to five people, but if you were using it at a festival or with close friends, the living room area could hold about five more people. Another thing we love about this tent is the super waterproof floor and the fact that if you set it up in the rain, the inside will stay dry.Read more
Honestly, nor product descriptions nor reviews mentioned much about the stability of this tent. What we can tell you is that the front of the tent is angled and when facing the wind, it provides a great shape for the wind to glide right over. This tent is inflated with three separate tubes. To ensure it’s stability, it must be heavily staked down.
This is a great durable tent. The floor of the tent itself is strong and waterproof, and above that is a sewn-in waterproof groundsheet. The included flysheet is made from 190T polyester and is fire retardant. The seams of the tent are taped and it has a waterproof rating of 3000mm.
The two-way pump includes a meter to show you the PSI. This is a great feature so that you do not over-inflate the tent and damage the materials.
The inner material of the tent is polyester with a strong polyethylene floor. As mentioned, the exterior of the tent is super strong and weather resistant and the floor is two-timed waterproof. There are strong PVC windows and ventilation slits. The ventilation slits feature mesh to keep out bugs. Unfortunately, the entry door does not have mesh and should usually be kept closed. This is a 3-season tent but can get pretty hot on the inside.
Inside, you will find “three rooms.” One of these rooms is the living area/porch. After that, you will find the bedrooms. It is considered to have two bedrooms, but the rooms a divided with a removable curtain. One of the room sleeps two people and the other sleeps three. The windows have retractable curtains, which are great for blocking out the sun. There are also plenty of organization pockets and a place to hang a lantern.
This tent weighs in at 33.5-pounds. It’s packed size is 29.5” x 17”. This isn’t a lightweight tent but with the amount of space that is provided, the load could be shared amongst your entire group.
8. HuiLingYang Outdoor Instant
Claims to be for 4 people, but is small
No rain fly
This instant tent brought to you by HuiLingYang is definitely one to check out if you want to get rid of the fussy tent poles and get a tent that will set up in no time. This tent sets up in three seconds, which will give you more time to enjoy making camping memories.Read more
This tent is a great inflatable tent and is quite stable once set up. Not only is it great in the wilderness but also it is great when you are at the beach or festival. It easily sets up in three seconds and for the convenience is definitely a tent worth checking out.
This tent is built with quality and will keep you protected from the elements on your next outdoor excursion. Try not to use this tent in heavy weather conditions as it may not offer the best protection.
Nylon 190 TPU fabric floor is 210D oxford with fully taped seams. This tent is built to be water-resistant to make sure that no water will leak into your tent and also is breathable to allow great air circulation so you are not breathing in stale air while sleeping in your tent.
This tent weighs about ten pounds. It comes with a great carrying bag that makes the tent very easy to travel with.
Criteria Used for Evaluation
Inflatable tents are perceived to be very unstable in high winds and many people have the misconception that floating off in strong winds is a real possibility. The reality is that they are perfectly stable if you secure them with ropes, which is the case with any other tent. However, compared to pole tents, if you are to be located in a windy area, you will need to secure your tent better. If you manage to do so, an inflatable tent’s construction might be even stronger in harsh weather conditions than traditional tents. However, this is not easily done and it is definitely not a few minutes job. Even though the simple erection of the tent would take only a few minutes, securing it could take up to an hour depending on the size of the tent and the weather conditions you are preparing for.
The popular belief about the inflatable tents is that it is a cheaper alternative to traditional tents. However, this is not picturing the reality right. Inflatable tents are high-quality tents with superior features to traditional tents. It is interesting to mention that the first tent in space was an inflatable tent. As you might already assume, this requires that the tent is of great quality and with great features. Nevertheless, even a high-quality product might get damaged if it is not used according to the instructions and if it is not cared for.
This means that before setting up the tent you should carefully observe the surface. All sharp objects and rocks should be removed and cleared from the area. The tent should be placed on a flat surface and all the instructions should be followed in order to avoid punctures. Inflatable tents come with a puncture kit that will help you take care of the issue. It might be surprising to know, but a puncture in inflatable tents is not more common than the traditional poles tent punctures. Nevertheless, if this happens and you prefer not using your repair kit, there are inflatable poles for a replacement that you can purchase from the same company as your tent.
On the other hand, the reliability of your inflatable tent will depend on the airflow in the air beams. There are two types of construction with different constructions. One with continuous airflow through the entire structure of the tent and others who have inflatable poles that are completely separate and replaceable. If an inflatable tent with continuous airflow gets a puncture while you are not around, there is a possibility that it collapses. However, a puncture is less likely to happen when no one is in a tent. If you notice a puncture though, you could close that section of the tent in order to save it from collapse. Closing off each tent section is a possibility in almost all inflatable tents. Even so, separate inflatable poles are a better alternative.
Before buying an inflatable tent, it is important to also consider repairing it. The breaking of the tent can be rather annoying, but luckily, there is a remedy if you have a repair kit. And the best thing is that they are very easy to use. In fact, the hardest part is locating the puncture. If the hole is too small and you cannot locate the puncture, try removing the air beam from the tent first. After that, put it under water. The puncture will reveal itself by forming bubbles where the hole is. After this, it is the same way as fixing a bike tire puncture. Simply patch up the puncture and then replace the punctured tube.
Inflatable tents with the highest quality have air beams that are constructed with an inner tube, so-called TPU that has a similar design like a bike’s tire. For those of you who haven’t had a flat bike tire before, it is constructed with a thinner smaller tire which is placed inside a wider, more sturdier sheath, in this case, made from polyester. The polyester shell is there in order to protect the air beam itself from damages but it also adds to the stability of the entire structure.
Valves are needed on the ends of the air beam in order to keep them in place. It is not rare that the air beams are blown through holes on the valves. However, this entire construction means that a pump is not a luxury that makes the inflation process easier, but a necessity. A minimum pressure of 6 psi is needed in order to inflate one air beam. The human lungs could not produce a pressure higher than 2.5 psi. However, many people prefer carrying a pump instead of several carbon or aluminum tent poles.
Guy lines and stakes are also part of the essential gear if you decide on purchasing an inflatable tent. However, in order to use them, which is necessary for a stable construction, you must have somewhere to attach them to. Luckily, there are trees in the woods, so unless you are going to an urbanized campsite, this shouldn’t be an issue.
If you are going to be carrying the tent yourself, the size and weight are incredibly important. However, if you are driving all of your gear to the doorstep of the campsite unless your car is packed full, this won't make much a difference to you. Inflatable tents tend to be lighter than traditional tents. The poles that create the structure of a traditional tent are usually what weighs them down, and what inflatable tents are missing.
However, even though they tend to be lighter in weight, inflatable tents have been known to be a bit bulkier than traditional tents. Even though inflatable tents are less heavy than conventional tents with poles, they are bulkier. When it comes time to pack up the tent, you may be carrying an extra bag on your back or shoulder. All in all, knowing the size, weight, and portability of the tent ahead of time will help you to better plan your journey.
Expert Interviews & Opinions
An inflatable tent would be perfect if you are a solo adventurist who prefers traveling alone. Pole tents require a handy person or minimum of two people in order to properly erect a tent. However, erecting an inflatable tent could be literarily done with your eyes closed. So, if you are not a fan of the whole set up process, you should seriously consider some of the inflatable tent suggestions above.
All inflatable products, tents included, tend to blow out when the temperatures increase. This is due to the fact that colder air takes less space than hot air. When this happens, if your air beams are fully blown, they might not have another choice other than to burst and destroy your trip.
In order to avoid this issue, it is important to anticipate this natural phenomenon and consider the part of the day that you are setting up your tent. If you are erecting it around noon, when the temperatures are high, it is safe to assume that the tent will bend a little during the night.
The opposite also applies. If you are blowing it out at night when the temperatures are lower, keep in mind that by noon you might end up with collapsed tent if you inflate it too much. In this case, make sure you release some pressure by releasing the valves a bit. Releasing the valves causes that excess pressure comes out of them if the weather gets too hot and the pressure too much for the air beams to take. However, this also means that once the temperatures drop, you might need to blow the tubes up again to the pressure that is recommended by the manufacturer.
Other Factors to Consider
There are various types of tents available on the market; one for every group, situation, and type of camping. Inflatable tents, although relatively new, are a common choice for campers whose final destination includes traveling with a vehicle. Even though inflatable tents could be ideal for certain people, it might not be exactly what you are looking for. For this reason, it is important that when choosing a tent, you start from your own camping preferences and habits. If you decide on an inflatable tent, make sure you choose the system that fits you better.
Frequently Asked Questions
q: Which companies make the best inflatable tents?
Inflatable tents are a relatively new invention that not every outdoor gear manufacturer could produce. In fact, there aren’t many inflatable tents manufacturers on the market. The revolutionary design is specific and most companies are refusing to take the risk of manufacturing a product that has relatively low demand on the market. However, there are few who have managed to gather a community willing to try them and unsurprisingly, they loved it.
A while after the Vango company launched its first inflatable tent design, several companies have followed the lead. Nowadays, these companies are the leading manufacturers of the best inflatable tents. It is interesting to mention that most of them are European which suggests that inflatable camping is more popular in that part of the world.
Kelty, a USA located company is also one of the top brands in the inflatable industry. Besides producing high-quality products, they are also part of the Conservation Alliance which is supporting the environment by supporting such organizations.
Coleman is a UK company that specializes in the production of camping gear. In their manufacturing process, they are focusing on the quality of the materials they are using, more than the design of their product. For this reason, they are among the best inflatable tents producers.
Easy Camp is a Danish company that is family run and it is part of the Oase Outdoors group. Outwell and Robens are the other parts of the group. Easy Camp is the leader in price. Considering the features they have to offer, they have the lowest possible price on the market.
q: Are inflatable tents a better choice than a conventional tent?
The advantage in inflatable tents is that you simply need to pump them up and you have strong construction that is as good as one made with traditional poles. However, there are disadvantages to this construction as well. When it comes to comparing the quality of both types of tents the biggest doubt campers have is stability. However, since the Heimplanet has announced that their tent could resist to winds of 120 mph, this has no longer been an issue. Although both types of tents have their advantages, we have concluded that inflatable tents are the more logical option between the given choices.
-They are much easier to erect,
-Have great stability and construction strength,
-Pack small in size,
-Have the ability to bend without being broken
-They are easily repaired on the field.
However, in order to give you the chance to decide for yourself, we are also presenting the downsides to the inflatable tents:
-They tend to be heavier than the conventional tents
-Their price is higher
q: How does an inflatable lawn tent work?
If you are wondering about an inflatable lawn tent, it is important to know that the features explained in the article apply to lawn inflatable tents as well. However, inflatable lawn tents have an entirely different purpose from the other types of inflatable tents. They are mostly used for events or as a shady area in your backyard. However, there are campsites that use lawn tents as additional coverage of the outdoor gear that has no place inside the tent. Even though this is not practical for a weekend, if you are going camping for a month on one location, you will find the lawn tent more than useful.
An inflatable lawn tent is made from PVC material which is water resistant. This is the most important feature of lawn tents which is mainly why they are being used. Inflatable lawn tents are also placed on the beach for creating a shadow for a larger group of people, although, considering the price, this is an arguable feature. Nevertheless, in order to stabilize them, you don’t need trees nearby, but simple guy ropes, stakes, and a relatively soft surface.
q: Do you loose air throughout the night if temperature changes?
Many may think that if you are camping in hotter climates the air may be lost throughout the tent and the tent will start to deflate. This is not the case in most of these inflatable tents as the companies that manufacture them take this into account and ensure that no air is lost while being used. The only way you may lose some air is if you have a puncture, so always have a repair patch on hand just in case.
q: Do these tents come with pumps?
The answer is dependent on which tent you decide to go with. Some companies provide a tent as without one the tent would not be of use until you found a compatible pump. Some companies understand that you are spending quite a bit of money on their tent and value your decision so they want to ensure you have everything you need to get set up and enjoying the outdoors with no other worries.
It is important when you are looking for an inflatable tent to check that it comes with everything you need and that you will not be searching for extra parts after you purchase on. The best thing to do is to check the customer reviews as you will get a first-hand account on what came with the tent and how the tent held up while being used by other customers.