05/06/2013
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Top tips for buying a camping table

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Who would have thought there was so much choice out there? Size, materials, style, colours and, of course, prices. We could be talking about any camping product, but it’s tables.

But first, do you actually need a table? Well, you may prefer eating off the ground, or maybe you’re the type who happily wanders off to the woods and comes back with sufficient attire to construct some kind of makeshift tabletop. Or, just possibly, you pitch up somewhere in the locality of a table-and-bench set-up kindly provided by the site operator (it can happen, but don’t rely on it).
No, I’d say for the majority of campers a table is a camping must. And the good news is we can afford to be pretty choosy these days.

Here’s a few top tips when it comes to choosing the right table for camping.
 
TOP TIPS
OK, once you know how many folk you want to sit around it and any other uses you may have in mind, there’s arguably not a lot to think about when it comes to choosing the right table for camping. Anyway, here are some thoughts:
  • Simple, really, but do consider what exactly you want to use your table for. Inside as well as outside the tent? Mealtimes? Or just sitting around? And, does it need to take a lot of weight?
  • Can you carry it? Do make sure it fits either in or on your car, rucksack, bike rack or whatever, along with all you other gear. Hence, our unique carbootability rating here!
  • Like all camping gear, tables are going to take a bit of a battering and should be capable of standing up to the weather. As ever, you generally get what you pay for, but there’s no reason for not checking thoroughly when you go to the shops.
  • Ease of use? On-line shopping may be increasingly the rage, but you won’t get the chance to see and feel the thing you’re buying, nor much in the way of “independent” advice. Get to your local camping shop and check out the scores before you do anything else.
  • Weight, too, is an issue. Most of the tables here use aluminium to keep the weight down, but you have every right to expect stability is not compromised.
  • Child-friendly? Some tables can be rather too clever for their own good. There is always the possibility a small child will trap a finger in any folding or locking mechanism. Beware, but also do check how effective any clips and bolts are in making sure a table stays up and stable.
  • Adjustability is a major plus. Look for height adjustment of the legs. You’re never going to pitch on the exact level every time. Usually, this adds to overall stability, too.
  • Other uses? There’s no reason these shouldn’t be used at home in the garden, or anywhere else you need a temporary outdoor table.
For more top camping tips and buyers guides, click here. Or for the latest camping gear reviews, click here.

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