When you search through internet for an 8-person tent, you’re going to use for your next outdoor adventure you are going to be bombarded by a lot of options. By bombarded, I mean the search will yield 194.000.000 results for you to choose from and that’s only at the time of writing. I’m pretty sure that the number will only go up. Some of them will look the same, others will look unique.
That will lead you to a hard time to decide what tent do you want and need. And here comes the complicated tent jargon that you might have no idea if you need that. Well, this article will tell you exactly what you need to look for, what makes a good tent, and suggest the top ten 8-person tent that you can find on market.
How To Choose The Best 8-Person Tent
To start your hunt for the best 8-person tent, you need to define the things you will need. Every person out there has their own best 8-person tent that will satisfy their needs or almost all their wants. Tents can be complicated; I get it, starting from choosing one to getting them up. You’re probably here because you don’t know which to choose from the catalog of tents. To make them simpler, I’ll tell you what are the three main things you need to consider when buying an 8-person tent.
Three-season or Four-season?
The most important one is to know if you are going to stay in a cold place or a hot one. You don’t want to be freezing in the cold because the heat just goes out of your tent or sweating through the night because the material of your tent is just too thick.
If your next adventure will be in places that are hot or just normal, you are going to need a three-season tent. They offer protection against the sun, rain, and weak winds. They are typically made of mesh materials and have a lot of ventilation. Because of their materials, three-season tents are lighter compared to four-season tents which is something to consider but we will get to that.
Although this type of tent is called “Four-season”, it is mostly used in cold places. Places where winds reach 25+ mph and snows heavily. With thicker materials and closed-off vents, four-season tents will keep you warm and protect you against strong winds and heavy snow.
So, to summarize that, normal or hot temperature? Choose three-season tents. Cold and windy places? Go with four-season tents.
Since you are going to buy an 8-person or more tent, you will probably need a lot of space for your guests. You will need to consider where are you going to put the bags? Is there enough space for people to sleep in? You don’t want to sleep outside because there is no space left in the tent. Knowing this will help you choose the right tent for your group and will result in an overall better camping experience.
Are you going to hike through mountains, walk miles of trails, or climb through large rocks? Then weight is going to be something you will need to consider more. Eight person tents will be heavier than small, and lightweight tents designed to shelter fewer people. Carrying a large bag is going to be cumbersome and will lead to a less enjoyable experience. But if you just want to camp outside in your backyard, you can ignore this and go to the next thing to consider.
So, these are three main things you will need to consider when buying an 8-person tent. But there are some things that you’ll want to consider.
If there is no space left for gear inside the tent, vestibules are a floorless space outside your tent and offer some protection to your gear against the environment.
Camping with tall people will make this something to consider. It’s necessary for people to be able to sit up inside the tent.
There are tents where trekking poles can be used as the tent poles. This is something considered since it could reduce weight and enable you to bring more stuff for your adventure. Also, based on the reviews, aluminum poles are better than fiberglass poles since they have a longer lifespan.
Top 10 Best 8-Person Tent
The Coleman Montana Tent satisfies all the things you need to consider for a three-season tent. It has vast space inside that can accommodate your gear and luggage. It’s lightweight, weighing only 22.3 pounds or 10 kilograms. It comes with extra features like an E-port for electricity, the door is attached to a hinge, and the elite version comes with a built-in light and self-rolling windows.
Welded Floors – Quality floors
Inverted Seams – for waterproofing
The Coleman Evanston might be the most balanced tent on this list. It’s a three-season tent that can fit up to 8 persons and two queen size beds which means it has decent space. And it offers a unique porch-like area called screen room that you can lounge around or as a vestibule to store your gear and luggage. It weighs 26.4 pounds or roughly 12 kilograms which is light for the amount of space it has.
Heavy for its size
The TOMOUNT Tent is huge and can accommodate up to eight people at a time but still has enough space for gear and luggage. It’s a three-season tent and comes with an E-port for power inside the tent, its waterproof rating is over 4000mm that is higher compared to the usual 2000mm that other tents have. It is also very light for an eight-person tent, it weighs 17.65 pounds or 8 kilograms.
4000mm waterproof rating
The Floor has no declared waterproofing
The Core Extended Dome tent can accommodate 9 persons but with fewer people, it can store more gear and luggage. It’s a three-season tent, if you want to stargaze, it has a removable rainfly that exposes the mesh material that is see-through. It weighs 18.25 pounds or 8 kilograms. It has additional features like the E-port for electricity, advance venting for better ventilation, a tent height enough for a 6-foot person to stand up.
Very low waterproof rating – 600mm
The OZARK Trail Family Cabin Tent can fit up to ten people and offers a wide space for storage justifying its lack of vestibule for additional storage. It boasts that it can fit three queen-sized beds and it has three doors. This three-season tent is very open and gets a lot of ventilation. It weighs 27.6 pounds or 12.5 kilograms.
Very basic tent
Lack of features and add-ons
The NTK Cherokee GT is another three-season tent that can accommodate eight to nine persons at a time. This tent is also great for tall people since its center height is 6.1 ft. With fewer people the space for gear is vast. It weighs 18.74 pounds or 8.5 kilograms. The tent comes with a mosquito mesh to prevent bugs from getting inside and an E-port for electricity inside the tent. With the rainfly attached, all vents are covered, and the only available ventilation is an opened door. Inside the tent, there is no division whatsoever unlike other tents and privacy is almost non-existent.
2500mm waterproof rating
The NTK Arizona GT can be occupied by up to 12 persons. Because of that a group of eight can occupy this tent and store a good amount of gear. It’s a three-season tent with a removable rainfly to allow more ventilation. It weighs 26 pounds or 12 kilograms. This tent is a very basic one, it has the standard NTK mosquito mesh, a reliable waterproofing; it’s rated 2500mm. This tent doesn’t have much to offer but the basics.
2500mm waterproof rating
The Coleman Tenaya Lake Cabin Tent has a three-season and four-season variation and is almost the perfect 8-person tent considering the important things you need to consider for an 8-person tent. It offers huge space for your beds, storage space, but it’s a heavyweight tent and weighs 41 pounds or almost 19 kilograms. For the features, it has an E-port that enables you to bring power inside the tent. Plus, it has a built-in closet. What more could you ask for?
Very high center-height
The Coleman Octagon 98 tent is an enormous tent with a center height of 6-foot 10-inch center height. This is the best tent on the list for tall persons for your group. Although this is a three-season tent, it’s rated to withstand winds of 35+ mph. When the rainfly is removed, big vents are exposed which makes the tent very cool. It weighs 40.9 pounds or 18.55 kilograms which is lighter than the Tenaya Lake Cabin Tent but still considered a heavyweight.
Can withstand strong winds
Very high center-height
Good ventilation when rainfly is removed
Lack of features and add-ons
The NTK Super Arizona GT is a large tent that can hold up to 12 people. The space is considerable and can store your gear and luggage inside. Its mesh windows promise to keep mosquitoes and small bugs while still providing ventilation. With 6.9 ft as its center height, this one is also perfect for tall people. It weighs 39.77 pounds or 18.04 kilograms. This is the last one on the list because it offers the fewest features. But if you just need an eight-person tent this one could still be your guy.
Lack of features and add-ons
Frequently Asked Questions
What is a Rainfly?
A Rainfly is a waterproof sheet that is used to cover your tent to make it rainproof as much as possible. Most tents come with their own rain fly and is an accessory which can be removed when it’s not raining for additional ventilation.
Which material is the best for tents?
There are four main materials that are used for tents.
Canvas, which is cotton-based soaks up water so in the rain it will leak inside the tent. There are ways to waterproof the canvas but that’s for another article. So, this material might not be the best for your next adventure.
Nylon, this material is light and does not soak up water as much as cotton. But additional measures can be done to waterproof it. A lot of tents use nylon as their materials, but one major downside of nylon is it’s susceptible to UV light. Over time, if exposed to the sun, nylon is slowly ruined. Nylon tents are generally more expensive compared to other materials but if you can afford it, Nylon material tents are reliable.
Felts are used in traditional tents like Yurts by the Mongolians. Traditionally it is made of animal furs or wool, but the material is also created using synthetic fibers. Felt is not really used for commercially available tents but it’s worth mentioning.
Polyester is the material of most of the tents on the top ten list. Just like nylon, it doesn’t absorb that much water, it is lightweight and susceptible to UV light. Polyester tents are cheaper and more affordable than nylon tents. So, Polyester if the go-to material if you’re on a budget and need a trusty tent that would shelter you from the harsh outdoors.
All of the materials mentioned would eventually be defeated by water. If used in wet conditions without proper waterproofing, most tents would leak. There are countermeasures that are done to stay dry inside your tent.
Seam-sealing – now some tents come with protected seams for additional protection against water. Tents don’t usually come with pre-applied seam sealers and you to apply it yourself. A seam-sealer is a chemical that is used to coat the seams of your tent to prevent water from getting inside your tent.
Urethane Coating – tents come with this pre-applied but over time it degrades with exposure to UV light. If your tent starts leaking, it might be time to reapply some urethane coating on your rainfly and tent.
Rainfly – This is a no-brainer but use your rainfly to cover your tent. Even if all the vents are closed, all materials will soak up water and your tent will be a shower instead.
Waterproof rating – to measure the amount of water a tent can withstand; they are tested against how much pressure they can take. It is measured by millimeters(mm) and usually good tents have ratings of 2000mm and it can go up to 10000mm.
Outside the tent, you have ways of waterproofing your tent and prevent it from getting inside. Inside the tent, you might have a problem with condensation. When your breath and body warm up the air in the tent and comes in contact with the cold surface of the tent, condensation occurs. Water droplets will start to form inside the tent. To prevent this, you need to open some ventilation. This will allow the warm air to escape outside your tent and decrease condensation inside your tent.
I hope this article helped you find the right 8-person tent for you or narrowed it down to a list. You might have noticed there is only one four-season tent on this list. The reason for that is, four-season tents are for cold weather and because of that, they are generally small to store warm air inside the tent. Plus, they are brought up to high places and as you’ve noticed, 8-person tents are heavy.