Investing in a tent can be expensive. Your heart can sink further when you look at the extras. So which tent extras are worth buying?
Tent porches give a much-needed weather entrance if one doesn’t exist already on the tent, and a very useful place for storing wet clothes and muddy boots, which you should keep out of your tent.
However, adding a porch is an extra effort after pitching the main tent.
A porch may provide extra shelter, but some tents have fully enclosed extensions.
These add a larger living area or can add another bedroom.
As with porches, if you can budget for it, get the tent that meets your need so that you don’t need an extension.
However, knowing that you can extend your tent gives you the option of expanding it as your needs change, and, in theory, spread the cost over a few years.
The downside with that strategy is tent manufacturers are always refining their designs, so extensions for models are hard to find a few years after the tent model has finished (though you may get lucky on e-bay). Click here for a guide to fitting extensions from other tents.
You could also get a smaller tent that is ideal for shorter weekend camps, and purchase the extension so that you use the tent for the main family camping holiday.
Buy the extension for your tent when you buy your tent
For more info read ‘Are tent carpets worth it?‘
Additional protection under your tent is very useful, especially if the ground has been wet, and it means the hassle of drying a wet tent is greatly reduced.
We use a relatively cheap tarp under our tent (see details here).
If you have an irregular shape tent, a footprint is worth investing in though as regular tarps will not fit without a lot of time spent folding them into shape.
Again, you could find a package deal that means you get the footprint at a much-reduced price.
A footprint could also protect the underside of your tent from damage caused by sharp stones and sticks. However, you should always check that there are none of these before pitching anyway 🙂
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