Is A Tent Footprint Worth It? Yes, And Make Your Own For Free

Is A Tent Footprint Worth It Yes, And Make Your Own For Free

Tents are great for camping or even backyard parties. They provide shelter from the rain, sun, wind, and bugs. They are also great for long camping trips where you’ll be hiking or camping for long periods of time.

However, when it comes to maintaining your comfort, then you’ll certainly want to invest in a tent footprint. These are an extra layer that you can insert between the bottom of your tent that you can use to get that extra layer of cushioning.

Although, when you are using one of these tent footprints, then you can expect to have to carry a lot more weight around with you, as it will take up some space in your gear bag. It will also cost money. So is there a way that you can make your own for nothing? Well, keep reading to find out.

What Exactly Is A Tent Footprint?

A tent footprint is basically just a piece of material that goes between the ground and the bottom of your tent. This makes sure that no matter how hard you stomp on the floor of your tent, you won’t damage it.

It’s important to note that not all tents come with this feature. If yours doesn’t, then you need to look into getting one. You don’t want to end up damaging your tent.

We all know how uncomfortable long-term camping can be, especially if you like to go camping for months on end. If you have a sore back, then sleeping on this hard floor will not make things that much easier for you.

So what should you do? Invest in a tent footprint!

You can use any kind of material to create your own footprint. However, I recommend that you choose something that is easy to clean. That way, you won’t have to worry about it being dirty after every trip.

You can buy them online, but they’re often sold at outdoor stores. Just ask someone who works there if they sell them.

Does A Tent Footprint Protect Your Tent?

Yes, absolutely!

When you place your tent footprint under your tent, then it will protect the floor of your tent from any damage. Additionally, it will help to prevent any moisture from seeping through the floor.

This means that you won’t have to spend hours cleaning the floor of your tent after each trip.

If you are going to be using your tent on a frequent basis, then you can expect a lot of footfalls. This will definitely impact the wear and tear on the underneath of your tent. Having a tent footprint is a great way of protecting this membrane-thin layer.

Does A Footprint Keep You Warm?

Footprints make tents more comfortable by keeping people warm. A good sleeping mat will keep them cozy. Heat is lost to the ground during campouts, so footprints will help keep people warm.

They also allow air to circulate better than traditional mats. The airflow helps to keep you cool in hot weather.

How Can Your Footprint Keep Your Tent Waterproof?

Well, the first thing that you need to understand is that when it comes to waterproofing, you really only need two layers: the top layer and the bottom layer.

The top layer needs to be water-resistant. This is usually done with a breathable fabric. Breathability allows the air to pass through the fabric without letting too much water in.

The bottom layer needs to be only slightly waterproof. This is typically achieved by putting down a rubberized or plastic sheet.

Now, if you were to put both of these together, you would get a very effective waterproof tent.

However, if you were to add a third layer, then you could further increase the waterproofing in your tent. This is where the tent footprint really comes in handy.

Does A Footprint Help You To Pitch Your Tent?

A tent footprint makes pitching your tent much easier. When you pitch your tent, you need to ensure that you line up the corners of the tent perfectly.

If you don’t do this correctly, then you can easily cause damage to your tent.

Having a footprint in place will help you to align your tent properly. This will save you time and money as well.

Can Your Tent Footprint Help You Pack Things Away?

It’s true that having a footprint in place will make packing things away much easier. If you want to pack away your tent, then you will need to remove the footprint first.

Once you’ve removed the footprint, then you’ll be able to fold the tent into its smallest size.

Then, all you need to do is roll everything back up again.

What Are Some Benefits Of Using A Tent Footprint?

There are many benefits associated with using a tent footprint. Here are some of the most important ones:

  1. Protection – The first benefit of having a tent footprint is protection.When you place your tent footprint, it protects the floor of your tent. This means that there will be less dirt and debris getting inside your tent, as you can shake it off outside your tent once you have used it.
  2. Comfort – Another benefit of placing a footprint under your tent is comfort. This is because your feet stay dry at night due to the extra layer. They won’t feel wet or cold if you are using a footprint.
  3. Ease Of Use – We all know how hard it is to set up a tent. A footprint will make life easier for you. You no longer need to worry about whether your tent has been pitched correctly. All you need to do is simply place it on the ground. This will make setting up your tent very simple.
  4. Durability – One final benefit of using a footprint is durability.
  5. Because they are made from strong materials, they last a long time. In fact, you can expect them to last for years.

Can You Buy A Tent Footprint?

Yes, you can buy a tent footprint online. However, you should always check out the reviews before buying one.

Some people say that they are not durable enough while others say that they are just fine.

How Much Does A Tent Footprint Cost?

The price of a tent footprint depends on what type of material you choose.

For example, you can find a footprint made from nylon for around $40.

On the other hand, you can find a polyester footprint for around $50.

However, these prices may vary depending on the retailer.

Which Type Should I Choose?

Choosing between nylon and polyester is easy. Both types of footprints work equally well. However, there are pros and cons associated with each type. Let’s take a look at both of them now.

Nylon Footprints


  • Nylon footprints are more affordable than polyester footprints.
  • They are lightweight


  • Nylon footprints tend to wear out faster than polyester footprints. Therefore, you’ll need to replace them sooner.

Polyester Footprints


  • Polyester footprints are more durable than nylon footprints. This is due to the heavier weight.
  • They will last you a long time, owing to the thickness and the strength of the materials.


  • Polyester footprints are generally more expensive than their nylon cousins.

How Can You Make Your Own Tent Footprint?

If you want to save money, then you can easily make your own footprint.

All you need is a piece of cardboard. Then, cut this in half so that you get two pieces. Next, use an Exacto knife to carefully remove any excess material.

Then, fold the two pieces over each other. Finally, tape them together.

That’s it! Now, you have yourself a great tent footprint.

You can also cut your own piece of thick foam to the shape of your tent. Do this by placing it on the ground when your tent is half set up and then cutting it to fit exactly. Make sure there is no excess, as this might alter the shape of your tent and cause the footprint to bubble.

Is It Possible To Use A Tarp For A Footprint?

Tents should be protected from rain or snow by a waterproof cover called a tarp. Campers and backpackers use tarps as an extra layer of protection. Tarps prevent damage to the bottom of a tent caused by sticks, rocks, and contact with other objects.

However, if you don’t have a tarp, you can still protect your tent with a footprint. Simply put it under the tent and secure it with stakes.

What Is The Best Way To Set Up My Tent?

When it comes to setting up your tent, there are several ways to do it. All of them are pretty much the same.

First, unfold the tent completely. Then, place the poles in the center of the tent.

Next, lay the flooring sheets on top of the poles. Then, tie them down using ropes.

Finally, pull the ends of the ropes through the loops on the corners of the tent.

Now, you’re ready to go camping.

Can I Put Anything Inside My Tent?

Can I Put Anything Inside My Tent

Yes, you can put anything inside your tent. However, keep in mind that some things might block the airflow.

Also, remember that the flooring sheet needs to be placed directly on the ground. Otherwise, moisture could seep into the interior of the tent.

This would lead to mildew and mold growth.

Should I Use A Groundsheet Or Flooring Sheet In My Tent?

A groundsheet or flooring sheet is used to provide additional protection for your tent. These sheets help prevent water from getting inside the tent.

They are usually made of vinyl, and they come in various sizes. If you plan to camp in wet areas, then you should consider buying one.

Otherwise, you can just use a regular sleeping bag liner.

Does a Sleeping Bag Liner Work As Well As A Groundsheet?

Sleeping bags and liners are very useful. They help keep your sleeping bag dry while you sleep.

However, they aren’t designed to provide protection against wind or rain. So, if you plan to camp in rainy weather, then you should buy a groundsheet instead.

Do I Need To Cover My Tent With Plastic When Setting It Up?

No, you don’t need to cover your tent with plastic during setup. This will only make it harder to take apart. Also, it won’t add much protection to your tent.

However, you can always cover it with a tarp after you’ve finished setting up your tent.

How Long Does It Take To Set Up My Tent On The Ground?

It takes about 15 minutes to set up your tent. You’ll need to spend at least 10 minutes unfolding the tent and putting the poles in the middle.

Then, you’ll need another 5 minutes to attach the flooring sheets to the poles. Finally, you’ll need to tie the tent’s corners together.

The Disadvantages Of A Tent Footprint

If you decide to use a footprint, then you’ll need to remove it before taking down the tent. Otherwise, you risk damaging the tent when pulling out the stakes.

Also, you’ll need to carry around the footprint when going back home.

Another thing to note is that footprints tend to get dirty quickly. So, you’ll need to clean them regularly.

Which Type Of Tent Should I Buy?

There are many types of tents available today. Some of them are better than others.

So, what type of tent should you choose? Here are a few tips:

  • Size – Make sure that the size of your tent matches the number of people who will be staying in it.
  • Weight – Try to find a lightweight tent. This way, you won’t have to worry about carrying it around all day long.
  • Price – Look for a tent that has been well-made. Don’t pay too much for a cheap tent.

What Is The Best Way To Store My Tent?

You can store your tent by hanging it up outside. However, this isn’t recommended because of the high chances of damage.

Instead, you should hang it up indoors. Then, you can simply fold it away when not in use.

Can I Use An Air Mattress In My Tent?

Yes, you can! But, an air mattress is not as comfortable as a sleeping bag liner.

An air mattress provides less support than a sleeping bag liner. So, you might feel more tired on a night spent camping.

This means that you’ll need to use a sleeping bag liner instead.

Are There Any Other Ways To Protect My Tent From Rain?

Yes, there are other ways to protect your tent from rain. One of these methods involves using a tarp.

Tarp covers are great for protecting your tent from heavy rains. However, they do require some effort to put up.

So, if you’re looking for something easier, then you should consider buying a ground sheet.

Our Final Say

We hope that our guide to the best tent footprints, as well as how you can make your own, has helped you to decide which are the best for your needs. You’ll need to make sure that it has the requisite amount of thickness to keep you comfortable and dry, while being easy to fold up when not in use.

About the author

Jesse Blaine

Jesse is the owner of, contributes to a lot of the material, and directs day-to-day operations. He lives in Colorado with his wife and kids and loves the outdoors. He’s an avid skier, hiker, kiteboarder, and adventure sports explorer. Jesse has also traveled the world and lived in five different countries. He speaks several languages and loves communicating with people

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