Finding cheap tents is not difficult to do.  Today there are many different retailers that sale outdoor gear and camping supplies.  In the summer months sales are abundant on these items as stores try to target people that want to do outdoor activities.  So where exactly can you buy tents and other outdoor gear?

Outdoor Stores:

The places that are going to sale the most tents are places that specifically target sports and activities like hunting and fishing.  Often outdoor retailers are more expensive than other places you can find.  Since they specialize in selling outdoor gear you can find better quality tents than at other places and usually more options.


This is one of the biggest outfitters for outdoor enthusiasts.  One step into their store you will find the trophy’s of hunters lining the walls.  Since they sell a lot of hunting and fishing gear it is a great place to find tents, including ones that are made by them.  They also sell tons of accessories for your tent from tent stakes, to floor liners. 


REI is another major store that focuses on camping and hiking gear.  They also have their own tents and are a great place to find other accessories you might need like footprints and stakes.  This was a store my family liked to use a lot when I was younger to outfit us for our summer camps.

LL Bean

Located in Maine, LL Bean has a ton of gear and clothing.  Their prices can be higher but they tend to sale very high quality products. 

Their online site has a great feature of allowing you to use their park search feature which allows you to search for a place for a campground for your adventure either by name or by using a map.  When you select by region you can narrow it down to the types of activities you are interested in doing there and it will come up with a list of different places.  I found the search to be lacking a bit since I tried to narrow down by state and I got results from many other places that weren’t even near by.


Fishing enthusiasts will already be familiar with Basspro but even if your perfect camping trip doesn’t include fishing you can still find some great stuff at this store that you can use for your upcoming expedition.  They sell their own tents and sale some Coleman tents as well.  They also sell loads of other supplies.


This is an online site that offers tons of different gear and options.  Something unique they offer are tents that they call, “slightly soiled.”  I’m not exactly sure if these are just tents that have been returned without use or not, but you can find some pretty cheap tents this way.


The three main superstores Target, Walmart, and Kmart all include specific aisles at their stores that contain tents, air mattresses, and other camping supplies.  They offer some great prices and will often feature seasonal sales.  Just keep checking your mailboxes and newspapers to see what their weekly specials are.  Also, at least with Target, when you enter the store just look at the walls.  They post their weekly ads on the walls between the two sets of doors.

The options at superstores won’t be quite as extensive as places that are focused on just selling outdoor activities but if you are just looking for an affordable tent you can’t go wrong here.

Club Warehouses: 

Club stores are places like Costco, Sam’s Club and B.J.’s.  They require you to have a paid annual membership in order to get in the store and purchase things.  Their inventory’s change often and you will be hard pressed to find many outdoor supplies during the winter here.  Even in the summer their selections are slim but they usually offer one or two cabin tents and sleeping bags.  If you are looking for a family cabin tent you might want to see what your local club store is offering.  When I stopped at my local Sam’s recently I noticed they had a Coleman 8 person tent although I didn’t catch which model it was.  It was advertised as their easiest to set up tent.  My Sam’s actually had a miniature model of the tent so you could get an idea of what it would look like when it is set up.

Online Stores:

For those who don’t want to venture out of the home to find a tent or other gear you can try numerous online retailers.  One problem with online shopping though is you don’t get to see the product up close and personal.  Don’t get me wrong I do a lot of purchases with Amazon, in particular, but for a big purchase I kind of like to see what I am getting.


Amazon is great because it offers two unique things.  A lot of people review products on there and so you can read through comments about particular gear and tents to see what others have liked and disliked about it. 

Another great feature is Amazon Marketplace.  This is similar to Ebay but no auctions.  You can get both used and new products sold by people other than Amazon.  Each marketplace seller has their own scores and people can leave feedback about their experience with shopping with a particular merchant.  This is a good way to see if the person is trustworthy.  You make your payment through Amazon and than they make the payment to the seller so you don’t need to worry about giving your credit card to some you don’t trust.


Ebay is a great choice for those looking for used tents.  If you plan on doing this be cautious.  You want a used tent that is in new condition or as close as possible to being new.  You don’t want to buy a tent that is ripped or missing parts.  Sometimes you might end up getting one where the instructions are missing as well.  You really just need to be careful when using this.


Their inventory is often pretty small since they get a limited amount of a specific item and sell them until they run out.  You can find some great deals on inexpensive tents, air mattresses and other camping gear using them. 

There are so many other options out there to buy tents and supplies for your camping trips.  It’s also good to price around.  Popular tent brands like Coleman can be offered in many stores.  Look onlineComputer Technology Articles, look at your ads in the paper and compare.  Some places will be selling the same item for much lower prices.

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