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Instant tents are designed for quick and easy setup. They either come with a preassembled collapsed system or a zero-pole, pop-up design. Both of which help maximize efficiency. With thorough testing and research, we discovered that many instant tents on the market feature easy-set-up designs without compromising durability or weather resistance. So if you’re a solo explorer or a family embarking on a memorable outdoor adventure, we have curated a selection of tents that will fit every need. Here are the best instant tents you can buy now.

How We Picked the Best Instant Tents

In order to ensure a comprehensive overview of available options, I conducted thorough market research, exploring a wide array of instant and pop-up tents across different brands, models, and price ranges. Next, I prioritized tents of different sizes and capacities, from 1-person shelters to larger family-sized options. This approach aimed to address the requirements of solo adventurers, couples, and larger groups. My selection process focused on efficiency in setup and user-friendly features. Tents that demonstrated a quick and straightforward assembly process scored well. 

Lastly, I evaluated the tents on their ability to withstand different weather conditions. This assessment included an analysis of features like fabric, rainfly coverage, taped seams, and overall build quality. I combined my personal experiences and preferences with an object evaluation of the tent’s features, specifications, and user feedback. This approach resulted in this curated list of high-quality instant tents that cater to a wide spectrum of camping preferences and needs.

Best Instant Tents: Reviews & Recommendations

Best Overall: Decathlon Quechua 2 Second Easy Fresh


  • Weight: 18.1 lbs
  • Capacity: 3-person (2-person version available)
  • Additional Features: Pre-attached rainfly, two doors, black-out technology, carrying bag


  • Fast set up
  • Fast take down
  • Good in bad weather


  • Heavy

Decathlon’s Quechua 2 Second Easy Fresh & Black Waterproof Pop Up Camping Tent is a mouthful to say, but an absolutely ingeniously engineered tent. As the name suggests, this tent lives up to its claim of being exceptionally easy to set up, sparing time and effort. To open, simply pull a cord on each side that opens the tent like two umbrellas. I put this tent through its paces this summer and can vouch for its durability and reliability in various conditions. The full-coverage rain fly offers outstanding protection against inclement weather. Inside, the innovative fresh and black technology not only helps with temperature control but also guarantees a restful night’s sleep, even if the sun is blazing.

While this tent excels in performance, it’s worth noting that its sturdiness comes with the compromise of weight. Additionally, as a satisfied user, I can’t help but wish it came in a 4-person version to accommodate larger groups or use as a family camping tent. Nevertheless, for small groups, couples, or even singles, this is a hassle-free, dependable instant tent.

Best Family: Coleman Skylodge


  • Weight: 25 lbs
  • Capacity: 4-person (also comes in 6, 8, 10, and 12-person)
  • Additional Features: Large double door opening, mesh storage pockets, carrying bag


  • Lots of headroom 
  • Great ventilation
  • Available in a variety of sizes


  • Not for heavy rain

The Coleman Skylodge sets up in about six minutes. It has telescoping pre-attached poles that extend and clip into place. For an instant tent, it has a solid frame and roomy interior, which isn’t surprising from one of the best tent brands. The center height of the Skylodge is 5 feet 4 inches, so while it’s not tall to comfortably stand inside, it’s plenty for kids. This room also allows the use of thicker mattresses, cots, and large air mattresses.

While the 4-person snuggly fits four people sleeping shoulder to shoulder, families might want to size up to allow extra room for gear and comfort. The Skylodge Instant Tent offers versatility with additional sizes available in 6-, 8-, 10-, and 12-person. While I love the large windows for ventilation on hot summer camping days, it’s not designed for heavy rain. The lack of a full rainfly leaves it susceptible to leaking or flooding during a downpour. That said, families who camp on pleasant summer weekends will find convenience and comfort in the Coleman Skylodge.

Best Waterproof: Gazelle T4 Hub Tent Overland Edition


  • Weight: 34 lbs
  • Capacity: 4 person (also comes in a 3 person)
  • Additional Features: 2 doors with mesh screens, removable rainfly, six mesh windows, 78” standing height


  • Rain and wind resistant
  • Tall standing height
  • Easy set up


  • Expensive

The Gazelle T4 Hub Tent Overland Edition stands out for its precision crafting, durability, and weather resistance. A favorite of overlanders, this tent is known for its exceptional features and waterproof ability. The body of the tent is made from 210-denier Oxford weave polyester and is waterproof up to 2,000 mm HH rating (an above-average rating for waterproof tents). The floor is made of a 300-denier Oxford weave polyester with a 5,000 mm HH rating in a bathtub-style design that is guaranteed to keep puddling and seeping water out.

Strategically placed pop-out wall hubs serve as a strong defense against gusty winds, ensuring stability and peace of mind during inclement weather. Plus, the top rainfly is removable, and the body features six mesh windows as well as two mesh, D-style doors. In addition to being a favorite for a range of weather conditions, the Gazelle T4 Hub is spacious. With an impressive 78-inch height and convex walls, there’s plenty of room to stretch out, set up cots, and hang out as a storm rolls by. For those who demand durability, versatility, and ample space in a 4-person tent, this is the ultimate choice in waterproof instant tents.

Best Pop-Up: Decathlon Quechua 2 Second Fresh & Black Pop-Up


  • Weight: 7.3 lbs
  • Capacity: 2-person (also available in a 3-person)
  • Additional Features: Fresh & black out technology, carry bag


  • Fast setup
  • Lightweight
  • Long


  • Low headroom

Speed is the name of the game with this pop-up tent, which takes less than a minute to pitch. It features hoop-style pop-up poles that open almost instantly with the unclicking of the tie-down buckle. While the easy setup might seem like a gimmick, it’s actually very well-designed. The tent’s main door opening, along with two side ventilation windows, provides reasonable ventilation and natural light. The blackout technology interior (optional) is perfect for those who want to sleep past daylight.

Structurally, the 2 Second Fresh & Black Pop-Up is commendable as well. It can hold up against moderate rainstorms and winds up to 30 mph. When it comes to size, the tent’s generous length of 82.7 inches caters to taller individuals (at 6’1”, I really appreciate this) or those in need of extra storage space. However, the peak height of 38 inches requires strategic planning when it comes to packing a suitable mattress. Weighing in at 7 pounds, it is also one of the lightest pop-up tents we reviewed. However, the large circular folded shape renders it a poor choice for backpacking since it won’t fit into a traditional pack.

Best 6-Person: Caddis Rapid 6


  • Weight: 25.5 lbs
  • Capacity: 6-person (available in a 4-person)
  • Additional Features: Six windows, large door, removable rainfly, power chord opening, gear loft


  • Good ventilation
  • Durable poles and instant mechanism
  • Mostly full coverage rain fly


  • Bulky pack size

The Caddis Rapid 6 is a cabin-style tent ideal for campers seeking comfort and roominess. With a 77-inch peak height, the interior feels remarkably airy and open. It also has four massive windows and a giant front door, offering excellent ventilation. We liked the large, single door for easy access and the thoughtful add-ons like mesh storage pockets, an included mesh gear loft, and an opening for an extension cord to run into the tent.

While some instant tents skimp out on the rainfly, the Caddis Rapid 6 comes with a top-to-ground rainfly that protects three-quarters of the tent. And while we feel this tent has a durable and easy setup/take-down mechanism, the size of the packed-down tent borders on ridiculous. At 50 inches long and over 25 pounds, this tent is not easily portable. So make sure you’re planning to stay close to the car on your trip.

Best Large: Ozark Trail 16 x 16 12 Person Instant Cabin Tent


  • Weight: 52.5 lbs
  • Capacity: 12 person
  • Additional Features: Vent for AC unit, shade awning, room dividers, 8 windows, carrying bag with wheels


  • Spacious
  • Can be set up by one person
  • Room dividers


  • Heavy
  • Limited rainfly coverage

This giant tent only takes minutes to set up and can be done by a single person. While having a partner can make the process even smoother, the instant setup is a necessary tool for single parents or group leaders who find themselves setting up camp alone. It boasts an L-shaped design with two entrances and an impressive eight windows. As a result, it’s a perfect warm-weather tent with excellent ventilation. In addition, it also has an opening to insert an air conditioner (not included).

The 12-person Cabin Tent is equipped with an array of features, including a shade awning, internal room dividers, and an impressive peak height of 6 feet 10 inches. For those seeking a comfy stay, it can accommodate three queen-size air beds. This Ozark tent comes with a rainfly that provides protection against the elements, but it’s not a good choice for heavy rain.

Best for Backpacking: Teton Sports Vista Quick Tent


  • Weight: 4.6 lbs
  • Capacity: 1 person (2 person option available)
  • Additional Features: Gear pockets, mesh gear loft, full rainfly with vestibule, can be set up on Teton cots.


  • Lightweight
  • Full rainfly
  • Affordable


  • Still heavier than most non-instant backpacking tents

Instant tents aren’t usually good backpacking tents because they’re often too heavy and bulky. But the Teton Sports Vista single-person tent isn’t. The fiberglass poles make for a lightweight design, only weighing 4.6 pounds and measuring 27 inches long. With an affordable price of under $100, it’s possible to assume that this tent doesn’t have much to offer, but you’d be wrong. It features taped seams, a full-coverage rainfly, and a lifetime warranty. In addition, this tent comes with mesh storage pockets, a mesh gear loft, a vestibule, and a super easy setup/take-down.

One area for improvement is the absence of a ground cloth/footprint as well as the absence of guylines to create airflow under the fly. I recommend adding both of these items, especially when camping in areas with questionable weather. Overall, this budget-friendly single-person tent is worthwhile for backpackers looking for a quick and easy setup.

Things to Consider Before Buying an Instant Tent

Instant tents offer convenience, speed, and ease, but they aren’t for everybody. Here are some key factors to consider when choosing an instant tent:

Ease of Setup

The main advantage of an instant tent is its quick and easy setup. Shop for a tent that has support poles already assembled and integrated into the tent body. The most convenient tents also have a rainfly attached or are single-wall without the need for an additional rainfly.

Capacity and Size

Before purchasing an instant tent, consider how many people it needs to accommodate. Tent sizes are often listed by the number of people they can fit sleeping side by side on the floor. Consider sizing up to make sure you have enough room for the campers as well as gear. Lastly, take note of the height of the pitched tent. You’ll want to be able to fit your sleeping pad and still have room to sit, or even stand comfortably. 

Weather Resistance

Ensure that the tent you choose is capable of withstanding the weather conditions you anticipate encountering. Features like a rainfly, taped seams, footprint/ground cloth, and bathtub-style floor do a good job of keeping the water out. A strong frame and durable materials are crucial for stability in high winds.

Weight and Portability

In general, instant tents are usually heavier than traditional tents due to the heavy weight of the instant setup mechanism. Therefore, it’s important to consider weight and packed-down size, especially if you plan on backpacking with your tent or transporting with limited space.

Additional Features

Some instant tents come with extra features that might enhance your camping experience. This includes storage pockets, gear lofts, electric cord ports, or a screen room and/or vestibule for storing muddy boots and gear.


Q: What is the difference between a pop-up tent and an instant tent?

The difference between a pop-up tent and an instant tent is defined by their different setup mechanisms. Pop-up tents are designed with pre-assembled frames that literally “pop up” into shape when released. They excel in terms of speed, allowing for incredibly quick setup and making it a popular choice for those looking for hassle-free camping experiences. On the other hand, instant tents, while known for their quick setup, typically feature a more structured frame that needs to be extended or unfolded. Imagine umbrella or telescoping poles that need to be opened and clipped into place. Instant tents can range from single-person to 12-person, while pop-ups don’t extend much past a three-person capacity.

Q: Are instant tents waterproof?

Most instant tents are designed to keep you dry in the rain, however, some perform better than others. Look for instant tents that come with features like sealed seams and a full-coverage rainfly to offer reliable wet-weather protection.

Q: How do instant tents work?

Instant tents operate on the principle of pre-attached designs. This means that the crucial components, such as the frame and fabric, are already connected, making the setup remarkably quick and easy. To set up an instant tent, users typically unfold or extend the pre-attached frame, then pull a cord mechanism or manually open the poles. This design significantly reduces the setup time compared to traditional tents.

Best Instant Tents: Final Thoughts

Instant tents are the perfect choice for campers seeking a quick setup. But this convenience doesn’t mean you have to sacrifice weather resistance, portability, or size. There are different styles and sizes for a variety of pursuits and needs. But the Decathlon Quechua 2 Second Easy Fresh is the best all-around instant tent you can buy.

Why Trust Us

For more than 125 years, Field & Stream has been providing readers with honest and authentic coverage of outdoor gear. Our writers and editors eat, sleep, and breathe the outdoors, and that passion comes through in our product reviews. You can count on F&S to keep you up to date on the best new gear. And when we write about a product—whether it’s a bass lure or a backpack—we cover the good and the bad, so you know exactly what to expect before you decide to make a purchase.