Buyer’s Guide: Air Mattresses
To find the best air mattress for your needs, start by reading our tip tops for understanding and choosing among the available options—and don't miss our top picks!
They inflate when you need them and deflate when you don’t. In effect, air mattresses are beds on demand. Making them all the more convenient is that when deflated, air mattresses can be stored away. Some are even designed to be compact and portable enough to be brought along on a camping trip!
Ahead, our guide explains what to look for in an air mattress and highlights our top-favorite picks among the best air mattress options out there.
- BEST OVERALL: SoundAsleep Dream Series Air Mattress
- BEST FOR COUPLES: AeroBed One-Touch Comfort Air Mattress
- BEST FOR CAMPING: Coleman Camping Cot
Internal electric air pumps offer the fastest inflation, but they’re only suitable for in-home use. If you want a mattress for camping, consider buying one with a battery-operated pump or a manual pump.
“Always on” electric pumps can sense a pressure drop and add air as needed to keep the mattress firm. Manual pumps, meanwhile, are operated either by foot or hand.
Raised air mattresses, up to three times taller than the standard 8-inch mattress height, can make it easier on the knees and the back when getting in and out of bed.
You get what you pay for with air mattresses, but only up to a point. Inexpensive options typically do not offer the long-term durability of pricier picks. However, some more expensive models may include extra features that you don’t necessarily need, such as remote control operation.
Our Top Picks
1. BEST OVERALL: SoundAsleep Dream Series Air Mattress
With a thick, flocked sleeping surface and ComfortCoil technology that distributes air evenly throughout, the SoundAsleep Dream Series Air Mattress impresses, not least on account of its stability and minimal sagging. Even better, the high-capacity internal electric pump of the SoundAsleeep inflates the mattress in just four minutes, and the 19-pound mattress comes with its own storage bag included.
2. BEST FOR COUPLES: AeroBed One-Touch Comfort Air Mattress
The AeroBed One-Touch Comfort Air Mattress inflates in just a couple minutes, while its Whoosh valve makes deflation similarly quick. The internal electric pump has a control wand that lets the sleeper, or sleepers, add air pressure without getting out of bed, while a patented stability base increases firmness. Offering a generous 60-inch by 78-inch surface and accommodating up to 600 pounds, the 22-pound Aerobed comes not only with its own stow bag, but also with a two-year limited warranty.
3. BEST FOR CAMPING: Coleman Camping Cot
While the Coleman Camping Cot mattress is only eight inches high when fully inflated, the included portable cot raises the bed to 22 inches, keeping the sleeper suspended off the ground. In addition, the Coleman boasts stable, supportive ComfortStrong Coil construction and features an Airtight system guaranteed by the manufacturer not to leak. At 45 inches wide and 74 inches long, with a weight capacity of 300 pounds, the cot (with machine-washable mattresses cover) collapses for easy storage in its own bag and is backed by a one-year limited warranty.