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Best Outdoor Folding Chairs Reviewed & Rated for Value

last updated Feb 04, 2019

Most people don’t think about what kind of folding chair is the best… until they realize how many options there are. We didn’t realize how many options there were until we decided to put together this top 10 list of our favs and we realized that there is a chair for every situation.

The days of running to the nearest store to grab any ol’ folding chair are over. Whether you use it while watching the ball game or at a bonfire, buying the right outdoor folding chair can make life a lot easier and comfortable. But finding the right chair you can be overwhelming, so we have done the research and highlighted the benefits of our favs to make your life and chair-picking-decision a whole easier.

In a Hurry? The test winner after 266 hrs of research

icon
GCI Freestyle Rocker
95.5/100 our score
Ease of Use
97
Weight
95
Materials
94
Style
96
GCI Freestyle Rocker
Why is it better?

Comes with a cup holder and padded armrests

Wider chair and more stable than most

Good height from the ground for easy sitting and standing

Can be used on most surfaces

High-Quality materials used in production

In a Hurry? Editors choice:
GCI Freestyle Rocker
Test Winner: GCI Freestyle Rocker
Amazon Link
Interviewed Experts
4
Interviewed Experts
Researched Sources
16
Researched Sources
Total Readers
10k
Total Readers
Reviews Considered
14k
Reviews Considered
Hours Researching
266
Hours Researching
Products Evaluated
10
Products Evaluated
Last Updated:
Shelby Wallace
By Shelby Wallace:

A recent update has been done to highlight the quality and benefits of our top 10 favorite folding chairs on the market. The information has been rewritten and updated to make it more digestible and easier to read and FAQ section has been updated as well. So if you have any questions, please stop by our FAQ section at the bottom of the page. Happy shopping!

Sorting Options
Ease of Use Weight Materials Style By Default
Rank
PictureProduct
Name
Rating
Shops
#1
The rating is based on the average rating (1-100) from all the criteria in which we rated this product.
95.5
Ease of Use
97 %
Weight
95 %
Materials
94 %
Style
96 %
Price Comparison Last Updated (14.10.19)
Amazon Link
$95.29
#2
The rating is based on the average rating (1-100) from all the criteria in which we rated this product.
95
Ease of Use
98 %
Weight
94 %
Materials
94 %
Style
94 %
Price Comparison Last Updated (14.10.19)
Amazon Link
$38.55
#3
The rating is based on the average rating (1-100) from all the criteria in which we rated this product.
94.8
Ease of Use
95 %
Weight
96 %
Materials
95 %
Style
93 %
Price Comparison Last Updated (14.10.19)
Amazon Link
$19.00
#4
The rating is based on the average rating (1-100) from all the criteria in which we rated this product.
94.5
Ease of Use
96 %
Weight
94 %
Materials
94 %
Style
94 %
Price Comparison Last Updated (14.10.19)
Amazon Link
$52.99
#5
The rating is based on the average rating (1-100) from all the criteria in which we rated this product.
92.3
Ease of Use
92 %
Weight
90 %
Materials
94 %
Style
93 %
Price Comparison Last Updated (14.10.19)
#6
The rating is based on the average rating (1-100) from all the criteria in which we rated this product.
92
Ease of Use
91 %
Weight
90 %
Materials
93 %
Style
94 %
Price Comparison Last Updated (14.10.19)
Amazon Link
$52.74
#7
The rating is based on the average rating (1-100) from all the criteria in which we rated this product.
91.3
Ease of Use
91 %
Weight
94 %
Materials
92 %
Style
88 %
Price Comparison Last Updated (14.10.19)
Amazon Link
$50.98
Cabelas
$54.99
See Deal
#8
The rating is based on the average rating (1-100) from all the criteria in which we rated this product.
91.3
Ease of Use
92 %
Weight
92 %
Materials
91 %
Style
90 %
Price Comparison Last Updated (14.10.19)
Amazon Link
$65.99
#9
The rating is based on the average rating (1-100) from all the criteria in which we rated this product.
90.3
Ease of Use
88 %
Weight
91 %
Materials
92 %
Style
90 %
Price Comparison Last Updated (14.10.19)
#10
The rating is based on the average rating (1-100) from all the criteria in which we rated this product.
89.5
Ease of Use
89 %
Weight
91 %
Materials
90 %
Style
88 %
Price Comparison Last Updated (14.10.19)

10 Best Outdoor Folding Chairs

1. GCI Freestyle Rocker

The rating is based on the average rating (1-100) from all the criteria in which we rated this product.
95.5
GCI Freestyle Rocker
Amazon Link
Ease of Use
97
Weight
95
Materials
94
Style
96
best offer for today
Amazon Link
$95.29
Pros:

Comes with a cup holder and padded armrests

Wider chair and more stable than most

Good height from the ground for easy sitting and standing

Can be used on most surfaces

High-Quality materials used in production

Cons:

A little more expensive than most chairs

Requires oiling occasionally to prevent squeaking

The GCI Outdoor Freestyle Rocker is a very solid choice for an outdoor folding chair. The freestyle rocker was designed to be easily opened and closed. It has a side handle for carrying convenience as well as a simple folding design making it easy to move and set up. The freestyle rocker is surprisingly light considering it’s made with powder-coated steel.

Smooth Rocking

The Freestyle Rocker offers a patented spring-action rocking assistance design to make your chair rock smoothly with every motion. The rear legs feature a rubberized tread that hold the freestyle rocker solidly in place while you’re rocking.

Easily Folding

We’ve all been there, struggling to fight the power of steel in order to close a chair that seems to be malfunctioning. The Freestyle Rocker uses patented easy-fold technology which makes it very easy to open and close the chair when it’s not needed.

Cost and Value

The Freestyle Rocker is modestly priced considering the features that it boasts. The high-quality materials used in its design and the limited lifetime warranty make this a chair that you can use and reuse for some time to come without hurting your budget.

2. Kijaro Dual Lock

The rating is based on the average rating (1-100) from all the criteria in which we rated this product.
95
Kijaro Dual Lock
Amazon Link
Ease of Use
98
Weight
94
Materials
94
Style
94
best offer for today
Amazon Link
$38.55
Pros:

Dual locks for extra stability

Mesh back for extra breathability

Rip-stop fabric

Comes in multiple colors

Cons:

Multiple users complain of rivets coming loose

The Kijaro dual lock portable camping and sports chair is a sturdy, supportive chair that is offered in a large variety of colors to choose from.

Rip-Stop Material

The Kijaro is constructed of heavy duty rip-stop material which is on a locking frame designed to support up to 300 pounds. The mesh back allows for air circulation to help keep you cool on warm summer days.

Cup holders and Storage

The Kijaro is designed with two cup holders in the armrests and a hanging side pocket organizer that is perfect for small items. The Kijaro comes with a carrying bag or it has a shoulder strap attached directly to the chair. The locking mechanism keeps the chair locked closed as well as open for easy transport.

Cost and Value

The Kijaro chair comes with nice features and in a vast array of colors to choose from. The locking features to keep the chair open, along with the rip-stop fabric make this chair a nice value.

3. Coleman Oversized Quad

The rating is based on the average rating (1-100) from all the criteria in which we rated this product.
94.8
Coleman Oversized Quad
Amazon Link
Ease of Use
95
Weight
96
Materials
95
Style
93
best offer for today
Amazon Link
$19.00
Pros:

Keeps your items within reach

Very supportive of your back

Easy to store when not in use

Mesh cup holder

Comes with carrying bag

Cons:

Armrests need adjustments

Difficult to get into carrying bag

The Coleman Oversized Quad is the most budget friendly chair on this list. It includes various perks like a drink cooling pouch, a cup holder, and a mesh pouch to hold anything you might need to bring with. It has a padded backing making it comfortable and providing extra support. The Coleman Quad comes with a bag for easy transport.

Cooler Pouch

The cooler pouch on the Coleman Quad is a very nice addition for those hot summer days. It is capable of holding four beverages and maintaining their temperature for a brief time.

Side Pockets

Spend less time looking for your personal items with the separated side pocket. The pockets are large enough to hold your standard pocket dwelling items such as a phone, keys, or even a smaller book.

Cost and Value

This is your standard cheaper outdoor folding chair. It’s the cheapest folding chair on this list but has remarkably good reviews for the low cost. It's padded backing, cooler pouch, side pockets and drink holder make this chair a good bang for your buck buy.

4. Timber Ridge Aluminum Director

The rating is based on the average rating (1-100) from all the criteria in which we rated this product.
94.5
Timber Ridge Aluminum Director
Amazon Link
Ease of Use
96
Weight
94
Materials
94
Style
94
best offer for today
Amazon Link
$52.99
Pros:

Multiple color options

Removable padded armrests

Quality stitching to prevent seat tearing

Breathable material perfect for summer conditions

No sinking into this chair

Cons:

Screws occasionally need tightening

Requires relatively flat surface

This Timber Ridge Aluminum director with a side table is perfect for a longer outing. It’s very sturdy and has a side table with a drink holder so you can eat with relative comfort and have a place to set your plate. The Timber Ridge Director’s chair has removable padded armrests as well as a breathable open back area.

Side Table

The side table can fold down when it’s not in use making it perfect for squeezing into a tight spot. It has a cup holder leaving your armrests free of obstructions.

Sturdy

With its high weight capacity and wide frame design, this chair is very sturdy. You can look forward to long term use with this aluminum chair.

Cost and Value

This chair falls in the mid-range price category in this list. Its high durability makes it more cost effective than others on this list and the side table offers a unique comfort for these types of chairs.

5. Kelty Low Loveseat

The rating is based on the average rating (1-100) from all the criteria in which we rated this product.
92.3
Kelty Low Loveseat
Amazon Link
Ease of Use
92
Weight
90
Materials
94
Style
93
best offer for today
more shops
Pros:

Well thought out design

Adjustable reclining back

Dual insulation keeps beverages colder, longer

Multi-use Carrying tote included

Provides long-lasting comfort

Cons:

Very heavy at 14 lbs

Center has an uncomfortable bar

The Kelty low Loveseat is an interesting choice for a folding chair that offers not one seat, but two seats. It’s made with a durable steel frame and higher-quality polyester material for a more cozy feel. This low loveseat also has a dual insulated beverage holder for quick and easy access to a cold beverage. The best part, it’s adjustably reclined for a more relaxing experience.

Partner

A normal chair is suitable but difficult to share. The Kelty loveseat makes the outdoors adventure more enjoyable by being able to share the experience with another. Each side has their own side pockets so both you and another can store personal belongings.

Rolling Storage

Rather than trying to squeeze this giant chair into a bag it was made with a rolling storage design. Simply deconstruct this chair and place the items in the easy to carry roll bag.

Cost and Value

As one of the more expensive options on this list, the value comes from the ability to seat two rather than the normal one person chair. This loveseat is constructed with very high-quality material, from the 600D polyester cover to the folding steel frame, you can feel the hard work that went into producing this product.

6. ALPS Mountaineering King Kong

The rating is based on the average rating (1-100) from all the criteria in which we rated this product.
92
ALPS Mountaineering King Kong
Amazon Link
Ease of Use
91
Weight
90
Materials
93
Style
94
best offer for today
Amazon Link
$52.74
Pros:

Can be expanded upon with other products

Larger seating area for comfort

Designed to last

Taller than most other chairs

Cons:

Front edge can hurt legs

Difficult to get in and out of

ALPS Mountaineering King Kong is a great choice for almost any outdoor situation. It has not one but two cup holders, one at the end of each armrest. There are two side pockets providing ample storage for personal items. The King Kong is much wider than your average folding chair and is made with high-end polyester making movement in the chair more comfortable.

Adjustable Armrest

The King Kong has adjustable armrests allowing you to set them to a level that's more comfortable for you. This same feature prevents the armrests from sliding down while you’re sitting which can be quite the nuisance.

Extreme Support

The ALPS Mountaineering King Kong is extremely well built and has the capability of holding 800 lbs. This chair would be perfect for anyone that considers themselves to be big and tall.

Cost and Value

Considering the size and the quality of materials this chair is the ideal mid ranged chair. It’s more suited for a camping trip than a hiking trip due to its size but it is ideal for setting up around a campfire and enjoying nature.

7. Browning Camping Strutter

The rating is based on the average rating (1-100) from all the criteria in which we rated this product.
91.3
Browning Camping Strutter
Amazon Link
Ease of Use
91
Weight
94
Materials
92
Style
88
best offer for today
more shops
Amazon Link
$50.98
Cabelas
$54.99
See Deal
Pros:

Size options for cost and comfort

Ease of access

Maintains a low Profile

Uses breathable mesh material

Cons:

Shoulder strap breaks easily

No armrests

The Browning Camping Strutter is a much smaller more portable folding chair than most others on this list. The size doesn't speak poorly of the quality either, it’s made with powder-coated steel and a collapsing design that makes it easy to carry while hiking. The Browning Camping strutter has another wider version for anyone that wants more room for comfort making it quite versatile.

Compact

The Browning Camping Strutters compact size makes this ideal for use in difficult to reach areas. When fully collapsed it’s is of being held on your back using a sling with relative ease.

Rotating Feet

This chair is perfect for use on uneven surfaces with its rotating feet. The chair's feet will automatically adjust to provide comfortable seating even on the most uneven of surfaces.

Cost and Value

This well built low sitting chair is one of the cheaper options on this list. Its portability and adjustability make it a staple for any hiking, mountain climbing, or hunting trip you may need it on.

8. Picnic Time Portable

The rating is based on the average rating (1-100) from all the criteria in which we rated this product.
91.3
Picnic Time Portable
Amazon Link
Ease of Use
92
Weight
92
Materials
91
Style
90
best offer for today
Amazon Link
$65.99
Pros:

The multiple pockets are great for accessories

Very easy to carry

Long lasting comfort

Can withstand some punishment

Cons:

Drinks easily knocked off side table

Backrest a little low

The Picnic Time Portable Sports Chair is a wide seat chair with an aluminum frame, side table, and multi-accessory side pouch. The multi-accessory side pouch can accommodate many of your daily use personal items and even has two insulated pockets for beverages. The Portable Sports Chair features 600D polyester fabric and padded armrests for your comfort, as well as multiple straps for easy transportation.

Multiple Color Options

Of all the chairs on this list, the Portable Sports Chair is the one only that features a large number of multiple color options. This chair can be used with almost any of your existing outdoor furniture and match the color quite well.

Security Pouch

The Portable Sports Chair has a side pouch that features a zipper and has ample space for your more important personal items. This security pouch is perfect for keeping your items out of sight.

Cost and Value

The Portable Sports Chair is one of the more expensive chairs on the list. This chair is more suited to someone that would frequently use a folding chair. With the insulated drink holders and the side table this is an all-inclusive outdoor chair.

9. ALPS Mountaineering

The rating is based on the average rating (1-100) from all the criteria in which we rated this product.
90.3
ALPS Mountaineering
Amazon Link
Ease of Use
88
Weight
91
Materials
92
Style
90
best offer for today
more shops
Amazon Link
$35.83
Pros:

Well constructed

Great carrying bag

Thick cloth

Three Reclining positions

Wider chair

Cons:

Difficult to get out of

The seat back is somewhat short

The ALPS Mountaineering Rendezvous is a low sitting powder-coated steel framed folding chair. This chair uses a free breathing mesh material which provides a deep comfort during hotter summer days. The reclined backrest makes it easy to kick up your feet and relax very comfortably. The small profile makes this chair easy to add to most any outdoor adventures.

Versatility

No matter what situation you find yourself in you can add this chair to your pack and have reliable comfortable seating. Its low profile and reclined back make it perfect for activities like fishing, beach trips, and hiking.

Reclined Back

The reclined back makes this chair very comfortable. It’s quite easy to fall asleep while relaxing in your favorite outdoor location. Combined with the breathing mesh you’re guaranteed to love this chair.

Cost and Value

The ALPS Mountaineering Rendezvous is reasonably priced and is in the mid-range on this ten best list. ALPS quality materials used make this a durable item ensuring you will get every cent of what you pay for.

10. Helinox One

The rating is based on the average rating (1-100) from all the criteria in which we rated this product.
89.5
Helinox One
Amazon Link
Ease of Use
89
Weight
91
Materials
90
Style
88
best offer for today
more shops
Pros:

Easy assembly

Less prone to stress cracking

Useful in most situations

Perfectly Inclined

Cons:

Quite Expensive

Smaller than most chairs

The Helinox One Chair is an interesting choice on this list. It uses a polyester 600D fabric that can be removed or reattached with ease. The Helinox One uses an aluminum pole frame that suspends the user in mid-air for long term comfort. The Helinox can fit into very limited spaces when it’s separated and deconstructed.

Lightweight

The Helinox is hands down the lightest folding outdoor chair you can buy today. It weighs less than two pounds making it ideal for taking with on all your adventures.

Suspended Sitting

While most chairs have a frame piece in the front for support it can end up being very uncomfortable. The Helinox suspends the user over the frame providing a comfortable seat.

Cost and Value

The Helinox is the most expensive chair on this list. The cost is offset by the simplicity in its design, the ease of usage, and lightweight. It uses higher quality 600D polyester for breathable comfort and includes zipping carrying case that the chair fits in without frustration.

Criteria Used for Evaluation

Ease of Use

When you think of an outdoor folding chair, you would be forgiven for thinking it is a relatively modern invention. Reasonable, yes, however, the humble folding chair can be dated back centuries. As long ago as the 15th century BC, folding chairs were a common sight in the Mediterranean and they would be used as grave goods for the powerful – one being found in the tomb of Tutankhamun in Egypt even earlier. Today, our outdoor folding chairs are not generally made with precious gold and ivory fittings and are much less reserved for our deceased.
When we go on an outdoor adventure and we don’t want to rely on finding a suitable rock, the folding chair comes into its own. And when communal use spaces are used for different reasons – the folding chair is a blessing. They are probably our first port of call when we go camping, either backpacking or in an RV, the versatility of the folding chair is worth its weight in gold. In the garden, at school, or anywhere we want a portable seat – this item is a must-have in any garage.

Weight

So, you know you want an outdoor folding chair, you know when you want to use it, and in what situation. This is when you can start to be picky in order to get the right one for your individual needs and requirements. You either need your ideal folding chair to be compact and light, or sturdy and heavyweight. There’s not much point buying a sturdy one if you plan to hook it to your backpack. Likewise, if you are buying one for summer use in your garden weight and size probably won’t be as important.

Materials

If the perfect chair for you is for ease put up in the garden, you may well find a wooden framed chair will be suitable, these are the heavier type and often come with canvas fabrics. However, these are not weather resistant and can be cumbersome to move around, possibly better for occasional use in nicer climates. Another frame material that is easily obtained, is a steel framed version, this is obviously an improvement for weather changes, they can still be quite weighty but not as much as a wooden chair. Canvas and synthetic fabrics are, once again a common feature.
For ultra light and portable outdoor folding chairs, aluminum frames are modern and are easy to fold and carry. They often compact down nicely so you should not be too hindered if you want to hook it onto your backpack. Nylon fabrics are used and this can offer a certain amount of weather resistance and durability. A mesh design is also versatile, is still very light and can also keep you cooler on the hot summer afternoons.

Style

The basic ‘X’ type, a simple light and easy to use outdoor folding chair can be very useful when you’re expecting a long day and seating is sparse. It’s convenient to carry and can even be attached to a bag. The only downside to this basic design is that it isn’t very stable, so you need to make sure you have a firm space to put it onto before you rest your legs. Four-legged or the basic design with a back can be the best next option, they do tend to be a little heavier but are more stable. These can come in a variety of finishes, hard plastic, struts, mesh, padded, nylon and canvas depending on what you want it for.
For the ultimate outdoor folding chair, there are the types with armrests, these are often lightweight and some even have the option of a drinks holder integrated within the arm material. They even come as a double seat if you want less weight to carry for more than one person. These come with handy carry sacks with strong strapping and some even have the option of ‘webbed’ feet so they are less susceptible to sinking in grass or softer ground.

Another popular type of outdoor folding chair is a low riser – this chair will sit only inches from the ground and can support your back in this position. This type is an ideal weight and size to fit into your backpack and comes in durable fabric. For that touch of luxury, when you’re looking for a great portable chair for your garden, there are the super comfy padded seats and cushions, and if you want to go for the whole set – some even come with a sun canopy attached.

So, the simple outdoor folding chair is not really simple, once you have your use in mind, and an ideal weight – the variety of different and alternative options on the market will ensure there is an outdoor folding chair that’s just the job for you.

Expert Interviews & Opinions

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expert tips icon
An outdoor experience can easily be defined by the comfort that you enjoy.

Taking the time to get the best outdoor folding chair for your needs will ensure you are comfortable in even the most unforgiving of terrains.

Frequently Asked Questions

q: Are there weight limits for outdoor folding chairs?

a:

Yes, there is usually a weight limit. You will need to check the details of the chair you buy to find out what the weight limit is.

q: How can I clean my fabric chair?

a:

Most folding chairs are easy to clean, but the way you clean them depends on the material they are made out of. So make sure to read and follow the care instructions carefully.

q: Do all folding chairs come with a carry sack?

a:

A good portable one should come with a carrying sack. However, it’s always best to check the information for the product before you purchase if this is a requirement for you and your needs.

q: Are folding chairs compact enough to carry on my backpack?

a:

Some are specially designed to be light and portable, making them a good option to carry on a backpack. Just make sure to check the dimension and the weight of the chair to see if it would be good to carry on your pack.

q: Do I need to treat the fabric on my chair?

a:

If you buy a synthetic, plastic or nylon covered chair then you shouldn’t need to treat it. If, however you buy a canvas fabric cover, and it might get wet, then it is advisable to treat it with a water-resistant spray.

q: Do I need to cover my folding chair if it is left outdoors?

a:

It’s always best to take your chairs indoors or somewhere protected from the elements when they are not in use. But if you need a chair that you can keep outside, there are a variety of covers that will protect your chairs from the weather.

q: Are outdoor folding chairs easy to set up?

a:

Yes, most are made to fold up and unfold quickly and easily so you can take them anywhere.