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Updated: 18 May 2022

Best air beds

Find out which are the most comfortable and durable air beds you can buy
Matthew Knight
A couple sitting on an air bed

To find the best air beds we recruited a 40-strong panel of people and purchased 11 popular air beds ranging in price from £22 to £160.

We tested double air beds and king size air beds with built-in pumps from brands such Argos, Dreamcatcher, Outwell, Vango, Yawn and more. We also tested a few manually blown-up beds to investigate whether these are just as good or better than inflatable beds with built-in pumps.

Our tests prove that you don't have to spend big. Two of the three Best Buys we found can be bought for under £100.

Prices correct as of 28 April 2022.

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The best air beds from our test

Only logged-in Which? members can view the inflatable bed test results below. If you're not yet a member, you'll see an alphabetically ordered list of the double air beds we tested. 

Join Which? now to get instant access to our test results and Best Buy recommendations below.

Active Era Premium King Size Air Bed

Cheapest price
: £82.99 at Active Era. Also available at Amazon

Other sizes available: £72.99 for a single at Active Era

Max user weight: 250kg

How do you inflate it? Built-in pump, but it can also be inflated with a manual pump, so it's suitable as a camping air bed

Dimensions when inflated (H x W x D): 42cm x 148cm x 197cm

Dimensions when folded (H x W x D): 17cm x 41cm x 38cm

Cover material: Soft touch waterproof flock

Additional features: It has an in-built raised pillow

This is a top pick according to the Independent, but our tests uncovered a compelling reason why this air bed shouldn't be on your shortlist. 

Log in now or join Which? to unlock our review of this double air bed instantly.

Bestway Comfort Quest Soft Back Double Air Bed

Only available at Argos for £82

Other sizes available: None

Max user weight: 300kg

How do you inflate it? Built-in pump

Dimensions when inflated (H x W x D): 45cm x 130cm x 187cm

Dimensions when folded (H x W x D): 21cm x 46cm x 41cm

Cover material: Soft-top flocked

Additional features: Carry bag, headboard

The headboard on this air bed takes up some of the sleeping space. This means it ended up being one of the smaller doubles we tested, so much so that a double sheet ends up being a bit baggy on it. 

Did its smaller sleeping space let it down? Log in now or join Which? to find out.

Bestway Fortech Air Bed King Size

Only available at Dreams for £90

Other sizes available: £79.95 for a Queen at All Round Fun

Max user weight: 350kg

How do you inflate it? Built-in pump

Dimensions when inflated (H x W x D): 43cm x 148cm x 198cm

Dimensions when folded (H x W x D): 19cm x 41cm x 46cm

Cover material: Flocked top

Additional features: Carry bag

This air bed takes twice as long to inflate as the fastest in our test, but is it comfortable? Does the rubber have a strange odour? And does it make a lot of noise when you or your partner turns?

Log in now or join Which? to get the answers to all these questions and more in our full review.

Dreamcatcher Deluxe Air Bed Double

Cheapest price
: £59.99 Futura Direct. Also available at Amazon

Other sizes available: £79.99 for a King size at Amazon

Max user weight: not stated

How do you inflate it? Built-in pump, but can also be inflated with a manual pump so it's suitable as a camping air bed

Dimensions when inflated (H x W x D): 49cm x 139cm x 190cm

Dimensions when folded (H x W x D): 22cm x 42cm x 34cm

Cover material: Soft flocking

Additional features: Carry bag

It takes a little longer for the built-in pump to blow this bed up than the fastest in our test. But that can be forgiven if this bed is super comfy, doesn't deflate and is quiet to move around on.  

Log in now or join Which? to find out if we'd recommend this bed for a great night's sleep.

Outwell Flock Superior Double Airbed with Built in Pump

Outwell Flock air bed
Cheapest price:
£87.21 at Wow Camping. Also available at WM Camping and Amazon

Other sizes available: None

Max user weight: Not stated

How do you inflate it? Built-in pump, but can also be inflated with a manual pump so it's suitable as a camping air bed

Dimensions when inflated (H x W x D): 40cm x 150cm x 193cm

Dimensions when folded (H x W x D): 17cm x 41cm x 43cm

Cover material: Flocked top

Additional features: Carry bag

This air bed was the best fit of those we tested for a standard double fitted sheet, but was it durable enough to pass our tough deflation and rough treatment tests?

Log in now or join Which? to find out.

Pro Action Double Flocked Air Bed

Only available at 
Argos for £22 

Other sizes available: £15 for a single at Argos, £32 for a King size at Argos

Max user weight: 295kg

How do you inflate it? It's manual inflation only, there's no in-built pump.

Dimensions when inflated (H x W x D): 15cm x 128cm x 182cm

Dimensions when folded (H x W x D): 12cm x 30cm x 30cm

Cover material: Flocked top

Additional features: None

This air bed inflates to a lesser height than some others we tested, so it was no surprise to us that it ended up as the joint-lowest scorer for getting on and off of. 

But is it a decent choice if you're not looking to break the bank? Will it stay inflated overnight? Plus, is it easy to pack up and put away?

Log in now or join Which? to read our in-depth review.

Quechua double air mattress

Quechua air bed
Only available at 
Decathlon for £24.99 

Other sizes available: £15 for a single at Decathlon 

Max user weight: 220kg

How do you inflate it? It's manual inflation only, there's no in-built pump.

Dimensions when inflated (H x W x D)14cm x 138cm x 188cm

Dimensions when folded (H x W x D): 21cm x 18cm x 37cm

Cover material: Velvety finish

Additional features: None

There's no in-built pump with this air bed, but it was still the quickest to inflate in our tests. 

But does the low ground clearance impact on comfort? And how did it fare in our tough durability tests?  

Log in now or join Which? to see if it's a bargain or not.

Silentnight Deluxe Double Air Bed

Cheapest price
: £24 at BM Stores. Also available at Amazon (out of stock at the moment) 

Other sizes available: None

Max user weight: Not stated

How do you inflate it? Built-in pump, also has a built-in foot pump for if you want to take it camping

Dimensions when inflated (H x W x D): 16cm x 126cm x 190cm

Dimensions when folded (H x W x D): 12cm x 34cm x 36cm

Cover material: Flocked

Additional features: Built-in pillow

The built-in foot pump is a nice feature, which works well for inflating the bed if you don't have a battery powered pump. But can this type of lower lying air bed compete with built-in pump air beds? 

To find out, log in now or join Which?.

Tuomico Inflatable Double Air Bed

Tuomico air bed
Only available at 
Amazon for £86.99

Other sizes available: None

Max user weight: 300kg

How do you inflate it? Built-in pump, can also be inflated with a manual pump so it's a suitable camping air bed

Dimensions when inflated (H x W x D): 44cm x 149cm x 199cm

Dimensions when folded (H x W x D): 34cm x 22cm x 42cm

Cover material: Flocked

Additional features: Raised edges around the side to stop you rolling off

It's one of the longer air beds we tested, and our panel found it one of the easier beds to get on and off of. But how well did it stay inflated overnight, and is it an air bed with an unpleasant rubbery aroma?  

Log in now or join Which?, to read our in-depth review.

Vango Blissful Double Air Bed

Cheapest price
: £130 at Amazon. Also available at Vango 

Other sizes availableNone

Max user weight: 227kg

How do you inflate it? Built-in pump, Constant Comfort pump auto inflates when the bed loses firmness

Dimensions when inflated (H x W x D): 45cm x 135cm x 186cm

Dimensions when folded (H x W x D): 36cm x 18cm x 54cm

Cover material: Flocked

Additional features: Carry bag, Constant Comfort pump auto inflates when the bed loses firmness, in-built pump auto cuts off so you can't over inflate the bed.

It's pricier than much of the competition but comes packed with tempting extras, including an auto-inflate feature that promises to top-up the air should this air bed start to deflate. 

Is it worth paying more though for this Vango air bed? Log in now or join Which?, to find out.

Yawn Air Bed

Cheapest price
: £79.99 at Amazon or Very

Other sizes available: £99.99 for a king size at Home Essentials 

Max user weight: 200kg

How do you inflate it? Built-in pump but it can also be inflated with a manual pump (e.g. if camping)

Dimensions when inflated (H x W x D): 45cm x 133cm x 192cm

Dimensions when folded (H x W x D): 36cm x 21cm x 42cm

Cover material: Flocked

Additional featuresCarry bag, built in headboard, raised edges around the side to stop you rolling off.

Its unique design and the promise of a luxurious night's sleep has seen this Yawn air bed flying off the shelves and rising to the top of 'best of' lists from various review sites. But what did our 40-strong panel make of it for a comfortable night's sleep?

Log in now or join Which?, to find out.

After a mattress you don't need to inflate? Compare our mattress reviews

How we tested air beds

The best air beds should be comfortable, durable and able to stay inflated overnight. 

But more than that, if you invest in a decent air bed, you'd expect it to be easy to set up and tidy away, for it not to make an irritating squeaking noise when someone turns on it and not to have an unpleasant odour. 

We recruited a 40 strong panel to assess comfort and designed a test to find the best air beds from popular manufacturers and retailers. 

Comfort

Our volunteers spent time lying on each bed and rated each one on how easy it was to get on and off, how comfortable it was when lying on your back, your front and each volunteer's preferred side. 

We found a reassuring degree of consensus from this test and three beds, our Best Buys, stood out as the safe bet for a comfortable nights sleep. 

Deflation

Each bed was inflated to its firmest setting, weighted down with heavy benches and left for 18 hours overnight. In the morning, we noted which beds had stayed firm and which ones were noticeably spongier than the night before. 

Durability

Each of the beds was jumped on 10 times and poked by a sharp point with 50 Newtons of force to assess its long-term durability, and how well it would stand up to general wear and tear or a bit of rough treatment.

Ease of use

We tested how long it took to inflate each bed, and how long it took to deflate and tidy the bed away. We also assessed how easy it is to achieve the desired firmness setting and how easy it is to fit a standard fitted sheet to the bed. 

Smell

An unpleasant rubbery smell can really upset a good night's sleep. So our researchers sniffed each bed and marked air beds down if they had a strong whiff of rubber. The best don't have any odour at all.

Noise

We rated each bed on how noisy it was with a researcher turning and shifting their body weight on it. Some beds make a terrible racket, but the best can handle the wriggliest of sleepers with barely a squeak. 

Heat distribution

We used a hot water bottle and a thermocouple to assess how well each air bed dissipated the heat. This test didn't reveal any marked difference in the capability of each air bed to evenly distribute the heat and/or provide a cool surface for a good night's sleep.