When it’s time to take a nap in your tent after a long camp trip, there’s nothing easier than unfolding a camping cot and crashing it on it.
Camping cots provide a great and easy access to everyone who wants a quick nap after a long day on a trek. Of course, a camping cot isn’t meant to be used on mountains, nor would you ever want to carry one up to one. But when it comes to parks or retreats into the accessible wilds, they are convenient due to their design.
Moreover, when not on an adventure, a camping cot is also incredibly useful as an extra bed at home for any guests.
The Best Camping Cots in 2018
We’ve compiled a list of what we believe are the best camping cots available on the market. This cots are tried and tested by many users who have given their opinions on their performance and reliability. We also have a buyer’s guide at the end to help you with your purchase.
Coleman Pack-Away Cot
The Ideal Cot at a Great Price
The Coleman Pack-Away Cot is a sturdy camping cot that has huge weight and size capacity. It also features a foldable side table for you to keep some water with you. This incredible cot is available it a fantastic price.
Given the price, performance, durability, and comfort, the Coleman Pack-Away Cot is by far the best camping cot you can buy.
Mountain Trails Base Camp Cot
Lightweight and Minimalistic
This superlight cot by Mountain Trails offers everything you need at a great price. A true minimalist’s product, this camping cot is sturdy, well built, and highly portable due to its weight and profile.
Anyone looking to buy a no nonsense camping cot that is light for an excellent price will have to consider the Mountain Trails Base Camp cot.
With a size that allows individuals of height up to 6’8” and a weight capacity of up to 300 pounds, the Coleman Pack-Away camping cot already seems grade. Then a look at the price only makes it seem better.
This cot is simple, sturdy, and effective in what it does. It also had a removable side table with a cup holder. That feature may not be useful for everyone, but it is invaluable to individuals who get thirsty at night and need to reach for a glass of water.
The cot has a steel frame that is foldable, and the fabric material is made from polyester. Both are very high quality and stable enough for any individual within the limits. It is also wider than many other cots with its 32-inch width.
This is a no nonsense camping cot that serves its purpose to perfection and does so at under $50.
- Incredible value
- Good size and capacity
- Added table is useful
- Sturdy and stable
- A tad heavy at 20 pounds
The minimalist’s camping cot, the Mountain Trails Base Camp Cot is all about bringing a very basic and extremely lightweight cot for individuals who want to pack light and only require minimal features.
The sleeping platform of this cot is 75 x 30 inches, which means individuals up to 6’3” can take use of this cot. It does have a slightly lower weight capacity of 225 pounds though, so you’ll be seriously pushing its limits if you’re a bulked up 6’3” individual.
This low riding cot uses a rugged yet comfortable 600D polyester fabric. It is low riding because it rests only 6 inches off the ground. The up side to this is that it has perhaps the slimmest profile available in camping cots. It also comes with a very handy and simple carrying sack.
At just 9.6 pounds, this is one of the lightest cots available on the market. It is also incredibly cheap for how well it serves its purpose.
- Incredible value
- Very light
- Takes up very little space
- Rugged fabric despite the light weight
- Can be small for very tall or heavy individuals
Coleman tends to dominate the camping niche with its tents and cots, and it’s hard not to include multiple products by the company because of how good they are at making them.
The ComfortSmart camping cot from Coleman is a unique product because it combines the regular camping cot concept and slaps on a foam mattress sleeping surface. This long, 80” camping cot can accommodate individuals up to 6’8”, and it also has a generous weight bearing capacity of 300 pounds.
The steel frame of this cot is coated well, so it is resistant to rusting over time.
The extraordinary thing about this cot is that it simulates sleeping on the bed as best as a camping cot can. It is 15” high from the ground and the mattress gives you a good night’s sleep. What’s amazing on top of that is that it requires no assembly at all.
- Simulates a bed
- Very easy to assemble
- Great weight and size capacity
- Mattress is very comfortable
The Big Agnes Helinox Cot has a big name but it’s one of the simplest camping cots you can buy. This camping cot almost looks like a stretcher at first gaze, but you realize that its simplicity and practically make in an incredible product.
The Helinox Big Agnes cot is a mere 6” off the ground. The primary design to utilize such a low profile is to reduce the amount of steel in the construction. It is perhaps the lightest camping cot in the market today at a very trimmed 4.8 pounds weight when packed, and a ridiculous 2.6 pounds when deployed.
Yet despite its incredibly lightweight design and conservative use of steel, this tame looking thing can handle about to 320 pounds of weight on it.
This camping cot is designed to save space and be extremely lightweight. It therefore limits itself to a narrow width of 27 inches and comes at a pretty standard 75” (6’3”) long.
The biggest negative about this cot is the price point, but this is a high quality enthusiast’s product not meant for the casual camper. If you’re serious about your adventures and camp a lot, this is the camping cot for you.
- Ridiculously lightweight
- One of the most space-saving cots ever
- Great weight capacity
- Minimalistic design
- Rather narrow
- Very expensive
Byer of Maine has made this an “easy” camping cot because they’ve put a lot of thought into its design. This seemingly simple looking cot is one of the best camping cots you can buy for under $100.
Made from 600 Denier polyester, the Byern of Maine easy camping cot comes at a very generous size of 78 x 31 inch. This means that it can fit just about anyone up to 6’8” height.
It is incredibly efficient and effective due to its folding mechanism. It is also heavily sturdy due to its choice of material. The polyester is holstered by a series of welded steel legs which give the cot an overall weight capacity of an impressive 325 pounds. The side bars of this cot are also wrapped in fabric for extra comfort.
There’s very little to complain about this brilliant cot. It is not the lightest cot around and is slightly more expensive than competing products that offer the same specs, but that does not prevent it from doing its job incredibly well.
- Excellent weight and size capacity
- Sturdy design
- Comfortable Good material choice
- Not the lightest cot around
- A tad expensive
The Vivo Cot is a minimalistic camping cot that is available at an incredible value and is extremely lightweight. Coming in at just 12 pounds, this simplistic cot allows individuals of up to 6’3” height to lie down comfortably.
The cot has a weight bearing capacity of 250 pounds, which is right in the middle of what a camping cot of this size should have. It is rather narrow though at 25 inches, but that also allows it to save space.
It is light, small, affordable, and does the job. It attains its lightweight primarily by using aluminum for the structural integrity, and the fabric used is polyester.
Simple, cost effective, and practical are the three terms that can best describe the Vivo Cot, which is what makes it so popular and an Amazon’s Choice product.
- No nonsense design
- Lightweight and portable
- Great value
- Not very durable
- Better cots can be purchased at a similar price
The Teton Sports Outfitter cot is a unique one in the list. This is because this cot is not designed for one but two individuals. If you’re looking to camp with your partner, this is without a doubt the best cot you can buy.
This camping cot is not all about capacity alone though. This thing is the Rolls Royce of camping cots. It utilizes a specialized insulated foam mattress for comfort and warmth. It has powerful patented steel legs that give it immense strength, which it needs because of its capacity.
The frame that supports the 600D polyester sleeping surface is made of aluminum. This beast of a camping cot needs all that support because it can bear weights of up to 600 pounds. The weight is distributed across the cot in such a way that it does not stress the point where the frame folds.
At a mammoth size of 85” length and 40” width, this is one of the biggest cots you can buy. However, it is designed for two individuals. Its price point will turn a lot of individuals away, but this is one of the very few (if not the only) camping cots that come with a lifetime warranty.
- Unmatched build quality
- Huge weight and size capacity
- Extremely sturdy and durable
- Space for two
- Lifetime warranty
- Very expensive
- Takes up a lot of space
The dimensions of your camping cot are the most important things you need to look at as not only do they tell you just how much space the cot will occupy, but also which height it’s suited for. Cots that are long and wide are a lot more comfortable than narrow and short ones.
However, wider and longer cots are often a lot heavier, and when you’re camping you always need to consider weight.
Then comes weight capacity. The weight of the camping cot is usually tied to its size and construction. Generally, larger cots have a much larger weight bearing capacity than smaller ones.
A camping cot is useless if it’s going to fall to pieces the moment you place your butt on it. That’s why construction is so important. Almost all the cots in the list above are very well constructed. You want sturdy and rust resistant steel legs and an aluminum or steel frame (the former makes the camping cot very lightweight).
Moreover, you should always research and (if possible) examine the polyester used in the cot. The polyester is the thing that is likeliest to fail first, so you want a high quality fabric that can last long naps and lots of folding/unfolding.
Camping cots are rather simple little pieces of equipment, but their price can vary quite a bit. As you may have seen from our list, majority of the camping cots fall below the $100 mark. However, there are certain ones that go well above even $200.
We feel the latter types are only suited to individuals who camp very frequently or have to do so because of their profession. For everyone else, sticking to anything below $100 should be adequate.
Why a cot over an inflatable mattress?
Both have their pros and cons, but camping cots take a lot less time to assemble and place. By the time you decide to lay either one, you’ll likely be very tired. An inflatable cot needs to be inflated. While there are a few that are self inflating, most of the them require some kind of effort. They are also quite leaky.
A camping cot on the other hand is easy to unfold and sleep on, requiring little maintenance or waiting time.
Do I need a camping cot even if I camp occasionally?
What’s wonderful about camping cots is that they can act like an extra normal bed in your home even when you’re not camping. This is great for guests if you’re running out of beds. Every guest will prefer a camping cot over crashing on the couch.
Should weather influence my decision in purchasing a camping cot?
Yes, it should. Camping cots use fabric that is porous, which means air can sweep in and create a cooling effect. While this is something preferable in warm and humid climates, it’s not an effect you want to be experiencing in cold weather. If you’re camping in very cold weather, a sleeping bag will be better.
Will the camping cot fit in most tents?
This will largely depend on the type of tent you’re buying as well as the size of the cot (which in turn depends on your size and weight). Be sure to know the measurements of the cot as well as the tent you’ll be using it in before you purchase.