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The Best Mattresses for Your Vanlife

the best mattresses for a roadtrip

There are endless benefits to leading the vanlife, but comfort doesn’t tend to be one of them. Still, getting sufficient rest is essential to your overall well-being. So, finding a good mattress and creating a high-quality sleeping environment is a must.

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With some right decisions, you can get the same sleep quality in your van and your bedroom. Let’s examine the basics.

The Best Mattresses And Bed Options For A Roadtrip

Bed Options

The bed is one of your van design’s central elements, especially if you’re starting from scratch. There are many options for you to choose from now that vanlife is gaining popularity among the general population. However, they tend to fall into one of these three categories.

Fixed Beds

The traditional type creates a readily available sleeping area, making it easier to pick a comfortable mattress. Even if your frame can’t fit your typical-sized mattress, you can easily cut one.

Convertible Beds

Convertibles are another super-popular option, especially if you’re strapped for space. You get two modes – a workspace during the day and a sleeping surface when the night comes.


Futons that turn into full-blown beds are an excellent two-in-one solution. Plus, having a couch makes the van feel like home. However, these tend to be rough on your back, so you might consider purchasing the best mattress in a box as a topper to curb that disadvantage.

Material Options

Once you pick a frame, it’s time to consider your mattress material. The options are many here, but the most frequent choices include:

  • Innerspring. These are mattresses you find in most houses. They’re challenging to customize and fit, but if you have a standard bed frame, they’ll make you feel like you’re sleeping at home.
  • Gel. You can cut this material with ease, and it’s a fantastic solution for hot summer nights as it dissipates heat.
  • Pillow tops. If you enjoy cushiony, soft beds, you can add a pillow top on your existing mattress for extra support.
  • Air. Finally, this option is great for minimalist van dwellers. They’re easy to store and roll out when needed, but they can lack in comfort.

Other Considerations

There are several other criteria to consider when building a van bed and picking the best mattress. Logically enough, these can make or break your overall vanlife experience.

The first thing to check is your mattress size. Accurately measure the dedicated area and ensure there’s enough room for you to sleep comfortably. Cutting the material to fit the space is a must.

Check the thickness of the material you went for, too, especially if your vehicle is low. Nobody wants to awake inches away from their ceiling.

Firmness is a matter of preference. Either way, go firmer if you plan on using it for a seating area, too. In this case, a topper is your best friend, ensuring you get the best of both worlds.

The Bottom Line

Overall, remember that the bed you put in your van can do wonders for your comfort or make you feel awful after nights of poor sleep. While choosing the best option, consider your sleeping habits and the environments in which you’ll be spending time.

There are many available options, and it’s on you to find the one that fits best with your lifestyle and desires you have for your vanlife. Find a good mattress, and you’ll wake up each day, refreshed and appreciating your choice to go off and enjoy a life of freedom.

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