Camping Chairs – Our Guide To The Best [2021]

Saggy bottoms, bad backs…do camping chairs have to be a pain in the posterior?

No! We’ve been testing exhaustively (!) to find a camping chair that’s both supportive and upright enough for eating at a table, and slumpy enough for lazing with a book.

Here are the best camping chairs we’ve found.

Latest update: September 2021

All our reviews at Campfire Magazine are independent and honest.

In a hurry? If you don’t have much time using the links below to quickly find our favourites for you on Amazon. You can be assured we only choose the best products…

The best camping chair?

Our Top Pick

Coleman Deck Chair Outdoor Furniture - Green

The best chair (for us, at least) would have a taut seat, a strong and supportive backrest, be made of aluminium for lightness and fold up reasonably small.

Coleman deck chair – comes in a sand colour too

So, the best we’ve found are directors’ chairs, and the best of these for sturdiness has been the Coleman Deck Chair. Good support with a backrest and strong seat. Not exactly chairs for lounging in, but you could definitely read a book, play a board game or eat a meal in comfort.

This chair just seems built to last. It’s smart, simple and very supportive. 

It has an aluminium frame, a sloping back and padded armrests, which incorporate carrying straps when it’s folded (to 13 x 53 x 75 cm).Weighs around 2.5kg, can carry 113kg and costs around £40. Available in khaki or green.

There’s a chair with a fold-out table too, but after scouring the web, we haven’t been able to find one for a reasonable price, so opt for the Kingcamp below. 

Coleman Deck Chair With Table, Comfortable Outdoor Camping Chair with foldables Side Table and Cup Holder, Padded Seat and Back Areas, Easy to Transport, Khaki

Best for your back


STRONGBACK Guru Lime Green - Ergonomic Foldable Camping Chair with Lumbar Support, 50 cm-wide chair, armrests, drinks holder

These fabulous chairs with lumbar support look heavy, but the Guru weighs 4.7kg, and the larger Elite is just 5.4kg.

Both these chairs curve in at the back rather than letting your back slump outwards.

The Guru has a 50cm wide seat and costs around £60. The larger Elite is 60cm wide. Both can hold up to 130kg. They pack away into a tubular carry bag.

Some of our Favourites

EDITORS CHOICE

TREKOLOGY YIZI GO Portable Camping Chair - Compact Ultralight Folding Backpacking Chairs, Small Collapsible Foldable Packable Lightweight Backpack Chair in a Bag for Outdoor, Camp, Picnic, Hiking

We love how portable the Trekology range is. This updated version of the classic YIZI is our favourite.  

Weighing only 2.1lbs(960g), it can hold upto 135kg, this guy punches well above it's very dainty weight. Packs down to only 36 x 11 x 15 cm in it's bag, there's a lot to love here.


Relaxdays Director, Folding Camping Chair with Cooler, Ideal for Day Trips & Backyard, 110 kg, Black, steel, Grey/Silver/Metallic

This is a good and sturdy director’s chair with a side table or a cooler bag attached. The back-rest is slightly padded. The seat is a good width too. No storage bag, unfortunately. Stated capacity is 110kg (16 stone).

Best Value

MP Essentials Strong Sturdy Portable Travel Sports Directors Chair with Pockets & Table (Charcaol)

This affordable MP Essentials camping chair costs around £35. It has a fold-out table and pocket storage. A choice of three colours too

Aluminium construction makes it very light, plus nice padding and support. Folds to 85cm x 45cm x 15cm, weighs 2.5kg and can carry 120kg.


KingCamp Heavy Duty Compact Camping Folding Mesh Chair with Side Table and Handle

Extra-strong and with a mesh back for ventilation, the KingCamp is surprisingly light (5.4kg) for its heft. It can carry up to 136kg.

One of the most packable and carryable at 51 × 48 × 15cm and costs around £100. For £15 more, you can get a version with a cooler bag on the side.


Uquip Woody - Portable Folding Directors Chair with Tiltable Table - Blue/Grey

Now this is a good idea. The Uquip Woody has a swivel table that also pivots so you can use it for your iPad or to rest a book.

It’s made from powder-coated aluminium and weighs around 5kg. It packs into a nice bag 86 x 53 x 13 cm. Can carry up to 120kg. Around £50. Very popular, so apologies if they go out of stock.

Best for Dining


Uquip Sidney Folding Chair with Cup Holder and High Backrest - Blue/Grey

A tall-back camping chair for dining, we think the Uquip tables are great, and this tall-back chair has some good features too – apart from the rather strangely positioned cup-holder!

He’s called Sidney and he weighs just under 6kg. Plus he can carry a weight of around 120kg. Packs to 120cm x 33cm and a bag’s included.


 

A ventilated back, a small folded size and a sturdy seat. This Quechua reclining chair is around £35 and even has a headrest. Best of all, it works for both sitting comfortably at a table and for lying back in the sun.

We also have a whole article about reclining camping chairs too.


Marko Outdoor Deck Chair Folding Garden Lawn Patio Spring Foldable Seat Camping Outdoor (Black)

This traditional folding camping chair is by Marko and costs under £12. If you’re only camping once in a while, maybe this is all you need. A steel frame but weighs only 2.4kg. Not for larger or heavier campers!

Helinox are famous for their virtually weightless chairs. They’re quite expensive and, for us, not all that comfortable because your bum is lower than your knees. However, they pack small enough to go in a rucksack, so they have their place.

Naturally, there are now a zillion copycat designs and most are rather rubbish. The best we’ve found is the Robens Observer chair at around £30 less than the Helinox Sunset, however….

The comparable Helinox Sunset is around £130, but the Observer is £100-ish.


ROBENS Folding Chair, Polyester, Gray, 55 x 69 x 100 cm

The Robens Observer chair is cheaper than Helinox, but comes in only two colours. It can carry up to 120kg and weighs 1.2kg.

Nowhere near as well made as the Helinox, but a close second.

Need to lounge?

If you have the space (and the need to relax!), then an adjustable lounger is the answer. You can use it with the back straight at dinner time and lie back for a snooze afterwards. They’ll make quite a big pack-size, of course.

Also see our Best Chairs with Footrest and our Best Camping Rocking Chairs


Kampa Comfort Chair - Firenze

This is a fairly streamlined comfort recliner from Kampa with a choice of seven positions. It weighs 5kg and supports up to 150kg weight.


Portal Outdoors Unisex's Monaco Portable Camping Chair, Grey, One Size

This Monaco recliner by Portal Outdoor folds flattish to 105 x 62 x 13cm. It’s the most expensive at around £70, but weighs less than 5kg and has one of the most interesting styles we’ve found. Aluminium frame. Supports up to 120kg.


Highlander Folding Outdoor Sit Mat - Lightweight Padded Portable Stadium Seat ideal for Walking, Picnics, Camping, Hiking or Festivals40x38x40cmBlue

We’ve tried a few of the floor chairs (like this Highlander) that have no legs and use your body weight and two straps to keep the back in place. They won’t suit you if you’re looking for absolute comfort, but they’re extremely lightweight and small.

Comfortable and adjustable – the Bonvivo floor chair

For an extra bit of cushioning, there are bulkier (and heavier) options like the BonVivo. This one is nice because, as well as having a few reclining positions, it can be used flat as a padded mat for lying on. It weighs around 3kg, though.


Denny Shop Folding Recliner Cushioned Textoline Beach Chair Sun lounger Bed For Garden And Outdoor Camping by Crystals®

For ultimate loungeability, you’ll need a zero gravity chair. These are the ultimate in feet-up-snooze-and-relax, but although they’ll fold more or less flat, they’re weightier and bulkier. These Denny chairs are around £130 for two,  and can support 120kg. Some people prefer a rocking chair, so we made a guide to the best rocking camping chairs too.


Crespo - Campingchair - AP-215 Air-Deluxe

Steve Harding Says - They sell very comfortable, taught seat chairs, in a variety of models and different heights. So ideal for people who are vertically challenged, like me.

So a different height couple can buy a pair of chairs, but suited to the individual.

Rachel Barrett says - We’ve tried dozens, you can’t beat a vango Titan!

Vango Titan 2 Oversized Foldable Camping Chair Excalibur Grey

Camping chairs to avoid

Stylish Outwell Gorman Hills. Better than many, but still not quite supportive enough.

Lots of camping chairs use a folding, concertina-type construction. Great for packabilty, but they tend not to make the seat fabric taut enough.

We thought we’d found a good compromise in Outwell’s Gorman Hills camping chairs. They felt comfortable in the shop and, with their choice of colour and rounded armrests, were a stylish change from all that camping khaki.

A week of sitting on them, though, and the lower back twinges kicked in. We found ourselves perching on the more solid front edge of fabric to eat at a table, but more often than not, we’d slump backwards and have to hold a plate on our knees.

Vango's Malibu. Under £25, but look at the slumpy seat.


So, we'd always avoid any chair where the seat material isn't held completely taut. That applies to most camping chairs with this concertina-type fold.

More Chair Guides

We are always on the look out for whats new and like to discover the different styles of chair there are so take a look at our other camping chair guides and see which are best suited to your needs. 

Best Reclining Camping Chairs for 2021

Best Camping Rocking Chairs – 2021 Ultimate Guide

Best Folding Camping Chairs With Footrest for 2021

Top 9 Best Double Camping Chairs (Folding & Portable)

Here's a roundup of out top picks from each category.

Enhancing your Camping Chair

So you have gone through and hopefully we have helped you decide which is going to be the right choice for you, we wanted to show you a few other accessories and add ons you can consider to make your camping chair experience that little bit sweeter. 

Camping Chair Add-ons

2 PCS Clip On Side Table Tray Camping Chair Cup Holder Snack Tray Garden Fishing Beach Storage Tidy for Sun Lounger Camping Fishing Chair

A simple yet great accessory for your chair especially if you do not have a cup holder in place of like me like to have somewhere to put all my pocket junk when I sit down! Will fit on most chairs just slide it over the tubes on the side.

Sport-Brella Sports and outdoor's Umbrella Versa-brella Shade Canopy, Midnight Blue, Standard

Sometimes finding somewhere with a little shade can be a difficult task so why not create your own with this handy umbrella, we love this one as it clamps on easily to most things so even if you don't use it on the chair you could put it on the side of the tent giving you shade when needed. Has two button hinges so has lot's of ways you can adjust it too.

TREKOLOGY Sand Cover, Beach Mat and Ground Sheet - Prevent Portable Camping Chairs from Sinking in Soft Grounds, Sand or Grass - Anti-Sinking Solution Fits most Compact Folding Camp Backpacking Chair

This ground mat is super handy if you find yourself using your camping chair on soft ground like at the beach or on muddy grass. It will fit most folding camping chairs and has 4 pockets to place the feet and a strap to hold it in place. Very durable and easy to clean with breathable polyester material.

ImiKas Folding Step Stool - 13 inch Height Premium Heavy Duty Foldable Stool For Kids & Adults, Kitchen Garden Bathroom Stepping Stool From

If you have the space these, they do fold flat and can be used for a variety of uses as well as a footstool for your camping chair! Strong enough to hold your weight as a step and flat enough to use a table if needed. 

Frequently Asked Questions

How do I choose a camp chair?

There are different types of camp chairs, each with their own pros and cons. A good way to choose the best camping chair is by looking at what you need it for - how often will you use it? What type of terrain do you camp on most frequently? If your answer includes any words like 'constantly,' 'every weekend' or simply 'always', then a more high-end model may be worth considering because they tend to last longer than cheaper models. For an occasional camper who camps primarily on flat ground, there's no reason not to get a less expensive option that costs half as much!

What is the most comfortable camping chair?

The best camping chair is one that you can sit in comfortably for a long period of time. When looking at the chairs, think about how they are constructed to offer support and comfort while sitting. A good rule of thumb is if your back starts hurting after 10 minutes or so, move on to another option until you find what's right for you. There really isn't any wrong answer because everyone has different preferences when it comes to their camping gear-as well as body types. Thankfully there are many options available out there that will suit your needs no matter who you are!

Can camping chairs get wet?

Camping chairs should not be left outside for extended periods of time. If they have to get wet, such as during rain or a storm, it is best to wipe them off and allow the chair fabric to dry before sitting on it again. This will prevent mold from growing and also keep bacteria at bay. To give your camping chair an extra layer of protection against water damage, try spraying waterproofing spray into the seams where possible too!

Do weight limits on camping chairs matter?

A weight limit on a camping chair is important for the safety of those seated in it. The person sitting in the chair should be able to move around safely without feeling uncomfortable or putting too much pressure on one side of their body. In some cases, chairs with higher limits can provide more stability and support than lower-limit models. One way to increase your level of comfort while out at camp, You could invest in an inflatable camping seat that provides you with extra cushioning!

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