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The Best Camping Cots for a Better Night's Sleep Outdoors

The key to a better night’s sleep outdoors is one of these snooze-friendly winners.

best camping cots
Gear Patrol

Tossing and turning in your tent? Get off the ground and upgrade your camp bedding, figuratively and literally, with a quality camping cot. A camping cot supports you more like an actual bed, which can make a huge difference in sleep quality. It’s also a heck of a lot easier to get in and out of than something close to the ground – a welcome feature for older or stiff-muscled campers.

Along with your carefully selected sleeping bag, cots also help to regulate body temperature. In chilly weather, a cot keeps you off the cold ground. In the heat, it allows for free air circulation below to keep you cool. Due to their relatively large folded size and heavy weight, they are best used when the campsite is close to the car. In most cases, setup is a breeze and only takes a few minutes.

What to Consider When Buying a Camp Cot

One of the most important things to look at when buying a cot is size. You want to make sure you have plenty of sleep surface area so you’re not hanging off the sides. By default, I’d recommend going big. No one ever says, “I wish I had a smaller bed.”

Typically, the stated manufacturer dimensions measure the entire top of the cot, which includes the area over the crossbars. So, unless you like sleeping on metal rods, I’d subtract 3 inches from the length and width to avoid rubbing.

Whether you’re a side, back, or light sleeper, these cots will help you get the shuteye you need to tackle whatever the next day’s adventure may bring.

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How We Tested
snow peak couch cot
Hayley Helms

Our staff members tested a selection of camping cots both in the wild and at home — one editor lives in an Airstream and is essentially "glamping" full time.

When testing camp cots, we kept a few features top of mind that define a cot's usefulness and utility: weight, assembly and comfort. All tested cots were judged on their packability and ease of transport, whether their set-ups were tricky or intuitive and how good the testers felt after using them. We went through some sleepless nights so you don't have to — here's what we found.

REI Co-op
Kingdom Cot 3
Snow Peak Campfield Futon Starter Set
Coleman Trailhead II Cot
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Most Comfortable Camping Cot
Coleman Twin Airbed Folding Cot
Most Portable Camping Cot
Helinox Cot One Convertible
Best Camping Cot for Couples
Coleman Queen Airbed Folding Cot
Best Camping Cot for Big and Tall
Teton Sports Outfitter XXL Camping Cot
Teton Sports
Easiest Set-Up Camping Cot
Coleman ComfortSmart Deluxe Cot
Best Camping Cot for Kids
Disc-O-Bed Large Cam-O-Bunk
Best Camping Cot for Dogs
Helinox Elevated Dog Cot
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