Nothing compares to a camping trip outside in nature where you can get away from all the problems and enjoy the simple life. In order to do so, you’ll need the best tent on a budget if you want your little escapade to be worth it. To make your job easier, we’ve looked at various customer and expert reviews along with several sales figures reports, and the award-winning tent is the Kelty Grand Mesa 40811715. The reason we are so fond of this item is related to the PU coating on the floor and the rain fly that keeps the moisture away while the double-wall and the special mesh increase the airflow. Because the tent features 2 lightweight aluminum poles the folding and the carrying are quite facile. If the Kelty Grand Mesa 40811715 is out of stock, there’s another option you might check out, the CORE 9 Person Extended Dome 40004.
Finding the best tent for camping that doesn’t cost a fortune requires some research. If you lack time to do it properly, let our team of experts give you a helping hand. They’ve already done their search and put together the information into this buying guide that shows you what features matters most when looking for tents o a shoestring.
Type of tent
The majority of tents for sale are double-wall units that feature three parts, such as the inner tent with a waterproof floor and non-waterproof roof, the waterproof outer tent or the rainfly, and the poles.
Generally, double-wall tents can be purchased in many varieties, such as self-supporting items that are outfitted with poles that hold up the majority of the weight, tunnel tents that have one or more hoop-shaped poles and rely solely on guylines for support, and freestanding tents that are easy to set up.
Tunnel tents usually come with a higher space-to-weight ratio than tents that use poles for standing up.
If you need a tent for camping during the winter season or rocky areas above tree lines, freestanding tents are a great choice because they are easy to stand up, offer complete protection from weather conditions, and are quite comfortable.
The only drawback of having a double-wall tent is that it is a tad too heavy. An average tent for two individuals can go up to 90 ounces.
Besides double-wall products, there are also tarp tents that are single-walled shelters with a built-in floor. The major advantage is that they don’t need much time for setup and they are half as light as double-walled ones.
When in the market for the best backpacking tent on a budget, you need to be aware of the fabric because there are certain options that work better than others.
For example, nylon is strong and offers more resistance to abrasion in comparison to polyester. Unfortunately, both of them need a special coating in order to be waterproof.
There is an indicator, such as the fabric denier or D that tells you the weight of the tent per square area. A light tent has 10D while the majority of canopies are made of 40-70D.
Tents that don’t cost much are outfitted with a Polyurethane (PU) coating because it’s a good option in cold and wet situations. People that like to camp in the mountains usually choose PU formulations with polyether because these tents are more durable and stable.
A combination of silicone and nylon called SilNylon is considered by many experts in the field as the strongest, lighter, durable and temperature stable option. Moreover, it provides a great deal of UV protection, and due to the slippery factor, you can rest assured no snow will stay on the exterior.
According to most budget tent reviews, the weight is a major factor to consider in your decision. Although a few ounces extra might not seem like a big deal, you need to be able to carry the tent with you without putting tons of efforts. Lightweight tents are a great purchase if you enjoy hiking. Otherwise, you need something not too heavy but practical.
As far as interior space goes, backpacking tents tend to limit the area since they use less material for the manufacturing process. If you need extra space or comfort, you should buy a tent that is suitable for one more person that you actually need. For instance, if you’re traveling in a group of 3, get a 4-person tent.
The footprint is something important because it adds durability to the floor of the tent. Most tents don’t have one because they are less heavy without it. But the protection is crucial especially against abrasion so if you don’t might the extra weight, consider getting a tent with a footprint that might last for many outdoor trips.
Top Rated Tents on a Budget in 2018
Showcased below you’ll find a list of products we’ve prepared for you. All of these items feature the important characteristics that tents on a budget must have. Have a look and see if one them matches your personal needs and preferences.
Kelty Grand Mesa 40811715
This dome tent shape is an excellent choice especially if you plan to pitch it in an area where wind issues are common.
Despite its small size, the unit is built to last, and the PU coating applied on the floor and rainfly prevents the moisture. Also, the double-walls and the special mesh are able to increase the airflow inside the tent and deliver fresh air while keeping the condensation away.
Quite easy to set up, the unit uses a special system that allows you to assemble the two crossing poles and then attach the tent to them. There’s no need to worry about complicated instruction because everything is color-coded so you’ll know where each piece goes.
The zipper works smoothly and doesn’t make noise so you can leave the tent without worrying about waking up the rest of the group.
The top half of the tent is screened so you won’t suffer from major heat while staying inside. Plus, there’s a vestibule located over the door that keeps the rain away from the interior and gives you plenty of space to leave the shoes and other supplies.
In regards to the storage capacity, the tent features plenty of pockets where you can put your flashlight, map, or GPS.Buy from Amazon for ($97.96)
CORE 9 Person Extended Dome 40004
This massive shelter is great if you travel with a large group of people or family and you need plenty of space for sleeping and supplies. The tent can accommodate nine people even if you place a queen size 3-inch mattress in the interior.
Because the center height is 6 feet, the unit is ideal for people of all sizes, without worrying about bending all the time.
The product features a lantern hook, a gear loft and organizer pockets where you can store different things such as snacks, lights or maps. Besides, it boasts an electrical cord access port that can be closed when you’re not using it for charging.
Due to the water-repellent fabrics that benefit from an active bead technology prevents the water from remaining on the tent’s exterior. Plus, the product comes with sealed seams and rain-resistant door and window seals that make sure no drop of water will enter the tent.
One aspect worth mentioning is the fully-taped rainfly that it can be removed during the summer so that it allows you to see the panoramic view through the mesh ceiling and the windows.
Furthermore, the tent comes with a venting system that uses the air intake vent in order to draw cool air from the ground. The mesh ceiling enables the hot air to escape from the tent. This way, you’ll have a comfortable camping experience no matter the season.Buy from Amazon for ($123.75)
Wenzel 8 Klondike 36424B
If you need large space not only for your group but also for the supplies, you’ll love this tent that can accommodate up to 8 people and has a large front awning where you can store several bags and backpacks.
Besides the fact that you can put your food, water, and clothes in the camping porch, you can also use it for sun or rain protection. Thanks to this awning, you can rest assured about the ventilation process because the tent ensures that a large amount of air gets inside.
One of the most interesting features is the rear mesh vent that has an awning that feeds towards the ground so it can be left open even when it rains outside.
The best part is that you can pitch this tent in no time and you’ll only need an extra pair of hands to set it up.
Once you finish the assembly part, the tent provides plenty of room, and you can even add a king size mattress in the main room and still have space to move around.
Especially if you have tall people with you in your outdoor escapade, the tent is great and allows people with a height of up to 6.1 feet stand and walk without any issues.Buy from Amazon for ($159.89)