Deflating feeling: air mattress recommendations
July 7, 2010 9:45 AM   Subscribe

What air mattress should my sister buy for me?

I'm looking for a queen or full sized air mattress for guests. I will be asking my sister for this for my birthday, so nothing horribly expensive. (I'm asking her because she'll be the first and likely most frequent guest sleeping on it).

If you think that air mattresses are all deflating tools of the devil, I'd be happy to hear of other inexpensive, easy to store alternatives.

Bonus points for being able to get this online or easily available to people without a car in NYC or DC.
posted by sciencegeek to Shopping (11 answers total) 2 users marked this as a favorite
I don't have a model suggestion, but having had to manually pump one of these up once (such a drag when all you want to do is go to sleep), I suggest one that has an inflator you plug in.
posted by cecic at 9:51 AM on July 7, 2010

The one I have the most experience with is a Coleman, but they don't make the model anymore. Since it's still working after twenty years of roughly quarterly use, I'll recommend them generally.
posted by Etrigan at 9:53 AM on July 7, 2010

I've had an Aerobed that I've used sporadically for myself and guests for about 10 years. Still holds air for days without reinflating. It's made of pretty thick stuff and the top has a little fuzzy texture to it that makes it feel a lot less like sleeping on a pool toy and more like a real bed.

Probably the best feature is that it has a motor to inflate it. Push a button and a minute later I have a bed. No struggling with pumps or blow holes or vacuum cleaners. It also lets me set it up and take it down every day to save space.

Bought it a Bed Bath & Beyond. Probably find it cheaper on Amazon.
posted by Ookseer at 9:57 AM on July 7, 2010

Seconding Aerobed - I've had one for 3 years, and it has gotten a decent amount of use w/no problems. It's comfortable and well-made.
posted by ryanshepard at 10:12 AM on July 7, 2010

Aerobeds are great--I slept on one for a whole semester in college--but the queen sized ones can run upwards of $250. Not sure I that's above your process point.
posted by devinemissk at 10:14 AM on July 7, 2010

I can not stand most air mattresses and slept on one recently and it was just fine. Costco has one with free shipping. Little tough to get sheets to stay on it, so you might have to be creative but I liked this one just fine.
posted by jessamyn at 10:22 AM on July 7, 2010

Very happy with our Aerobed. I have slept on it myself and slept fine (not as awesome as an actual bed, but definitely much better than other inflatable mattresses). We have frequent out of town guests and they have slept well on it too. And definitely, the motor and pump that you use to inflate it is a great feature. It inflates in seconds, all you have to do is hook it up.

The one jessamyn linked too looks even better than the one I have, which is the basic flat model.
posted by DrGirlfriend at 10:33 AM on July 7, 2010

If anything, I'd recommend you look for one of the raised types, like two mattresses stacked atop one another. The one jessamyn linked to looks good.

I've slept on both low-height airbeds and the double-height ones, and was significantly more comfortable on the double-height. Less chance of ending up touching the floor if there happens to be some deflating mid-sleep. Also, like others have mentioned, it's well-worth it to get the kind with a cord to plug into the wall to inflate and deflate it.

I'd bypass the kind with cushy top portions; that seems kind of silly and heavy and unnecessary.
posted by rachaelfaith at 10:46 AM on July 7, 2010

I've got this one, which is fine, I've slept on it myself many times with no problem.
posted by essexjan at 10:46 AM on July 7, 2010

We have an Aerobed for guests. My dad swears it's the most comfortable bed he's ever slept on.
posted by mogget at 10:51 AM on July 7, 2010

I had a Coleman queen that sprang a leak after not too much use. My thinking was that I overused it as it was in the bedroom and not on the infrequent camping trip.

I replaced it with an Intex that has been fine for a few months. As a gift, someone gave me a foam pad for the entire mattress that *really* improved the comfort. I think they got it from Home Shopping Network. If I can find a link I will post it, but a first search turned up nothing. But basically it is a 2" foam pad that smooths out the mattress bumps and makes the whole thing more even.

One last thing = if you can get a electric air pump, it is more than nice. Eventually the bed will need to be topped up with air and blowing into it is no fun and does not work nearly as well as a pump.
posted by lampshade at 11:12 AM on July 7, 2010

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