Best Folding Cot

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If you love camping but find it too difficult to sleep on the cold, hard ground, then a folding cot may be the solution.

It is pretty tricky to choose from a large variety of folding cots out there, with all claiming their camping beds are the best. From our extended research, we have narrowed down to a group of top folding cots that we think is best for camping. In this guide, we have listed down all its key features and why these camping cots have landed among our top picks. If you want to skip and find the best camping cot, then Alpcour Folding Camping Cot is the one for you.

Table of Contents

Top 5 Folding Cot

This foldable bed is sturdy and comfortable. Its steel tube frames lock into place very well. The cot bed does not flex or creak when you turnover at night. Weighing at only 13 lbs, and you will be surprised that this camping bed can carry up to a maximum weight of 300 lbs. 

 

Gone are the experiences of cot bars poking your back, a feature usually found in traditional cots. We love the slight incline at the head, which helps to avoid back or neck ache. 

 

Unlike air mattresses where it is too cumbersome to blow up and breakdown, this camp bed folds into itself like an umbrella. This backpacking cot is compact when packed up and it slips back into the nylon carry bag neatly with room to spare. This portable cot is great for car camping, but it is not something so portable that you can carry for hiking.

 

One of the strong points is its breathable 600D polyester fabric, which is tough and water resistant. Just so you know, this is the same type of material used for military grade backpacks. This makes the material lasting and you find cleaning it after camping easier. 

 

 

There is a nice pocket at the side of the cot to store your small items like your phones or keys. Not many users like the pillow as it is made of collapsing foam that also crinkles when you sleep which can be annoying. 

Pros

  • High quality fabric
  • Steel tube frame
  • Great weight capacity
  • Includes a carry bag 
  • Lightweight
  • Side pockets
  • 100% foldable

 

Cons

 

  • Uncomfortable pillow

This Coleman cot is one of the most popular cot used in the camping community. This sleeping cot is a very comfortable cot that comes with a 1.75 inch mattress, which makes it feel much more like a  bed. The heavy duty steel frame is solid enough to  support up to 300 lbs, which generally fits most individuals. 

 

This camp cot measures 80 x 30 x 15 inches, which is wide enough so you have enough space to move around. Heightwise, it can fit a sleeper up to 6.5 feet tall. Note these sleeping cots can fit in most 4 persons tents, even solo tents. Also when transporting it around, you will find that it will fit into your car trunk without any issues. 

 

Coleman camping cot is super easy to assemble, just unfold the main frame and legs. Even when not camping, it is an ideal spare bed when you have sleepover guests. The legs of the cot will not damage your tent as it is designed to be a rounded bar.  

It is a little bulky but lightweight enough to move around short distances. One setback is there is no storage bag that comes with this cot. It is harder to transport around or store it safely away from the dust and dirt. Some users found the mattress slides around easily, but this can be fixed by laying another non-slip fabric between the frame and mattress.

Pros

  • Comes with mattress
  • Comfortable
  • Size fits in most tents
  • Easy to set up
  • Durable frame
  • Affordable

 

Cons

  • Bulky
  • No storage bag
  • Mattress slides around

 

If you have a back challenge, BYER OF MAINE Easy Cot is the cot for you. There are no crossbars in the middle and no end rails. This crucial design prevents your back, feet and head from touching the cold metal bars when sleeping. 

 

Another feature worth mentioning is this cot is 31″ wide, much wider than standard cots which are usually 27″ wide. Its width caters for those who toss and turn constantly during sleep. This oversized cot has a length at 78″ which is great for tall campers.

 

If you are looking for a heavy duty cot, this heavy duty steel frame cot will last you years. It is physically impossible to tip even though you are sitting on the edge. Users have found its 600D Denier polyester canvas does not sag even after extended use. Instead it stays firm and flat. 

 

However, this cot is slightly on the heavier side at 20lbs, but it will do well for car camping as you can just unload and park elsewhere. It is a great solution for guests sleeping over or when you wish to set up a spare bed in the office.  

 

 

Like other cots, it is easy to set up and you do not need any tools. And you will not get your fingers pinched as there is fabric covering places where the bars unfold. However, some reviewers have commented the storage bag is rather small and quite a tight fit when packing it in.  

Pros

  • Heavy duty cot
  • Oversized cot 
  • Sturdy fabric
  • Durable frame
  • No end and middle bars

 

Cons

  • Storage bag small
  • Heavy 

 

If you are looking for a huge camping cot, this is the one for you. Its 600D oxford high-denier fabric keeps the cot taut, making it a great sleeping surface for your back. It is the size of a queen size camping cot, and can sleep 2 average adults, which is great for couples.  But note, this folding cot bed will take up significant space in your tent, so check that your tent is large enough to accommodate it. 

 

It is no doubt a heavy duty cot. Its patented steel S-leg strengthens the cot. This is why it can support up to 600 lbs of weight. You can definitely fall asleep easily in this cot as it is so comfortable. There are rubber pads from each of the 6 legs to provide protection to your tent base and also provide shock absorption to the sleeper.

 

It folds up easily like a camping chair. There is a carrying bag accompanying this cot to transport it around. It packs up at 26 lbs, so it would better be carried to your camp ground via a vehicle. 

 

Some reviewers do find it harder to set up this cot, you do really need the muscles to get the end rails in. But the manufacturer has now included an option of a red pivot arm to allow the last connection of the rail to be easy. Usually, by the 4th or 5th setup, you will get the hang of it. 

 

 

Here is a video that will help on this cot setup

Pros

  • Size of a twin bed
  • Supports up to 600 lbs
  • Durable
  • Firm top

 

Cons

 

  • Harder to set up

This is a good piece of cot, which should last you for years. It comes with good stitching, and a dual layer honeycomb Ripstop fabric which can withstand abuse from outdoor elements. The cot comes with 5 legs, which explains why it is able to cater for a maximum weight capacity of 300 lbs. 

 

It is super comfortable especially for a person with back pain. The cot opens up to a dimension of 78″ L x 28″ W x 6″ H, which can fit a solo tent. One of the advantages of camping with this cot, is you can increase the storage space in your tent, as you can keep extra stuff underneath the cot. 

 

It is easy to carry around, due to its use of a 7000 series aluminium frame. This material is extremely lightweight at 5 lbs, which is the lightest cot among all the tent cots we have reviewed. It packs up into a 7″ 17″ carrying case, which means you can even carry it for motorcycle camping. And when not being used, you can just store it in your closet.

 

 

To set up the cot, just roll out the top fabric and insert the corded side rails. This cot may be a little tough to assemble especially at the legs, which is the last step. But after a few times you should be able to get the hang of it. 

Pros

  • Lightweight 
  • Strong aluminium frame
  • Comes with a carry bag
  • Reliable
  • Compact

 

Cons

  • Less affordable
  • Tough to assemble

 

Buying Guide

Size

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Standard cots usually fit for 1 person. But if you are looking for a bigger fit to accomodate 2 kids, for couples or just a larger individual, there are special designs just for that. 

 

Some cots are designed with children safety in  mind, which includes the side and end rails. Having a larger sized cot, also means it may take room in your tent. It is important to check the measurements. If you have a small tent, perhaps a smaller cot is more suitable. 

 

 

There are also height differences. Depending on your preference, you probably may not want your feet hanging over the edge. You might like a cot that has a height just like your bed, or you may prefer a height that is low to fit your tent size.

Weight

 

This is an important factor depending what kind of camping style you are going for. If you plan to backpack with it, then a super lightweight cot makes more sense. But if you just want to camp short distances or car camp, durability becomes more important. If so, weight will come in only as the secondary factor. Know that steel frames tend to be slightly heavier than aluminium frames.

Load capacity

There is usually a maximum weight the cot can handle without breaking. So check this upfront with the manufacturer specs before deciding the right one.

Fabric

The most common fabrics used are nylon, polyester or canvas. Nylon and polyester are both easy to clean and tear resistant. They provide better insulation, keeping you warmer on cold nights. Canvas however is more difficult to clean, but still a favorite among camping buffs due to its usage over the decades.

 

 

There are 2 types of stitching often used on fabrics, Ripstop and Oxford. Ripstop are usually tear and rip resistant while Oxford stitching creates durable and wrinkle resistant fabric. 

Accessories

Some camp cots come with extra frills of pockets to store your keys or phones. And some come with built in pillows so you do not need to bring another item with you. There are also foldable cots that feature neck support options. 

 

Having an option of a storage bag with a handle will help make transporting your cot easier. It is easier to pack it in and store in your cupboard when not needed. It keeps dust away.

If you like more comfort, there are cots that come with a mattress, for extra comfort. But if you already have a good sleeping pad, you might opt for one without extra padding.

Comfort

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If you have a problematic back, then having a cot that is taut will certainly elevate the quality of your sleep.

Having rubber feet for the end of each leg helps provide better support and shock absorption. It also protects your tent floor and prevents the cot from sliding around.

Durability

Some frames may not be sturdy and may collapse after a few uses. So if you plan to use the cot for serious camping, find one which is durable in frame. Common materials used for cots are either aluminium or stainless steel. Aluminium is strong and rust free, while stainless steel is more durable but slightly heavier.  

The common shape for cot legs are X-shaped or U-shaped designs. X shaped legs can usually support higher capacity, while U shaped legs help spread the sleeper’s weight across the cot and help protect the tent floors. 

Assembly

Imagine struggling to set up your camping cot after a full day out in the wild. You still have to set up your tent and your campfire to prepare for night. You would want something that is easy to set up and pack back for convenience sake.

Summary

If you still cannot decide and need a final recommendation for the best cot, then we would recommend Alpcour Folding Camping Cot. It is a reliable foldable cot for an affordable price with all the frills of a pillow and elevated headrest. We highly recommend this cot as it is lightweight and easily packable, meeting most of campers’ needs.

What's Next

If you are looking for an alternative to a folding cot, check out our recommended tent cots (A cot with a built-in tent) or reclining camp chairs.

I hope you enjoyed this review and if you have questions about any of the 5 best folding cot, or want to leave your own personal review, feel free to leave a comment below. I would love to hear from you.

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