By: Carreez Reason: I own(ed) one Made in: 2010 Rating: Date: 21/08/2010
Having not previously camped with the children (now aged 8 & 11), I wanted to choose a tent that was spacious for a family of four, without compromising our privacy. I also wanted a tent that was compact when dismantled and wouldn't take up too much space in our relatively small boot - that was the main reason I chose the Quecha 4.2 XL Air, as it has two totally individual bedrooms that are further separated by a generous living area, and a 'built-in' canopy area (other tents offered separate canopies which I would have preferred, but this would have meant an additional bag, and didn't have the separated bedrooms).
The built-in canopy was slightly disappointing - more of a sloping front door, but it does mean that you can have the door open if it rains, without the rain entering the tent. There isn't a further shelter provided, or door flap that can be opened out as a 'roof', so if you intend to do any cooking outside in inclement weather I would recommend taking a gazebo or something similar.
There are plenty of storage pockets in the bedrooms, and also pockets that hang within the living area, which were very useful. The living area was large enough for us to have our picnic table up permanently, with room for a further four camping chairs too.
The tent was fairly straightforward to put up & dismantle (even for my impatient husband), and I was very pleasantly surprised at how easily it all fitted back in the bag! (I had spent sleepless nights worrying that it would never go back in!) I recommend watching demonstration videos on YouTube first - I found it helped to have some knowledge beforehand.
The Air function of the tent worked very well and it was a welcome function to be able to 'open' the additional vents at each end during the day. It was cold in the evenings, (but that might be due to the clear skies) and draughty from beneath the mosquito flaps. We experienced very heavy rain one night, and can report no leaks. Our campsite was also very windy and the tent remained sturdy throughout.
The tent seems to be well-made, with plenty of toggles for folding up window covers, and a large pocket for folding the front door into when open. I also like the sturdy plastic clips that are used to clip the external flysheet to the poles (much better than flimsy ribbons that I have experienced with other tents).
The only reason I have marked down my rating for this tent, is that I was slightly mis-led by the online description on the Quecha website which raved about how it would be insect-free. Although it did work very well in this respect, I had not considered that it might not be 'animal' free - due to the fact that the groundsheet is detached. The mosquito flaps at the base of the tent are great for keeping out midges, but don't prevent draughts/gusts of wind entering in the evening, or mammals entering in the night!
However, I have not been put off, and am looking forward to my next camping trip in this tent.
Purchased in July from Decathlon on offer at £149.99 - excellent value for this price.
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By: Corsetta Reason: I own(ed) one Made in: 2007 Rating: Date: 10/06/2008
Used this last Year and we all know what the season was like in '07 ;)
No leaks at all, roomy and dry, quite quick to put up and stable in the wind. Seems well made too. What more could you want for the price?
Only snag is that you can get cold in the mornings, even in July/August although its far preferable (IMO) to having a tent too hot too enter untill nightfall! the air ventilation system is very efficient.
This tent isn't overy practical to use for more than the Summer season in this country but then it is why its the 'air' version of the 4.2
Overall, we're very pleased with it and would buy another without hesitation although I don't think we'll need to as this is a well made tent.
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