How to Choose a Camping Table

Wooden Camping Table And Chairs

One of the often overlooked but absolutely essential items for camping is the camp table. Whether you are preparing food, playing board games or cards with the kids or simply need a place to store items, the camp table can be a lifesaver.

Camp tables are not expensive and they fold up or break down so that they are very easy to store. In fact, there are some camp tables that you can even strap to your backpack and take with you on the hiking trail; they are so light and portable. But choosing the right one requires taking a look at all of the options and accessories out there.

Choosing a Portable Camping Table

When it comes to choosing a portable camp table, you have to pay attention to three things:

  • Whether you are able to easily pack the table from the car to the campsite, even if you have to hike a short distance to get there.
Portable Adjustable Table on Grass
  • Whether your table is going to be stable and stand up to the wind and other elements.
  • How many people you have at camp and how much space you will need.

Of course, these are just the basics. You still need to look at the actual qualities of the table and make sure that it is high-quality and will meet your needs.

These three factors are the most important but you should also look at the height of the table, how quickly it sets up and tears down, the material that it is made from and whether the table has useful accessories such as enclosed racks for storage underneath that protect food and other items from animals.

The Folding Camping Table

The folding camp table is the most popular option out there and you will find many different models and brands to choose from. One of the first things that you’ll want to look at is how tall the table is, and how much surface area it gives you to work.

Pot And Glass on Foldable Table

With folding tables specifically, you want to look at two different factors. First, how easy is the table to break down and fold up? If you have to use all of your strength to fold the table or it is a model that is challenging to set up, you may want to look at something different.

Second, you want to make sure that it will fit easily in your vehicle when it is folded up. That’s why tables that both have folding legs and fold in half are popular at camp. If the table has a handle that makes for easy carrying, that is a bonus.

The Roll up Camping Table

Another option out there is the roll up camping table. Roll up tables are much preferred by those who have space at a premium. If you have a six foot folding table in the back of a compact car you are going to have trouble fitting passengers and other gear. For these people, a roll up table is perfect.

Roll Up Camping Table on Grass

A roll up table is one that the legs fold under and the table actually rolls into a tube, which makes it very easy to fit into your car and gets lot of gear on top of it. Roll up tables are not always as sturdy as folding tables, but they are great for camping because you can unload them and set them up in seconds, put them in a backpack to take with you on a hike and are usually a great deal lighter than folding tables.

The Small Camp Table

Another type of table that you may want to consider is the small camp table. These are usually very portable, very light and tend to have small surface areas. However, they can be useful for storage space, extra food preparation areas or simply to keep items within easy reach.

Man Sitting at Small Camping Table

Small tables are cheap and you can fit several of them in your vehicle. Many of them even have mesh pockets and enclosed storage so that you can put your food and personal items away. The nice thing about these tables in relation to camping is that they will fit in most tents.

The Lightweight Camp Table

Finally, there is the lightweight camping table. This actually can apply to some of the other table types, but the main advantages of keeping your table light and less than one or two pounds is that you can easily carry it to your campsite if you have to park far away and you can take it backpacking if you choose to set up your campsite on the spur of the moment.

Holding Lightweight Camp Table

Lightweight tables are often flimsy so they may not work for everything, but they are extremely inexpensive and it is handy to have a few of them around.

Five Steps to Choosing The Best Camping Table

  • Decide what you will be using the table for (dining, storage, preparing food, etc.)
  • Determine what amount of space you need your table to have (larger groups will need larger tables for dining or preparing food)
Camp Table on Floor
  • Decide how much height you want your table to have and make sure that if dining at it that your chairs will fit under it. For cooking, you probably want a taller table so you don’t have to bend over. Note: there are adjustable tables out there which can be a much better solution, particularly if you want the table to be as versatile as possible.
  • Look at tables that you will be able to easily fit in your vehicle that will not be so restrictive as to keep you from stowing other gear.
  • Check out the reviews of the table, make sure it is stable and that customers are happy with it, and then buy from a company that will allow you to return it without hassle if it doesn’t work out the way you’d hoped.

Leave a Comment: