Why Choose a Roof Top Tent over a Regular Tent?

Sometimes we forget there are some of you who have never had the pleasure of camping in a roof top tent. We still get lots of “What is a roof top tent? Does it go on the roof of your house?” questions – and we don’t blame you! It’s a fairly new concept in North America, the roof top tent that sits on a rack on top of your vehicle. If you have had the pleasure of trying one, you’ve experienced the benefits that a roof top tent has to offer. Although we are believers in getting out and exploring in whatever way you can, we can attest that roof top tents are a game changer, and most importantly – they’re really fun to use. We’ve compiled the major benefits here for you.

A man opening a SMRT Tent roof top tent on top of his 4Runner in the mountains in Canada.

 

BENEFIT 1: ROOF TOP TENTS ARE QUICK AND EASY TO SETUP & TAKEDOWN

First and foremost, a roof top tent will take a fraction of the time to set up as a regular tent. This is probably the biggest reason we see people switching to a roof top tent: the quick setup time, and easy take down. Imagine you pull up to your camping spot, it’s 10pm, it’s pouring rain - and all you have to do is hop outside in your raincoat, to pop the roof top tent open! A mere 30 seconds and you’re in your dry bed, watching the storm from the safety of your roof top tent (for our clamshell styles. Softshells take a few minutes, but still much quicker than your ground option!). This situation is a lot more appealing than struggling to set up a ground tent while searching for the right poles, a proper spot, and trying not to let the rain get you down. We like to say that your camping setup will be complete before your camping buddy has time to crack open a beer (or soda!) for you. Wake up in the morning and don’t like your spot? No worries, just pull the roof top tent shut, hop in the car and move to your next location! 

A girl and her dog looking out onto a landscape of trees from a SMRT Tent roof top tent.

 

BENEFIT 2: YOU MIGHT SLEEP BETTER IN A ROOF TOP TENT THAN IN YOUR OWN BED…

Another big bonus to sleeping in a roof top tent is the great quality of sleep you get! We’ve all been there – sleeping in your ground tent, on your little roll up mattress, on a flat patch that isn’t QUITE even, fit with a few rocks and pebbles that you didn’t sweep out of the way. In a roof top tent, you are sleeping on a flat surface every time - no rocks, no uneven ground, no dirt piles in your back. You get to lay down on a comfortable 3 inch high density foam mattress, and you can put to bed the worry of waking up in a puddle, since you are far off the ground. Put together the combo of sleeping on a good bed and the fresh air, you should wake up feeling refreshed and rested. Let’s put it this way: you wouldn’t be the first person to sleep in their roof top tent in their driveway – by choice!

A couple is sitting around a fire with their dog at their campsite. Their SUV is behind them with their SMRT Tent roof top tent open.

 

BENEFIT 3: ROOF TOP TENTS GIVE YOU A SENSE OF SAFETY & PEACE

You might not be scared of bugs, but chances are you don’t want to sleep right next to them either. Although you need to watch your screens for letting in mosquitoes, the bugs we find on the ground have a much, much harder time making an appearance in your roof top tent. The other thing that will be more inclined to leave you alone are the animals we find in the wild! A lot of customers report feeling safer when camping from this higher vantage point.

An SUV is parked at the edge of a beautiful lake in Canada with a SMRT Tent roof top tent open.

 

BENEFIT 4: YOU ALWAYS HAVE A PLACE TO CRASH

On a long drive and feeling a bit too tired to keep driving? Pull over into a rest stop and have a snooze on the comfort of a mattress. Had some drinks at a friends house on the weekend? Pop open your roof top tent and get a good night’s sleep on their street. At a BBQ and your toddler is in need of a nap? You know the place. The uses for your roof top tent go far beyond camping and adventures – you have a safe, reliable bed with you at all times.

A Toyota Tacoma and a Toyota 4Runner are parked in a valley of mountains in Canmore, Canada with SMRT Tent roof top tents open on top.

BENEFIT 5: THOSE VIEWS!

The fun factor. The wow factor. There’s a childlike feeling of excitement that comes in to play when you’re climbing up the ladder into your roof top tent – we like to think it’s the treefort you always wanted as a kid. Add in a beautiful view, a sunset, and some cozy blankets, you’ve got yourself a near perfect evening. What’s better than the sunset, is waking up to your view. It just never gets old, trust us!

There are of course many other benefits to having a roof top tent, but we hope this short list of major benefits was helpful. If this sounds like the kind of lifestyle you want to get into, don’t hesitate to reach out to the team to plan out your next adventure.

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