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TravelChair Joey Review

This is an excellent camp chair that provides a comfortable and sturdy seat.
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Price:  $100 List | $54.69 at Amazon
Compare prices at 2 resellers
Pros:  Comfortable, study
Cons:  Heavy
Manufacturer:   TravelChair
By Lauren DeLaunay ⋅ Senior Review Editor  ⋅  Jan 7, 2020
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76
OVERALL
SCORE


RANKED
#4 of 12
  • Comfort - 30% 9
  • Size - 30% 6
  • Stability - 25% 8
  • Versatility - 15% 7

Our Verdict

The TravelChair Joey quickly impressed our team. Our testers love its stability and comfort, and, though not particularly lightweight, find it to be an excellent choice for adventures close to home. While other products in this review excel in single categories, like size, the Joey, with a high overall score in nearly every category, is highly comfortable and one of our top choices for car camping or short backpacking trips.


Compare to Similar Products

Our Analysis and Test Results

The Joey is one of the most comfortable chairs in this review, and its wide, sturdy feet make it a great purchase for any environment. We would recommend this chair to any of our friends or family looking for a comfortable, portable camp chair at a very reasonable cost.

Performance Comparison


From left to right: TravelChair Joey  Helinox Swivel  REI Flexlite.
From left to right: TravelChair Joey, Helinox Swivel, REI Flexlite.

Comfort


It's a nice change of pace to review a luxury item, as it provides the unique opportunity to be concerned with comfort as function, not in addition to it. The Joey provides an excellent place to sit and relax after a long day of adventuring.

We felt very supported in the strong material of this chair. It's made of thick canvas, and stands out compared to models with flimsy material — some of which left us afraid of sitting down too forcefully! The Joey also has excellent mesh panels for ventilation that are well-positioned for optimal breathability. We were happy to snooze here on a hot summer day.

Soaking up sunshine in the Joey. You can see where the fabric is ventilated across the entire back and sides.
Soaking up sunshine in the Joey. You can see where the fabric is ventilated across the entire back and sides.

While this seat feels slightly more shallow than some other options in our review, the remarkable stability allows you to sink back and use up all the available space. The sides are relatively high, but this allowed us to feel snug and secure despite the slightly awkward arm positioning. A favorite aspect of this chair is the nice high seat. Eleven inches off the ground, we had an easy time getting in and out of the Joey, as opposed to many of the chairs we tested that sit very low to or directly on the ground.

Size


The main reason the Joey lost points in this review is due to its weight. At 38 ounces, this chair is not the heaviest in our review, but it's close.

As a purely backpacking item, this chair is too heavy. If we needed something to carry far into the backcountry, there are a few great models that come in under 20 ounces. However, weight does not hold the Joey back from being an excellent camp or beach chair. It folds easily, compacts to nearly the same size as any of the other tent-style chairs in this review, and can fit nicely in a backpack or beach bag. And while carrying this chair for miles on end probably doesn't make sense, it is an excellent piece to bring to your local climbing area as a belay seat or spot to rest in between laps on your favorite route.

Packed up and ready to relax.
Packed up and ready to relax.

Stability


A chair seems like a great thing to bring into the backcountry — until you can't find a solid place to put it down, or you fall over into a puddle! Stability is a major issue with travel chairs, and the Joey stands out in the pack for its great performance on any surface.

The wide feet make it nearly impossible to tip the Joey over, and it's easy to use on a variety of surfaces. This seat doesn't take home any awards, but it is one of our favorites for car camping or in locations where weight is less critical. And while other chairs sink into sand or mud, the Joey will keep you upright and dry.

Versatility


When traveling, we love having products that serve more than the original purpose. The smart feet of the Joey make this one of the more versatile products we tested. It sits high off the ground, and its broad feet keep it from sinking into sand, so it's great for the beach.

Taking a break in the Buttermilks with the Joey.
Taking a break in the Buttermilks with the Joey.

This chair is also excellent on grass and uneven surfaces. We wish it featured a side pocket for extra storage, but that's just about the only thing we would change. Because of its weight, the Joey is too cumbersome to bring on longer backcountry adventures, but we would pick it over most any other in this review for activities close to the car.

Value


The Joey is one of the least expensive of the tent-style chairs we tested for this review, and for that reason, we think it offers excellent value. It is widely versatile, very comfortable, and we would gladly recommend it to anyone looking for a well-rounded portable seat.

Conclusion


We realize we're deviating from the backpacking setting of this review just a little bit here. We just couldn't help but want to appreciate all of this product's great qualities, and we wouldn't be surprised if you get so attached to yours that you do end up schlepping it into the mountains. You can't put a price on comfort, and fortunately, you don't have to negotiate much with the TravelChair Joey. We're confident you'll make your friends jealous at your next picnic with this excellent buy.

Sand  rock  or grass  the Joey is an excellent choice.
Sand, rock, or grass, the Joey is an excellent choice.


Lauren DeLaunay