Super Seats for Small Ones
- What: Camp Chairs for Kids
- When: 2 years and up
- Why: Keep kids comfortable
- Where: Amazon or REI
We adore our Alite Mayfly Chairs. That being said, since the Alite company doesn’t exist anymore, you might need an alternative option.
The Mayfly sits low to the ground, making tipping over or falling out a non-issue. Even better, since the chair fits adults, you don’t have to worry about kids outgrowing it – ever. Finally, it packed down so compact I could fit it in a shoulder bag, a huge difference from our standard camping chairs. We have yet to find another option as awesome, but here are a few contenders.
Big Agnes Skyline: The Big Agnes Skyline chair offers a stable base. While it sits much higher off the ground at nine and half inches, making it tougher for the littlest campers to get into and out of, for older kids the extra height works just fine. The hubless poles keep the chair compact (though larger than the beloved Mayfly), but do require more effort to assemble as a result. Intended for adults, this chair will keep older kids comfortable well past their childhood years, though the limited color range won’t appeal to kids as much.
Helinox Chair Zero: The Helinox also sits up higher off the ground at seven inches, more like a traditional camp chair. It does pack down compactly, around the size of a bottle of water, and weighs only a bit over a pound. It comes in several color choices, though none of them offer the bright colors and patterns often appealing to kids. At a price point only about ten bucks more than the Big Agnes, if you care about seat height and weight, it might be worth the extra dollars.
REI Kids’ Chairs: This option looks like your traditional camp chair, just scaled down for kids. If you don’t care about weight or size, it’s totally the way to go. The $30 price point means you can afford to buy multiples for less than the cost of other compact models. While it offers arms and a cup holder as well as an integrated carrying strap, it takes up a lot more room. It usually comes in at least two different colors, which change from season to season. With their lifetime guarantee, you don’t have to worry about your kids breaking it. Since it can hold up to 125 pounds, it will last until your kid finishes elementary school at least, and perhaps through middle school, at which point you can decide if you use a camp chair often enough to invest in something that costs more.
If seat height matters most to you, look for a low chair design. Quite a few companies, including REI, make a more traditional folding seat that has a low profile. Equally good for young kids as for attending outdoor concerts and events where you don’t want to block the view of those behind you, these chairs have the low seat height we’ve come to love. That being said, if you happen upon an Alite Designs Mayfly, don’t hesitate to snap it up!