8 Best Camping Air Conditioners For Adventures In 2022

camping air conditioner

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You may love roughing it in the wild, but sometimes it is nice to have some of the creature comforts of home when you’re camping. And one of the most delightful and popular of these is air conditioning – there’s nothing like the cold flow of air to help you drift off on a hot summer night, or chill out after a long day of hiking!

But how can you find the best air conditioners for camping

 Lots of companies make claims about how portable their products are and/or how effective they are, but unfortunately this isn’t always really the case – so let’s find the best of the best, in this guide to the best camping air conditioners on the market today!

If you’re in a hurry to get out of town and to the campsite, and don’t want to read the whole article, here at my top choices in the four main categories:

Best Window Mounted Air Conditioner for Camping

LG 6,000 BTU Window Air Conditioner with Remote Control

Sale
LG 6,000 BTU Window Conditioner, Cools 250 Sq.Ft. (10' x 25' Room Size), Quiet Operation, Electronic Control with Remote, 2 Cooling & Fan Speeds, 2-Way Air Deflection, Auto Restart, 115V, 6000, White
  • LOW NOISE PERFORMANCE: Operates at sound...
  • MULTIPLE FAN SPEEDS: 3 cooling and fan speeds...
  • MAXIMUM USABILITY: Easy to use electronic...
  • AUTO RESTART: After a power failure, auto...
  • COOLS ROOMS UP TO 260 Square Fee: LW6017R is...

Best Portable Air Conditioner for Camping

Black+Decker 10,000 BTU Portable Air Conditioner with Remote Control

BLACK+DECKER BPACT10WT AC with Remote Control Portable Air Conditioner, 10,000 BTU, White
40,777 Reviews
BLACK+DECKER BPACT10WT AC with Remote Control Portable Air Conditioner, 10,000 BTU, White
  • QUIET & POWERFUL - Our 5,500 BTU DOE (10,000...
  • PERFECT FOR SMALL ROOMS - This floor-standing...
  • SIMPLE & QUICK TO INSTALL – Just wheel this...
  • EASY TO USE & CLEAN – The simple remote...
  • 3-in-1 FUNCTIONALITY - Combines 3 energy...

Best Outdoor Air Conditioner for Camping

Hessaire MC37M Portable Evaporative Cooler, 3,100 CFM, 950 SF

Sale
Hessaire MC37M Evaporative Cooler, 3,100 CFM, Gray
4,049 Reviews
Hessaire MC37M Evaporative Cooler, 3,100 CFM, Gray
  • PORTABLE - 4 heavy duty locking casters for...
  • COMPACT YET POWERFUL – 38x16x24 inches; 3,...
  • EASY TO OPERATE & SIMPLE TO MAINTAIN – 3...
  • MANUAL & CONTINUOUS FILL – Utilize the...
  • SUPERCHARGED, ECONOMICAL COOLING – 3-sided...

Best Personal Portable Air Conditioner for Camping

Ankuwa Portable Air Conditioner Fan 3 Speed USB Evaporative Air Cooler

Sale
Portable Air Conditioner Fan, 4 in 1 USB Evaporative Air Cooler 3 Speeds 7 Colors Light, 70°Oscillation Personal Mini Air Cooler with 700ml Water Tank, Desktop Cooling Fan for Room, Car, and Camping
48 Reviews
Portable Air Conditioner Fan, 4 in 1 USB Evaporative Air Cooler 3 Speeds 7 Colors Light, 70°Oscillation Personal Mini Air Cooler with 700ml Water Tank, Desktop Cooling Fan for Room, Car, and Camping
  • ❄️❄️【4 in 1 Mini Air Cooler】Our...
  • ❄️❄️【2 S Rapid Temperature...
  • ❄️❄️【Large Water Tank】The 700ML...
  • ❄️❄️【Suitable For Much...
  • ❄️❄️【 7 Colors Light】: Small...

What Kind of Air Conditioner is Best for Camping?

In our guide to top camping air conditioners I’m going to recommend four basic types of AC units for camping:

Personal Portable Coolers

These are not technically air conditioners, but rather mini swamp coolers – small fans which use water to make the air flowing from them nicely cool.

Not always the coldest option, and in fact a lot of them don’t do much at all, but if you get a good one it can be a real blessing!

Outdoor Air Conditioners

These are also not real air conditioners, these are very much like the personal portables just above, but much larger and more powerful.

For a fairly limited area outside, like your seating area outside the tent or RV, these units can be very effective.

Portable Air Conditioners

Now we’re talking about real air conditioners, which will deliver very cold air just like you’d experience at home.

These are a lot larger, and need to be set up so that their exhaust vent can move warm air out of your tent, but they are very, very effective.

Window-Mount Air Conditioners

These are allso true air conditioners, these are essentially what you use at home, and are the most effective choice.

If you don’t have a tent with an AC flap, you will need to modify it a bit, but for larger tents a good window-mount air-con is fantastic – too much, though, for most smaller spaces!


I will offer my top picks for the best camping air conditioner for each of the categories above, and in each case one good runner-up as well.

But as a brief summary here, the first two categories are not “true” air conditioners. They use water to cool the air – think “swamp cooler” – and will not put out nearly as cold of air as a real air conditioner.

That said, they are much cheaper to run, and usually to buy, and the best evaporative coolers work surprisingly well. They are also much easier to use, requiring essentially no setup at all. And the outdoor variety are big and strong, and can cool a large outside area surprisingly well.

The final two categories are true air conditioners, which is kind of good and bad. The good is that they are by far the best and most effective coolers, and will put out air that’s anywhere from slightly cool to downright frosty, depending on your preference.

But they only really work in interior spaces – pushing the warm air outside – and so are only applicable here to tents or inside your RV. Plus they use a lot more electricity to run, and so if your campsite doesn’t have AC outlets you will need a gas-powered generator to run them – an AC plug in a car, truck or SUV won’t cut it.

I will talk a lot more about how to power real air conditioners when you’re camping in my Bonus Section at the end of the article. 

So let’s get into it, with Know the Flo’s 2022 buyer’s guide to the best air conditioners for camping!

8 Best Camping Air Conditioners

Best Personal Portable Air Conditioner for Camping

Ankuwa Portable Air Conditioner Fan 3 Speed USB Evaporative Air Cooler

Sale
Portable Air Conditioner Fan, 4 in 1 USB Evaporative Air Cooler 3 Speeds 7 Colors Light, 70°Oscillation Personal Mini Air Cooler with 700ml Water Tank, Desktop Cooling Fan for Room, Car, and Camping
48 Reviews
Portable Air Conditioner Fan, 4 in 1 USB Evaporative Air Cooler 3 Speeds 7 Colors Light, 70°Oscillation Personal Mini Air Cooler with 700ml Water Tank, Desktop Cooling Fan for Room, Car, and Camping
  • ❄️❄️【4 in 1 Mini Air Cooler】Our...
  • ❄️❄️【2 S Rapid Temperature...
  • ❄️❄️【Large Water Tank】The 700ML...
  • ❄️❄️【Suitable For Much...
  • ❄️❄️【 7 Colors Light】: Small...

This is a tricky category, because honestly a lot – really, a lot – of these little personal cooling products don’t work at all. In fact, the joke is that they are so frustrating that you’ll actually end up being a lot hotter in the end – at least under the collar.

But a few of these personal coolers work wonderfully, and the best I’ve found is the Ankuwa, which is a very simple and very effective little evaporative cooler for camping. 

Features-wise, the Ankuwa is very similar to other units – it is very easy to fill, and its large 700ML tank will let it cool for up to 4 hours – or run even longer without water. It has three fan speeds and two mist settings, and is very quiet when it’s working.

And it’s relatively light, and small enough that you can take it with you, especially with its nice carrying handle – and yet very solid and stable when set in place.

But the main reason I love the Ankuwa portable cooler, and think it’s the best personal air conditioner for camping, is that it really cools the air. 

For bigger areas and bigger tents, or for very hot climates (or very hot campers) the true air conditioners below are a better choice, but for small tents or personal cooling this is an inexpensive, well made and beautiful unit, and highly recommended. 

✅ Pros❌ Cons
Very InexpensiveNot for Larger Spaces
Effective Cooling of Smaller AreasNot as Effective as a True Air Conditioner
Well Made and Reliable
Quiet
Easy to Use

Best Personal Portable Air Conditioner – Runner Up

Vimi Portable Air Conditioner 4 Speed USB Evaporative Cooler

VIIMI Portable Air Conditioner, 6-IN-1 Evaporative Personal Air Cooler Humidifier with 4 Speeds 7 Colors Light, 70°Oscillation USB Quiet Air Cooler white
318 Reviews
VIIMI Portable Air Conditioner, 6-IN-1 Evaporative Personal Air Cooler Humidifier with 4 Speeds 7 Colors Light, 70°Oscillation USB Quiet Air Cooler white
  • 【STRONG COLD WIND FAN and 3-SPEED...
  • 【DOUBLE COOLING & 6 ICE CRYSTAL...
  • 【CORDLESS DESK FAN】Never be limited by an...
  • 【7 COLORS LIGHT FANS】This portable air...
  • 【ULTRA QUIET】The mini air conditioner fan...

Like the Ankuwa above, the Vimi is a very good choice based on one extremely important consideration – it actually works!

Again, while this kind of product – a USB powered personal cooler that uses water, or ice and water, to cool the air it blows – seems like an ideal choice for campsites and tents, most of them are pretty pathetic, with little or no cooling, and sometimes even little or no air movement at all.

But my two choices are actually super effective, and this Vimi may even be a little more effective than my top choice, and a tiny bit quieter as well.

It is about a third more expensive, though, and pretty much identical in most features, so it is maybe a better second choice. Like the Ankuwa it has 70 degree fan oscillation to move air better throughout your space, and a large 600ML water tank that is easy to fill and clean.

For the best value in a personal cooler for camping, I would go with my first pick. But for a bit more cooling and air movement, and a bit quieter operation, the Vimi personal portable air conditioner is a brilliant product, a cooling system that actually works, and works well, and still a great bargain.

✅ Pros❌ Cons
InexpensiveNot for Larger Spaces
Effective Cooling of Smaller AreasNot as Effective as a True Air Conditioner
Excellent Material and Build Quality
Very Quiet Running
Clear and Intuitive Controls

Best Outdoor Air Conditioner for Camping

Hessaire MC37M Portable Evaporative Cooler, 3,100 CFM, 950 SF

Sale
Hessaire MC37M Evaporative Cooler, 3,100 CFM, Gray
4,049 Reviews
Hessaire MC37M Evaporative Cooler, 3,100 CFM, Gray
  • PORTABLE - 4 heavy duty locking casters for...
  • COMPACT YET POWERFUL – 38x16x24 inches; 3,...
  • EASY TO OPERATE & SIMPLE TO MAINTAIN – 3...
  • MANUAL & CONTINUOUS FILL – Utilize the...
  • SUPERCHARGED, ECONOMICAL COOLING – 3-sided...

There are a lot of brands of outdoor evaporative coolers, but Hessaire has always been my favorite.

They make units that are commercial-grade tough, quiet and reliable, and that really, really work, and while they have a big range of coolers, from quite expensive to relatively cheap, this mid-range Hessaire MC37M is an ideal choice in many ways – and especially for camping.

I should say right away that even though I call this a “mid-range” unit, the MC37M is actually quite inexpensive – especially for the quality and effectiveness it offers.

This is not a true air conditioner – which don’t work well outside anyway – but a big, heavy duty version of the personal coolers above. That is, it’s an evaporative cooler, which uses water and powerful fans to cool a large area very effectively.

Since this is a bigger unit, for a larger area, you do need AC power, but the cooling you’ll get is incredible – much, much stronger and a much bigger drop in temperature than even the best personal coolers, and even much better cooling than real air conditioners in outdoor settings like campsites.

The Hessaire 37M has 3 fan speeds, and with its innovative high density cooling pads it will really cool down spaces up to 950 square feet – great even for large tents and very effective outside. The oscillating louvers will move the air efficiently throughout the space, and the heavy locking casters and solid construction make sure the unit will stay in place.

A very high quality and very effective evaporative cooler, that you can also use at home, in your workshop or anywhere else, the Hessaire MC37M is the best outdoor air conditioner for camping I’ve ever used, and a true value for the money.

Since this bigger cooler requires AC power, you should get a good outdoor-rated heavy duty power cord – I really like the 100 Ft. Epicord. And if you also need an excellent and versatile AC generator, you can’t do much better for the money than the Jackery Portable Power Station.

✅ Pros❌ Cons
Very Powerful and EffectiveMust Use AC Power
Simple and Reliable Mechanical Controls
Quiet Operation – especially for this level of power
Great for Large Outdoor Spaces
Excellent Company

Best Outdoor Air Conditioner – Runner Up

Hessaire MC18M Portable Evaporative Cooler, 1300 CFM, 500 SF

HESSAIRE MC18M Portable Evaporative Cooler – Color May Vary, 1300 CFM, Cools 500 Square Feet
747 Reviews
HESSAIRE MC18M Portable Evaporative Cooler – Color May Vary, 1300 CFM, Cools 500 Square Feet
  • OUTDOOR COOLING: Designed to cool outdoor...
  • PORTABLE HUMIDIFIER: 4 heavy-duty locking...
  • MANUAL AND CONTINUOUS FILL: Continuous fill...
  • ELECTRONIC HUMIDITY CONTROL: With the...
  • MONITOR WATER LEVELS: Uses water evaporation...

Hessaire products are so great, and such great values, that I chose them for both my outdoor AC spots – best overall and runner-up!

And the choice for runner up, this Hessaire MC18M outdoor evaporative cooler, could easily be my top choice – it’s smaller and less powerful than its bigger brother, just above, but no less effective. And definitely no less well made and reliable.

Again, these are not true air conditioners, and while a high quality air con will make the air even more icy, they do not work well (or really at all) in outdoor settings, and are a bit of a faff to make work in tents, and this kind of evaporative cooler is a probably better choice – definitely better for outside applications.

The MC18M has a big water capacity of almost 5 gallons, so it will run a long time between fillings, and runs in 4 modes – 2 speeds with or without water. The heavy duty motor is fairly quiet, though a bit noisy for sleeping, but is so powerful for outdoor use. The locking casters and the overall superb material quality and construction make this a very stable unit.

At almost two hundred dollars less than the larger Hessaire I reviewed above, this Hessaire MC18M is an amazing value, and for medium to large tents and most campsites and outdoor areas it’s more than you’ll ever need – and, in fact, much more effective in cooling and moving air than anything I’ve found anywhere near the price!

And again, just like the smaller Hessaire, this MC18M will need a good heavy outdoor extension cord like the 100 Ft. Epicord, and maybe even a nice power station like the Jackery Portable Power Station – at least if your campgrounds don’t have AC plugs.

✅ Pros❌ Cons
Extremely Well Made and ReliableMust Use AC Power
Strong Motor and Great Cooling
Simple and Reliable Mechanical Controls
Excellent Company
Super Value

Best Portable Air Conditioner for Camping

Black+Decker 10,000 BTU Portable Air Conditioner with Remote Control

BLACK+DECKER BPACT10WT AC with Remote Control Portable Air Conditioner, 10,000 BTU, White
40,777 Reviews
BLACK+DECKER BPACT10WT AC with Remote Control Portable Air Conditioner, 10,000 BTU, White
  • QUIET & POWERFUL - Our 5,500 BTU DOE (10,000...
  • PERFECT FOR SMALL ROOMS - This floor-standing...
  • SIMPLE & QUICK TO INSTALL – Just wheel this...
  • EASY TO USE & CLEAN – The simple remote...
  • 3-in-1 FUNCTIONALITY - Combines 3 energy...

With the Black and Decker 10,000 BTU portable, we are finally looking at a unit that is a true air conditioner, using a compressor and coolant to most effectively cool indoor air, while it moves warm air outside.

This will always give you the best cooling, with a crisp, chilly quality that even the best evaporative coolers can’t quite match. But it also means more involved and particular installation – specifically, you need to have a way to move that warm air out without any leakage.

Even with a small portable air conditioner for camping, you still have an air outlet hose which you’ll need to set so it can blow outside, and usually this means running it through an openable window or the door – just make sure you use towels or something else to seal it all – keep the cool air in and the mosquitoes out!

So yes, it is a bit more of a setup, but if you want cool air in your tent, or are in an especially warm or hot area, it is all totally worth it, and the cooling you will get is just amazing.

Especially with this Black+Decker portable air conditioner, which is very well made, quiet and reliable, won’t leak or spill in your tent, and will keep even larger tents very cool. The sleep mode is ultra-quiet, and even noise-sensitive people can sleep with no problems while it’s running.

The control panel is very clear and easy to use, and there is a great full-function remote control also included. There’s a 24 hour timer and adjustable fan speed, and you can also run it in fan mode or dehumidifying mode without cooling.

The Black+Decker 10,000 BTU portable air conditioner is a very effective cooler for even larger tents, and it is doubly valuable – when you’re not camping, it is a wonderful and very easy to set up AC for small rooms like offices or bedrooms. A great product from a really great company, and highly recommended!

You will need to plug your new Black+Decker portable air conditioner into AC power, and I recommend a good, heavy duty outdoor extension cord like the 100 Ft. Epicord. If you are at a campsite that doesn’t have AC power, and remembering that car power inverters or portable power stations generally will not have enough wattage for an air conditioner, you might want to see my Bonus Section below for information on how to get the power you need.

✅ Pros❌ Cons
Very Well Made and ReliableHigh Power Consumption
Strong CoolingMore Involved Setup
Good for Larger Tents
Quiet Running
Versatile

Best Portable Air Conditioner – Runner Up

SereneLife SLPAC8 Portable Air Conditioner 8,000 BTU

Sale
SereneLife SLPAC8 Portable Air Conditioner Compact Home AC Cooling Unit with Built-in Dehumidifier & Fan Modes, Quiet Operation, Includes Window Mount Kit, 8,000 BTU, White
20,385 Reviews
SereneLife SLPAC8 Portable Air Conditioner Compact Home AC Cooling Unit with Built-in Dehumidifier & Fan Modes, Quiet Operation, Includes Window Mount Kit, 8,000 BTU, White
  • HANDY AND PORTABLE: The SereneLife Portable...
  • 3 OPERATING MODES: The compact floor AC...
  • BUILT-IN DEHUMIDIFIER: you don’t only get...
  • REMOTE CONTROL: Features a digital touch...
  • 8000 BTU COOLING POWER: with 900W rated power...

SereneLife is a relatively new player in the air conditioner game, but I am really impressed by the quality and effectiveness of their products – and apparently I’m not alone, as they have quickly become one of the very best selling and highest rated brands going!

And really, I don’t consider the SereneLife SLPSC8 a “runner-up” at all. it is, in fact, just as good an AC for tent camping as the Black and Decker above, just as well made and just as effective – in this case, I thought it would be nice for you to have two wonderful choices for best portable AC for camping, and this is definitely a wonderful choice.

The SereneLife may be a little less quiet than the Black+Decker, and while it’s a few pounds heavier it doesn’t necessarily feel more solid or substantial – they are both very well made and stable, but the B+D is probably a bit easier to move around.

The SereneLife is, though, a bit less expensive – comparing it to the B+D with the exact same power – and has essentially the same excellent cooling effectiveness, the same basic running modes – AC, fan only and dehumidifying – and a similarly nice and usable remote control.

So either way you will end up with an excellent portable air conditioner for camping, and again one you can use in lots of other places as well. The Black+Decker, above, is my choice by a very slight margin, but this beautiful SereneLife is a little less expensive and equally as impressive.

Remember that this is a real AC, so you will need a good and heavy extension cord suitable for outdoor use, like my favorite, the 100 Ft. Epicord. And, as I’ve already briefly mentioned, this – or any – air conditioner will require a lot of electric power, so if your campground doesn’t have AC outlets you will probably need a generator – see the Bonus Section below for a lot more on this.

✅ Pros❌ Cons
Well Made and ReliableHigh Power Consumption
Very Efficient and EffectiveMore Involved Setup
Great Company
Excellent Value
Simple to Use

Best Window Mounted Air Conditioner for Camping

LG 6,000 BTU Window Air Conditioner with Remote Control

Sale
LG 6,000 BTU Window Conditioner, Cools 250 Sq.Ft. (10' x 25' Room Size), Quiet Operation, Electronic Control with Remote, 2 Cooling & Fan Speeds, 2-Way Air Deflection, Auto Restart, 115V, 6000, White
  • LOW NOISE PERFORMANCE: Operates at sound...
  • MULTIPLE FAN SPEEDS: 3 cooling and fan speeds...
  • MAXIMUM USABILITY: Easy to use electronic...
  • AUTO RESTART: After a power failure, auto...
  • COOLS ROOMS UP TO 260 Square Fee: LW6017R is...

The great thing about the best window-mount air conditioners for camping is that you don’t need to get the biggest, most powerful or most expensive unit – even a modest AC like this LG 6000 BTU will be more than enough.

Well, really that’s just one of the great things, the best of them being that a good quality window air conditioner will bring ultimate coolness to your camping tent – really icy air and plenty of it.

With the LG 6000 there’s a lot more to love as well, like very quiet operation, strong, heavy-duty construction and real long term reliability, lots of programmable and easily switchable fan and cooling modes, a great remote control and a very simple, clear and easy to read control panel.

If there’s a downside, it’s that this – or any window-mount – is a bit of a task to use in a tent. You have to either have a tent with a AC flap or easily openable window (the AC unit must be able to face both inside and outside), make sure the window is nicely sealed around the air conditioner (to keep mosquitos out and cold air in), and have the AC itself setting on a stable and solid stand – my favorite is the Camco Adjustable Height Aluminum Stand.

But if you want full air conditioning in your tent – if you camp in hot areas or at the hottest times of the year, or just want the coolest air possible – a real air conditioner like this is the way to go, and a window mount is the most effective of them all, and is well worth the set-up.

Definitely the best choice for super-cool air, and the  best tent air conditioner I’ve found.

As with any true air conditioner, you will need either a campsite with an AC outlet or a higher power generator – usually gas-powered. For a great long outdoor AC extension cord, try the 100 Ft. Epicord, and for a good generator, check out my Bonus Section below.

✅ Pros❌ Cons
Very Powerful – especially for tents!High Power Consumption
High Levels of Material and Build QualityMore Involved Setup
Wide Range of Climate Settings
Easy to Use
Quiet Running

Best Window Mounted Air Conditioner – Runner Up

GE Window Air Conditioner 5000 BTU with Easy Install Kit

GE Window Air Conditioner 5000 BTU, Efficient Cooling For Smaller Areas Like Bedrooms And Guest Rooms, 5K BTU Window AC Unit With Easy Install Kit, White
4,603 Reviews
GE Window Air Conditioner 5000 BTU, Efficient Cooling For Smaller Areas Like Bedrooms And Guest Rooms, 5K BTU Window AC Unit With Easy Install Kit, White
  • GE 5000 BTU MECHANICAL WINDOW AIR CONDITIONER...
  • BEST FOR SMALL ROOMS: This AC unit is the...
  • LOW-NOISE OPERATION - Keep the cool air...
  • MAXIMUM COMFORT: Efficient with 2 cooling...
  • EASY INSTALLATION AND CLEANING: This AC has a...

The General Electric 5000 BTU window air conditioner is one of the best made and most effective units I’ve ever used. I sometimes wish I could recommend this quiet, powerful little guy to more people, but for home use it’s really only good for rooms up to 150 square feet.

But for tents it is just ideal – even fairly large tents. Really, you’d need to have a pretty big tent – not quite circus size, but yeah, pretty big – to be too much for the GE 5000, or do a lot of camping in Death Valley, or both.

But for most of us, who want real back at home coolness and comfort in our tent, during the day and when we’re sleeping, this is it. It’s a very affordable unit, runs quietly, is well made and reliable, easy to use and very effective.

The basic mechanical controls may seem a little dated compared to some ultra-sophisticated smart-home products these days, but they make the GE very, very easy to use and to fine adjust, and also make it a very reliable unit – as do the heavy duty motor and compressor and the overall high level of material and construction quality.

Again, a window-mount AC in a tent is a bit of a hassle to set up – or at least takes a bit of time and effort, even if it is pretty easy. You will need a good stand – like the Camco Adjustable Height Aluminum Stand – and you’ll need to open the window, place the air-con so it’s facing both in and out, and then thoroughly seal around it. You’ll also need a good quality outdoor-rated extension cord, like my favorite 100 Ft. Epicord.

And finally you’ll need power, which I am going to talk about a little in the next section. Suffice it to say that if your campsite of choice doesn’t have AC outlets, for a true air conditioner for camping you will need fairly high wattage AC power, like you’d get from a proper generator. But again, check out my Bonus Section just below for more information on that.

But to close this section of my article on best air conditioners for camping, let me reiterate that this GE 5,000 BTU window-mount is one of the best AC units for tents I’ve ever found – it’s quiet, effective, easy to use and very well made – not quite as powerful as my top choice, but definitely enough frosty cooling for almost anybody, and it’s an incredible value!

✅ Pros❌ Cons
Very Good ValueHigh Power Consumption
Excellent CompanyMore Involved Setup
Extreme Reliability
Easy to Use
Quiet but Very Effective

Bonus Section: How To Power a Camping Air Conditioner

As I’ve already mentioned, we are looking at two kinds of cooling devices in this article on best air conditioners for tents and camping – evaporative coolers and true air conditioners – and the two types have very different power requirements.

The first two categories of recommendations…

Best Personal Air Conditioner for Camping

…are not true air conditioners, and they don’t use or need a lot of power. For either of these categories, a car AC outlet or inverter or even a solar panel power station – like the wonderful Jackery Portable Power Station – is more than enough.

But the third and fourth categories…

Best Portable Air Conditioner for Camping

Best Window Mounted Air Conditioner for Camping

…are real and true air conditioners, which means they have a compressor – the single most power-hungry device on the planet! Well, not really, but compressors are the main reason why any true air conditioner is so expensive to run on a regular basis.

Compressors are also why your normal car, truck or SUV – or probably even RV – AC outlet or power inverter is not sufficient, and will not provide enough power for the air conditioner to start up and run. This is also true of pretty much any solar or recargeable portable power station, as cool as they are.

Of course if your favorite campsite has AC outlets, you’re good to go – or to stay, I guess. But if it doesn’t, you will need a good, heavy duty gas-powered generator to make your AC work.

Good news / bad news – these are pricey units, and most will cost more than even the best camping air conditioners on our list, but the good news is that even the lowest priced generators are  more than enough, and if you get a good one it will last a lifetime, and you will use it for a thousand other things.

To close, I want to list out a couple of excellent low-priced gas-powered electrical generators, which have more than enough wattage for any of the true air conditioners on our buyer’s guide, are very well built, reliable and high quality, quiet running and efficient.

So here are the three best cheap camping generators I’ve found – actually, the best cheap generators I’ve ever used for anything and everything, and all very highly recommended:


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