For those who choose a ground tent, one of the most comfortable options for a good night’s sleep is perhaps a good folding camping cot.
The usual alternatives like inflatable mattresses, sleeping pads, and simply sleeping on the tent floor don’t sound too well once you’ve tried sleeping on a camping cot.
Finding the best camping cot can be an overwhelming task, given the number of options on the market right now.
This review will hopefully be able to help you choose one that is right for you. If you are backpacker, there are some lightweight, backpacking cot reviews in our list.
What are the advantages of the Best Camping Cots?
Camping with cots has a lot of advantages. First, they keep you elevated off of the ground come sleeping time. This means that you’ll stay warmer since you won’t be losing heat due to the coldness of the ground. This also means that warm air will circulate freely around your body while you are sleeping, which is good in winter conditions.
Secondly, when it’s warmer, a camping cot can actually make you feel much cooler. Similarly to how it works in colder conditions, the air circulation will actually keep you feeling warmer.
These best camping cots are also excellent not just for sleeping but also for use outside of the tent itself; you can simply relax by the fire and trade stories with your camping buddies with fewer worries of ants and other insects while you are outdoors.
Finally, the best camping cots provide bed-like experience; you’ll be able to get in and out of one with relative ease.
Best Camping Cot
Best Camping Cot Reviews
The Coleman ComfortSmart has a robust foam cushioning system and a relatively sturdy 275-pound capacity that will accommodate a larger overlander.
Not only is this Coleman ComfortSmart mattress thickly foam cushioned, but the system is also backed by coil suspension so that you receive a very mattress-like experience with the ComfortSmart cot.
One of the most important aspects of a folding camping cot is portability, and in this regard, the ComfortSmart cot has the ability to be folded up to fit in most car trunks.
In fact, at its full unfolded size, the Coleman ComfortSmart cot measures a full 69 x 25 x 15 inches when in use, but folds down to a svelte 34.3 x 25.4 x 5.5 inches when it’s time to go.
The Coleman ComfortSmart cot only weighs about 14 pounds, so it’s very easy to carry it to where you want to camp.
If you’re looking for extra features like side tables and cup holders, the Coleman ComfortSmart doesn’t have much, but when it comes to general use, most campers find that this is a very convenient and easy-to-pack camping cot.
- The frame is made of steel so that it can support 275 pounds
- It doesn’t have an uncomfortable bar in the middle
- The mattress is very comfortable thanks to a coil and foam system
- Your legs will dangle if you’re taller than five foot seven inches
- No extras, like a side table or cup holderLimited compatibility
When you’re looking to get a good night’s sleep, the Coleman 2000020273 is an excellent option because not only does it rest well, but it also packs in a side table for convenience.
Additionally, this product is designed to accommodate larger people; a single user of 300 pounds will be able to sleep comfortably on its surface.
Similar to the previous Coleman cot, this product is a mere 14 pounds, which means that it’s relatively easy to carry from site to site.
The side table has a cutout that also will allow you to store a drink or personal items like mini flashlights. When it’s not needed, you can remove and pack away this feature by unzipping it.
Being a product that is designed for larger folk, this cot can accommodate a person up to six and a half inches tall on its 80 x 44 x 17-inch frame.
While the sleeping surface isn’t thickly cushioned, you will be able to get a fairly comfortable rest on its top due to its supportive structure. When it folds down, it is a mere 39.5 x 11 x 10 inches in size, which is easily packable.
The YTX14-BS iGel Powersport battery from ‘Chrome Battery’ comes with an affordable price. However, it packs a lot of advanced features. For instance, it has a LED display built-in.
- It comes with a carrying case to make transport more convenient
- It’ll accommodate up to 300 pounds of weight
- The side table adds a lot of conveniences
- It has an extra-wide design, so theoretically, you can fit another person on its surface
- It’s advantageous to bring a pad to make the top surface more bed-like
Sometimes, when you’re camping, you don’t want a lot of complicated features; you just want a good night’s sleep. When this is the case, a good military-grade cot does the job every time.
The Coleman Trailhead II camping cot has a steel construction so that it’s very strong; in fact, it’ll accommodate a user of 300 pounds or less.
Additionally, it has enough room to support people that are as tall as six feet two inches.
It’s made of heavy-duty polyester fabric that won’t rip or tear very easily, and also is very supportive during your camping excursion.
When it comes to portability, the cot folds neatly from a 75 x 30 x 17-inch operating size down to a very storable 40.2 x 7.9 x 3.9-inch size.
While it doesn’t have a feature like a night table, there are storage options; the cot has pockets that will let you store camping essentials with ease.
- The product comes with a carry bag
- With its steel frame, this cot doesn’t lack any stability
- It unfolds quickly
- It’ll accommodate up to 300 pounds of weight
- At 18 pounds, this cot can be a little heavy to carry for long periods of time
- For larger people, the fabric may stretch over time
Another cot that’s great for its simplistic design, this Magshion cot also comes in seven unique colors so that you can accessorize it with your camping gear.
This best camping cot also shines in its weight-to-capacity value; the cot only weighs eight pounds but can handle up to 300 pounds in weight.
The frame is also very sturdy; it’s made of steel and has an oxford cloth material for the top surface. This material is very comfortable and supportive for a single sleeper.
When folded, this cot measures 4.5 x 24.5 x 36 inches and expands to a very sleepable size of 13.5 x 24.5 x 72 inches. This means that the cot can manage sleepers of six feet and below. This may be the best lightweight camping cot.
Magshion also has included a carrying bag, which is fairly useful when it comes to portability. As a military-style cot, there’s not a lot of extra features, but the portability and support of the product make this a good option, especially considering that this is a very thin cot.
- It’s thin and lightweight (8 lbs) so it is very portable
- The cot has plastic covers at its base so that it doesn’t damage the flooring
- It’ll accommodate up to 300 pounds of weight
- It comes with a storage bag
- It is relatively narrow, so it can be uncomfortable
While the Vivo Fold-Up Cot isn’t the best for larger people since it only has a weight capacity of 250 pounds, it still performs brilliantly when it comes to portability.
Its frame is constructed of aluminum, which means that it’s constructed sturdily and only weighs about 12 pounds. The fabric on the surface of this product is very strong; in fact, it’s constructed of 600 denier polyester.
When it’s time to carry the cot, it packs up very neatly into its own carry bag. This is advantageous because the bag has a handle and can be slung easily over a shoulder.
This best single-person cot also comes in two colors: green and black and is 75 x 25 x 16 inches in size when it’s unfolded.
When folded, the product shrinks down to 36 by seven by four inches. The polyester fabric top is relatively thin, but when pulled taut and secure, the cot provides a very comfortable sleep.
This is a military-style cot that is very simple and easy to carry
It folds down to a very small size
It comes with a carry bag
Its unfolding method ensures that the cot is very stable and secure
It only has a weight capacity of 250 pounds
It can be difficult to lock the top and bottom bars in place
If you’re a larger person or someone that might want to share small a military-style cot with a loved one, then this Tetons Sports Camp Cot, with its 400-pound weight capacity might be the right choice for you.
This best cot has a surface made of 600-denier Oxford polyester canvas, so you won’t have to worry about tears and rips.
While the carry bag did not impress some of the buyers, the cot is part of Teton Sports’ camping collection and is thusly compatible with their mattress pad and under storage unit.
When unfolded, the cot measures at 85 x 32 x 19 inches, which means that it’s actually a bit longer than a twin-sized mattress. When it’s time to hit the road, the cot folds down neatly to a 42.5 x 8.5 x 5.5-inch sizing, which is pretty portable.
When it’s time to deploy this best cot, one person can easily execute the job; you simply have to unfold and snap the end bars into place and you’ll have a taut, comfortable cot.
Design options are relatively limited with this product since it only comes in black, but this color goes with most camping gear, so it’s not much of an issue.
- This steel frame and polyester cot can manage up to 400 pounds
- Available in outfitter XXL camping cot size
- It sets up very quickly
- Naturally pairs with Teton’s other products
- The canvas pad is on the thinner side, so this cot is a good candidate for a pad
- The bag is somewhat on the larger side
We are a huge fan of Kamp-Rite product range including their Kamp-Rite Tent-Cots, and we think that their camping cots are really well-made. One of the better features of this Kamp-Rite Oversize Kwik Cot is its excellent storage pockets that are positioned along the side of the product.
These pockets have great sizing; in fact, one of the storage areas looks specifically designed to manage a smartphone. The other pocket is netted and flexible so that you can store things like a flashlight or sunscreen.
The fabric of this best cot is comprised of 600-denier polyester. This means that you’ll be very well supported; in fact, this cot is perfect for heavier people since it can manage 350 pounds.
Additionally, there aren’t any bars in the construction of this product that would be uncomfortable during a night’s rest.
One of the first things you might notice is that this best cot is somewhat high off the ground; this can be useful because it’ll help air circulation so that you are warmer in colder climes and cooler when its warm outside.
Unfolded, this best camping cot measures 84 x 33 x 22 inches and folds down compactly to 43 x 10 x 9 inches.
- The side pocket adds a lot of storage options
- Easy and hassle-free to set up
- Each of the legs is coated in plastic so that your tent bottom isn’t ruined
- It supports up to 350 pounds weight limit
- This cot raises 22 inches off of the ground, which can be more comfortable than the lower cots
- The material can stretch over time
- A mattress is needed to make it more comfortable
This Mountain Trails Base Camp Cot is another fairly simple cot that allows for easy carry; it weighs less than 10 pounds in total.
This Mountain Trails product also has a fairly low to the ground design and uses bars rather than legs to provide support for campers. These bars are curved and are made of steel so that you can experience a stable and supported rest during your outing.
With its low-slung design, this best cot definitely has a form factor that’s favorable in most tents, and its rounded bars shouldn’t do much damage to floors or tent bottoms. It has 225 pounds of weight capacity.
Sizing-wise, this camping cot is 74.8 x 30.3 x 6.7 inches, which means that most users under six-foot-two should be able to get a comfortable night’s sleep on this folding camping bed.
When folded, the product shrinks down to a 32 x 7-inch sizing, so it’ll fit easily in most trunks and storage areas.
The frame of this best cot is made of steel that’s been powder-coated to prevent rust and damage from the elements. It also uses 600-denier polyester to provide a fairly robust sleeping area.
- Includes a carry bag
- It’s simple to set up
- It has rounded bars rather than pointed legs
- It weighs less than ten pounds
- The lower design means it fits most tents
- The camping cot may be slightly low for some people
- The simplicity comes with less comfort
Byers of Maine created this cot for individuals who like to sleep alone on their camping trips. This cot has a tan and blue design that makes it stand out from most cots that are a solid color.
This best cot is designed to have a weight capacity of approximately 325 pounds, which means that it will work for nearly any overlander, and it is only 18 inches in height, so it will keep you off of the ground without being too tall for the tent dimensions.
The steel legs of this Byer of Maine cot are great for support, which means that the 78 x 31-inch cot can accommodate tall individuals as well.
This lightweight model, which is only about 21 pounds, is designed to be a portable option that you can use inside as well as outdoors, so it comes with a convenient carry case that makes it easy to store or carry.
- Strong construction
- The 78 x 31-inch steel legs are extremely durable
- This cot is easy to set up
- Some buyers have mentioned that this cot is quite comfortable
- It weighs less than ten pounds
- The lower design means it fits most tents
- It’s been said that it sags in the middle after consistent use
The next Kamp-Rite Standard Kwik tent cot is a great option for anyone who is planning to sleep on their own on their next overlanding trip.
This best single-person cot is designed to hold up to 300 lbs. It is designed to be six inches off of the ground, and it is six inches wide as well so that most campers will be comfortable during the night.
This best cot is constructed with an aluminum frame and nylon mesh material that is very durable, so you will be able to use it for years of camping and overlanding.
The head of the cot is padded to provide extra head support and comfort, and there is a mesh pocket on the cot that can be used for storage.
The cot folds up into a compact size that is very portable, so you will have no issues pulling it out and setting it up when you arrive at your campsite. It features the build qualities of the other Kamp-Rite product range.
- It comes with a travel bag
- It has a design that is easy to set up
- The nylon fabric is very durable
- This camping cot raises 19 inches off of the ground, which can be more comfortable than the lower cots
- There are no crossbars
- This is a heavy cot, which makes it difficult to carry
Features to Consider when Choosing the Best Camping Cot
More often, if the camping cot isn’t the right size for you, it will lead to terrible sleeping situations. That’s why it’s important to choose a camping cot that perfectly fits your body stature.
If you are a tall person, the best camping cots are those that will extend enough to support your full length. Also, these cots should be wide enough for your body frame.
Nothing is more uncomfortable than having your shoulders laying on the frame or your legs hanging off the end of the cot all night.
When comparing camping cots, check its length and width and make sure that there are several inches to spare. If you are a big person, check if a particular brand offers an outfitter XXL camping cot.
You may also consider checking the height of the cot as higher cots will give you additional storage space under it. That is of course aside from giving you a better night’s sleep.
Also, when it comes to the size of the cot, it’s important to make sure that it will fit in your car or tent with the rest of your gear.
So get your measuring tape, measure the available space in your tent or car, and from there decide on the size of a cot that works for you.
When it comes to weight, there are two critical factors that you need to check: the weight of the cot and its maximum weight capacity.
The weight of the cot is associated with portability. If you often set up your sleeping space at the back of your vehicle, the portability of the cot may not be that important.
However, if you also go on trips where you have to trek a good distance from your vehicle, a lightweight cot will definitely make your trip more convenient.
Some cots for camping are very lightweight while other models can be a bit heavy. It’s nice to get a lightweight cot but sometimes, lightweight materials have a low maximum weight capacity.
When you buy a camping cot, make sure to check not just its weight but also its capacity. Choose one that can support your weight.
One of the factors that contribute to the strength of the folding camping cot is the fabric used for the bed. The camping cot fabric is typically rated in Denier or D.
The higher the Denier, the stronger the fabric is. When buying, you should get a camping bed or cot with at least 600D.
Some camping cots on the higher end are made of ripstop fabric. It is a great choice as this material does not easily tear. It is also better in quality and stronger than regular cot fabrics.
If you are buying a camping or bunk bed cot, checking the frame is one of the crucial steps before making a decision.
Cheap camping cots typically have weak frames that easily break or collapse. It’s important to note that once the frame breaks, it can be hard to fix or replace it.
When it comes to frames, even those that are made from the same material differ in terms of frame thickness and joints. Stay away from camping cots that use thin gauge metal and with poorly constructed joints that do not flex well.
The best camping cots for overlanders are those with thick frames typically made of aluminum or steel. Choose a camping cot with a frame that folds and unfolds easily.
The pack size of your folding cot or bed affects its efficiency when it comes to traveling or storage. Of course, we want a cot that will require the least amount of space in our vehicle or storage area.
The best camping cot folds into a small size that will fit the trunk of a regular car.
Aside from the basic structure, some of the best camping cots come with a wide range of features.
It would be good to know what are these extra features or accessories that you can possibly have so that you can make a better choice when buying a cot.
- Side table – This may be the most useful feature you can get. A side table for your bed gives you extra space for your food or drink or perhaps a place where you can keep your phone and small essential gear.
- Pockets – There are also camping cots with storage pockets which are great for storing your reading materials and other miscellaneous items for easy access.
- Foam mattress – With a camping cot that comes with a foam mattress, you will have a more comfortable bed, just like sleeping in your own bed at home.
- Rubber feet – A rubber tent is a must if you want to use your camping cot inside a tent. The rubber will help prevent the cot from scratching or tearing up the tent floor.
- Insect netting – Those pesky insects are hard to avoid especially when you are outdoors. Good thing some camping cots come with a net that will protect you from insects.
- Carrying bag – It can be an essential feature if you have to carry the cot with you when going to your campsite. It improves the tent’s portability.
Just like when buying a sleeping bag or an air mattress, comfort is also of the essence when buying a camping cot. While we want to avoid buying expensive products, we don’t also want to buy something cheap but of low quality.
So when it comes to buying a camping cot, be prepared to spend at least $50 for a quality product that will offer you many nights of comfortable sleep.
You may be able to buy cheaper cots with quality construction but generally, cheaper models are flimsy and made of thin fabrics.
When it comes to comparing prices, it’s a good idea to do it after considering several camping cots with the features that fit your needs. You can use the price as your final determining factor among your initial choices.
Q: Is camping cot necessary for overlanders?
A: While not a necessity, a camping cot can make your overlanding adventure even better.
Remember that a comfortable and good night’s sleep helps you get rejuvenated so that you can enjoy another day of adventures outdoors. A camping cot can give you that. Sleeping on an elevated bed typically gives you a much better sleep. Also, with an elevated bed, this can reduce your exposure to creeping bugs and insects than when you are laying on the ground.
Q: Are camping cots easy to use?
A: Yes. You will find that many camping cots are easy to fold and unfold within seconds. Generally, they don’t require a tool to set up or take down. Anybody can easily use a camping cot.
Q: Will a camping cot fit inside a tent?
A: This depends on the size of your tent and the size of your cot. That’s why it is important to first measure the size of your tent and check the dimensions of the cot you want to buy to make sure that the cot will fit inside.
Q: Can I use the camping cot in my house?
A: Definitely yes. A camping cot is not just for camping. Generally, these camping cots are versatile so you can use them as a bed in case you have a visitor at home and you need an extra bed. It is also great for slumber parties.
Conclusion and Buyers’ Advice
When you’re looking for a good cot for camping or overlanding, there are several brands that stand out. Here are the top three in our opinion:
If you’re looking for a military-style cot, Kamp-Rite has more than a few products in their line that use this type of design. In fact, some are very portable with weights that come in under 10 pounds.
For those looking for a home-like overlanding experience, Coleman, which is a major producer of camping goods, has several products that emphasize comfort. They have product lines like the ComfortSmart line of camping cots that provide coils and foam cushioning so that you have a foam mattress-like experience.
Teton Sports has a fairly high-quality line of camping gear; you can find pads, tents, and of course, cots.
The company manufactures some heavy duty camp cots that can support 600 pounds. It’s not very common to find a camping cot that has a weight capacity of 600 pounds.
Each of these brands provides a reliable camping experience.
Kamp-Rite and Teton Sports produce quick and easy setups, while Coleman with its air mattress aims for more comfort.
While there are three brands that stand out, our top 2 choices for the best camping cots are:
What we like about this heavy duty Coleman camping cot is that it is extra wide and can carry up to 300 lbs of weight.
These features make this pack away camping bed extremely versatile when it comes to who can sleep on it. You can let someone with a larger built sleep on this cot.
It’s also advantageous that this pack away cot comes with a side table. It’s very convenient to use especially if you want to have breakfast in bed.
Who doesn’t want that? You can also use the side table to tuck away your other essentials.
Moreover, this camping cot comes with a storage bag which makes it more portable. Plus this cot easily unfolds if you want to use it.
Another well-made heavy duty cot in our list is the Kamp-Rite Oversize Kwik Cot. This sleeping cot is also worth checking out because of its remarkable features.
For one, it uses 600D polyester which is extra durable and strong. It also has one of the highest maximum capacities we’ve seen for a single cot, that is 350 pounds.
This cot doesn’t have a fancy side table but it does have a side pocket for storage. A side pocket allows you to safely keep your small items while giving you easy access to them.
We also like the fact that the legs of this cot are coated with plastic so that if you will use it inside of your tent, you don’t have to worry about tearing the floor.
These two best camping cots are easy to set up and easy to take down. Apart from that, they are among the best selling camping cots with many positive reviews.
Most of their users share how these cots give them comfortable night’s sleep.
Sleeping on a camping cot such as any of those that we feature in this review can make a big difference in your sleeping experience outdoors. For a more comfortable sleeping experience, be sure to choose your cot wisely.
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