Camping is a great pastime, but it might get a bit stale if you are doing it frequently. After all, you’re essentially doing the same thing over and over again – pick a nice spot, set up tents and enjoy living close to nature for a short period of time. Although you can’t change the fundamentals of what camping is all about, you might modify some aspects of it. For example, instead of living in tents, why don’t you try sleeping in your truck? To make it easier, below you’ll find everything you need to know about truck bed camping.

Truck bed camping will need a slightly different setup from that of a traditional camping trip. First of all, you might need a comfy mattress to sleep on. You might also buy a truck bed tent to protect yourself from the elements. If you want something more sturdy, go for a truck bed camper shell. Finally, it might be good to invest in a 12v camping fridge and LED headlamps to make your truck bed camping experience complete. Explore the ideas below and learn the intricacies of this amazing camping method!

Choose A Good Truck Bed Tent or a Camper ShellBest Cars to Sleep in for Camping

Unless you want to experience open camping and sleep on your exposed truck bed, consider getting a proper truck bed tent for your vehicle. These tents are designed to fit tightly around your truck bed, providing a space for you to sleep and store your camping gear. They’re also water-resistant and durable enough to protect you from the elements while you sleep. Also, truck bed tents are quite similar to typical tents in that you can disassemble them once you’re done and store in one of your compartments.

If you need something a bit more sturdy, go for a camper shell. This type of accessory is designed to fit on top of your truck bed and turn it into a room of sorts. It usually takes the shape of a roof, which is supported by walls and will provide you with an enclosed space to sleep and store your camping gear. The best part is that you can use it as an additional storage compartment when you’re not camping or even turn it into a small bedroom if you’re planning to live in your truck in the future.


You Need To Pick a Right Mattress

While choosing a mattress for a truck bed camping trip might not be a complicated process, it’s still important to do it right. You don’t want to get stuck sleeping on bare metal and get ill in the process. If your vehicle has an enclosed loading space, you might want to choose a good memory foam mattress. This type of mattress will provide you with plenty of support and keep the metal from digging into your body. It’s a supremely comfy option, but only if the cabin is watertight.

If there’s a risk of leaks or you simply prefer to camp under the stars, an air mattress will be a better solution. It’s still very comfortable, but at the same time won’t be damaged by rain or high humidity. It’s also more flexible than your typical mattress – by the time your truck camping trip ends, you can simply deflate it and store it in a very compact form.

Finally, if both options are too costly at the moment, but you absolutely want to experience a truck bed camping adventure, go for a roll pad and a good sleeping bag. Your comfort might be reduced, but you still should be sufficiently isolated from both the cold metal bed and low temperatures.

Get a Good LED Overhead Lamp And a 12v Camping Fridge

If you plan on going on a truck bed camping trip during the night, you might want to consider getting a good LED overhead lamp. These are designed to fit snugly on your head and provide you with plenty of light without blinding you. They are very useful in such small enclosed spaces like a truck bed, as they allow you to avoid bumping into the metal walls or roof in the middle of the night.

Because you’re going to camp in your truck, you’ll have easy access to electricity. You can use that to your advantage and buy a camping fridge. The best part is that such a device doesn’t require any special equipment – it will plug straight into your vehicle’s power outlet. It’s usually efficient enough to not drain your battery too much but will become indispensable if you plan to take fresh ingredients with you. It’s a great way to avoid sticking to processed and canned food during your truck camping trip.


As you can see, truck bed camping is a great alternative to traditional camping trips. It’s a bit more expensive, but it’s far more comfortable and should be a welcome change of pace for those bored with traditional camping ways.

You need to pick the right mattress for you and the sort of vehicle you have. You also should invest in making your truck bed protected from the elements by getting a truck bed tent or a camper shell. Finally, don’t forget about investing in an overhead lamp and possibly in a 12v portable fridge. If you follow these tips, your truck bed camping experience should be much safer and more fun! Good luck!

Read Next:

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Pick a Place to Stay

Not everyone wants to camp in a tent. For those that prefer a cabin, we recommend checking out the cabins on VRBO. If you want a glamping experience check out the amazing glamping options on Expedia or visit Tentrr where it’s broken down by state! To find good campgrounds in Europe check out EuroCamp.

Rent an RV

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Get Travel Insurance

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Choose Activities and Tours

To find great activities in any area I use Get Your Guide and Viator. If we are visiting a city with lots of popular attractions I always check CityPass and GoCard to see if they have discount cards available. When I want to book a full-on multi-day tour I use TourRadar. They’ve got fantastic weekly deals.

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