5 Best Rooftop Tents 2022: A Buyer’s Guide

A roof top tent give you a sense of luxury while camping in the wilderness. Considering the elevated height and increased protection from dust, dirt and moisture, you can’t beat the comfort of a rooftop tent when compared to a ground tent or traditional tent. Choosing the roof top tent can be daunting as you decide which type is best suited for you. We’ve put together a list of our top 5 favorite roof top tents to help in your search.

Top 5 Best Rooftop Tents 2022

In this article, we review some of the highest rated roof top tents for 2022. We look at key features of each to determine the best roof top tents and how they rate overall. This includes size, weight, drag factor, ease of setup, weather protection, mattress, ventilation and bonus features.

BEST ROOF TOP TENT

NAME

BEST FEATURE

CAPACITY

TOTAL SQUARE FEET

SQUARE FEET PER PERSON

iKAMPER SKYCAMP ROOF TOP TENT

Best weather protection

4-PERSON

44 sq. ft.

gives 4 adults 11 sq. ft. each

THULE TEPUI FOOTHILL ROOF TOP TENT

Best for carrying bikes and kayaks

2-PERSON

27 sq. ft. of space

gives 2 adults 13.5 sq. ft. each

ROAM VAGABOND XL ROOF TOP TENT

Best bonus features

4-PERSON

48 sq. ft., with an additional 24 sq. ft. annex vestibule

gives 4 adults 12 sq. ft. each in the main tent

YAKIMA SKYRISE HD ROOF TOP TENT

Best weight / size ratio

3-PERSON

37 sq. ft. of space

gives 3 adults 12 sq. ft. each

SMRT TENT SUMMIT SUITE ROOF TOP TENT

Best rack mounting

3-PERSON

33 sq. ft.

gives 3 adults 11 sq. ft. each

Best weather protection: iKamper SkyCamp

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About the iKamper SkyCamp:

The iKamper SkyCamp is a luxurious way to camp. Rated as one of the best hardshell rooftop tents, the SkyCamp has a universal mounting system that works with most vehicles, a built-in king-size mattress, and a lightweight, sleek design.

The SkyCamp also has a strong, angled hardshell rooftop which provides durable protection in rainy, windy weather. The rooftop tent is also light enough to meet the industry standard of 160 pounds, which is the most that most cars and trucks can carry at highway speeds.

The tent is also easy to set up and take down, which makes it great for people who are just starting out camping.

Features:

  • 4-Person
  • 4-Season
  • Hard Shell Rooftop Tent
  • Weight: 160 pounds
  • Size / Weight: We give the iKamper SkyCamp high marks on square footage. The amount of space is a significant upgrade, especially when compared to the almost identical SkyCamp Mini rooftop tent. The regular Sky Camp roof top tent provides 44 sq. ft. of space, which gives 4 adults 11 sq. ft. each.  However, we deduct points on weight. This rooftop tent weighs a hefty 165 pounds!
  • Ease of Setup: Setup is super easy for the Sky Camp roof tent with the new and improved lock latches.One person can setup and break down the tent within 60 seconds!
  • Drag Factor: The roof top tent packs down to a height of 13 inches, which is on the taller side compared to other tents in our list. However, the Sky Camp’s aerodynamic hardshell rooftop slices through wind and reduces drag to a minimum. This ensures that you won’t run into issues with wind slowing you down with the Sky Camp.
  • Weather Resistance: The 75D polyester, waterproof, ripstop rainfly and 300G poly-cotton canvas are strong enough to withstand heavy rain without leaking.
  • Ventilation: The SkyCamp roof top tent offers great ventilation and stargazing through large skyview windows that can all be opened at same time. Use the outside cover as blinds.
  • Mattress:  The roof top tent includes a built-in 2.5 inch mattress with insulated lining, cover and breathable pad to prevent dampness while you sleep. This is a .5 inch thinner than other models we reviewed, so we deducted a point for comfort.
  • Bonus Features: The SkyCamp really stands out with its insulated, double shell roof top tent that is strong, soundproof, and resistant to condensation There’s also extra room in the hardshell to store bedding, sleeping bags, and pillows.

What we like about the iKamper SkyCamp:

  • 60 second, 1 person setup
  • Insulated double shell roof
  • Weather protection
  • Hardshell storage
  • Breathable mattress
  • Great ventilation

What we don’t like about the iKamper SkyCamp:

  • Expensive price tag
  • Too heavy for sedans

What rack mounts work best with the SkyCamp?

The iKamper rooftop tent has a universal mounting system and can be mounted most vehicles. Their tents are designed to be mounted on two normal cross bars which do not directly attach to the rooftop. Aerobars, Round Bars, and Square Bars will work. For the SkyCamp, the roof rack must have a minimum dynamic weight capacity of 165 pounds.

Best for carrying bikes and kayaks: Thule Tepui Foothill

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About the Thule Tepui Foothill Rooftop Tent

The Thule Tepui Foothill rooftop tent is big enough for two people and folds up small, so you can still put bikes, kayaks, and other things on your roof rack. The Foothill is half as wide as other roof top tents and can be mounted on either side of your rack.

When folded, it’s low-profile, with a soft cover and a redesigned foundation that reduces weight while increasing strength and stability. Unzipped and unclipped, it’s simple to assemble with telescopic internal poles that snap into position.

The Thule Tepui Foothill has a big door that is easy to get in and out while carrying gear, but is a little hard to access from inside the roof top tent. The door is placed on the side of the tent, rather than at the end. Therefore, accessing the door will usually require climbing over other people. With its large rear window and two skylights, the tent has great airflow and lets you see the stars from all sides.

Features:

  • 3-Person
  • 2-Season
  • Soft Shell Rooftop Tent
  • Size / Weight: We give the Foothill high marks on space, especially for a 2 person roof top tentThe Thule Tepui Foothill provides 27 sq. ft. of space, which gives 2 adults  13.5 sq. ft. each. It is also the lightest on our list at 108 pounds! One downside is the Thule Tepui‘s peak height is shorter by 1 feet compared to other tents.
  • Ease of Setup: Setup is a breeze with a telescopic internal frame that allows for easy, one-person setup and breakdown.
  • Drag Factor: The roof top tent folds down to a height of only 9.5 inches – one of the most compact on our list.  This low-profile symmetrical design makes transport easy with little wind resistance.
  • Weather Resistance: We give the Thule Tepui Foothill high marks on weather resistance. The 600D polyester withstands rain, snow and sun. Breathable to reduce condensation inside the tent.
  • Ventilation: The Tepui Foothill has oversized, panoramic windows with dual skylights to provide excellent ventilation and star gazing.
  • Mattress: The roof top tent falls short on mattress comfort. It has a 1.6 inch built-in foam mattress, which is very thin compared to other tents. It has a 1.6 inch built-in foam mattress, which is very thin compared to other tents.
  • Bonus Features: One of the best features of the Thule Tepui Foothill is the symmetrical design that allows the tent to be mounted on one side of your vehicle, which frees up rack space for other gear. This also makes it easy to store in the off-season.

What we like about the Tepui Foothill:

  • Light weight of 108 pounds – the lightest on our list! 
  • One minute, One-person setup
  • Leaves room to carry other gear on top fo the car.
  • Heavy duty fabric
  • Panoramic windows

What we don’t like about the Tepui Footfill:

  • Door is difficult to access from inside the tent, making it tricky to enter and exit because you have to climb over other people.
  • Mattress is a thin 1.6 inches.

What roof rack mounts work best with the Tepui Foothill?

The Tepui Foothill is designed to work with the Thule Xsporter Pro, Thule TracRac – Truck or the Thule TracRac – Van. The roof rack must have a minimum dynamic weight capacity of 165 pounds., 

Best bonus features: Roam Vagabond XL

  • Features:
  • 4-Person
  • 3-Season
  • Soft shell rooftop tent
  • Size / Weight: The Vagabond XL scores high marks on space. Provides 48 sq. ft. which gives 4 adults 12 sq. ft. each, with an additional 24 sq. ft. annex vestibule. One drawback is that the tent is a heavy 160 pounds.
  • Ease of Setup: The Vagabond takes longer to setup than other tents in our list. Although setting up the main roof top tent can be done in 5 minutes, setting up the rainfly and annex can take another 15 – 20 minutes and require 2-3 people.
  • Drag Factor: The rooftop tent packs down to a moderate height of 12 inches, which is likely to have some wind resistance. This is due to luxury components like the 3 inch mattress and annex vestibule.
  • Weather Resistance: The Vagabond XL can withstand most weather with its waterproof rainfly made with 600D ripstop nylon, and 280G ripstop poly/cotton roof top tent body that is UV, water, and mold resistant.
  • Ventilation: Large panoramic windows with rollup mesh blinds and 2 skylight windows provide excellent airflow.
  • Mattress: The 3 inch foam, king-sized mattress is one of the most comfortable beds on our list. It has an anti-condensation mat to regulate body temperature while you sleep.
  • Bonus Features: The Vagabond XL rooftop tent has several bonus features that we love.
    1. First, is the 1 inch internal aluminum frame that helps prevent the rooftop tent from tipping over in heavy wind.
    2. Second, it’s the only roof top  tent on our list that includes an annex vestibule. This extra room adds more square footage, additional storage and a private area apart from the main tent.
    3. Third, the rooftop tent is supported by a reinforced diamond base plate. This provides long lasting structural support and is insulated to regulate temperature.
    4. Includes nice perks like boot bags. The Vagabond takes longer to setup than other softshell tents like the Tepui Foothill. 

We like the Roam Vagabond XL’s:

  • Durable fabric
  • High-density mattress
  • Wind resistance
  • Diamond plate bed base
  • Ventilation
  • Annex vestibule

We don’t like the ROAM Vagabond XL’s:

  • Heavy weight of 160 lbs
  • Manual setup that takes 15 – 20 minutes and requires 1-2 people

Best weight / space ratio: Yakima Skyrise HD

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