Choosing The Best Air Mattress For Truck Bed, SUV Or Car Camping adventures

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Picking yourself up off the ground when you wake up in your tent sucks. Plus, sleeping on a thin camping pad leaves you at the mercy of finding a campsite with a perfectly flat and soft tent pad.

If you have done any extended camping, you know that tent pads are more often slanted and filled with rocks than not.

That’s why many truck campers opt to add a truck bed air mattress to their sleeping setup.

These Inflatable truck beds will fits perfectly over wheels in the bed of your truck or SUV get you up off the ground and provide a more comfortable, cushioned spot for you to get better sleep while truck bed camping or car camping. 

It’s important though to make sure you have a truck camping mattress that will actually fit in your pickup bed. There is no “one size fits all” option when it comes to the best air mattress for pickup truck bed.

In order to help you make informed purchases, in this guide I’ll tell you what to consider, followed by my five favorite camping air mattresses for your truck, SUV, lifestyle and budget .

I will also specify the exact makes and models that each mattress fits in so you can quickly hone in on the right one for your truck bed. 

Why Should I Get An Air Mattress For My Truck Bed?

The best reason to pick up an air bed for your truck is that you are tired of sleeping on the ground! 

Aside from that, here are a few additional benefits of inflatable truck beds: 

  • They are relatively quick to inflate and deflate
  • They are compatible with the best truck bed tents, camper shells, and truck bed storage drawers
  • They can be used at home or in other settings where you need an extra bed
  • They are great for stealth truck camping
  • Some are thin enough to double as a backpacking air pad for hiking trips

4 Best Truck Bed Air Mattresses for Your Pickup Or SUV

When you are looking for a new inflatable mattress for your truck bed, pay close attention to the dimensions and truck fits we have outlined in the bullet lists below.

This will help you quickly evaluate whether the mattresses we have chosen to review will work for your truck!

Here are 4 of the best camping air mattresses to sleep comfortably out of the back of your pickup, SUV or car.

1. Best For Long Bed Trucks: Offroading Gear B08TZNWPCJ Truck Bed Air Mattress

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  • Dimensions: 75” x 62” x 7.5” (L x W x H)
  • Materials: Vinyl (body) and Polyester (top layer)
  • Weight: 14.76 pounds

The Offroading Gear air bed is the definition of versatile. It fits right around the wheel wells in the bed of your truck when camping.

But it also has two optional air chambers that can be inflated to make it a full-size mattress when you want to use it anywhere else. 

This air bed comes with its own 12-volt electric pump to easily inflate and deflate it quickly.

The three-chamber design also makes it easy to customize the setup depending on where you are setting it up.

This bed also has the kind of soft, polyester top layer that makes it comfortable enough to lay directly on when the weather is warm.

The remainder of the body is the kind of slick vinyl material that is easy to wipe down or hose off between camping trips.

Fits Beds On The Following Trucks

  • Ford F-150, 250, and 350 (1974-Present)
  • Dodge Ram (1994-Present)
  • GMC Sierra (1973-Present)
  • GMC Sierra Crew Cab With Tailgate Down (1999-Present)
  • Chevrolet Silverado (1973-Present)
  • Chevrolet Silverado Crew Cab With Tailgate Down (1999-Present)
  • Nissan Titan (2004-Present)
  • Toyota T100 (1993-1998)
  • Toyota Tundra (2000-Present)

2. Best For Short Bed Trucks: Rightline Gear 110M10 Truck Bed Air Mattresses

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  • Dimensions: 80” x 71” x 7” (L x W x H)
  • Materials: Heavy-Duty Synthetic PVC
  • Weight: 10.75 pounds

While they do offer two models for long and short-bed trucks, short-bed truck owners will enjoy the ease and convenience of this inflatable bed.

It can also be paired with Rightline’s truck bed tents for a complete truck bed sleeping system. 

The bed is designed to fit between the wheel wells instead of wrapping around them.

As an added benefit, it features side storage areas where you can keep items like phones, clothes, and flashlights handy through the night. 

The mattress also boasts O-beam support, which essentially aims to create a more rigid sleeping surface when you have two people of different sizes sleeping on it at the same time. It also features a soft, flocked top surface for added comfort. 

This is a complete air bed solution as well. It comes with a 12-volt electric pump, stuff sack, patch kit, and set up guide.

Fits Beds On The Following Trucks

Two Sizes Available:

  • Full-size trucks with a long bed (8’), standard bed (6.5’), or a short bed (5.5’)
  • Mid-size trucks with a long bed (6’) or a short bed (5’)

3. Best For Trucks With Sleeping Platforms: SUITEDNOMAD SN/SPD_US Sleeping Pad for Camping

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  • Dimensions: 77” x 48” x 2.2” (L x W x H)
  • Materials: Non-Slip TPU 
  • Weight: 2.9 pounds

If you already have a sleeping platform or storage drawers installed in your truck bed, you probably have a limited amount of space between the platform and the ceiling of your camper shell. 

So that’s where a thinner air mattress like this one from SuitedNomad can come in handy.

The thin design helps to maximize headroom if you are sleeping in a camper shell and will also make your setup feel less claustrophobic. 

This double sleeping pad can also double as a solution for tandem backpacking trips (as long as you and your partner can agree on sleeping in the same tent).

But it does feature the kind of shapely design that allows it to go around the wheel wells in a truck bed. 

In addition to truck bed use, it is versatile enough to work for SUV camping.

Plus, it folds down to just 11” by 6” in size when you are ready to pack up and head down the road!

Fits Beds On The Following Trucks

  • Full and mid-size trucks with a minimum bed length of 6.5’

4. Best For Hunting Trips: Offroading Gear B08TZNWPCJ Truck Bed Air Mattress

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  • Dimensions: 73” x 55” x 12” (L x W x H)
  • Materials: PVC
  • Weight: 18.31 pounds

This high-end camouflage air mattress is the ideal comfortable sleeping solution for your overnight hunting trips.

It wraps right around and over your wheel wells to provide a flat, cushioned sleeping surface. 

It features an integrated air coil system that makes it more comfortable than its competitors.

Basically, that design helps to distribute weight more evenly across the entire surface of the bed (similar to springs in traditional beds).

That prevents sagging or buckling in the areas where you place the most weight. 

It also comes with a built-in pump with a rechargeable battery for quick inflation and deflation.

The battery can be removed to be charged and simply inserts into the pump when it is time to inflate the mattress. 

You can also purchase optional wheel well inserts that are built specifically for this camping bed.

Those inserts allow you to turn this into a standard air mattress for use at home or in an open tent.

Fits Beds On The Following Trucks

  • Chevrolet S10 6’ Short Bed (1982-Present)
  • Dodge Dakota 6’5″ Short Bed (1983-Present)
  • Ford Ranger 6′ Short Bed (1983-Present)
  • GMC Canyon 6′ Short Bed (1982-Present)
  • Honda Ridgeline 5 Bed (2006-Present)
  • Isuzu i280 / i290 6′ Short Bed (1996-2008)
  • Mazda B Series 6′ Short Bed (1994-Present)
  • Mitsubishi Raider 6’6″ Long Bed (2006-2008)
  • Nissan Frontier 6′ Short Bed (1988-2012)
  • Toyota Mid Size 6′ – 6’3″ Short Bed (1989-1995)
  • Toyota Tacoma 6′ Long Bed (1995-Present)

What Makes A Great Truck Bed Air Mattress?

Aside from ensuring the air bed you choose will actually fit in the back of the truck, here are a few important qualities to look for:

It Fits!

The first and most important factor is whether or not it fits in the bed of truck your truck with the tailgate up or down.

If you are doing mostly warm weather camping and you don’t mind sleeping with your tailgate down, you can get away with a longer mattress. 

But if you are looking for something for full-time truck camping and plan to seal yourself inside a camper shell at night, for example, you will need something that fits with your tailgate up. 

Length

There are generally three common truck bed lengths out there: 

  • Short bed: ~5’8” long
  • Standard bed: ~6’6” long
  • Long bed: ~8’ long

Depending on the make and model of your truck, these lengths can vary by several inches in either direction (shorter or longer). 

Width

In addition to length, truck bed width isn’t standard either. Truck beds range from 50 to 63.5 inches wide. 

That said, the most common truck bed size is an even six feet long by four feet wide.

Unfortunately, this doesn’t match any of these standard mattress sizes (all measurements are length by width): 

  • Twin: 75” x 38”
  • Twin XL: 80” x 38” 
  • Full: 75” x 54”
  • Full XL: 80” x 54”
  • Queen: 80” x 60” 

Note: we are not including dimensions for king and California king beds here because no truck beds can accommodate them. 

Height

Also, it can be useful to consider height as well. If you plan on sleeping in an open truck bed, this is less of a concern.

But folks with camper shells or truck bed tents should ensure that they will still have engough headroom once the mattress is fully inflated. 

For camper shells, there are two common designs: standard, mid-rise, and high-rise.

Standard shells match the height of your truck’s cab. Mid-rise shells are roughly 4 inches higher than the cab while high-rise shells will be approximately 8 inches above the cab.  

A thicker design will provide more cushion and more room for error if the mattress slowly leaks at night.

But it also might put you too close to the roof of your camper shell if you have a sleeping platform in the bed of your truck.

Finding Your Custom Fit

So the best way for you to guarantee the right size air mattress that will will fit in the bed of your truck is to grab a measuring tape and take measurements for yourself.

For width, make sure you measure between the wheel wells unless you are going to choose a mattress with inserts or optional air chambers where the wheel wells will be. 

When you measure the length of your truck bed, take two measurements. Measure from the front of the bed to the seam between the bed and the tailgate if you plan to sleep with the tailgate closed. 

If you are willing to sleep with your tailgate open, you can add the height of your tailgate to your initial measurement.

This will give you the maximum mattress length that your truck bed can accommodate. 

Measuring the height between your truck bed (or sleeping platform) and the roof of your camper shell (if that’s the setup you are working with), will also help you identify the maximum mattress height that won’t leave you feeling claustrophobic or squished when trying to fall asleep. 

It’s Comfortable!

There honestly isn’t much variation in the materials used to make these air mattresses.

The main thing that I would look for is some sort of soft polyester top layer. That is going to be more comfortable than laying on a bed that feels more like plastic. 

Aside from that, the best way to get a sense of how comfortable each of these truck beds will be is to read through user reviews on Amazon and the manufacturer’s website.

You can bet your bottom dollar that folks that had a lot of trouble sleeping on any particular mattress will express their discomfort on these platforms. 

It’s Durable!

Durability is super important with these products because they are basically useless if they can’t hold air.

The best designs out there feature multiple internal air chambers so that they don’t go completely flat if they do suffer a small tear or puncture. 

In practice, this would at least get you through the night until you can find the repair kit and patch the hole in the troubled chamber.

That also raises another important point that a quality air bed for camping should always come with a repair kit! 

It’s Easy to Set Up and Breakdown!

If you choose a thinner mattress, you can probably inflate it using your mouth. For the larger mattresses, you will need a 12-volt electric pump to make the job more efficient. 

Some truck mattresses these days even come with their own built-in electric pumps. These are going to be the easiest to set up and break down because they just need to be rolled out, plugged in, and turned on. 

Stepping down from those models, I would highly recommend an air bed that comes with a compatible electric air pump. That gives you a one-stop solution for your camping bed needs. 

Just know that you will need enough cord length to reach the pump from your truck’s cigarette lighter back to the bed if you want to inflate it in place.

Otherwise, you will have to do it on the side of your truck and then move it into the bed. 

It’s Easy to Clean!

While the soft polyester layer on top of a camping mattress can make it more comfortable, it can also make it more difficult to clean.

Dirt and debris tend to stick to a softer material more easily than to a slicker nylon or vinyl material. 

In addition, that softer material will take longer to dry if you hose your mattress off to clean it when you get home.

Slicker material, on the other hand, will dry quicker and can even be wiped clean fairly easily between trips. 

It Serves Multiple Purposes!

The best inflatable camping beds can also be used at home, in hotels, or at that massive vacation rental y’all book for your next family vacation. So what makes an air mattress multi-purpose? 

For starters, it is natural to get attracted to the designs that fit perfectly around the wheel wells in your truck bed.

However, those mattresses are going to look a little weird when you put them on the ground in a house or hotel room. 

Fortunately, some of those models feature alternative air chambers that can be inflated when you are not using them in the bed of your truck. So they can adapt more adequately to all of your needs. 

Of course, if you choose a rectangular mattress it will be much easier for it to suit your needs in a variety of situations. 

In addition to that, one of the mattresses above is thin and light enough to be useful for backpacking as well as truck camping.

While it is really only a viable option for solo travelers, it might be the perfect multi-purpose mattress for the solo truck camper/backpacking aficionado!

The Price Is Right!

At the end of the day, the right truck bed air mattress also needs to fit in your budget. Fortunately, this is far from the most expensive truck camping accessory out there.

The mattresses we have chosen to review range from under $35 at the low end to nearly $300 at the upper end. 

Do keep in mind that you get what you pay for and, in this case, you also get the kind of quality sleep you are willing to invest in.

If you are tired of your old air mattress gently deflating through the course of the evening, you should be willing to spend a bit more on an air bed with more durable construction and better seams. 

Where Can I Go With A Truck Bed Air Mattress?

Anywhere! Seriously though, the possibilities are nearly endless if you are strategic about how you pack your truck. 

If you are anything like me, you have a lot of outdoor recreation gear that you like to bring on your adventures.

That can make it tough to save enough space in your truck bed for one of these mattresses. 

Even if you store a lot of gear in your truck bed while you are driving, it shouldn’t take much more than 30 minutes to rearrange gear and set up an air mattress in your truck bed when you want to get some rest. 

If you want to keep your air mattress set up in your truck bed permanently, you will have to limit your gear to what can fit in the backseat, on top, or behind your truck. 

Fortunately, there are a lot of options for rooftop cargo carriers and hitch-mounted cargo racks out there.

These can help you bring along all of your favorite camping gear while also keeping your truck bed set up all the time. 

Sleeping In The Bed Of Your Pickup

Sleep is definitely something that full-time truck campers don’t take for granted. Only you know how different surfaces feel on your body and impact your ability to enjoy quality sleep. 

So, I would encourage you to listen to your body and examine whether your current sleeping setup is working for you. If the answer is no, then you might benefit from investing in a truck bed air mattress. 

I hope that you have learned a lot about these camping beds and found a few models that will work for your ideal camping setup.

If you have experience with any other mattresses that you do not see on our list, we would love to hear about them! 

Drop us a comment below so that your fellow campers and RVers can find their perfect solution for a great sleep in the wild!

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Written By Tucker Ballister

Tucker Ballister is the proud owner of a 36-foot 1997 Fleetwood Bounder. This is the second RV that Tucker has owned. The first was a beat-up 1983 Ford Tioga that he and his brother renovated before road-tripping from California to Texas to explore the music scene in Austin. Tucker grew up taking multiple RV trips throughout the western United States every summer. He also had the privilege of being the primary RV driver for a five-month road trip across the country in support of a Run Across America event, which raised money for the Guardian for Heroes Foundation. Tucker began his copywriting career as a graduate student in 2013. He has worked as a full-time freelancer and part-time outdoor guide ever since, while also starting his own website thebackpackguide.com dedicated to hiking, backpacking, and outdoor gear reviews. Tucker currently resides in the gorgeous mountains to the north of Lake Tahoe (the second deepest lake in the United States!). His current tally of RV road trips across America stands at five and counting.

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