What Are The 3 Most Popular Tent Styles Available Today?
Updated: Feb 22
For the first time camper, you need to purchase the right tent for your tenting needs. This can be a daunting task as there are many different styles, sized and price ranges for you to consider.
What are the most common tent styles for first-time campers?
While there are many different styles of tents on the market today, there are three basic styles.
While there are many variations of tents on the market today, they are all based on these three simple forms.
Today, in this world of camping and glamping, these three tent styles comprise most of the marketplace. Here we will discuss the three styles, their uses, and the pros and cons.
A-Frame: This is a simple small, easy tent that resembles a triangle. It is a lightweight and easy tent to assemble. Assembly is rolling it out and installing the two poles that create the A-Frame. They are open on each end but do have flaps that can be tied shut to help keep the weather out. It is a small and basic tent that usually accommodates 1 to 2 people. This easy tent is one of the simplest camping items.
Pros: Simple design with easy assembly. This camping item is a Very lightweight and small footprint in carrying case. This tent is excellent for backpacking hiking, where you would use the trailside. This camping item is a Great first easy tent for children to experience tenting. These are usually the least expensive of all tents but still an essential camping item.
Cons: Small, lack of interior room, and comfort. Best for 1 to 2 adults depending on the size. Weather protection is limited as this easy tent doesn’t come with a rainfly, so rain resistance is limited for this camping item.
These easy tents come in a variety of sizes and styles. They can accommodate from 2 to 12 people. These tents can I have multiple rooms with good headroom. They are usually lightweight under 20 pounds. Assembly is relatively easy, but larger the family tent, the more effort needed to assemble. Two people are a good rule of thumb. However, smaller versions of the dome family tent can be assembled by one individual.
Pros: Rain resistance is excellent and utilizes a rain fly that covers the family tent. They are usually best suited to 3 seasons. However, you can purchase colder weather tents. They are lightweight enough, generally under 20 pounds. This camping item can be used for backpacking, ocean camping, car camping, and hiking. Assembly is easy and uses fiberglass poles that are slipped through sleeves on the outside of the easy tent then fit into the hole at base to create the Dome.
In most cases, a rainfly is included for increased protection from rain and moisture. Dome family waterproof tents are relatively inexpensive, depending on the size in most cases. Most models now include the E-Port system, which allows you to bring electricity into the tent via a cord. This system also keeps the rain out. When not in use, this can be closed to be weatherproof.
Cons: Overall height is usually under 5 feet, so the headroom is an issue. Most adults will not be able to stand tall. They typically have a D-style door, which means you will usually be crawling into the waterproof tent. Also, you will be shuffling your gear in and out of the family tent. Another item of consideration here is the fiberglass poles provided. They need to be of good quality so that the waterproof tent can withstand winds on your outing. This wind tends to be a familiar weak spot. Also, the poles are usually connected via an elastic string to keep them together for assembly. This item is another area of weakness, as it is common for these strings to break.
These family tents come in many different sizes and styles. They can be multi room tents, tents with screen rooms, multiple windows and doors, and event awnings and entry mats. These cabin style tents can range from 4 to 12 people or larger. They are used for 3 season camping as the internal size tends to make them cold in lower temperatures. Multiple doors and windows create an open feeling and larger living space in these cabin style tents.
Pros: Great for the whole family with ample space and headroom, usually 6 feet in height in these cabin style tents. Suitable for use in extended stay camping or car camping. Weatherproofing is supplied by a rainfly to make these a waterproof tent. Many options for size and styles. Usually good ventilation. Most have a mesh ceiling, so when rainfly is removed, you have a view of the stars. Prices vary by options and manufacturers but tend to be affordable. Allow ample space for family, and the room divider systems make them multi room tents give space for children or pets. Vents are usually provided at the base and a mesh ceiling. Most have a T-Style door that allows you to walk into the tent. Also, in larger family tents, two entries may be included. Also, most family tents have light hooks, side pockets, and a luggage loft to store valuables. The E-port option is now available in most waterproof tents. It allows you to bring an extension cord for electricity into the family tent, while still keeping the water out.
Cons: Assembly is more complicated. You will need to install the poles that crossover outside of the multi room tent holding it up. Two people are best for assembly. Usually more substantial in construction, so the larger you go, the less likely you will want to use hiking and backpacking. The ample ventilation is a plus in warmer weather but does make these tents cooler in cold weather. These cabin style tents are more cumbersome, around 30 pounds, and larger, so hiking and backpacking isn’t an option. Price is also usually more than the other two styles of easy tents, but you get the added space.
Another option for the Cabin Tent is the Instant Cabin Style Tent. These can be assembled by one person and usually takes under 5 minutes for assembly. This easy tent is constructed by the poles being attached to a central hub in the top middle of the tent. The poles fold or telescope out and connect to a clip at the base. This folding action makes all of this possible. The downside for this is the weight. Usually over 30 pounds, so you will want to be nearer your car. These cabin style tents still utilize the rainfly system for keeping the water out, making them the option of a waterproof tents. They tend to be a little more expensive than traditional cabin tents, but you gave the setup convenience. Depending on your situation, this may be an option you want to consider.
We hope that this information has been helpful. Keep in mind that we have reviewed many different tents for the models above, giving you the information you need to make an educated purchase.
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