Rooftop Tents: A Buyer’s Guide From Artemis Overland – Artemis Overland Hardware
Alu-Cab Rooftop Tent on top of a pickup truck

Rooftop Tents: A Buyer’s Guide From Artemis Overland

One of the best parts of camping outdoors is gazing up at the stars. But what if you could get just a little closer to those stars while getting away from bugs and critters on the ground? This is possible, thanks to rooftop tents! 

Rooftop tents, either hard or soft, are designed to attach to the roof of your vehicle and easily pop out to provide a lofty camping experience. A ladder is included for campers to enter. 

Hard shell rooftop tents are an incredible piece of overlanding gear, but if you’re thinking of purchasing one for the first time, there’s a lot to consider. What do rooftop tents have to offer? Can you afford one? How do you choose the right one? At Artemis Overland, we’ve got you covered (pun intended)! 

In this buyer’s guide, we’ll share everything you need to know before you purchase your first rooftop tent. 

Rooftop Tents: Pros and Cons

Purchasing a rooftop tent is a big decision, and often a big investment. To make sure it’s a good fit for your lifestyle, you’ll want to weigh the pros and cons:


  • Elevation: You’ll have less contact with bugs and critters.
  • Ease of use: Some rooftop tents take less than 5 minutes for complete set-up.
  • Durability: Hard-shell rooftop tents are waterproof when stored. 
  • Comfort: No more sleeping on the ground, and many rooftop tents come with high quality mattresses. 


  • Price: Rooftop tents are often more expensive than traditional ground tents.
  • Drag: Although well-designed rooftop tents are aerodynamic, you’ll add more weight to your vehicle, giving you less fuel efficiency.
  • Use of car: While having your tent on top of your vehicle is awesome for camping, you’ll have to take the time to take it down whenever you need to drive away from your campsite.

Fitting Your Rooftop Tent to Your Vehicle

When shopping for a new rooftop tent, you’ll want to refer to your vehicle’s owner’s manual to get information about your vehicle’s rack, or your aftermarket rack. Make sure your rack is capable of holding the weight of your new rooftop tent. 

The weight should be listed in the description of any rooftop tent you’re considering. The description of the rooftop tent should also include the specific vehicles--year, make and model--that it’s compatible with. 

Look for the static and dynamic weight ratings in your vehicle’s owner’s manual. Dynamic weight capacity refers to how much weight your vehicle’s roof can safely tolerate while driving. Static weight is how much weight it can safely hold when not in motion. 

At Artemis Overland, we’re glad to help you find rooftop tents that are compatible with your particular vehicle. 

Selecting the Right Rooftop Tent

Finally, you’ll want to consider brands, styles and sizes of rooftop tents, and choose the best fit for your family and lifestyle. 

One of the main choices you’ll be faced with is whether to purchase a hard-shell or soft-shell tent. While hard-shells are more durable and easier to set up, they are heavier and more expensive. Soft-shells are lighter and less expensive, but they’re generally less durable, and can require more time to set up. 

Rooftop tents come in a variety of sizes and styles, so consider your needs: 

  • How many people will my tent need to sleep?
  • How many people does set-up require?
  • What accessories do I care about (mattress, shelving, pockets, lighting)?
  • What climate will I be camping in and how insulated should my tent be?

Shop Rooftop Tents at Artemis Overland

If you’re ready to purchase a rooftop tent, we’re here to help! Artemis Overland is a top-rated seller of overlanding gear in Springfield, MO. Our passionate and knowledgeable sales team will help you find the perfect equipment and accessories for your next adventure. Visit our online shop today, or call us at 417-501-1190 for personalized assistance from us.

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