Benefits of a Rooftop Tent vs a Truck Tent
In recent years, truck tents and rooftop tents have increased in popularity. For people who want to enjoy the outdoors while still sleeping safely and comfortably, both these types of tents offer a different way to camp.
But if you’re looking to invest in a truck or rooftop tent, you’re wondering which is best for you. We’ve taken a look at four factors, Versatility, Setup, Comfort and Storage to compare a pickup truck bed tent versus a rooftop tent.
First and foremost, you aren’t limited to owning a truck when it comes to setting up a rooftop tent! Any car from a sedan, SUV, or jeep can be equipped with one of our hardshell or softshell rooftop tents. Truck bed tents only work on, you guessed it, a truck but can be transferred from one truck to another with more ease.
When fully set up, truck tents and rooftop tents have a similar structural look to them. But deconstructed, they actually function quite differently.
Truck bed tents function more like traditional ground tents. All the components of a truck bed tent detach, and the tent itself is stored in a satchel or dry sack. When you get to your campsite, you take all the components out, position the tent in the bed, attach the straps to the truck, and use the tent poles to raise the structure.
By contrast, rooftop tents are built into a fixed housing, which is attached to your vehicle. When you’ve reached your campsite, you unfold the structure, and the tent opens and raises like an accordion. Because the tent is built into the housing, there’s no need for straps or tent poles. A ladder gives access to the entrance of the rooftop tent. Typically a rooftop tent takes about 90 seconds to set up!
Both styles of tents get you off the ground. Anyone who has camped in a traditional tent knows that even with sleeping bags and sleeping pads, you spend the night feeling the unevenness of the ground, and the cold of the earth. Truck bed tents and rooftop tents give you a flat, elevated base, so you’re warmer and sleeping on an even surface.
While both tent types offer the elevated advantage, there’s a difference in comfort between the two. Truck bed tents are restricted by the area of the truck bed itself, and they don’t always come with a built-in floor. Rooftop tents like our hardshell Miner 2 (pictured above) have an integrated floor, with a mattress, so it’s more like sleeping on a bed. And rooftop tents come in a variety of sizes and configurations, so you can choose the amount of space that best fits your sleeping needs.
While pickup truck tents make a great camping and overlanding alternative to traditional ground tents, they have one major disadvantage while in use. Because they fill the bed of the truck when set up, you lose the storage of your truck bed during the camping or overlanding trip.
Conversely, rooftop tents sit over the cabot the truck or extend on a frame above the car. If you do have a truck, the bed remains free for use throughout the trip and your cooler, gear, clothes and more are mostly protected from the elements. If you are camping out of your SUV, sedan or jeep, a rooftop tent means you have more room inside your vehicle for other camping items because you don’t have the bulk of a bundled, collapsed tent talking up room!
Does a rooftop tent sound right for you? We know we might be biased, but having tried out both ourselves, a rooftop tent wins in every category! Find the style of Hutch Tents that fits your truck or SUV, and your lifestyle. Explore our rooftop tents.