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Rating and Summary
The REI Co-Op Camp Dreamer Double Self-Inflating Deluxe Bed is not only comfortable, but warm, plush, with minimal bouncing, and is almost a Queen size. It’s also pretty inexpensive for a self-inflating camping mattress when it goes on sale, and gave me awesome bang for my buck.
However, it’s quite bulky. Also, quite a few reviews seem to say that it leaks air overnight. Did mine though? And do I recommend this? Read on to find out!
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Check out the REI Camp Dreamer Double:
Here’s what we’ll discuss here:
- In the Box
I bought the REI Co-Op Camp Dreamer Double Self-Inflating Deluxe Bed from REI Co-Op, and here’s what it was like as I was unboxing it:
In the Box
In the box, I got the self-inflating deluxe bed inside a carry bag, and I also got a pump.
Here are my personal measurements and timings of the REI Co-Op Camp Dreamer Double:
- Thickness: 3.75 inches
- Loft: Foam and air
- Length: 81 inches
- Width: 54 inches
- Weight (Mattress): 11.6 pounds
- Weight (Stuff sack): 11.5 ounces
- Weight (Pump): 11.8 ounces
- Packed Size: 29 by 15 by 12 inches
- R-value: 6.5
- Material: Polyester
- Valve: 2 hi-flow TPR valves with screw-on caps (both have inflation and deflation functions)
- Stuff Sack: Yes
- Pump: Yes (doubles as pillow)
- Features: Vertical side walls
- Fastest Inflation: 10 minutes (self-inflation), plus 1 minute (pumping)
- Fastest Deflation: 5 minutes
Testing and Performance
I put the REI Co-Op Camp Dreamer Double through these 5 tests:
- Ease of Use
- Versatility + Sizing
Here’s how the REI Camp Dreamer Double performed.
Thickness and Loft
The REI Camp Dreamer Double gets me about 3.75 inches off the ground.
When inflated to my personal preference, which is a little bit softer, my body does not touch the ground whether I’m sleeping on my back, stomach, or side.
When I was leaning on my elbow and sitting down though, I could feel the ground a little, but it was still pretty comfortable because of all the foam inside.
If I make the Dreamer Double really firm though, I can’t feel the ground in any position, even when sitting down.
I like it a bit softer, because then the foam of the Dreamer Double contours to the shape of my body, and gives my body plenty of support.
But even when it was very firm, it never felt too stiff and was also pretty comfortable.
The REI Dreamer Double measures about 81 by 54 inches, which is slightly smaller than a Queen size in width. For me, I found that it fits two people very comfortably, and the 81 inches in length is also great for taller people.
The side walls are vertical, which maximizes sleeping space.
The sleeping surface is flat, not baffled, the polyester top fabric is also soft against the skin, and is not noisy when moving around in bed.
As for bouncing, it’s very minimal even when there’s another person sharing the mattress, which is one of the benefits of having a self-inflating mattress instead of an air mattress.
Ease of Use
The REI Camp Dreamer Double has 2 valves along the side wall of the foot of the mattress, which are kind of flushed with the surface.
Both valves are exactly the same, and have both inflation and deflation functions.
To inflate the REI Dreamer Double, unscrew the caps of both valves, and turn them to the side that says “Inflate”. This is a 1-way valve that lets air in, but doesn’t let air leak out.
I usually leave the Dreamer Double for about 10 minutes, and it’ll inflate to about maybe 85% of the maximum firmness.
After that, I attach the open end of the included pump to one of the valves, you will hear it pop into place, then make sure the other side of the pump also says “Inflate”, and pump about 10 times to fully inflate the Dreamer Double.
This takes another 1 minute or so. You can pump it less if you like it a bit softer. Then, I remove the pump, and screw the caps back on tightly.
How Storage Affects Inflation
How quickly the Dreamer Double self-inflates depends on how you store it at home. If you store it unrolled with the valves open, it could self-inflate in as quickly as 10 minutes.
If you keep it deflated and stored in the stuff sack like this for weeks, maybe even months, at a time, like I do because I don’t have a lot of space at home, it takes around 20 minutes. Could be more if you store it for much longer.
Oh, and it’ll self-inflate less, maybe 60, 70%, so you’ll have to manually pump it up more.
For a slightly quicker inflation, I sometimes position both valves sideways like this, which allows for more air to flow in.
But do remember to flip it back to the “Inflate” side when topping it off with air, and before screwing the caps back on.
To release some air from the Dreamer Double to make it a bit softer, just unscrew the caps of one of the valves, and push it in slightly to let some air out.
To deflate the REI Camp Dreamer Double, unscrew the caps of both valves again, and turn them this time to the side that says “Deflate”.
Then, I fold the Dreamer Double in thirds, use my body weight to push the air out, and then half it to get as much air out as possible.
This usually takes me about 1 and a half minutes or so. Folding it up properly will take another 3 and a half minutes, so, the full deflation usually takes me about 5 minutes.
If you forget any of this, there are instructions about the valves on the mattress itself, which is really neat.
The REI Dreamer Double comes with a convenient carry bag. It’s not exactly oversized, but it fits the mattress back in easily even if it isn’t fully deflated. It’s big enough to fit the pump as well, and I like to deflate the pump for easier storage.
The carry bag also has a shoulder strap for easy carry.
After deflating, the smallest packed size I could get the REI Camp Dreamer Double down to is about 29 x 15 x 12 inches.
Here’s what it looks like back in the carry bag, beside the deflated included pump, and a 32-ounce Nalgene bottle.
The packed size will change depending on how you fold it and how much air you push out of it.
How to Fold
For me personally, I like to fold it in half before rolling it up. When rolling it up, I use my hands to grip the sides of the Dreamer Double, while using my knees and body weight to push air out.
It takes me about 1 and a half minutes to roll it up the first time.
I usually unfold it, and roll it up a second time to push just a little bit more air out, which takes another 30 seconds.
Then, I put the straps back on, before standing it up and placing it back into the carry bag, which is another 1 and a half minutes.
The REI Dreamer Double weighs 11.6 pounds for just the mattress alone. The pump weighs 11.8 ounces, and the carry bag weighs 11.5 ounces.
Versatility + Sizing
The REI Camp Dreamer Double has an R-value of 6.5, so it’s well insulated, and can be used for all seasons, including winter.
Unfortunately, I did not get to test this out, but the reviews seem to show that it’s well-insulated, and was warm even in temperatures down to 30 degrees Fahrenheit.
I used the Dreamer Double only in summer temperatures between 60 to like 80, and never felt too hot even in higher temperatures. (Although I am a cold sleeper.)
It’s so enormously heavy that backpacking is out of the question, so you’re limited to car camping.
The included pump also doubles as a pillow, and I usually deflate it before using it as a pillow. Not the most comfortable camping pillow that I have, but it’s okay and it’s better than no pillow.
Here’s what the Dreamer Double looks like inside a Coleman 2-Person Sundome Tent.
The length of the Dreamer Double extends from one end of the tent to the other, so when inflating, there’s no space to attach the included pump to the valve to add more air in.
When self-inflating, the Dreamer Double doesn’t inflate completely, this is about as much as it’ll inflate, so I would recommend using this in larger tents.
Unless, of course, you use an electric pump to inflate it fully.
If so, the Dreamer Double actually fits just nicely into the Coleman 2-Person Sundome Tent, although there’s almost no space for gear at all. It also doesn’t reduce livable space at all, and I have plenty of space to sit up and also to crouch.
And here’s what the REI Dreamer Double looks like inside a Coleman 4-Person Dome Tent when placed vertically inside the tent.
There isn’t enough space to fit 2 of these mattresses, but having just 1 mattress gives me plenty of space for my camping gear. I also have lots of livable space, and I can almost stand up.
Foam and Seams
The REI Camp Dreamer Double is made of horizontally cored, self-inflating foam, with welded seams.
The top is made of polyester, and feels smooth and very soft, while the bottom feels less smooth and more rugged.
When I first inflated the Dreamer Double, I found the mattress plush and comfortable.
However, on the first night that I slept on the Dreamer Double, it lost all of the additional air that I pumped into it within 1 or 2 hours, and I found myself sleeping on just the foam. But I was too tired to get up, so I actually slept on my back through the night without topping it off with air. (It wasn’t too comfortable sleeping on my side on just the foam.)
The foam of the Dreamer Double is very thick, so it’s actually sort of comfortable even after losing air.
When I tried to find the leak, I could hear air leaking around one of the valves, and because the Dreamer Double has quite a few negative reviews about leaky valves, I assumed it was the valve that was faulty, and that the turning of the valve did not give it a very tight seal. So, I tried all kinds of things to stop it from losing air. But every night, the Dreamer Double kept losing air.
Eventually, I realized the problem – there were 2 holes in the mattress, very near to one of the valves. Once I patched up the holes, air retention became good, and I slept on the REI Dreamer Double with another person 3 nights in a row without having to top off any air at all.
The hi-flow TPR valves of the Dreamer Double did not leak for me, because I made sure to align the valves properly, and also to tighten the screw-on caps on the valves.
The included pump is versatile, doesn’t need batteries or charging, and comes with the same hi-flow TPR valve, which is good quality as well. I do use the pump as a pillow occasionally, and haven’t had any leaking so far.
Stuff Sack Quality
The stuff sack feels high quality and seems to be pretty strong.
The Dreamer Double would have been a great quality self-inflating mattress if it didn’t come with 2 holes that kept leaking air. I know it’s just a manufacturing defect, because there are quite a few 5-star reviews without air leakage. But still, I expected better quality control even for the discounted price of 30% off.
Pros and Cons
For pros, I found the REI Camp Dreamer Double warm and very comfortable, whether you like it soft or firm. It’s very plush, and bouncing is minimal, which is important when 2 people are sharing a bed.
It’s almost a Queen size, which is great for those who are taller or those who prefer bigger mattresses.
It’s also relatively inexpensive for a self-inflating camping mattress when it goes on sale. I think the Dreamer Double is easily one of, if not the, least expensive big-name self-inflating mattress for the size. Inflation is also super easy.
However, for cons, deflation is not quite so easy. For me to deflate the Dreamer Double on my own, it’s a mini 5-minute workout. It’ll be much easier with 2 people for sure.
It’s also very, very bulky, even after I try to squeeze out as much air as possible. It’s my most bulky 2-person camping mattress by far, and check out what it looks like beside a packed-up Coleman 2-Person Sundome Tent, and my packed-up Coleman 4-Person Dome Tent. Insane, really.
My Dreamer Double also came with 2 small holes, which is a manufacturing defect for sure, because it leaked even on my first night of use, so I wish quality control was better. To be fair though, apart from this defect, I think it’s fairly durable, because I had no other leaks once I patched up the holes, in the few weeks that I was using this.
Overall, I would recommend the REI Dreamer Double when it goes on sale. I think I definitely got my money’s worth, because I got this for 30% off, and I’m really happy with how soft and comfortable this is.
But at full price, I think it’s a little bit pricey, and doesn’t give quite as much value for money. At full price, I’d rather go for the Exped MegaMat.
Also, I would recommend the Dreamer Double only if you have the space to accommodate it in your car, and also at home for long-term storage.
It’s also not the most ideal for 2-person tents, so bigger tents will be better.
And please, remember to test it out a few times before your 1-year warranty with REI is up, in case you happen to have issues like mine.
The bottom line is that if you don’t have a super large budget for a high-end self-inflating sleeping pad like the Exped MegaMat, wait for the REI Dreamer Double to go on sale, which happens a few times a year, and then pick it up.
At the discounted price, it’s like almost half the price of the Exped MegaMat Long Wide Double, and the Dreamer Double is also 3 inches longer and 2 inches wider than the Long Wide Double, so you have like a ton of space for half the price, which is seriously incredible.
Bonus: Must Read!
To find out how the REI Camp Dreamer Double compares against the Exped MegaMat Duo 10 and 8 other 2-person camping mattresses, here’s a blog post where I bought, tested and compared 10 of the best camping mattresses for couples.
Or, check out the REI Camp Dreamer Double: