Best Truck Bed Tent – 5 of the Best to Consider in 2021

Gear Tents

If you’ve got a truck, why not try camping in it? Our guide to the best truck bed tent may be able to find the perfect set up for you.

Camping in your truck has a ton of advantages – if you already have a truck, you can just throw in a few essentials and head off. However, which is the best truck bed tent? And what should you look for in a tent made for truck beds?

The bottom line up front: We like the Rightline Gear Truck Tent, as it has good storage as well as a sky light to allow you to stargaze at night.

We also like:

We’ll be looking at:

  • What a truck bed tent is
  • What to look for in a truck bed tent
  • 5 of our favorites, including their specs, pros, and cons
  • Frequently asked questions
  • Which ones we like the best and why

Let’s start by looking at what a truck bed tent actually is!

Best Truck Bed Tents Compared

Feature
Good All-Rounder
Best for Smaller Truck Beds
Best with Extendable Awning
Good Sustainable Choice
Easiest to Install
Model
Sportz Avalanche Truck Tent III
Rightline Gear Truck Tent
Hasika Waterproof Double Layer Tent
Napier Backroadz Truck Tent
Sportz Truck Tent
Sportz Avalanche Truck Tent III
Rightline Gear 110770 Compact-Size Truck Bed Tent 6'
Hasika Waterproof Double Layer Full Size Truck Short Bed 5.5-5.8 Foot Tent with Floor Blue Grey
Napier Backroadz Truck Tent , Grey/Green, Compact Regular Bed (6'-6.3')
Sportz Truck Tent Blue/Grey (Full Size Crew Cab 5.5-Feet Box)
-
-
133 Reviews
1,797 Reviews
120 Reviews
1,998 Reviews
203 Reviews
Feature
Good All-Rounder
Model
Sportz Avalanche Truck Tent III
Sportz Avalanche Truck Tent III
-
133 Reviews
Feature
Best for Smaller Truck Beds
Model
Rightline Gear Truck Tent
Rightline Gear 110770 Compact-Size Truck Bed Tent 6'
1,797 Reviews
Feature
Best with Extendable Awning
Model
Hasika Waterproof Double Layer Tent
Hasika Waterproof Double Layer Full Size Truck Short Bed 5.5-5.8 Foot Tent with Floor Blue Grey
-
120 Reviews
Feature
Good Sustainable Choice
Model
Napier Backroadz Truck Tent
Napier Backroadz Truck Tent , Grey/Green, Compact Regular Bed (6'-6.3')
1,998 Reviews
Feature
Easiest to Install
Model
Sportz Truck Tent
Sportz Truck Tent Blue/Grey (Full Size Crew Cab 5.5-Feet Box)
203 Reviews

What is a Truck Bed Tent?

car with a rooftop tent parked in a bush campsite

A truck bed tent is a lot like a regular tent, but it is designed to fit perfectly in the bed of your truck. It’s an ideal solution if you already have a truck, you want to travel, and you need somewhere safe to sleep at night.

What to Look for in a Truck Bed Tent

There are a few things to look for in a truck bed tent:

Truck Compatibility

White Truck Bed, empty bad of an modern white truck, daylight

The first thing to look at is if the tent in question is compatible with your truck. Not all tent manufacturers give a specific guide to which trucks it will fit with, but they should advertise the size of the truck bed that the tent works with, so you may be able to figure it out that way.

Size

View from inside the tent

Truck bed tents are, by design, on the smaller side. They look a little like dome tents, which means they won’t have a lot of headroom to walk around in. They won’t fit a large family, for example (unless you have a very big truck and you’re willing to squash in tightly together!). However, they work well for 1-3 people, with enough room for your sleeping pads or airbeds and a bit of extra room to move around in.

Something to take into consideration is the storage situation. If you’re also using your truck bed to store gear, you’ll need somewhere to safely keep that gear while you sleep. Look for a tent with an overhead storage loft area, which is ideal for bulkier gear like backpacks. You can also look for tents with smaller storage pockets for smaller items like keys, phones, and water bottles, as well as lantern hooks so you can see at night.

Some tents also come with an awning, which will give you a bit of shade in the daytime. This is perfect if you need somewhere to sit to enjoy the fresh air on hot days.

Materials

Tent fabric used to cover the tent

Most tents designed for truck beds are made from polyester. This is a commonly used material for tents, as it’s pretty durable and strong. Most tents are coated in a waterproofing material like polyurethane which increases the waterproofing.

The poles, which give the tent its structure, tend to be made from either aluminum or fiberglass. Aluminum is lightweight and cheap, whereas fiberglass is stronger and durable, but tends to bump up the price a bit.

Waterproofing

Dew drops on green tourist tent. Waterproof fabric rain, test of bad weather

Tents for truck beds can be just as waterproof as regular waterproof tents or tents for rain

You may see that your tent has a hydrostatic head measurement (this is shown in millimeters, or mm). The higher this number, the more waterproof your tent will be. It measures the depth of the pool of water that collects on the top of a tent before it starts to seep through. Not all tents have this measurement displayed, but it’s worth looking for one with at least 2,000mm.

There are other things to look out for too. For example, sealed seams are great because they can prevent rain from getting in at the sides, and covered zippers can do the same thing at the entrances.

Most tents come with a rainfly included. This is the outer layer of the tent, which will keep the rain at bay. It may also come with a sewn-in floor, which is great for keeping moisture and cold out from underneath you. Not all tents for truck beds have this flooring, so if you want, you can lay a tarp under your airbeds to keep the moisture at bay – we like the B-Air Grizzly Tarp, which is a multipurpose tarp you can use for all sorts of situations.

Ventilation is important too – look for mesh windows or ceiling vents for improved airflow. Some tents allow you to roll the rainfly right back on clear nights, revealing a mesh layer – this allows you to stargaze while avoiding being bitten by insects.

Ease of Use

Close-up on aluminum flexible arcs-sticks and hooks for attaching internal breathable fabric

Ease of setup is pretty important. While truck bed tents are smaller than regular tents, it still involves threading poles through fabric and securing it to your truck. Look for color-coded poles and pole sleeves, which will help you to figure out which pole goes where.

If you want an idea of what is involved in setting up a truck tent, Napier demonstrates how to do it with their Sportz tent in this video.

Portability

Finally, there is portability to consider. Weight may be a consideration, as well as the size when packed down – if you’ve got a lot of gear in your truck bed, you want a tent that can pack down small. Most tents come with a handy carry bag, which makes it easier to transport.

Top 5 Truck Bed Tents

Here are 5 of our favorite truck bed tents. We’ve included their specs, pros, and cons, so you can figure out which one is the best for you.

Sportz Avalance Truck Tent III – Good All-Rounder

Sportz Avalanche Truck Tent III

Key Features

  • Sleeps: 2
  • Compatible Trucks: Chevrolet Avalanche or Cadillac Escalade EXT
  • Materials: Polyester
  • Size:
    Headroom: 5ft 5in (66in / 168cm)
    Awning: 6ft x 6ft (72 x 72in / 183 x 183cm)
  • Weight: 19.7lbs (8.93kg)

The Sportz Avalanche Truck Tent III is roomy for 2, with a decent amount of headroom. It has one large entrance door and one rear access door to the truck’s cab, and it has small interior pockets and a gear loft – perfect for getting your stuff up out of the way.

It comes with a sewn-in floor and a rainfly with taped seams and storm flaps, giving you privacy as well as great weather protection. The poles are made from fiberglass and hold up well in windy conditions. It also has mesh windows and vents in the ceiling, which means the ventilation is good for warmer days.

It has color-coded poles for easier assembly, in 15 minutes or less. However, it can be tricky for one person – it’s much easier with two, which is something to bear in mind. It fits nicely into the carry bag included.

Pros

  • Good amount of space for 2 people
  • Waterproofing is good
  • Poles are strong
  • It has good storage

Cons

  • Difficult to set up solo
Check Price and Reviews on Amazon

Rightline Gear Truck Tent – Best for Smaller Truck Beds

Rightline Gear 110770 Compact-Size Truck Bed Tent 6'

Key Features

  • Sleeps: 2
  • Compatible Trucks: Chevy Colorado (’04 – ’12) S-10 Ford Ranger (’83 – ’12) B-Series (Mazda) GMC Canyon (’04 – ’12) S-15 Sonoma Hombre & i-Series (Isuzu) Nissan Frontier (’98 – ’04) Toyota Tacoma (’95 – ’04)
  • Materials: Polyester
  • Size:
    6 x 5ft 6 x 4ft 5in (ft)
    72 x 68 x 55 (in)
    183 x 173 x 140 (cm)
  • Weight: 8.40lbs (3.81kg)

The Rightline Gear Truck Tent is ideal for trucks with a 6ft (72in / 183cm) bed. They sell larger versions, too, and they have a sizing guide to help you figure out which one you need. It’s fairly spacious, with small storage pockets and a lantern hook. It also has a skylight, which is a nice touch, as you can camp out under the stars on clear nights (like those in our guide to the best tents for stargazing).

The tent doesn’t have a sewn-in floor, which means you might feel the cold a little (you might want to pick a thicker sleeping bag to mitigate this), but it does mean you won’t have to take everything out of your truck bed before you put the tent on top. It has a hydrostatic head measurement of 2,000mm, with a built-in rainfly and strong fiberglass poles. This means it’s going to hold up well in rainy and windy weather. The downside is that it’s not the most durable on this list, so you may experience a bit of wear and tear after a while.

It has color-coded poles and pole pockets to make assembly easier, as well as soft protective buckles and straps to prevent any damage to your truck. It’s pretty easy to put together and fold back down into the included carry bag.

Pros

  • Includes skylight for stargazing
  • Great waterproofing
  • Easy to put together

Cons

  • Not as durable as some other truck bed tents out there
Check Price and Reviews on Amazon

Hasika Waterproof Double Layer Tent – Best With Extendable Awning

Hasika Waterproof Double Layer Full Size Truck Short Bed 5.5-5.8 Foot Tent with Floor Blue Grey

Key Features

  • Sleeps: 2-3
  • Compatible Trucks: Any truck with a 6ft 4in – 6ft 7in bed
  • Materials: Polyester
  • Size:
    5ft 2in x 5ft 5in x 5ft 5in (ft)
    63 x 67 x 67 (in)
    160 x 170 x 170 (cm)
  • Weight: 13.23lbs (6kg)

The Hasika Waterproof Double Layer Tent is great if you want extra shade in the day. The awning will give you a little bit of extra space to hang out in. The inner tent itself is pretty spacious, with some small internal storage pockets. It does lack larger pockets or an overhead storage loft.

It has a sewn-in floor, which is perfect for keeping the cold (and damp) away from your bedding. The outer layer has a hydrostatic head measurement of 2,000mm, and the window cover has a rating of 3000mm. The tent has strong poles and is pretty durable, so should hold up well against bad weather.

The tent is very easy to set up and take back down again, however, if you’re short you may find it difficult to extend the poles all the way – it may be easier with two people. It folds down small into the included carry bag.

Pros

  • Includes spacious awning
  • Easy to put together
  • Good waterproofing
  • Durable

Cons

  • Not much storage space
Check Price and Reviews on Amazon

Napier Backroadz Truck Tent – Good Sustainable Choice

Napier Backroadz Truck Tent , Grey/Green, Compact Regular Bed (6'-6.3')

Key Features

  • Sleeps: 2
  • Compatible Trucks: Chevy Colorado, Ford Ranger, GMC Canyon, Nissan Frontier, Toyota Tacoma (more choices available in different sizes)
  • Materials: Polyester
  • Size
    Center Height: 4ft 8in – 5ft 1in (58 – 62in / 147 – 157cm)
    Length: 6ft 3in (76cm / 193cm)
  • Weight: 8lb (3.62kg)

The Napier Backroadz Truck Tent is good if you’re environmentally conscious – for every Backroads Tent purchased, a tree will be planted (this is via a partnership with Trees for the Future). It’s spacious for two people, and it has internal pockets, a gear loft, and a lantern holder.

It comes with a sewn-in floor for protection against the elements, and a full rainfly with great waterproofing. It has two large windows for ventilation, and the fiberglass poles are strong and durable. The downside is that the zippers aren’t the most robust, and you may find in heavy rain, you get a few leaks through the doorway.

A big draw of this tent is the ease of setup – it has color-coded poles and sleeves and takes 10 minutes to put together. It’s super easy to do, and it’s simple to pack it back down again into the carry case it comes with.

Pros

  • Easy to assemble and pack down again
  • Good waterproofing
  • Strong poles
  • Good storage

Cons

  • Zippers aren’t robust and may let rain in
Check Price and Reviews on Amazon

Sportz Truck Tent – Easiest to Install

Sportz Truck Tent Blue/Grey (Full Size Crew Cab 5.5-Feet Box)

Key Features

  • Sleeps: 2
  • Compatible Trucks: Any truck with a 5ft 5in cab
  • Materials: Polyester
  • Size
    Center Height: 5ft 6in / 67in / 170cm
    Length: 6ft / 72in / 183cm
  • Weight: 20lb (9.07kg)

The Sportz Truck Tent is fairly spacious for 2. It has an overhead storage loft and a lantern hook but lacks smaller pockets for valuables. The tent has an awning for extra outside space.

It has a sewn-in floor, with a built-in rainfly that holds up well against stormy weather. It has strong poles and mesh windows for good ventilation. The downside is that it’s not as durable as some of the tents on this list – you may find the fabric tears after a lot of use, and you may need to repair or replace parts.

It is, however, incredibly simple to put together. With the color-coded poles and sleeves, it takes less than 10 minutes to set up, and it’s easy even for beginners. It’s also simple to pack down into the carry case it comes with.

Pros

  • Very simple and quick to put together
  • Decent rainproofing
  • Good ventilation
  • Overhead locker included

Cons

  • Not as durable as some of the others on this list
Check Price and Reviews on Amazon

Frequently Asked Questions

Fathers With Sons Unpacking Truck On Camping Holiday

Here are some of the most commonly asked questions about truck bed tents:

Is it cheaper to camp in my truck?

It depends on where you’re going. It still costs money to pull up for the night in a campsite, and like all tents, truck bed tents can get expensive depending on what you’re after. There are ways to save money when camping – try this guide for camping trips on a budget by Field and Stream for more ideas.

Can I make my truck bed tent more waterproof?

Yes, you can use a waterproofing spray. We like the Kiwi Camp Dry Water Repellant Spray, which is easy to use if the waterproofing on your tent is beginning to wear off. For a more in-depth guide on this, the REI Co-op has an article on how to re-waterproof a tent.

Do tents come with warranties?

It depends on the manufacturer. Many tents come with a 1-year warranty. This is just long enough for you to test it, checking for defects as you camp. It does vary though, so we’d recommend checking before you buy.

Can I use a regular tent in my truck bed?

Technically you can, but we would recommend getting a tent that fits your truck bed. A regular tent is designed to be attached to the ground, which won’t be possible in your truck bed. You may also run into problems with sizing. It’s easier to get a tent designed to fit into a truck bed.

To Sum Up – Which Truck Bed Tent is Best?

Truck with Roof Top Tent in Field

We like the Rightline Gear Truck Tent. It has good weatherproofing, the storage is great, and you can even stargaze at night.

If you want a tent with an awning, the Hasika Waterproof Double Layer Tent is perfect. It will give you a nice bit of shade for hot days.

We also like the Sportz Truck Tent, which is ideal if you’re new to camping as it’s so easy to set up.

We hope this has helped you to find the perfect tent for your truck!