If you’re a fan of camping and/or hunting and own a pickup truck, there’s no reason to set your tent up on the cold, damp ground. You have an entire truck bed that will provide you with much more comfort while you spend time outdoors. With the best truck bed tent, you have a great alternative plus some added privacy and protection.
Truck bed tents aren’t just comfortable and secure, but also easy to set up and tear down. Because of the ease, you could set one up anytime you need a quick nap while traveling. Besides our list of best truck bed tents be sure to check out all the information below about how to choose the right truck bed tent for you.
7 Best Truck Bed Tents
1. DAC Full-Size Truck Tent
This full-size tent is versatile and suits anyone’s needs. Not only is it easy to assemble, but you can expect to have your tent ready in just a few minutes. In addition, it offers superior ventilation so you have plenty of airflow on warm nights.
This truck tent fits vehicles that have a rear access window which raises up and out. You can also use it with tailgates that equal or are larger than 58” wide. It also fits perfectly with flat back and high back camper tops or place it over your airfoil and carrier rack. This tent also works with SUVs, but it isn’t compatible with any that have a spare tire mounted on the outside of the trunk.
2. Rightline Gear Standard Truck Bed Tent (Full-Size)
This pickup bed tent offers a floorless design setup. This comes with multiple advantages you might not think about. For example, with this Rightline Gear truck tent, you don’t have to remove your gear from the bed before you set it up. You also don’t have to worry about the bottom of your tent getting dirty from the bed either.
Many people love the color-coded, heavy-duty poles and pole pockets which make assembly hassle-free. In addition, the protective straps help to protect the truck’s finish from damage. This water-resistant fabric combined with tape effectively seals off the seams so you stay dry through the night. There’s plenty of room to hold two adults plus all your gear. In fact, there are even some storage pockets inside to keep your items secure. There’s also a lantern hanging hook and glow-in-the-dark zipper pulls included.
If you want some added ventilation, you’ll love the sky view vent which also offers a panoramic view. If you prefer, you could remove the rainfly and feel the cool, night air for the entire night.
3. Rightline Gear 110907 SUV Tent
If you plan to turn your truck bed into a cozy sleeping spot, then this is the pickup bed tent you want. It offers lots of space thanks to its 8×8-foot design. There’s even 7.2-feet of height inside. Don’t let the name confuse you; this tent works great for SUVs or trucks. In fact, the tent itself holds four adults plus there’s additional space for two in your truck bed.
The tent fabric is water-resistant and durable. You’ll be safe from humidity and the elements while inside. Simply attach the adjustable sleeve to your pickup truck, SUV, or minivan for a fun, family camping experience. If you prefer, this tent is also versatile enough to be used without your vehicle. That gives you plenty of options for your next trip.
This tent also includes a storm-cover rainfly for more privacy and protection. There’s even a lantern hook located inside and easy-to-use glow in the dark zippers. You can easily store all your valuables in the provided storage pockets, and the tent fits nicely in its storage carrying bag when you’re done in the outdoors.
4. Guide Gear Compact Truck Tent
Turn your truck bed into a camping oasis with this cool tent option. You remain off the ground at all times for maximum comfort, plus it provides plenty of room inside. Because there’s 4-3/4’ of headroom, you’ll never feel claustrophobic or trapped. Boasting extra protection fabric with sewn-in floor features, it also offers a warm, dry place to lay away from any dampness.
The effective ventilation allows you to receive fresh air at all times, plus this tent features a versatile design for different setup options. With the four-pole tent design construction, you’ll have it set up and torn back down in no time. It also features an easy to use D-shaped door for quick exits and easy entering.
This tent only weighs 10 pounds and comes with a carry bag while it’s not in use. The sturdy polyester construction is waterproof and keeps you comfortable for the entire night.
5. Sportz Camo Truck Tent
If you love the look of camo, you’ll be a fan of this truck bed tent. It lets you feel like you are a part of the wilderness while still keeping you protected and safe. The 5.7’ height allows room for two people to fit inside comfortably. There’s even a 4×4’ awning that offers some additional shade and protection of your gear.
In terms of full rain protection, it has it all. With the storm flap built-in plus the additional rainfly, you can expect to stay dry at all times while also maintaining your privacy. The rear window gives you easy access into your cabin plus there are three large windows combined with a couple of ceiling vents for maximum ventilation.
This tent comes complete with a lantern holder, gear pocket, easy to use carrying bag and six shock-corded poles made from fiberglass for easy setup. You’ll have your tent ready to go in just ten minutes.
6. Sportz Avalanche Truck Tent III
If you want your next trip to be roomy and comfortable, this Outdoor Sportz truck tent might be the best pickup bed tent for you. It’s also easy to assemble and doesn’t cost a fortune. You can fit a full-size regular bed air mattress inside, so two adults can sleep with ease.
Because it features 5-1/2’ of headroom, you should have no trouble standing up comfortably. In addition, the fiberglass poles come color-coded so setup is a breeze. The rear door gives you quick access to the cabin when needed. In addition, the larger front door makes exit and entrance easy.
Because there is a six-by-six-foot awning, you have further protection from the sun and elements. Inside, there’s access to the gear loft and two interior pockets to hold your belongings. When you’ve finished using the tent, simply pack it away in the handy carrying bag.
7. Sportz Truck Tent Compact Regular
This tent comes with enough room to fit two people and has a full floor for maximum comfort. The mesh windows provide excellent ventilation and with side vents for superior ventilation while inside. The higher ceiling measures 5.6’ for plenty of headroom and to keep you from feeling trapped.
The access panel allows you to reach into the truck cab with ease. The setup is also simple and you won’t need guide ropes. If you desire a little extra space, you’ll be a fan of the four-by-four-foot awning that gives even more shade and room.
The rain fly is exceptionally constructed plus setup is simple with the color-coded system. When camping is over, simply put your tent back into its storage bag and you’re good to go.
Truck Bed Tent Buying Guide
What is a Truck Bed Tent?
Essentially, it’s a “tent for back of truck” arrangement but there’s a little more to it than that. Now that we’ve looked at the top picks for the best truck bed tent, let’s define what this handy invention is. The first time anyone saw a commercial truck tent was in 1990 when Roman Napieraj invented one. He was the founder of Napier Enterprises at the time.
Up until then, campers constructed their own forms of truck tents by modifying conventional tent options. A pickup bed tent offers the same thrill and excitement of camping and similar sports outdoors, but it places the user up higher off the ground. They look like a regular tent and have many of the same features. The only downside is that the majority of them won’t work as a regular tent. If for some reason you don’t have your truck, you probably won’t be able to use it.
What’s Inside a Truck Tent?
Each pickup bed tent offers its own design and setup. With that said, many of the tents from the same manufacturer will look alike. Different brands provide a varying amount of ventilation options and windows.
Overall, the biggest aspect of the appearance will be the floor. Many of them have built-in floors, but there are also models without. If you have the floor, you might feel more secure and comfortable. Without it, however, your tent won’t get dirty on the bottom from your truck bed.
In a truck tent, you often won’t find the same views as you would from a conventional tent. They usually have smaller windows and less viewing area. This isn’t true of all of them, but you can expect to pay more for the chance to see the entire outside world.
Truck Bed Tent Buying Considerations:
When you look for the best tent, there are many factors you need to consider. Here are some key points to keep in mind while shopping.
You want to take note of how many air vents and windows there are. These are your source of ventilation and help you from feeling trapped. With good ventilation, you’ll sleep better and enjoy the experience a lot more. Otherwise, you’re basically sleeping in a plastic bag. That doesn’t sound fun, does it?
You’ll want to also pay attention to the straps. These ensure you receive an adequate fit and help to keep your tent in place. If you plan to camp during a windy night, these are even more crucial. While the placement of straps differs slightly depending on the design, you’ll get the basic idea of how to attach them.
It’s also wise to choose a truck bed tent that features straps constructed from a soft material. This keeps your paint job in tip-top shape.
How much time do you plan to spend setting up? The best truck bed tent should set up easily and quickly. The top of the line options only take ten minutes or less, but you should never spend more than 30 minutes getting one setup.
Of course, you’ll find some features which make this even easier. For example, keep an eye out for color-coded poles which help you to get the job done in record time.
Of course, your tent size is limited by how big your truck bed is. With that in mind, you can still have a say in the truck bed tent height. The compact tents are smaller and often lower-priced, but you won’t have a lot of space inside. They tend to offer a “D” shape which might make some people claustrophobic. If you don’t like being enclosed so much, you’ll want to invest in a higher-end model with the additional interior room.
In our list we included options that mainly featured aluminum, color-coded poles. That’s because they offer a lightweight while remaining sturdy and strong. You might think that fiberglass is a better option, and it is in terms of weight. On the flip side, they won’t offer the same strength that aluminum does and might not withstand wind or bad weather the same. Steel poles are also an option, but they are very heavy. We only recommend these if you need to camp in extreme conditions and need maximum durability.
Just as important as your pole construction, your tent materials need to be durable. Most tents are made from polyester which is waterproofed for maximum protection. There was one on our list that was constructed of canvas. This premium material allows your tent to breathe while eliminating condensation. It’s also going to jack up your price tag significantly. If you can afford a canvas truck bed tent, you’ll get more life out of it and it will be a great investment.
Some truck bed tents have a floor built-in while others don’t have any. There’s a nice mixture of both included in our truck bed tent list. The floor creates an enclosed feel and additional protection from the elements. There’s also another layer of security between your air mattress and truck bed.
To use a truck bed tent with a floor, it’s essential you clean it out first. That’s why some people prefer to use a truck bed tent without a floor. This is the best option if you store stuff in the truck bed that you don’t want to move first.
You’ll want to have things on hand like your wallet or cell phone. Leaving them in the cab isn’t always the best option. That’s why it’s helpful to have a least one storage pocket in the truck bed tent to keep your valuables safe and dry. Plus, you won’t crush them when you roll around at night.
Access to the Cab
There are a few truck bed tents that offer some additional access so you can reach into your cab. These options feature a window in the rear that hooks into the cab securely. When you open the window, you can easily get items from the cab without leaving the tent.
This allows you some more storage space and helps you enjoy your favorite tunes while camping.
While we wish you didn’t pick your truck bed tent based on the price, we know many people need to think about a budget. The good news is that even when you’re strapped for cash, you can find some great options. Just take your time and read the reviews and see what others thought about the tent first.
We’ve listed several types of truck bed tents on our list. Some work for SUVs as well as trucks, but the majority of these are strictly for truck beds. For the most part, you’ll find that the tents fit a variety of pickups. To ensure the proper fit, you’ll want to measure the truck bed and compare that to the dimensions of the tent. Take into consideration your truck type: is it a crew cab? Is it a short truck? Is it a full-size standard? These things are important when selecting the best tent for the job.
Set aside some time to take measurements from multiple areas if you desire a decent size. By examining your truck bed size prior to shopping for a tent, you’ll narrow down your options and make choosing even easier. If you aren’t sure that a tent will fit, don’t be afraid to contact the company and ask them to confirm if it will work. It’s best to be safe, especially if you plan to spend a few hundred dollars.
Truck camping is a real adventure and leads to life-long memories. Whether you plan to camp with a loved one or you need a place to sleep while hunting, it’s possible to find a truck bed tent that suits your needs. You can choose a small, easy-to-setup model for those quick stops or invest in something that feels like a full-size tent for extended vacations.
Either way, a truck bed tent offers lots of versatility, protection, and security while you’re away from home. Take your next trip to a new level and invest in a pickup bed tent. You’ll be happy you did after you experience that first great night of sleep.