Camping vs. Glamping Cost - Which One Is More Expensive?

Camping vs. Glamping Cost - Which One Is More Expensive? - Main Image


When you think about holidays in the great outdoors, you think of simple things: waking up with the morning sun, roasting marshmallows on the campfire and leisurely strolling through pretty woodlands. Surely all this is pretty cheap, right? Well, that depends! Both traditional camping and staying in a glamping pod can make for some very affordable holidays, but the key to keeping your costs low is knowing what you need from your holiday. 

To help you figure out how much a camping or glamping holiday might cost you, we’ve put together a guide below that goes over some estimated costs of both types of holidays as well as some of the creature comforts you can expect from them. As a bonus, we’ve also included a couple of our favourite tips on saving money on camping trips of all kinds.


What is glamping?


The word “glamping” might elicit thoughts of unbridled luxury: hot tubs, massages and three-course meals prepared by your own private chef. And while glamping can be all of these things, it’s not a given, nor is it necessary to have an enjoyable holiday. Here at Wigwam® Holidays, we view glamping as “camping made comfy”: it’s simply about making camping accessible to both avid outdoorsmen and women and those who would never consider camping in a tent.

What this means in practice is that while you can add bells and whistles to your glamping experience with Wigwam® Holidays - a hot tub, a TV and an en suite bathroom in your cabin - above all, it’s about enjoying the great outdoors without compromising your comfort. This means double-glazed windows, heating, electricity and comfy beds in every Wigwam® cabin.

 

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How much does camping cost?


But is glamping more expensive than camping? Well, not necessarily. Glamping prices vary site to site, but looking only at the price per night doesn’t give you a complete picture of how it compares to the cost of camping in a tent.

After all, you’ll need to invest in some gear that can run quite expensive when staying in a tent: the tent itself, sleeping bags and sleeping mats make up just the barest of bare necessities. 

Say you’re a family of four going camping. As we explained in our blog post on camping for beginners, you should aim to get a tent that is designed to fit at least one more person than you’re planning on camping with in order to not feel too cramped. This one by Outwell fits five people and normally retails for £475, making it a solid mid-range family tent.

On top of that, buying four inexpensive sleeping bags like these and four camping mats like these will cost you an extra £300 in total. That’s an initial cost of £775 - and that’s before buying additional nice-to-haves and small essentials like camping chairs and tent pegs. While a spot in a campsite for pitching your own tent does run cheaper than renting a camping pod, there are no initial costs for a glamping holiday: simply grab some blankets and towels from home and you’re good to go!

 

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How much does glamping cost?

What works our cheaper for you really depends on how often you want to go camping: if you’re looking to go holidaying in the brave wilderness 3-4 times a year, traditional camping in a tent will likely work out cheaper, even if you invest in some additional gear like cooking equipment, a heater and a large cooler to make the experience a little more seamless.

On the flip side, if you’re new to outdoor living, are not sure whether camping or glamping is your thing and what creature comforts you’re willing to give up for it, starting out with glamping adventures with Wigwam® Holidays is a better option as it eases you into camping life and requires a smaller investment up front.

We’ve compiled a handy chart below that compares the facilities and average nightly costs of camping in a tent and different kinds of Wigwam® camping pods. Please keep in mind that prices per night vary from one location to the next for both traditional campsites and Wigwam® sites. We’ve added some average costs in the tables below based on a family with two adults and two children sharing a tent or a camping pod.


What’s Included

Camping In A Tent

Wigwam® Cabins

Running Water Wigwam® Cabins

En Suite Bathroom

No

No

Yes

Running Water

No

No

Yes

Private Kitchen

No

No - but most sites have BBQs

Yes

Electricity

No

Yes

Yes

Bed

No

Yes

Yes

Insulation

No 

Yes

Yes

Heater

No

Yes

Yes

Price Per Night

ca. £30-40

ca. £80

ca. £100

Initial Costs

£775+

£0

£0


Tips to save money on your camping or glamping trip


Whether you want to go camping in a tent or a glamping pod, there are some easy ways you can save some cash. Having been in the glamping business for over twenty years, we’ve picked up a hack or two on ways to cut costs on camping holidays.

One of the simplest ways to save money while camping is to borrow your equipment or buying it used. You’d be surprised how many of your friends and family members own camping equipment that they only use a couple of times a year, if that. You could even buy a tent together with some friends and “share custody” of it throughout the year when your families are planning holidays.

You should also consider what stuff you actually need: if you have air mattresses at home for hosting overnight guests, you’ll probably not have to buy separate camping mats. Similarly, you can save some money and space in the car by not buying camping pillows, but stuffing pillowcases with clothes instead.

You can also save money by skipping expensive prepacked meals and last-minute trips to the village shop: preplan simple meals with few ingredients and cook them on the campfire - after all, cooking on the open fire is one of the charms of camping!

 


Which one is better - camping or glamping?

 

It may come as a surprise but we can't say one is definitively better than the other - it all depends on what you want out of your outdoor adventure! Many of our customers are seasoned campers who love sleeping in a tent, but sometimes, they just want a break from some of the hassle that comes with traditional camping. In those situations, staying in a camping pod is the perfect compromise.

On the other hand, many of our newer customers are looking to break away from the routine of stuffy hotel rooms or cramped B&Bs, but don't want to take the risk of investing in a full camping kit and tent only to discover that camping isn't for them.

So glamping offers a change of pace for avid outdoors people and camping newbies alike. It’s not a case of it being any better or worse than traditional camping - it’s just a slightly different option to it!

 

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Ready for your outdoor adventure?


If you’d like to try out our concept of “comfy camping” for yourself, have a browse through our inspiration page to find the perfect glamping break for you. For some great deals on glamping holidays, check out our last minute offers page by clicking the link below.

 

Browse Last-Minute Glamping Breaks