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Tent Showcase: Vango Beta 350 XL

Tent Showcase Index  >  Vango  >  Beta 350 XL Reviews

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3  (more 3 berth tents)
6.85 KG
£130.00
1
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Average User Rating:
6.8/10 from 10 reviews

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10 Reviews of the Beta 350 XL

By: Jnine  Reason: I own(ed) one  Made in: 2014   Rating:   Date: 12/08/2014

I'm not going to add lots of detail as previous reviewers have covered all. I agree that its a good little tent, however there are design issues:

The lack of two way zips and a fly screen on both doors

The incline of the inner sleeping area, which limits the ways in which you can sleep

The fact that side opening doors mean you can't have a 'porch' option when its raining.

We have the black colour way, it's good for keeping out too much sunlight first thing, but is a bit dull in the day time and agree the wind covers are very fiddly and doubt the fasteners will last long.

Good points include the ease of putting this up, and its was solid as a rock in the wind. There is plenty of space for two, it would be tight with three, but its 's true of all tents, in that the maximum number is always tight in my opinion.

My biggest concern is that, like Bongomagic, our tent leaked on its first outing in exactly the same place. I was really disappointed with this and surprised given Vango's reputation. We have had the flysheet replaced and I'm now anxious about the replacement, we'll be testing it next week (although not exactly hoping for rain!).

We paid £100 for the tent, so not cheap but probably reasonable value. I don't think its worth the full price though.
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By: Bongomagic  Reason: I own(ed) one  Made in: 2014   Rating:   Date: 14/07/2014

I have just returned this to the shop after the door zip leaked on my first trip. There are similar accounts of this design flaw. Quality isn't bad for the money but this isn't the Vango of old. Basically one door has a mesh secondary door with its own zip. Zips tend not to be taped so a storm flap is required. Here's the flaw. I think they have used the same stitches for the storm flap and the mesh door zip on that side, hence the accounts of only one side leaking. None of this structure is taped. I think the zip stitches is the source of ingress and once the fabric of the zip becomes saturated there is only one place left for the water to go. Light rain which is insufficient to saturate the zip will probably not get through. I think if you haven't experienced this yet you will. I also had a fraying hem along the bottom edge of the inner tent zip and a slightly out of line curtain. Shame as it does look relatively well put together apart from that. All taped seams look spot on and the light weight fabric seems good quality. Stitches do seem to lack tension as well though and I don't know if that is normal. If not then I don't think these will have a long life span like Vango tents of old. For a tent which leaks I can't give more than 1 star.
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By: Bobsy852  Reason: I own(ed) one  Made in: 2012   Rating:   Date: 08/07/2014

This is the first proper tent I've owned and my girlfriend and I bought it to allow us to explore the UK without paying the extortionate prices for hotel rooms.

After a lot of looking this tent looked ideal for us, with a large porch area and separate inner tent from the flysheet.

We set it up without much trouble and it took us may be 30mins for a first try with all the guy lines etc. I wasn't sure if I'd set it up tight enough but it kept us dry through the wet weekend.

The extra space was great for the 2 of us, especially as my girlfriend doesn't travel light. I was very hot in the tent in the evenings, although my girlfriend was cold. We're very opposite!

It rained heavily both evenings, throughout the night. Inside the tent never got wet though (only if you opened the door). There was a lot of condensation on the inside of the flysheet which I mistook for rain on the second night. There was very little breeze during our stay, despite the rain and so I don't think the ventilation was much good in these conditions.

So far I'm very happy with the tent! Can't wait to use it again!

(Apologies I don't know when the tent was manufactured. It much be quite new as I only bought it a month ago (June 2014).
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By: Wibblywobbly  Reason: I own(ed) one  Made in: 2014   Rating:   Date: 22/06/2014

Bought for motorcycle touring, needed something roomy, light, and no longer than handlebar width when packed.

Went for the black/treetops as it would be darker on bright mornings.

Went up straight out of the bag, and I left the inner attached to make subsequent trips less work. It is very roomy, I could stand up enough to get dressed on a morning which was a luxury.

Keep a towel handy to catch the drips from the door, though tapping the surface will cause most water/dew to run off before opening it.

Solid as a rock with the Vango tension bands, easy to erect in a few minutes, and quick to take down if the inner is left in place. It also went back into the bag without problems after a bit of persuasion.

All in all a good one, though oddly I now wish that I had bought a smaller tent as this one is way too big for my needs.
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By: Stogursey  Reason: I own(ed) one  Made in: 2014   Rating:   Date: 29/05/2014

I've just returned from my first one-week camping trip with this tent and I am quite impressed.

Having used a solid but small 2-man tent (a North Face Westwind) for many years, I decided to go for a large tent for car-based camping a couple of years ago and bought a Coleman tent that I could stand up in. The first trip (to Skye) saw it collapse in the middle of the night due to high winds. The next trip, to Harris, with broken poles duly replaced, saw it collapse on the first night due to moderately high winds . It had to go!

I looked around for a tent that had a reasonable amount of space to sit out bad weather in yet looked like it might stand up to some rough weather and the Beta 350XL seemed to fit the bill: you can't quite stand up in it but there is a reasonable amount of space in the living area - two can sit comfortably in normal height camping chairs without your head hitting the roof and there is still room for the coolbox, food, crockery and all the other paraphenalia you seem to collect when camping from a car!

The sleeping compartment is big enough for two people with holdalls either side - although described as a three man tent I think it would be a bit too cosy for three.

The week was wet at times with some quite heavy storms, which the tent stood up to very well. Water doesn't generally come in through the doors but you do need to be careful when opening them if it is wet - the zips go up the sides and into the curve of the roof. If you unzip just the vertical part of the door then they are fine but if you unzip them all the way to the top then the top of the open door is over the inside of the tent and you will let water in. With care though we found that the only water inside the tent came in on our shoes!

It has a tension band system to help it withstand strong winds although with only light winds on the trip these didn't get much of a test. The tent feels very solid though and one of the factors that convinced me to go for this tent was the YouTube video posted by Taunton Leisure showing this (and other Vango tents) standing up to some horrendous winds in their outdoor display area.

Good Points

It is easy to pitch and easy to strike.

For the size of tent, it packs down into a relatively small bag.

It pitches flysheet first so the inner tent doesn't get wet if you pitch in the rain.

The groundsheet design works really well. If you splash out on electric hookup, the cable would also slip neatly through the overlap between the groundsheet and tent.

Good weather resistance.

Good value for money (I paid £99).

Less Good Points

As a previous reviewer has pointed out, I'd like to see a fly mesh on both doors.

The 'curtains' covering both the windows are fiddly to do up since the toggles are positioned where they are most likely to be hidden behind stuff inside the tent.

The bedroom zip could benefit from a zipper at each end to make it easier to open in the dark.

The tent was supplied with not one spare tent peg so make sure you carry some spares!

All in all, though, these negatives are pretty minor and don't really detract from what I think is a great tent for the intended purpose; a strong stable tent with plenty of room for two when car camping without going to the size/weight/expense of a full-size luxury tent.
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By: Chrismo  Reason: I own(ed) one  Made in: 2013   Rating:   Date: 08/05/2014

I bought one of these last year, as I was looking for something to replace our ancient Vango Force Ten for my 2 teenagers to use. We needed something small enough to fit in our car, with some useable porch space for cooking,storing gear, sitting in in the rain, etc. And affordable.

This isn't an expensive tent, and I picked it up even cheaper in a Blacks sale, so I guess you get what you pay for.

I managed to put it up on my own first time round, though I wouldn't fancy doing this in any kind of bad weather.Even with 2 of us, it wasn't easy to get it perfectly pitched.

Used it 3 times for weekends and holidays last year,the kids liked having more space. But one of the pole bottom sections snapped on a windy site in Dorset the 2nd time we used it. Despite some 1st Aid with masking tape, the pole is now virtually unusable, and the tent pitches like a Tescos carrier bag. Blacks have closed down, and I no longer have the receipt. Bah! Lesson learned. Better to pay more, or look for a second hand better quality tent.

We're going back to the old Force Tens; lovely canvas, and despite a few knocks, still usable after 30 years!
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By: Chazzer  Reason: I own(ed) one  Made in: 2012   Rating:   Date: 27/04/2014

Just a quick review of this tent as this is a great little weekender or festival tent with added comfort and space.

I bought this tent so I could take my 6 year old daughter camping, and so far it has worked out well with this tent.

It is quick to pitch with only one person needed to do so, it is good and sturdy and water proof and has plenty of room for two people .

It's classed as a 3 person tent but is perfect for 2 people and all your gear, the living space was big enough for two camp chairs and a cool box and all our cooking supplies.

On our first trip out in this tent we had one night that was quite windy and heavy rain all night but I can say that this tent coped with ease and showed no sign of weakness or leaking.

All in all we like our little adventures in this tent as it is more than up to the task of keeping us warm and dry along the way.

It is quick to bring down and pack away too, and is small enough to dry out and air and easy to clean when you get home.
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By: Moorepitz  Reason: I own(ed) one  Made in: 2014   Rating:   Date: 13/04/2014

I just bought the Beta 350 XL to replace my twenty two year old Khyam Igloo 2. After erecting my new tent, on my own, for the first time I can only say. It is very awkward to erect, the poles do not slide through easily, and the materials seem flimsier than my old tent. I do not believe this tent will last twenty years! The advertising says it can pitch as one, I think that'll make it even more awkward to do. So far NOT impressed. I'll have to try with my girlfriend or other helper and maybe reassess this tent and use it. I may continue to use my old Khyam and try to get rid of this tent and buy another Kyham with their brilliant Rapidex pole system.
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By: Cheekychap  Reason: I own(ed) one  Made in: 2013   Rating:   Date: 06/11/2013

This is the first time I used this tent as I like a bit more room when camping alone. I spent a week on the I.O.Wight for the walking weekend,25th October 2013. Although wet and windy it was easy to pitch and didn't take long to put up.I wasn't expecting the gales that followed that weekend, I can truly say this tent stood up to 40mph winds with torrential rain during the night. The winds were so strong that it bent a steel pole on my windbreaker. Despite the tent rattling a bit there was no rain leakage or damage, the tension band system really does work making it very stable, even the pegs stayed put. Vango have put a lot of thought into this tent making it a first class tent for first timers or experience campers.
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By: Crazy daisy  Reason: I own(ed) one  Made in: 2013   Rating:   Date: 09/05/2013

I have gained so much useful information from this site that I thought I would add my own contribution should anyone be in a similar situation to us.

REASON FOR PURCHASE

We wanted a 3 man tent that was relatively light weight (we are flying to France and hiring a car when we get there) to take on a 2 week camping trip in July 2013.

We also wanted a tent that could be used in the UK for short breaks for one or two nights that was quick to pitch but has good storage space.

We already have an Outwell Virginia 5 with a Vango Icaurus 500 canopy which is brilliant for longer stays but wanted something more “grab and go”.

On top of that we wanted the cost to be below £100.

WHY WE CHOSE A BETA 350 XL

We went for the 350 XL rather than the 350 because of the linked in ground sheet in the porch area. We have 2 dogs so wanted a way of keeping them inside the tent rather than heading out when the mood takes them! Also the windows on the XL are bigger.

Other reasons for choosing this tent was the price, under £100, the sewn in inner ground sheet, the large porch area and the head height. We wanted to be able to sit on chairs in the porch area if it was raining.

THE REVIEW

Used the tent this weekend for 2 night stay on Exmoor.

Easy to carry, comes in its own bag with handles. Can be carried like a holdall which could slide over your shoulder if necessary.

Easy to pitch, just the 3 poles, it says they are colour coded, one of the poles has a grey section which corresponds with a grey tab on the tent.

The bedroom area can be zipped up to keep it bug free, it also has a part mess section which can be zipped open for ventilation.

The ground sheet in the porch area is very easy to clip into the corresponding eyelets and more importantly it was dog proof.

It was easy to clip out at the end of our stay and brush out any grass etc. We are also thinking that in France we may even fold up this ground sheet up so that more air can get into the tent if it’s hot. (The dogs are staying at home on the French trip)

The porch can be accessed from both sides, one door is a solid door but the other door also has a mesh inner door. Ideally we would have liked both doors to have mess to improve the air flow without bugs.

We went for the black and green colourway hoping to keep the tent darker at night. I think this was the right choice, at night we could only see the green areas of the tent when lying in bed.

There is also this tension band section which is supposed to help in windy conditions. We haven’t tested this yet but I did find it useful to drape clothes over!

Storage wise we found the porch area to be very good, room for a bag each, 2 medium sized dogs beds and with some arranging two camping chairs.

On this trip we used 2 SIMS (forgot the double airbed!) there was also room enough to bring in one of the dog beds for our bigger dog to sleep on; the small dog sleeps on the bed.

CONCLUSION

We tried out this tent on a hot and sunny weekend so it hasn’t been really tested yet to the extremes of the UK weather!

My initial thoughts are that the tent is going to work for us, light weight, easy to pitch and roomy for 2 people. The couple of things I would change to give it 10/10 would be to turn the front panel into a window, to give more vision if you are inside looking out. The curtains for the PVC windows in the porch area are rather fiddly and awkward to get to if you have got stuff in the porch area. I would also have mesh on both the porch doors. Having said all that, we are really pleased with this tent and looking forward to many happy camping trips with it.
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Manufacturer's Description

◦Flysheet first or all in one pitching to ensure your sleeping pod always stays dry if it is raining.
◦Hard wearing, durable and waterproof groundsheet.
◦Linked in Groundsheet in the porch area ideal for storing outdoor footwear, rucksacks or for sitting under cover.
◦Breathable polyester inner tent on the Vango Beta 350 XL.
◦Sewn-in Inner groundsheet for easy pitching and eliminates draughts and stray 6 legged beasties.
◦TBS®II - Tension Band System - Vango''s patented system which gives our tunnel tents unrivalled stability.
◦Part mesh inner door.
◦Reflective webbing to pick up torchlight in the darkness.
◦Lantern loop conveniently sewn into roof, so that you can hang your Vango lantern whilst reading or chilling out.
◦Crystal Clear PVC windows allow maximum light and visibility.
◦Inner tent pockets are conveniently positioned and ideal for storing small items.
◦Vango Orange guylines are easy to see even in low light conditions.
◦All our tents are tested, within a certified test centre, to ensure that they will stand up to even the most extreme weather conditions.
◦The Vango Beta 350 XL includes a handled bag for simple packing and carrying.

... there may be more info on their website

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