REI Co-op Kingdom Insulated Air Review
Cons: Bouncy, too large for some tents, fairly low R-value
Compare to Similar Products
REI Co-op Kingdom Insulated Air
$149.00 at REI
Check Price at REI
|Check Price at Backcountry|
Compare at 2 sellers
$143.76 at Amazon
$79.99 at Amazon
|Pros||Big enough for two people, fabric is soft and quiet to sleep on, some insulation||Bed-like comfort, easy inflation, great value||Very packable, lightweight, warm enough for three season use||Lightweight, packable, great value||Inexpensive, easy to use|
|Cons||Bouncy, too large for some tents, fairly low R-value||Too big for some single person tents||Bouncy, a little noisy, not warm enough for winter||Not as comfortable as foam core camping mattresses||No insulation, bouncy, heavy|
|Bottom Line||Much warmer than non-insulated air mattresses and sleeps two, though still bouncy||All our favorite features we love from a camping mat at a great price||A lightweight and packable mattress that is also comfortable and warm enough for most uses||If you want a mat that you can take on short backpacking trips and you prioritize snuggling over weight savings, this is the pad for you||A classic air mattress, it's easy to use and good for the occasional warm night outdoors|
|Rating Categories||REI Co-op Kingdom I...||REI Co-op Camp Drea...||Therm-a-Rest NeoAir...||Klymit Insulated Do...||EnerPlex Camping Se...|
|Ease of Use (20%)|
|Packed Size (10%)|
|Specs||REI Co-op Kingdom I...||REI Co-op Camp Drea...||Therm-a-Rest NeoAir...||Klymit Insulated Do...||EnerPlex Camping Se...|
|Dimensions||79 x 56 x 6 in||78 x 32 x 4 in||77 x 30 x 4 in||74 x 47 x 3 in||80 x 60 x 9 in|
|Test Model||Asphalt Queen||XL||XLarge||Two person||Queen|
|Length||79 in||78 in||77 in||74 in||80 in|
|Width||56 in||32 in||30 in||47 in||60 in|
|Thickness||6 in||4 in||4 in||3 in||9 in|
|Weight||5.8 lbs||6.38 lbs||2.34 lbs||3.6 lbs||10.94 lbs|
|Type||Pump inflation||Self Inflating||Pump inflation||Pump inflation||Pump inflation|
|Packed Size (inches)||10 in x 20 in||11 in x 30 in||12 x 6 in||7 x 12 in||17 x 17 x 8 in|
|Bed Material||100% polyester with a TPU laminate||Stretch polyester||Polyester||75D polyester||Polyvinyl Chloride with waterproof flock top|
|Valves||One-way||One valve||TwinLock||Flush Flat||One valve|
|Accessories||Stuff sack, air pump||Air Pump/Pillow||Stuff sack, pump, pump sack||Inflation bag/stuff sack||Electric pump, 12 volt car plug, storage sack|
|Breaths to Inflate||N/A||N/A||N/A||N/A||N/A|
Our Analysis and Test Results
It is important to know what you are looking for in a camping mattress before you buy. If you are looking for the highest level of comfort, you may want to look at a foam mattress, which can be as comfortable as the mattress you sleep on at home. If you only sleep out a few nights a summer, and also need something for unexpected guests, an air mattress might be a good fit. The REI Kingdom is an air mattress that delivers a higher level of insulation than many other air mattresses, which can make the difference between sleeping and shivering all night.
REI’s Kingdom is an insulated air mattress that blows up to be 6 inches thick across the surface of the mat. Like all air mattresses, it has a certain amount of bounce to it, especially with two people sleeping on it. If it is fully inflated, there is less bounce, but it may be too firm for comfort. By letting out some air, we found that it felt more cushioned, but also more springy. Two people who move a lot at night may not find this to be the best sleeping situation.
The Kingdom is considerably warmer than the average air mattress, and the fabric exterior is both quiet and soft to the touch.
Ease of Use
The Kingdom comes with a rather large manual hand pump for inflation. The valve has two parts to unscrew — the top cap reveals the one-way inflation valve, which ensures that air doesn’t come out after it's been pumped in. The pump nozzle pushes into this valve for relatively easy inflation. The hand pump is actually quite noisy, though it is dual-action so it inflates on both the pull and push motions. It is fairly low to the ground, as well, making it a bit awkward for taller people to operate.
The hand pump has a setting for deflate, but using it requires opening the deflation valve, where the air dumps out quickly, so we didn’t see any reason to use that side of the pump. For micro-adjusting the level of air in the mattress, we slightly opened the deflation valve until enough air was out to make the bed as soft as we wanted.
While most air mattresses lack insulation to protect you from the air below your body, making them really cold to sleep on, the Kingdom is equipped with some synthetic insulation for warmth. The R-value of 2.6 is enough to take the edge off of cool nights, especially in the summer months. If you are camping at higher altitudes, where nighttime temps can dip into the 30s, or in the early spring, late fall, or winter, you might want to consider a mattress with a higher R-value.
Our testers were pleasantly surprised at the insulating properties of this mattress, however, and for casual campers who primarily sleep out on warmer nights, the Kingdom is worth a look.
The Kingdom is described as a queen-size mattress, 79 x 56 inches, making it large enough for two people and a dog, but too large to fit in many two- or even three-person tents. It is also too wide to fit in a standard pickup truck bed and lacks the insulation to make it comfortable for colder nights out. It is also much too bulky and heavy to carry for a backpacking trip. In other words, this is not the most versatile mattress. On the plus side, it makes a great guest bed and is durable enough for sleeping right on the ground.
Considering the size of the hand pump, which tucks into the rolled-up mattress, the overall packed size of the Kingdom is pretty acceptable for a two-person sleeping setup. It is much too large for backpacking, but it won’t take up much room in the back of the car or in the gear closet at home. It is also notably lighter than many of the other two-person mattresses in our test.
Should You Buy the REI Co-op Kingdom Insulated Air?
While theKingdom costs more than a typical air mattress, it is much warmer and more comfortable than the average air mat. And it sleeps two people. If you want a big camping mattress that can double as a reasonably comfortable guest bed, this is an excellent choice and a good value.
Foam mattresses offer the highest level of comfort, but two-person foam camping mats can be quite large, as well as pricey. If you plan to car camp a lot, investing in a plush foam mat may be worth the investment. If, on the other hand, you are a casual camper who wants more comfort than the average air bed, the Kingdom is worth a look.
— Laurel Hunter
Ad-free. Influence-free. Powered by Testing.
GearLab is founded on the principle of honest, objective, reviews. Our experts test thousands of products each year using thoughtful test plans that bring out key performance differences between competing products. And, to assure complete independence, we buy all the products we test ourselves. No cherry-picked units sent by manufacturers. No sponsored content. No ads. Just real, honest, side-by-side testing and comparison.Learn More