Are you a new camper, or you are just looking for a budget tent that won’t squeeze your wallet out? Picking the best tent under 100$ is challenging, as there is a lot to choose from. One might get overwhelmed by a sheer range of available choices.
Getting a nice tent in this price range is an exhilarating task. After all, you want to find the best tent for your budget. If you are here, you are most likely having difficulties with the choice.
Well, we know how difficult it is to choose a low-budget tent that justifies its price. After extensive research and testing, we’ve prepared the list of 7 best tents under 100$. After the tent overviews, we have explained some aspects and considerations to have in mind before making the final purchase.
Prepare for an extensive, in-depth read about the best choices for tents under 100$!
We are kicking off the list with the best 1-person tent under 100$! It is incredibly lightweight at just 4lbs (1,81 kg). If you need to pack tight, you can compress it to 3lbs 5oz (1,50 kg). The interior dimensions of 90″ x 32″ (228 cm x 81 cm) and a center height of just 36″ (91 cm) tell us that this is a small and portable backpacking tent. If you are over 6ft (183 cm) or have a bit bulkier build, you might feel confined in this tent.
Because of its size and weight, the ALPS Mountaineering Lynx tent is incredible for backpacking, bike touring, and regular camping. Regardless of its size, it is surprisingly durable, as it is a 3-season tent. That means you’re good to use this tent in spring, summer, and autumn – if the temperatures are not extremely hot or mildly cold.
The assembling and dismantling process is pretty straightforward. It takes at least 2 minutes once you get the hang of the processes. It is a free-standing tent, so it is easy to move it around when it is assembled on the desired camping spot. The two aluminum poles and clips to attach on the poles give this tent lots of stability, even in high winds.
It offers relatively light rain resistance as the polyester fabric is 75D 185T – a standard for this price range. The rainfly provides additional water resistance and UV protection thanks to the 1500mm PU coating. Of course, the floor also has water protection in the form of a 2000mm PU coating. The tent will efficiently keep the light rain and hard wind at bay.
Considering the price, the tent has superior ventilation in the form of mesh walls, two vents, and two windows. Even during the peak of summer, the tent will be well-ventilated. Because of light material, we definitely wouldn’t recommend camping in the winter with this tent.
This tent has just one door, which is pretty convenient because it is a 1-person tent. It features a vestibule, gear loft, and storage pockets, a welcome addition to the storage space. The vestibule and the door have a #8 zipper that makes for convenient entrance and exit.
All in all, if you are on your own, ALPS Mountaineering Lynx is undoubtedly one of the best backpacking tents out there! It provides you with a great balance between high-tier features and low price tag.
Bessport actually offers two variants of this camping tent, the 1-person, and the 2-person tent. Both of them come in three color schemes – Green, Grey, and Orange. The one-person tent weighs 4,4lbs (2 kg), has interior dimensions of 87,8″ x 33,5″ (223 cm x 85 cm), and the center height of 42,1″ (107 cm). On the other hand, the 2-person tent weighs 5,2lbs (2,36 kg), has interior dimensions of 86,6″ x 48,4″ (220 cm x 123 cm), and the center height of 43,5″ (110 cm). It’s a perfect choice if you’re looking for a tent for dogs.
Well, the tent is made with 68D Polyester fabric that features an additional coating to increase water, tear, and wind resistance. The rain fly has a PU 3000mm coating. Along with that, the tent has a heat-sealed seam construction, which prevents water from leaking inside the tent. Of course, it wouldn’t be a full durable package if the floor wasn’t welded, which increases the water-resistance considerably. Obviously, this tent was designed to last for a while, which is a huge compliment for a tent under 100$.
Setting up and a disassembling process is simple, even for first-timers, and should take you around 2 minutes. The tent comes with two pre-attached magnetic poles with clips, which makes for a quite sturdy frame, a quality of a well-made 3-season tent. As this is a free-standing tent, you can move it around to a better camping spot without disassembling it. Other gear that you get with this tent are 12 aluminum stakes, 4 reflective guy ropes, and a carry bag.
The mesh walls provide quite proper ventilation and a magnificent opportunity for stargazing. Getting out shouldn’t be too much of a hassle, even with a partner, as the tent has two doors. The #8, 2-way zippers are of neat quality, as they are coated with weather-resistant fabric.
This tent comes equipped with storage pockets and two vestibules to seal the camping deal! These offer convenient storage space for smaller items and gear and an increase in breathability and rain protection.
While this is easily one of the best tents under 100$, it does come with a few flaws. The rain resistance isn’t the finest, and if you don’t ventilate the tent well, it will get moisty. Keep these considerations in mind, and you will be much satisfied with this backpacking tent.
If you are on a low budget, this is undoubtedly one of the best 2-person backpacking tents! You can get it in two color variants: Deep Green and Orange-Brown. This tent is quite lightweight at 5,4lbs (2,45 kg), a trait that makes it ideal for backpacking, hiking, bike trekking, and fishing. It offers plenty of space, with interior dimensions of 87″ x 59″ (221 cm x 150 cm) and the center height of 46″ (117 cm).
This free-standing 2-person tent comes with two aluminum poles, 14 aluminum stakes, and four guy ropes. You can set it up in a few minutes, and move it around without needing to dismantle the tent. It features two vestibules that provide additional room and protection from the elements. In the whole package, this backpacking tent offers tons of space for two people and their gear.
What we like the most about this tent is its smart, curved design, which elevates it above most tents under 100$. The rain fly is made from 75D 210T Polyester, and the floor is coated with 5000 PU coating. One fantastic thing about the rainfly is that it doesn’t touch the tent, so it keeps the moisture away.
The double-sided vents on the top of the tent offer incredible airflow coupled with the fact that the tent’s interior is fully covered in mesh. Also, you will find it more convenient to get out of the tent as it has two D-style doors. The two-way zippers of the entrances are of high quality, with increased protection thanks to the Velcro sleeves. Nevertheless, the stitching quality on this part of the tent is not the finest.
In the package with this camping tent, you will get a Polyester carry bag and an emergency repair kit, which could come in handy. You never know when you will need to get your hands a bit dirty when in the outdoors!
Many users of this tent really enjoy the fact that this is one of the most durable backpacking tents in this price range. On rainy conditions and at 50F (10C), the tent will stay dry, comfortable, and well-ventilated. Even at 22F (-5C) and 13F (-10C), it will keep the water out if there is light rain or snow.
Well, it is hard to determine the best 2-person backpacking tent on a low budget, but this outing from Closnature comes very close!
Coleman tents are renowned for their extraordinary quality. We got to say, the quality doesn’t falter even with their tents under 100$! For this specific tent, we have three variants with different specifications: a 2-person, 3-person, and 4-person tent. To make things short and on point, check out the specifications for each option below!
Weight: 6,38lbs (2,90 kg)
Interior Dimensions: 82,7″ x 59,1″ (210 cm x 150 cm)
Center Height: 47,2″ (120 cm)
Weight: 8lbs (3,63 kg)
Interior Dimensions: 84″ x 84″ (213 cm x 213 cm)
Center Height: 52″ (132 cm)
Weight: 9lbs (4,08 kg)
Interior Dimensions: 108″ x 84″ (274 cm x 213 cm)
Center Height: 59″ (150 cm)
Well, you cannot go wrong with any of the variants of this tent under 100$. It all depends on your size, and with how many partners will you go camping or backpacking. Regardless of size, this free-standing camping tent takes on a dome shape and is easy to set up in just 10 minutes.
During disassembly of the tent, pay extra caution when you pack it in the tent bag. As the tent uses fiberglass poles, which can break very quickly, you need to take care that the poles don’t break your tent bag or the canvas itself.
You can get inside and outside the tent fairly quickly through its large D-style door. There are no two doors, so it may be trickier to get in and out if you are camping with a partner.
We really enjoy the stability that this Coleman tent offers to campers. Before the tent’s market launch, Coleman successfully conducted a 35+ mph wind test and water resistance test that involves pouring 35+ gallons of water on the tent for 10 minutes.
Well, that’s what the manufacturer says, but what is the reality here? Well, the tent fabric and rainfly are made of 75D Polyester material, which is suitable for light rain and brings decent UV protection to the package. The rain fly doesn’t fully cover the tent, which means that rain may fall off the tent and soak the walls and the interior. To fix that, Coleman utilizes their WeatherTec design, which does a great job of stopping the flow of water into the tent. The magic is in inverted seams and welded corners of the tent that direct the water away from the tent walls and interior. With this tent, you also get a seam sealer bottle for further use!
Along with excellent stability, this Coleman tent under 100$ offers superior ventilation! The main ventilation components are the two large windows and lots of mesh along with a floor vent. This floor vent complements the mesh ceiling, which means that any hot air that comes through the floor vent will get out of the roof. Also, the mesh ceiling is fantastic for stargazing if the rain fly isn’t on the tent. The one thing that we don’t particularly like about the mesh walls of this tent is that they are not very loose, which may let some smaller bugs in.
For extra storage space, there is a mesh pocket in the interior walls. Also, one lovely thing that we fairly enjoy is the E-port on the front left part of the tent. This really comes in handy for a variety of things, from charging phones to lighting up the tent. If you are looking for the best backpacking tent on a budget, the Coleman Sundome provides terrific features for such a low price tag!
This tent from MOON LENCE is one the best backpacking tents on a budget when you consider its space and stability and how it is packaged into a low weight of 5,95lbs (2,7 kg). The interior dimensions of this 2-person tent are 83,8″ x 59,8″ (213 cm x 152 cm) and the center height is 48″ (122 cm).
MOON LENCE is a good camping tent and hiking and backpacking tent, with its dome shape fit for 3 seasons. As it is a free-standing tent, so it is relatively easy to transfer to another, more desirable spot.
Now, how does this tent stand up to the best water-resistant tents under 100$? Well, its fabric is made from 63D 190T polyurethane, which boasts of 1000mm water resistance. It is undoubtedly suitable for light rain, but if you plan to camp in the storm, don’t be surprised if this tent gets wet from the inside.
Of course, the tent comes with a rain fly composed of different materials. It is made of 210D Polyester material which doesn’t block out the rain. It just absorbs the rain, which means if there is heavy rain, the water could pour down in the tent. The rain fly partially covers the tent, which translates to less weight, more space for the windows, and easier tent access.
At least the construction is seam taped, and the floor is welded, so it won’t get too wet. Also, the fabric is double-stitched, which effectively means two layers. This increases the tent stability under hard winds. Even though the tent is a bit thick because of two layers, it offers surprisingly proper ventilation. The top half of the tent is fully meshed (a mosquito net). There is one D-style door with dual waterproof zippers (which get stuck often), two windows in the back, and a large floor vent on the rear.
The tent is very easy to set up in 5 minutes, as you need to set up two shock-corded fiberglass poles and 9 tent pegs. You also get four reflective guy ropes for extra stability. All the different tent components come in a separate bag, which is excellent for the organization. In the tent walls, you can utilize mesh pockets for extra storage. Also, there is a hook on the tent roof on which you can put a lantern or some other gear. It’s a shame that this tent has no vestibule for increased space and stability.
If you are going backpacking and know that the weather will be nice in that period, the MOON LENCE is the contender for the best budget backpacking tent for sure!
Forceatt has made a nice 2-person tent ideal for backpacking, hiking, and camping in all 4 seasons. It weighs 5,5lbs (2,5 kg), and its interior dimensions are 88,6″ x 53,1″ (225 cm x 135 cm). Don’t expect to stand up in this backpacking tent, as it has a center height of 43,3″ (110 cm).
This is one of the most spacious tents for 2 people, and it has two D-style doors. No need to step on your partner! On both doors, you can find #8 dual-use waterproof zippers that thankfully rarely get stuck, which is often a problem with tents that cost under 100.
You should be able to set this tent up in 3 or 4 minutes, even if you are doing it alone. It has two 7001 aluminum poles that offer additional wind protection due to their stability. Along with the poles, you have 7 nail stakes and reflective guy ropes. On the pole ends, there is a locking mechanism that we found as a nice touch, as it offers even more wind protection!
The walls of the tent are fully covered in mesh, meaning plenty of breathability. There are two ceiling vents and more mesh on the top. To fully cover the tent, there is a rain fly included, made of tear-resistant 75D 220T polyester fiber, that offers 3000mm water protection. The welded floor design that elevates the floor to keep it wet-free is prevalent in this design. It is coated with 220D Oxford cloth, which provides 5000mm water protection.
Well, this is undoubtedly one of the best budget backpacking tents out there, as it is suitable for a wide range of weather scenarios, while not being shy of providing you comfort and breathability.
Last but not least, this unique pop-up tent is marketed as a 4-person tent, but we recommend using it for 2 or 3 people, as it offers plenty of space. It is a circular tent with dimensions of 95″ x 71″ (241 cm x 180 cm), and the center height of 40″ (102 cm). Based on our experience, this is a very cozy tent, but if you are a taller individual, you won’t be able to stand up inside the tent.
The most appealing feature of this ZOMAKE tent is certainly its ease of setup, as it comes pre-assembled with attached fiberglass poles. You just toss it in your desired camping spot, and enjoy the magic! For extra stability, you can stake the edges of the tent.
It is a bit harder to disassemble this tent and put it to a backpack, so we wouldn’t really recommend this tent for backpacking. If you enjoy camping at the beach, then this tent is perfect for its convenience of setup.
Another thing that is great during nights at the beach is stargazing. Well, this tent is perfect for stargazing. It has a vast mesh roof, as well as two mesh doors and windows. The airflow is very lovely, and you can roll a secondary mesh layering on the doors and windows for a different setup. As the tent has no rain fly, it has a small removable tarp that you can attach to the tent’s roof with six hook and loop points. This is convenient if you want to block the sun.
The tent fabric is made from 190T Polyester, and the floor is coated with 210D Oxford fabric. Now, this is not the best tent for more hazardous weather like heavy rain. It is designed as a sun shelter, but it can withstand light rain for sure.
If you are preparing for a day trip to the beach, or just want to gaze at the stars, but know that the weather will be beautiful, the ZOMAKE Pop-Up tent is ideal.
Things to Look At While Buying a Budget Tent
Of course, when choosing to buy a tent under 100$, you have to agree on various compromises. Maybe you will need to sacrifice space for more weight, especially if you are on a backpacking trip. Tent specifications are not something to look away from, as you want to make a smart, calculated, and not a quick buy. We have compiled all the most information to consider about tents under 100$ in the following guide.
Waterproofing is mostly an advertising catchphrase, especially if you are looking for the best tents under 100$. In reality, all canvas-type tents will eventually let the water in through the tent wall. It all depends on how much soaked it is and how much weight the accumulated water is putting on the canvas.
Actually, the rain fly is the tent component that can be waterproof. Nevertheless, keep in mind that most manufacturers market waterproof tents in a select way, most often with Polyester canvas and floor. Just know that waterproof is a highly relative term in the camping world, as nothing is really 100% waterproof. In this case, water resistance is a much more appropriate term.
If you require additional water resistance, you should consider getting a waterproofing spray. The spray increases and restores water-resistance of the tent in a way that it coats the canvas surface so that raindrops fall off the tent canvas with more ease. It also increases the tent’s UV protection, which provides better canvas resistance to sun rays that can fade out the canvas color over time.
Don’t expect to find high-quality tent zippers, even in the best tents under 100$. In this price range, coil zippers are almost exclusive. Of course, these zippers are relatively simple to use on curved doors and usually come with waterproof coating.
The biggest annoyance with them is that they get stuck awfully easy if you apply too much pressure. Remember stuck zippers on backpacks? You just need to get used to that and learn how to fix broken zippers in seconds.
You probably realize that it is essential that you get a high-quality tent for the best possible camping experience, especially in harsh weather conditions.
A couple of established tent brands are renowned for their high-quality tents and a variety of choices, so it is recommended to have them in mind when choosing a tent that suits your needs.
The top camping brands that you can trust are:
- Alps Mountaineering
- Big Agnes
- Coleman Tents
- Kelty Tents
- Ozark Trail
Ease of Setup
With a tent set up, you need to take the parts of the tent into consideration first:
- Tent body (main structure of the tent)
- Rain fly
Depending on the tent body size and the number of additional components, the ease of set up will adjust accordingly. Larger tents are obviously harder to set up, and we recommend that more people participate in its setting up these tents.
With tents, the setup time usually varies between 1 minute and 20 minutes. Smaller tents are typically designed to be very easy to set up.
If you want to find out how easy it is to set up a particular tent, you can check out customer reviews or manufacturer recommendations tied to the tent.
When it comes to tents under 100$, don’t expect good quality stakes, even with the best tents in this price range. You will mostly see aluminum stakes, which are very light and have surprising strength.
Also, in this price range of tents, you will mostly get regular tent pegs, which are best for soft ground. If you are not satisfied with the stock tent stakes, you can always invest in the best tent stakes for your tent.
Seasons & Weather
This is yet another useful factor to consider for the best tent on a budget. It mainly depends on the place and season you want to go camping. Most tents nowadays are designed for 3 seasons: spring, summer, and autumn.
With such tents, the design mainstay is the vents on the top and window sides that help filter out the hot air during the hot summer days. During winter, you need to stay warm, so there will be covers for those vents that can block the cold from outside. Of course, the sleeping bag is a must for such conditions! Also, it’s not a bad thing to learn how to heat your tent without electricity.
There are different types of tents if we look from the season & weather perspective:
They are the best for the summer seasons, as they are built around a mesh structure that keeps the tedious insects away and manages the interior temperature.
When looking at this type of tent, make sure that it’s constructed to fit your needs. For example, lots of mesh in the tent construction means that the tent is not the most stable. So, if you have lots of gear, and are camping in the wind, the stability of this kind of tent will falter.
They offer protection against rain and light snow in the form of the rain fly. Still, it’s not smart to expose the tent to these elements for extended periods. You see, most 3-season tents are made of thin and light canvas. When there is a lot of rain on the canvas, the water will start soaking to the interior.
For ventilation, you will need to remove the rain fly when you want to filter out the hot air during the day. Most of the 3-season tents have unzippable windows that will reveal mesh, which is also suitable for ventilation. These tents are fantastic for spring, summer, and autumn. We all know that summers can be quite hot and everyone needs a cold refreshment while camping. Learn how to cool down your beer while camping and never drink a warm drink again.
Extended Season Tents (3 to 4-season tents)
These tents are great to use all year long. While they offer better protection than 3-season tents, they are worse than 4-season tents. We don’t recommend using this type of tent in extreme weather conditions such as downpour and heavy snow.
Mountaineering Tents (4-season tents)
In this category, you will mostly find dome-style tents that offer stunning protection against rain, snow, and other winter hazards – such as heavy snow and heavy wind, as well as sub-0 temperatures.
They prevent snow from accumulating on the top, so that snow doesn’t put too much weight on the tent. That’s why they are designed with less mesh, maintaining the warm air inside the tent, and preventing cold air from entering.
What’s the best shape of a tent?
If we are going by a general classification, there are two distinct tent shapes:
- Cabin-style tents
- Dome-style tents
The main advantage of cabin-style tents is their straight, almost vertical walls that translate to considerably more space inside. They are great for tall people, as most of them can stand inside these tent types.
One considerable disadvantage of these tents is that the straight walls are not the best for wind deflection, hence making tent stakes essential for stability. Imagine a scenario that the wind is so strong it pulls up your tent. It would be a bummer, right? Well, if you set up this kind of tent near trees, you can tie up tent corners to them and dramatically increase their stability.
Dome-style tents are more common in this price range. They are made of lighter material, which makes them very portable. The outer walls slope inwards toward the tent’s ceiling, which secures the dome-style tent from the hard wind, as it will pass around the tent thanks to the shape of the tent.
Dome-style tents are not the largest, which taller individuals will especially feel. Well, if you are having difficulties moving around a dome-style tent, there are some more extensive options for a more considerable sum of money, of course.
How many times are you planning to use the tent?
If you are aiming to buy a tent under 100$, then some decent picks will withstand continued use. The most important thing is that you don’t overexpose them to rain and wetness.
You will need to increase your budget if you want an incredibly durable tent that will withstand continued use under the exposure of rain and other elements. On the other hand, if you want a single-use tent, there are even cheaper alternatives that our picks in this post!
Note: If you’ll be using a tent only a few times per year, don’t just throw it away after you’re done with your camping trip. It’s important to leave your tent on fresh air and clean it before packing. No one likes a smelly tent, but in case it stinks, here is the guide to clean your stinky tent.
This is a totally essential metric for backpackers carrying the tent and all the necessary gear on their back. For others, it is an afterthought, especially for larger groups who are going camping via car. Nevertheless, the weight of the tent shouldn’t be ignored entirely.
Keep in mind that the tent is more expensive when you increase its weight. Here is an equation that you have to be mindful of when buying the tent:
Weight + Durability + Stability = Higher Tent Price
Most camping tent manufacturers create terminology for the weight that may be a bit confusing. What is the difference between packed size and packaged weight? Or, what makes for an ultralight tent? Here is the terminology breakdown down below:
Minimum Trail Weight
This term details the weight of necessary equipment to set up your tent: rain fly, tent body, and pole weight. You can use this metric to compare different backpacking tents.
This metric provides information on how much backpack space will the tent and its essentials take away. Based on this metric, you can determine which pieces of equipment to divide between your backpacking partners. This is very convenient for group backpacking.
It provides the weight numbers for the tent and all the equipment it comes with. Realistically, if you are going solo camping, you won’t be able to take everything with you. Based on that fact, a more realistic weight number would be between the Packaged Weight and Minimum Trail Weight.
This is a bare minimum weight for a tent when you strip off the tent of additional equipment for minimal weight. It is usually one pound per person.
This is the primary metric that you should look into first to make your camping experience as comfortable as possible. You don’t want an unpleasant surprise, after all! Don’t expect a tent under 100$ to have space for more than 4 people.
If you are hiking or backpacking, you want to minimize the tent size so that it fits your carry strength. Some tents have vestibules for extra storage space, which can really come in handy, especially with smaller tents.
Down below, you can see some considerations to have in mind with differently-sized tents:
These tents are the most lightweight and budget-friendly options. Great for solo campers, although their comfort level will greatly depend on the individual’s height, as their dimensions are fit for one average-built person.
You should pick this type of tent if you are going on a backpacking trip and want to pack light. They offer optimized setup time, small size, and high portability, something precious for backpackers.
If you are camping alone, this type of tent will be more than enough, even if you are a taller individual. It may be a bit small for two people, which greatly depends on the size of the individuals. Don’t expect to stand in this type of tent, but at least aim for room to crawl in and out of the tent.
If you aim for more comfort and storage space, then the 4-person tent is a no brainer choice! In these tents, you can easily fit a sleeping mattress along with your clothes and other gear.
They are fantastic for taller people too! Just prepare to invest a bit more money into this type of tent, and the setup time may be a bit longer too. This type of tent is best for camping with friends or as a couple.
If you made it to the end of this comprehensive post, great job! Hopefully, you are ready to choose your best pick for the tent under 100$! We also hope that you have learned something more about the various tent specifications, as these things shouldn’t be overlooked. That applies to amateurs and professionals alike.
We sincerely wish you a great camping experience. Stay safe and smart at all times!