How Much Should I Pay for a Tent?

“How much does a tent cost?” isn’t a bad question, but there’s not really a good answer. A 4-person tent can cost as little as $50 or upwards of $1,000. There’s a lot that determines how much a tent costs. The quality of materials, the amount of research and development put into the design, and even the brand name are just a few of the things that influence the price tag on a camping tent. So how much should you pay for a tent? Here’s some information to help you decide.

How often do you go camping?

This is a good place to start when deciding how much you should pay for a tent.

If you’re going to camp less than once per year, it makes sense to buy a cheap tent. If you use a tent on a weekly basis, you should pay for a high quality tent.

Those who plan on camping once a month, or even two or three times a year, should invest in a nice tent.

What type of camping do you do?

Are you a professional mountain guide? Do you backpack 30 days out of the year rain or shine? Do you only go car camping in perfect conditions once or twice a year?

The type of camping you do directly determines the quality of tent that you need. The more you use your tent, and the more demanding the conditions you use your tent in, the higher quality tent you need.

Generally speaking, the higher the quality, the more expensive the tent. The average person doesn’t need to buy the most expensive tent on the market, but you definitely shouldn’t buy the cheapest tent you can find, either.

How do you treat your gear?

Some people rip out the tent stakes, wad up their wet tent, throw it in the car, and leave it sitting in the garage for a few weeks until they need it again. Others carefully take down their tent down, clean it as soon as they get home, and set it up to dry thoroughly before methodically storing it for next time.

If you take good care of your outdoor equipment it makes sense to spend more on a tent. If you’re rough on your equipment and don’t always show your gear love, it doesn’t make sense to spend a lot of money on high quality outdoor gear.

Spending less up front doesn’t always save money.

A well made tent, that’s well taken care of, can last for decades. Cheap tents, on the other hand, break and have to be replaced. Buying a super cheap tent may seem like an opportunity to save money, but it’s typically just wasteful.

Again, you don’t have to spend and exorbitant amount of money for a good quality camping tent. You can get a great tent that will last for years in the $200 – $400 price range, depending on the size of the tent.

Also, watch for sales. This is a great way to get a deal on a high quality tent. Looking for a tent in Northwest Arkansas? Stop by Uncle Sam’s Safari Outfitters and check out our selection of camping tents!

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