Best “cheap” air mattress under $60 – March 2017 update

Intex-plush-top-budget-friendly-airbedIt’s been exactly one year since we set out to test, review and pinpoint the best cheap air mattress. We sent out 21 low-priced airbeds to 10 of our featured testers and asked them to use them and rate them in 10 quality categories. The results of the journey are presented below.

Before  we do anything else, let’s explain the odd cutoff of $60 for a cheap air mattress.

The logical or natural cutoff would be something like $50, right?

It was a devious plan to bend “natural” only so that we can include one bed that costs a peg more in queen size and it’s by far the best airbed in this price range. We felt like if the line was 50, you’d be missing out because this model would get buried.

That’s our confession for the oddity of 60 (which kind of sounds like a B production horror movie), but there’s nothing scary about the bed in question which you can see on the right – the Intex Comfort Plush Elevated.

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The Intex Plush Elevated is not only the best “cheap” air mattress

under $60

but one of the 10 TOP-rated airbeds overall.

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This bed is very close in quality ratings to the best air mattresses that cost twice or trice more, and better-rated than some that cost 10 times more…we’ll give you an example further on.

For starters, take a quick look of the video demo we have for you, it’s a must watch to understand the rest of the review.

1 minute video demo of the Intex Plush Durabeam


Let us get straight to the results – as it always was, this is a category where Intex dominates…every bed on the list is Intex.

 

 

Best cheap air beds – TOP 3

 
Model
 
Current
ratings

(out of 10)
 
Amazon ratings & Price Comparison link
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See the Intex Comfort Plush Elevated
on Amazon here >>>

 
 
 
8.5

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2nd-best-low-priced-airbed-itex-pillowrest

See the Intex Pillow Rest
Durabeam on Amazon here >>

 
 
 
8.1
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 3-best-cheap-airbed-intex-classic
See the Pillow Rest
Classic on Amazon here >>

 
 
 
7.8
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Fact sheets and all category ratings

 

Specs & all category ratings

 
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Intex Comfort
Plush Elevated
 
second-best-economy-airbed

Intex
Pillow Rest Durabeam
 
 
bargain-blow-up-mattress-intex-raised

Intex
Classic Pillow Rest
 
Height
 
22 "
 
16.5 "
 
16.5 "
 
Available
sizes
 
Twin / Queen
 
Twin / Queen
 
Twin / Queen
 
Max weight
capacity
(queen)
 
 
600 lbs
 
 
600 lbs
 
 
not listed
by company
 
All Category Ratings (out of 10)
 
 
Air retention
 
 
9
 
8
 
8
 
Comfort
 
 
9
 
8
 
8
 
Durability
 
 
9
 
8
 
8
 
Design
 
 
8
 
7
 
6
 
Pump
 
 
8
 
8
 
8
 
Materials
& Finish
 
9
 
9
 
8
 
Easy to use
& store
 
8
 
8
 
8
 
Edges
Sturdiness
 
8
 
8
 
9
 
Value for
money
 
10
 
9
 
8
 
Customer
Service
 
8
 
8
 
8
 
Overall Rating
 
8.6
 
8.1
 
7.9
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second-best-economy-airbed
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See what owners of the Intex
Comfort Plush Elevated
are saying about on Amazon here >>>

 
 

See the Intex
Pillow Rest Durabeam
on Amazon here >>>

 
 

See the Intex
Classic Pillow Rest
on Amazon here >>>

 

 

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What’s better about the Comfort Plush Elevated?

 

Main advantages of the Comfort Plush Elevated

 
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1. Fiber-tech construction
 
The innovation that basically saved the Intex brand and the most important thing that happened to the company in two decades.
 
Instead of regular PVC that stretches over time making your bed saggy and putting more stress on the seams (which causes them to pop), Intex used what they call Fiber-tech fibers for this series of airbeds.
 
These fibers don't stretch nearly as much as the regular PVC used in other airbeds and makes for better weight distribution. This means no sinking to the middle of the bed and flatter, sturdier surface.
 
 
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2. About twice as durable as any airbed in the price range (non-fiber-tech)
 
As you could see in the ratings, the Comfort Plush and the Pillow Rest Durabeam are both from the Durabeam series that features the Fiber-tech technology.
 
In our tensile testing of the materials, it took about twice the force to cause any seams popping, chambers bursting or air leaks.
 
All of that is reflected in the Durability category in the table above.
 
 
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2. 35% more support
 
Because the weight is distributed better, any sagging or sinking is minimized - our load & fatigue tests showed about 35% better results in beds with the Fiber-tech fibers.
 
 
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3. Much better air retention
 
This is an important one, since it's the most common issue with airbeds of lower quality - air leaks.
 
Again, this is probably a result of the better beam construction - the Intex Plush showed much lower % of leaks developing over time-spans of 1, 3, 6 month and a year.
 
 
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4. 15-16% lighter
 
This might be a big deal for most people, but let's just mention that, compared to regular airbeds, models with the fiber inner support are about 15% lighter.
 
 
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5. Doesn't have the "air mattress feel" to it
 
If you ever owned an airbed, you know what we're talking about here - that bouncy quality most cheap air mattresses have.
 
It might be fun for kids but it's a deal-breaker for an adult, especially people who need good spine and neck support.
 
 
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6. Six inches higher than the runner-ups
 
Sitting at 22 inches, this bed is not only higher than the competitors in the price range but higher than the currently top rated air mattress - the Dream Series by Sound Asleep, which you'll see in just a minute when we compare it with this Intex side-by-side.
 

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User reviews of the Intex Plush Durabeam

 

We could talk about our testing results, category ratings and technology,

but nothing beats reading about the experiences of people who actually

own this air mattress.

You can see them in the link below.

 Intex-plush-top-budget-friendly-airbed 
 
 

Click here to read what
owners of the Intex Plush
are saying about it on Amazon >>>

 

 

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Intex Comfort Plush compared to the best airbed overall

 

low-cost-airbed-sample1

 
Intex Comfort
Plush
Durabeam
low-cost-airbed-sample2

Currently best-rated

 
*Dream Series
by SoundAsleep*

 
 
Air retention
 
 
9

 
 
10

 
 
Comfort
 
 
9

 
 
10

 
 
Durability
 
 
9

 
 
10

 
 
Design
 
 
8

 
 
9

 
 
Pump
 
 
8

 
 
9

 
 
Materials
& Finish
 
9
 
10
 
Easy to use
& store
 
8
 
9
 
Edges
Sturdiness
 
8
 
10
 
Value for
money
 
10
 
10
 
Customer
Service
 
8
 
10
 
Overall Rating
 
9.7
 
8.6
low-cost-airbed-sample1
low-cost-airbed-sample2
 
Price
 
 
$
 
$$
 
Click here to see
the Amazon ratings
of the Intex Comfort >>

 
 
Click here to see
the Amazon ratings
of the Dream Series >>

 

 

 

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Best cheap air mattress by size

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In the rest of the article we’ll explore some of the things you guys have asked us to go into, like best cheap air mattress in twin, queen and full size.

Obviously, the top choice among low-cost inflatable beds in twin and queen size is the Intex Plush we talked analyzed above, so in those categories we’ll present some runner-ups.

In the size categories we haven’t covered, we’ll recommend the currently top rated budget solutions. Let’s get to it…

 

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Best cheap king air mattress

We’re gonna work our way from the top and since there are not cheap air mattresses in California King size, we’re starting with the best low-cost airbed in King size that we think is worth the money.

The only inflatable bed that we could call cheap that comes in King size is the Intex Classic downy. It is what the name suggests, it’s an industry classic that still holds it’s own.

Current ratings of this bargain king airbed is 77/100.

Among King size blow-up beds, our definition of cheap is anything under $100, and that’s where the Intex Downy is.

 

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Some basic info about the best cheap king airbed – the Classic Downy by Intex.

This a is a back-to-the basics air mattress, minimal and simple it is a counterweight to the all-signing-all-dancing models that have been hitting the market in recent days.

If the budget is tight and you still want to bask on a 76×80 inches airbed, this is pretty much your only choice…and it’s not a bad one, too.

Fact sheet of the best cheap king size air mattress

No built-in pump

The fact that this Intex does not include a built-in pump is understandable because it’s designed to be a budget-friendly camping air mattress. It comes with a manual pump that’s very light and it takes about 5 minutes to inflate it.

You’ll find it selling with pillows includes that are also vinyl with a flocked top.

What campers will especially like is the fact that it the flocking is water-proof, which is not common for a king mattress at the lowest price range. If you do some research, IntexCorp is the only company offering inexpensive airbeds in king size.

Very light and portable

It weighs only 11.9 lbs and packs pretty small. What can be an issue, however is getting all the air out when you want to deflate it – that’s why an battery operated pump is a good add-on. You can find our guide on the best pumps for air mattresses here.

It is a low-rise air mattress (sits at 8.75 “) but you still need to makes sure you have room for it if your plan is to use it for camping, do some research on tent sizes that can accommodate this cut-rate air mattress.

Durability

For a king size airbed that costs next to nothing, the quality of the PVC is surprising. It’s a 21 gauge for the sides and inner beams, while the top and bottom are 14 and 15 gauge.

Capacity of the cheapo king size

Again, for an uncostly inflatable, the capacity is surprisingly high at 600 pounds.

Can be cleaned with soap and water

The waterproof flocking makes it easy to clean using just soap and water. One more quality campers will find appealing.

Guarantee

Intex airbed are not known for their customer service, in fact, they can be hard to work with at times. But what’s important is that you have one week for detailed testing for any defects. So don’t order it and let it sit in the garage for a month before you unpack it.

Unbox and inflate it the same day and if you don’t want to test-drive it, place something heavy (close to its weight capacity) and follow what happens over the next few days. If there’s a flaw it’s much easier to return it or replace it within one week. That’s their cutoff period for the lower priced king airbeds.

 

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Best cheap Queen air mattress with a built-in pump

As we mentioned, what we’ll do in this section is look at runner-ups in the size categories we already covered, and we’ve already established that the best cheap queen air mattress is the Intex Comfort Plush Durabeam, that we praised so much above.

Let’s look at some low-cost airbeds in queen size that are runner-ups…nothing close to the Plush, either in ratings or quality, but we’ll pinpoint a bed or two in Queen size with even lower prices.

Runner-up among cheap queen airbeds – Intex Deluxe Pillow Rest Raised (built in pump)

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James

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