There’s just no way to spend a weekend quite like camping. Especially since indoor activities are currently a no-go, a weekend in the woods or mountains might just be the best way to bond with your friends and loved ones, get some fresh air, connect to mother nature, and just get away from it all and come back to civilization feeling refreshed.
But some people aren’t really up to or interested in the full “roughing it” experience, and a sleeping bag on the ground might be a bit below your standards. Don’t let the gatekeepers shame you, there’s nothing wrong with a little glamping. Some people just need the bare minimum of at least a cot to really enjoy their weekend. The point of camping is to relax and have fun, and if a camping cot helps you do that, more power to you.
We want to help you find the best cot out there for your needs to help you have the best weekend getaway possible. That’s why we’ve written this list of the best folding camping cots – to help you find the best folding cot that will allow you to connect to the great outdoors and have a relaxing and stress-free weekend without paying the price of a sore back.
Carry on reading to see our full list of the best folding camping cots, followed by a recap breaking down what makes each product on our list stand out. Or jump straight to our number #1 pick on Amazon here.
What Should You Look For in a Folding Sleeping Cot for Camping?
So what do we look for in our folding camp cots? Thankfully, it’s pretty straight forward. As you’re essentially buying a bed, there’s not a whole lot of jargon or technical information you need to be familiar with, unlike buying, for example, a new computer, where it can feel like you have to be a certified expert just to know what anyone is talking about. That being said, it’s always good to have things written down, and that’s why we’ve laid out our criteria below to help you keep everything nice and organized. So let’s look at the traits we want in the best camping cots.
Criteria #1: Comfort –I don’t think I’ll have to explain this one too much. Obviously, you want to feel well-rested in the morning and actually get a good night’s sleep, even when you’re camping, and that requires having a bed with a level of comfort that’s up to your standard. The biggest issue here is that there’s very little concrete way to quantify “comfort” so we will mostly have to rely on reviews for this criteria – reviews from blog posts, the customers in online stores, YouTube videos, etc.
Criteria #2: Portability – As we’re specifically focusing on folding cots for camping, we obviously want cots that are portable. You don’t want to show up to the campsite with a king-sized mattress that took up the entire volume of your car. Simplicity is key. Our ideal cot will be able to fold in a way that makes it both small and convenient to carry and pack, so as to make bringing it up to the campsite as easy as possible.
Criteria #3: Size – Size is definitely related to portability, but it’s not necessarily a one-to-one ratio. Some manufacturers have gotten very creative with their products. There are camping cots out there that are of a decent size while open yet can fold up to be almost the size of a purse. Of course, there is a certain compromise you should expect in terms of portability the bigger your cot is, which is why it’s best not to be excessive with the size of your new cot. Obviously, everyone is a different height and general size, so exactly how big you’re willing to go will be based on your preference and your body type.
Criteria #4: Price – We’re not here to make you spend a ton of money for no reason. Meeting this criterion is less about being cheap and more about justifying your price. We’d rather buy an expensive product that’s cheaper than it should be than waste money on a cheaper product that isn’t worth the money and that will just break on you or not perform well.
Here’s How We’ve Determined the Folding Sleeping Cots for Camping
We measured the specs of the top products on the market against our listed criteria to see how they held up and if they’re worth buying. We then checked customer reviews, blog posts, and “best folding camping cots” articles to see if the products on our list performed as advertised.
And without further ado, here is our list – tailored to your specific needs – of the best folding camping cots.
#1: Alpcour Folding Camping Cot (Best Value – All-Purpose)
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Starting off our list is the Alpcour Folding Camping Cot. This folding cot is sure to leave any standard customer more than satisfied. Our number one pick is long enough even for particularly tall individuals and can fit anyone up to 6’4″, so the overwhelming chances are that you’ll fit perfectly in this cot.
The Alpcour cot’s durable steel frame can also support a weight of up to 300 pounds, and only weighs 13 pounds itself, so you won’t have to burn too many calories packing it up or bringing it from the car to the campsite. On top of that, Alpcour boasts that their folding cot is made from “a double Layer of 600D polyester for superior strength, water-resistance, and easy cleaning .”
They also claim nothing but the peak of comfort from this camping cot and insist that you won’t even need a mattress pad or a pillow. They’re definitely right on the second count. One of the Alpcour Folding Camping Cot’s standout features is the slight incline leading up to the head of the cot and the built-in pillow. You’re guaranteed to have perfect neck support, and you’ll always have a nice pillow waiting for you on this cot without any extra packing.
Perhaps my favorite feature of the Alpcour Folding Camping Cot is the built-in side pouch. This side pouch, which is located right by the head of the camping cot, has two pockets attached to it. One of the pockets is made of mesh, and the other is made from the same polyester as the cot itself. This pouch is perfect for storing your toothbrush, toothpaste, and mouthwash, or a flashlight and your water bottle, or even a book. You’ll feel right at home with the Alpcour Folding Camping Cot, and you’ll be able to hop right out of bed and get a good start on the morning with all of your essential items close by.
The Alpcour Folding Camping Cot folds away easily, and it comes with its own carry bag that will make lugging it around a breeze. This camping cot is a favorite among both official reviewers and paying customers. Customers loved the comfort and size of this cot, with one reviewer pointing out that the bag actually has extra room once the cot is packed up. This means you won’t spend the end of your trip wondering how you ever packed this cot up in the first place. It’ll fit right in, and you can be on your way.
Finally, on top of all of the praise we’ve had for this cot so far, it’s more than reasonably priced and actually on the cheaper side of things, when all is said and done. It’s height, sturdy steel frame, slanted head, and convenient side pouch are sure to leave any customer happy and satisfied. Its price makes it clearly the best value pick that should get the job done no matter what you’re looking for. So as soon as you start looking at camping cots, you need to look at the Alpcour Folding Camping Cot. It’s almost guaranteed to fit in your budget and have what you’re looking for.
#2: Bushtec Camping Cot Sierra 440 (Best Machine)
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Our second-ranked camping cot, the Bushtec Camping Cot Sierra 440, is a bit more luxurious than our top-ranked folding cot, and you could definitely argue that it’s firmly on the “glamping” side of the spectrum, which of course means that it’s also more expensive than the Alpcour Camping Cot. Sometimes you get what you pay for, and while we ranked this cot lower, there are definitely reasons you might decide to splurge for it over the Alpcour Camping Cot. Here are the big selling points of the Bushtec Camping Cot Sierra 440 that might make you decide it’s worth the investment.
Reason #1 to Choose This Product: Larger Size
Are you, or do plan on becoming, a center in the NBA? If yes, then best of luck in the upcoming season. If not, then you should have zero problem fitting in this camping cot. The Bushtec Camping Cot Sierra 440 has a length of 6’10”, so unless you’re pushing seven feet, you’ll be nice and comfortable and won’t have to worry about your feet dangling off the end of this cot. It’s also 34 inches wide, which means that a couple of smaller people could honestly fit in this camping cot together and still have some wiggle room. Also, the “440” in this folding cot’s name stands the weight limit, so I can basically guarantee that straining this cot’s steel frame won’t be an issue. For all of you bigger and taller folks out there, the Bushtec Camping Cot Sierra 440 is exactly what you’re looking for.
Reason #2 to Choose This Product: Satellite Feet
Finding level ground at a campsite can be such a struggle. The truth is, sometimes there just isn’t any to be found, and you have to resign yourself to a weird lopsided sleeping angle. But with the Bushtec Camping Cot Sierra 440’s satellite feet, you can make level ground wherever you go. Since the feet are completely adjustable, you can set up this cot to be at a comfortable angle even when Mother Nature has different ideas. If you’re picky about your sleep, and who isn’t, this cot will make a night or two out in the woods much easier.
On top of the wide and tall frame and the super-useful satellite feet, this folding cot features an extremely durable canvas build that’s water-resistant. It’s even fire retardant, which I really hope you don’t need to make use of, but maybe you like to get a little closer to the campfire.
Its back is adjustable, so you can get the same ideal angle you’d get from the Alpcour Folding Camping Cot, and you can even turn the cot into a lounge chair.
The big drawbacks of this more expensive cot are its size when packed up, which measures 33 inches x 32 inches x 10 inches – made even worse by the lack of a carry bag – and the weight. This heavy-duty cot weighs a whopping 38 pounds, so you’ll definitely want to move it as little as possible. It’s also lacking the convenient side pouch of the Alpcour cot, but it’s probably more comfortable due to its extra padding.
So if you really want the more portable cot or the convenient side pouch, then you should stick with our number one pick. But if you can’t say no to the tall and wide cot with adjustable feet and you’re willing to pay extra for those luxuries, then the Bushtec Camping Cot Sierra 440 is calling your name.
#3: KingCamp Portable Folding Camping Cot (Best Versatile Cot)
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If you need a camping cot that can be ready for any situation and double as a chair no matter the situation, look no further than the KingCamp Portable Folding Camping Cot. This versatile and flexible camping cot has an adjustable back that can be put into four different positions. So if you’re a little finicky about how you like to sleep or you want your cot to be able to double as a recliner for when you relax and enjoy nature during the day, it’s absolutely perfect for you.
The KingCamp Portable Folding Camping Cot also has a convenient folded size of 30″ x 5.9″ x 23″ and weighs only 14 pounds, so carrying it won’t be a problem at all, especially compared to the Bushtec cot. Just like our number one pick, the Alpcour Folding Camping Cot, the KingCamp Portable Folding Camping Cot has a built-in and strapped on pillow that you’ll never have to worry about losing and a convenient side pouch located at the head of the cot near said pillow.
The main drawback of this cot is that it’s a bit on the short side, with a length of about 6 feet and 2 inches, so while most people will be fine, it’s not at all impossible that you’re a bit too tall for comfort on this specific cot. That being said, it has a weight limit of 265 pounds, which is a bit easier to stay within, though again, it’s not unheard of if you’re pushing that to its limits.
Another unfortunate drawback of this cot is that, while it’s light, it doesn’t have a carry bag, which will definitely hurt its portability. It’s a tiny bit more expensive than the Alpcour cot, but still very affordable, and it comes with a full one-year warranty that significantly adds to the value.
If you’re small enough to fit in it and you want to save some room packing a chair, the 2-in-1 KingCamp Portable Camping Cot is a great way to keep things light. You’ll also save some money since you’ll be buying only one product instead of two.
#4: CoastRail Outdoor Camping Cot for Adults (Best Low Cost)
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Sometimes you’re just trying to keep it as cheap as possible while not sticking to a sleeping bag on the cold, hard ground. I am definitely no stranger to the budget route, and the honest truth is that a lot of the time you find yourself wondering what everyone else paid so much for. It’s not too hard to stay affordable when looking at camping cots, but when you want to keep it really cheap, there aren’t that many options better than the CoastRail Outdoor Camping Cot for Adults.
This cot supports a weight up to 400 pounds, measures 75″ x 28″ x 19.3″ when it’s opened up, and 40″ x 8.5″ when folded. So just like our last cot, it’s a bit shorter than some of the competition, but you’ll probably be fine unless you’re particularly tall. It’s also more than wide enough unless you roll around in your sleep a lot or if you’re an NFL linebacker.
A nice feature of this cot is that it’s fitted with elastic straps that are perfect for keeping a mattress pad in place. So if you already have a mattress pad at home, this cot could be a great way to save some money and still get top-tier comfort while you’re camping.
Aside from the height, there really aren’t too many glaring defects to this cot. It has the side pouch we’ve come to know and love, and its pouch is even a bit wider than that of the rest of the competition. You’re also getting the classic convenient strapped-in pillow, which has a foam padding guaranteed to help you sleep like a baby.
Customers loved this affordable camping cot, calling it easy to use and set up, as well as nice and comfortable. So if you know that you shouldn’t have to break the bank on your camping cot, buy the CoastRail Outdoor Camping Cot for Adults. If you’re interested in this cot but are a bit too tall for it, there is a longer option, which is a bit more expensive but still cheaper than most of the competition.
#5: Coleman Camping Cot with Side Table (Best Utility)
If you really want to feel like you never even left your bedroom, then the only cot for you is the Coleman Camping Cot with Side Table. You’ll be living in the lap of luxury with this cot and its signature side table. Sure, a pouch hanging over the end is nice, but there’s nothing like starting off your day with your exact regular routine.
This side table is a great place for setting your book, your glasses or contact lenses, or your flashlight. There’s also a cup holder built into the side table that’s perfect for a water bottle, mouthwash, or your toothbrush and toothpaste, so you can feel ready for the day right away.
Besides the side table, this folding cot is definitely more on the minimalist side of things. It fits campers up to 6’6″, so we definitely don’t have to worry in terms of height, and its 32-inch width will let you roll around a bit while you dream. Plus, it’s steel frame can handle weights up to 300 pounds.
Finally, it comes with a carry bag, and the back is adjustable so you can get that perfect angle to support your neck. However, it is lacking an attached pillow, though of course bringing your own is no big hassle. And best of all, this cot is nice and cheap!
Plus, with close to 3,000 reviews on Amazon, you can be sure you’re getting a tried and tested product. Customers complimented this cot for being easy to fold up and comfortable. It’s worth noting that one reviewer did suggest using a sleeping pad in tandem with this cot. If you need the feeling of having your own bedroom nightstand, then the Coleman Cot with Side Table is the only cot for you.
#6: Magshion Portable Military Fold Up Camping Bed Cot (Bonus Budget Option)
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Yes, I know, we already listed a budget option, but I wouldn’t want anyone to feel left out if even the CoastRail cot wasn’t cheap enough for them. If that’s the case, then you’ll have to check out the Magshion Portable Military Fold Up Camping Bed Cot. I promise you won’t find anything cheaper.
This budget cot has a simple folding design to fold in half, and it has velcro straps to hold itself in place while folded shut. It’s not exactly the most portable or compact cot on our list, but it’ll definitely free up your hands. It won’t be too difficult to pack in the back of a car, and it’s pretty light.
Plus, it comes with a carry bag, and it’s made with a waterproof fabric and a sturdy steel frame. It’s in the size where you really start to see a compromise in your efforts to save. This military cot is only 6 feet long, and its maximum weight is 195 pounds. Obviously, those are both pretty easy to go over, all things considered, but they’re also easy to stay under. So if you’re a little on the smaller size, this cot is an amazing way to save a lot of money.
One more thing about this cot, that might put off some customers, is that it’s much closer to the ground than our other folding cots. Where the rest of our cots have a pretty standard height of 1.5 feet, this cot rests at just a little more than a foot above the ground. That can definitely be a bit off-putting, but it also may make you feel more at one with nature.
If you can fit in it, and if you don’t mind giving up some height, the Magshion Portable Military Fold Up Camping Bed Cot is the absolute best cot you’ll find at this price range, and it may be the only cot at this price range.
How Should I Use My Folding Cot?
The first thing you should decide is if you want to supplement your cot with a sleeping pad. Unfortunately, I can’t answer this question for you, but your answer will come down to whether or not you prefer comfort over light packing.
If you don’t mind a little firmness and hate having extra baggage, you’ll definitely want to forego the sleeping pad. But if you need your beauty sleep, then a sleeping pad is definitely the best way to enrich your camping experience.
It’s also important to think about your tent when you’re looking at camping cots. Obviously, the standard cot adds quite a bit of height. So if you don’t have a pretty large tent to keep up, that might not work out very well. Of course, you can always enjoy a relaxing sleep under the stars. It’s all up to you and your priorities.
You may also just want a cot as an extra bed around the house for more short-notice guests, which will mean that it’s not as necessary to look at folding cots that are super portable, and you can just focus on comfort.
Verdict: Your Best Folding Sleeping Cots for Camping
That’s almost it for our list. We gave you six fantastic camping cots, so we’ll understand if your brain is a little fried and you find yourself feeling overwhelmed. It’s a lot of information to take in all at once, and I know it’s not always as easy as love at first sight. If you’re still not sure which cot is perfect for your body and your tastes, don’t worry. We’re going to recap all of our camping cots and highlight their standout features to make your choice a little easier.
If you want the best value for money, pick the Alpcour Folding Camping Cot.
This cot is our number one pick for a reason. It can fit you no matter your height or size, it’s comfortable, it’s water-resistant, and it comes with a fantastic pillow attached as well as an amazingly convenient side pouch for all of your important bedside items. Finally, the head of the cot is slanted at the ideal angle to give you and your neck the perfect amount of support while you sleep. You’ll feel right at home with this affordable cot. It’s second to none in value.
If you need the largest cot available, pick the Bushtec Camping Cot Sierra 440.
Most of our cots are pretty accessible even for bigger people, but if you’re the kind of person who’s constantly ducking down or turning sideways to get through doors, this Bushtec cot is the only option for you. On top of being extra large, it’s also padded and extra comfortable, and it has adjustable legs that give you the freedom to set up camp wherever you want, regardless of the incline.
If you want to keep the spending cheap, pick the CoastRail Outdoor Camping Cot for Adults.
It’s camping. It’s literally sleeping outside. It should be cheap. If you want to keep things within a budget and don’t feel like spending a fortune just to rough it, then this CoastRail cot is exactly what you’re looking for. Despite its cheap price, it comes with all of the standard features. It’s nice and small once it’s folded up, but it’s more than tall enough for even taller folks, and it can support about 400 pounds. Also, it’s extra wide, so feel free to twist and turn to your heart’s content.
And that’s it for our list. If the cots we highlighted above weren’t what you’re looking for, you may prefer the flexible and versatile KingCamp cot that doubles as a lawn chair or the convenient Coleman cot with its attached nightstand. Of course, you also may be interested in the super cheap Magshion Portable Military Fold Up Camping Bed Cot.
It could help to think about or write down the one or two cot traits that are really important to you. This will narrow down the search, and you may quickly find that even some of the more popular camping cots just don’t have what it is you’re looking for.
That’s all for now, we hope your new cot makes camping and enjoying nature an even more enjoyable experience.