As a lover of travel, but without the budget for expensive trips, I have been considering buying a tent for literally years now. I love the idea of loading up the car and setting off somewhere for a night or two. I got so close to buying a ground tent a couple of years back – I made a special trip to one of the largest tent showrooms in the country, determined to finally buy a tent and get started on spontaneous adventures. However, the day of my visit it was torrential wind and rain – I’m talking monsoon weather. The tents on display were simultaneously threatening to a) fly away and b) collapse under all the water. I took it as a sign from God that camping life wasn’t for me! And that leads me to the story of how I ended up ordering a Tentbox Lite XL…
A couple of months ago, I walked past an SUV with something I had never seen before – a black rectangular flattish box on its roof, with the word Tentbox emblazoned on it. Intrigued, I Googled “Tentbox” when I got home and was introduced to a concept I wasn’t familiar with – rooftop tents. This led me to an information wormhole as I dived deep into all the information that’s out there – best brands, the right size, hardtop vs softshell, etc etc.
As someone who goes deep with my research but also makes a decision quickly (partially because I was keen to manage a trip or two before the colder weather kicks in) – I ordered a roof top tent (specifically the Tentbox Lite XL) within a few days of learning about the concept as I quickly realised roof top tents took away many of my anxieties that I had about traditional camping. I lean towards being indoorsy rather than outdoorsy so I have high standards when it comes to what I am willing to endure (cue my husband rolling his eyes…). As such, I thought I would write a post outlining my reasons for choosing the Tentbox Lite XL vs a traditional ground tent in case it is helpful to anyone else:
More room in the car to store all the camping necessities
We are lucky enough to have a fairly large boot space – however, a traditional ground tent does take up a fair bit of room. By having the tent on the roof of the car, there is more space for all the things you have to take camping with two kids i.e. a lot of things!
Better suited to poor weather
I live in Scotland. It is supposedly Summer but it is currently lashing it down with rain and has been for weeks – I can’t remember a dry day since June. The idea of pitching a tent on soggy, muddy ground is so grim and incredibly unappealing. Whereas with the Tentbox Lite XL and other roof top tents, you are raised above the ground therefore much drier. I would happily set off on a camping trip right now with my rooftop tent but there is no chance I’d be keen on heading anywhere with a ground tent.
I’m not saying a roof top tent is is impervious to slugs, snails and spiders etc but I reckon you will find a lot fewer of them in a roof top tent vs a ground tent.
The Tentbox XL lite’s space
I love how the roof top tent that I have gone for has a huge sleeping space (240cm x 180cm) – lots of room for our family of two adults and two kids. We can cosy up together but at the same time it won’t be claustrophobic
Easy to set up
It’s a simple process to set up the Tentbox – there are some great tutorials online. I would hate to be faffing around with posts and pegs, especially in the rain. Also, there is no need to find a perfectly flat bit of ground and clear it of sticks and rocks. Just park up, and get going.
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Please feel free to ask me any questions in the comments below.
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