Freestanding Vs Non-Freestanding Tents: Comparison For Best Of The 2 Tent Types

Freestanding vs non-freestanding tents

Are you not which type of tent is more suitable for you?

We’ve got you covered with our buyers guide on how to choose the right style for your backpacking needs wit comparison of freestanding vs non-freestanding tents.

Free Standing tents are obviously more popular but non-free standing backing packing tents are growing in terms of popularity.  Although they are heavier, they are built to be a bit tougher, and offer more room inside.

A non free standing tent takes longer to set up, but after you get used to it is much faster.The process of setting it up maybe a bit fussy but it makes you more aware of the surroundings.The freestanding tents can fly away but they will not even if they don’t look as tough.

Free Standing Vs Non-Free Standing Tents: Definitions

Freestanding Tents:  Tents which are not attached to anything but a pole. Then can easily be picked up and moved around without losing their form.

freestanding vs non-free standing tents

Non-Freestanding Tents:  These tents that require rope that is pounded into the ground.  They may or may not use your trekking poles to stand up.  

freestanding vs non-free standing tents  

Freestanding Vs Non-Freestanding Tents: Performance Considerations

1. Freestanding Vs Non-Freestanding Tents: Weather Protection 

Freestanding tents are better when it comes to protection against weather it  has a dedicated pole structure that is not dependent on stakes in a windy weather. On the other hand,in case of non-free standing tents more could go wrong in situation of strong gusts. Secondly most freestanding tents comes with a double-wall designs, whereas non-freestanding tents are most often single-walledhis gives an extra layer of separation between you and the elements

However, it is important to note that all freestanding tents are not double walled and not all non-freestanding tents are single walled. This is a consideration ythe purchase.ou need to make while making the purchase.

2. Freestanding Vs Non-Freestanding Tents: Ventilation 

When it comes to ventilation, double walled design are better as the inner tent body is made of breathable fabric that allows condensation to escape. Since most freestanding tents are double-walled and most non-freestanding tents are single-walled, ventilation is better in freestanding tents. It’s important to note that there are exceptions to this rule.

3. Freestanding Vs Non-Freestanding Tents: Weight and Packed Size

When it comes to wight and packed size, non-free standing tents are clear winner. Infact, weight and packed size are one of the biggest differences between the two tent structures. It is the main reason backpackers go for a non-freestanding model.

This is because it has a minimalist single-wall designs and often no included tent poles, making them much lighter and compact. However, there are ultralight weight freestanding tents that are light and compact but you have to sacrifice durability and they are pricey.

4. Freestanding Vs Non-Freestanding Tents:Interior Space 

In terms of livability and headroom you get free standing tents are better in general with steeper walls created by the structure of dedicated tent poles where as typical frame like design of non-free standing tents leads to a compromised livable space.

Freestanding tents can fit anywhere from one to four people depending on size, whereas non-freestanding,  often max out at three. 

5. Freestanding Vs Non-Freestanding Tents: Durability 

There’s little distinction between freestanding and non-freestanding tents when it comes to durability as both of them can be made of fragile fabrics or rugged materials. So, it mainly depend on the type of materials used.

However, in case of ultralight freestanding tents durability is compromised to compensate with lighter weight.

6. Freestanding Vs Non-Freestanding Tents: Set-Up 

The advantage of freestanding tents is that they can be set up just about anywhere and then moved.On the other hand, non-freestanding tents must be setup at your intended site. So, if you set up your non-freestanding tent and aren’t pleased with the location, you’ll have to take it down completely in order to move it and start the process all over again.

Second consideration is the ease of setup. In non-free standing tents, setting up is a learning curve- But once you get to know your non-freestanding tent, it will go up quicker: simply stake out the corners and insert the trekking poles. In fact in situation of rain, you can assemble a non-freestanding tent  without risking getting the inside wet, wheras a double-wall freestanding tent where you’ll have to set up the body before putting on the fly.

7. Freestanding Vs Non-Freestanding Tents: Versatility Advantage

When it comes to versatility, double-wall freestanding tents offer the most amount of customization. You can forego the fly for more airflow in warm weather conditions.

However, the majority of non-freestanding tents have just one configuration. There are few ways to strip weight or tailor ventilation.

8. Freestanding Vs Non-Freestanding Tents:Price 

There’s a great deal of variation within both the variants. However,  lighter tents in both the types tend to be more pricey.

Freestanding Vs Non-Freestanding Tents: Conclusion And Final Review

We hope our guide gave you a better understanding of the types of tents available and helped you narrow down your search. Therefore, which type of tent you want to purchase depends on what type of camping you do most often, what conditions you camp in, how big your camping crew is etc.

Freestanding tents tend to come in larger size options and are simple to set up, making them a good choice for family campers. On the other hand,  lightweight nature of non-freestanding tents tend to make this variation most popular with backpackers. Make the purchase based on your personal preference. Happy trails!

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