The best air beds for overnight guests, camping and travel
Looking for a space-saving sleeping solution for overnight guests or a camping trip? We've pulled together our top picks for the best airbeds to suit all your sleeping needs.
We have all experienced the horror of waking up on a deflated airbed with a seriously stiff back. Whether you’re camping out in the wild or crashing on your pal’s bedroom floor, the thought of an airbed and a good night’s sleep don’t exactly go hand in hand. Well, friends, there is a better way.
When it comes to airbeds, quality is everything. Carefully choosing the best product to meet your needs is the best way to salvage your night's sleep, but with so many options to choose from, there can be a lot of information to wade through.
Well, that's where we come in. At The Recommended, we’re committed to taking out the guesswork and helping you shop smarter. We scoured the web for the best airbeds for every need and pulled together our top picks to help you sleep a little easier (you’re welcome).
The best air beds at a glance
- Best premium air bed: Active Era Premium King Size Air Bed
- Best single-air bed: Pavillon Inflatable Single Air Bed
- Best double airbed: Milestone Double Air Bed
- Best all-rounder: Intex Dura-Beam Series Single High Airbed
- Best for air retention: Coleman Comfort Airbed
- Best with in-built pillow: TOUCHXEL Double Queen Inflatable Air Mattress
- Best for kids: Avenli Childs Air Bed
- Best for camping: Silentnight Single Air Bed
- Best with in-built pump: Denny Shop Air Bed
- Best for use in the car: Ciramiv Car Air Mattress
The best air beds
Best premium air bed: Active Era Premium King Size Air Bed
A touch of luxury
This luxury air bed is made with an in-built electric pump and pillow for added comfort. It is fitted with 35 structured air coils that work to provide maximum support for your body, neck, and spine.
More like this
The bed is specially made for long-lasting use and has an extra thick, waterproof, and puncture-resistant flocked top layer. The large mattress sits 46cm off the floor when inflated and can support two people.
Best single air bed: Pavillon Inflatable Single Air Bed
Room for one
This single-air bed is designed with quick inflation and deflation in mind. It has a valve for convenient use, which means the airbed can be pumped up or blown into.
The Pavillo Single Airbed is made with a flocked sleeping surface for added comfort and sturdy coil beam construction for long-lasting quality. It is a traditional airbed perfectly suited to a lone sleeper.
Best double airbed: Milestone Double Air Bed
Perfect for camping, this double-airbed is made from waterproof materials and is designed to stay dry all night. It has an in-built safety valve that allows the bed to inflate and deflate within 1 minute.
The bed is made with a strong vinyl coil beam construction for added durability and comfort. When not in use, this air bed can be folded flat for easy storage in cupboards and cars.
Best all-rounder: Intex Dura-Beam Series Single High Air Bed
This airbed is both strong and lightweight, ensuring both durability and ease of use. It is designed with a quality-tested flocked top and sides with long-lasting quality in mind.
The bed has a vinyl bottom and features a 2-in-1 valve with extra-wide openings for easy inflation and deflation. It can easily be packed away and folded up when not in use.
Best for air retention: Coleman Comfort Air Bed
The Coleman Comfort Airbed features a double-air chamber, allowing you to adjust the level of firmness to your preference. The double-airbed also features an airtight design and easy-to-use double-lock valves.
A coil structure of the bed also works to offer optimal support and comfort. The bed is perfect for camping trips and can be packed up small to fit in the back of the car.
Best with in-built pillow: TOUCHXEL Double Queen Inflatable Air Mattress
This airbed is made with an extra-thick, waterproof, flocked top layer for optimal support and comfort. It is designed for long-term use and comes with a patch repair kit and travel bag for convenient storage.
The air mattress has an in-built 220-240 V AC pump and can quickly inflate or deflate in approximately 4-5 minutes. It sits 47cm off the ground, so is perfect for those with mobility issues.
Best for kids: Avenli Childs Air Bed
For the little ones
This airbed is made to prioritise comfort and safety with raised walls to keep your children secure as they sleep. The children’s airbed features a 1-way air valve system for easy inflation and deflation and fits a 16mm pump nozzle.
It comes with a repair patch for peace of mind when you’re on the go. There are two colour options, pink and blue, to keep the kids happy and fashionable.
Best for camping: Silentnight Single Air Bed
For the great outdoors
This airbed features an in-built foot pump for easy inflation and is designed with an interlocking easy-release valve. It also comes with a durable repair patch for added peace of mind.
An in-built pillow also helps you save space when travelling, and the whole bed can be packed down small to make it easy to travel with. Great for camping pumped in a matter of minutes.
Best with in-built pump: Denny Shop Air Bed
This airbed is made with a high-rise design for added comfort and support. It sits 47cm off the ground, and you can choose from 3 different sizes.
The air bed also comes with an in-built electric pump for easy inflation and deflation. A handy carrier is also provided so it can easily be stored for on-the-go use.
Best for use in the car: Ciramiv Car Air Mattress
This airbed is designed with 4 separate inflatable segments allowing it to adapt to your vehicle. It comes with a DC 12V air pump and can adapt to different weather conditions for year-round use.
The bed is made with durable, environmentally friendly, non-toxic, and odourless materials for a pleasant user experience. It fits perfectly in the back of most cars and is pumped via the cigarette lighter.
Air bed buyer’s guide
If you’ve decided you want to purchase an air bed but are unsure how to choose one that’s right for you, then our comprehensive buyer’s guide can help. Here we take a dive into all things air bed so you can single out the perfect convenient sleeping solution for you. We’ll cover everything from choosing the right size bed to which material is going to give you the most comfortable night's sleep.
We’ll also give advice on how to troubleshoot common issues in your air bed and maintain it so that you won’t have to look at our product roundup for many years to come.
How to choose the right size air bed for your needs
Choosing the right size of an airbed is one of the most important considerations before purchasing. There would be nothing worse than buying an air bed, pumping it up, and realising you don’t fit on it or it doesn’t fit in your room. To avoid this, there are some factors you must consider.
Use of the air bed
You need to consider how many people are going to be using the airbed. If it's just for one person, a single or twin size may be sufficient. For couples, a double or queen size is usually the best option. If the air bed is being taken on
When picking an air bed, you must measure the available space where you want to lie it down and then match this with the air bed dimensions. If you are going camping, then you should also make sure the air bed is smaller than the tent. Be aware that airbeds also need somewhere to be stored when they are deflated.
If you plan on using the air bed for camping or travelling, a smaller size may be easier to transport. There is usually a weight capacity for each bed as well, so you should make sure it is able to support the weight of the intended users.
What material should my airbed be?
There are several different airbed materials to choose from, and they all offer benefits and drawbacks. The material choice comes down to personal preference and where, when, and how often you want to use your airbed. The majority of airbeds are made using a base of PVC and then tailored to add different textures and comfort levels to the surface of the airbed.
- PVC: PVC air beds are affordable and durable and are often the main choice for people who are going camping. They are the most common type of air bed and are a good option for occasional use and having guests stay. They aren’t always the most comfortable air bed.
- Flocked: Flocked air beds often have a base of PVC but are then topped with a soft, velvety surface that can be more comfortable to sleep on. They are less likely to slip or slide on during use but more expensive and larger than typical PVC options.
- Memory foam: Memory foam air beds offer superior comfort and support, especially for people with back pain or joint issues. They can be more expensive than other materials but are worth the investment for a good night's sleep. Their size and weight make them less convenient to travel with.
What different types of air beds are there?
There are several types of air beds available, and again you should pick these on personal preference and suitability to how you want to use them. It’s important to remember that all air beds need air (obviously), so the higher the air bed, the more air and time are needed to pump them up.
Standard air beds
These air beds sit closer to the ground and are suitable for camping or occasional use. They usually sit between 20-30cm off the ground and may require an external pump to inflate. Without this, it is possible to blow them up by mouth, but it might take longer and tire you out.
Raised air beds
These air beds sit higher off the ground, and because they have more air in them, they are often thought to be more comfortable. They provide a better option for people with mobility issues who might struggle to get up off the floor level. Some models come with built-in pumps to make the setup process easier.
Self-inflating air beds
These air beds are designed to inflate automatically when opened and don’t need to be pumped or blown into. They are great for people hiking and travelling who want a more comfortable sleep and can often be rolled up. They only sit between 3-7cm off the ground, so they are often less comfortable than traditional blow-up beds.
Hybrid air beds
These air beds combine the features of standard and raised air beds, offering a comfortable sleeping experience that's closer to a traditional mattress. They often have foam inside them and are then topped up with air to sleep on. Their size makes them difficult to store.
Tips for looking after your air bed to make it last long
Giving your air bed proper maintenance can help it last longer and mean you don’t have to spend as much money on repairs and replacements. Here are a few tips to help you do this.
- Keep your air bed clean by wiping it down with a damp cloth and basic soap. Avoid using harsh cleaners or abrasives.
- Store your air bed in a cool, dry place when not in use and avoid storing it in direct sunlight or damp areas.
- Inspect your air bed regularly for leaks or punctures and repair any damage promptly to prevent further damage.
- Avoid placing sharp objects on your air bed, such as keys or jewellery, to avoid puncturing the bed and causing damage.
Common air bed issues and how to solve them
Like any product, air beds can develop issues over time. Here are some common problems and how to troubleshoot and repair them:
- Slow leaks: Slow leaks can be caused by small punctures or tears in the air bed. To fix them, use a repair kit to patch the hole or replace the valve if necessary.
- Deflation during the night: If your air bed is deflating during the night, it may be due to over-inflation or a faulty valve. Adjust the inflation level or replace the valve if the problem continues.
- Uncomfortable surface: If your air bed feels uncomfortable, add a mattress topper or pad for extra cushioning. Alternatively, consider upgrading to a higher-quality air bed with better materials and support.
Finn Byrne is a Digital Writer for Immediate Media. He works across several brands including The Recommended, RadioTimes.com, MadeforMums and BBC Gardeners’ World. Finn has previously written for publications including MyLondon, The Mirror, The Express, and The Star. When not writing Finn enjoys spending time on the football pitch and getting stuck into a book.
Isobel Nutbrown is a Staff Writer at The Recommended and works with leading industry experts to help readers make informed decisions and shop smarter online.