Comparison of Mega Mat with other mats
I bought and compared several camping mattresses and I think there is NO mattress on the market that is more comfortable than the Exped Mega Mat. For me it's literally twice as comfortable as anything else I tried. Especially for an older person with joint pain, the Mega Mat is as comfortable as camping is ever going to get. It has the perfect combination of support and micro-adjustable softness.
On a scale of 1-5, here's how I would rate the 5 mattresses I tried for sleeping comfort on the ground (as opposed to on a cot):
Intex Classic Downy....4
Exped SIM Comfort 10...3.5
REI Campbed 3.5........3
Exped Synmat 7 LW......2.5
Noticeably missing from that list are the Nemo Cosmo Air with Pillowtop and the Thermarest Dreamtime. Reviewers rate the Mega Mat higher than both of those and I agree.
MEGA MAT VS REI CAMPBED: I think the Mega Mat is clearly more comfortable than the Campbed for a discerning sleeper, which might include older folks and also larger or heavier people, and worth the extra money. The Campbed will probably be sufficient for a lot of people, especially those younger and smaller. One advantage of the Campbed over the Expeds is more comfortable top material (it's softer).
MEGA MAT VS EXPED SIM: You can save a bit of money with the Exped SIM, but again the Mega Mat is significantly more comfortable and worth the extra money. The main problem with the SIM is that you roll off the sides. The box sides of the Mega Mat entirely prevent that, and the REI Campbed also provides a stable sleep surface.
MEGA MAT VS EXPED SYNMAT 7: The Synmat 7 is as good as it gets for backpacking and kayak camping. I use it for those activities and give it a top rating. But if you have the space for the Mega Mat for car camping, it's much more comfortable.
MEGA MAT FOR COT? The actual measured width of the Mega Mat is 31". It does not fit on a 30" cot. It might fit on a 34" or 36" cot. For a 30" cot the most comfortable mattress I found was the REI Campbed 3.5".
BOTTOM LINE: The best value in car camping mattresses and the best choice for use with a cot is the REI Campbed 3.5. But if you camp a lot and can justify the cost, and you value a perfect night of sleep, go with the Mega Mat.
Excellent for Car Camping!
I use this mat exclusively as a car camping mat. For that application, it is excellent...it's almost like a bed! I used mine on a 3 week car camping trip last fall, and used it several times this winter on car camping trips.
My mat self inflates to about 3/4 full, then I top it off with about 2.5 schnozzel pump bags full of air, which is very simple. (The schnozzel pump bag does not come with this mat...I use the one I got with my Downmat UL 7.)
I then usually deflate the mat a little to my comfort. I lay on my back on the mat, then reach behind me to deflate the mat little by little until I feel my hips start to sink in a little so the mat fills in the small of my back...this is how I like it. Then I close the valve and it is ready for sleep.
There have been several times when I never added any air to it all...just let it self inflate then go to sleep on it just like that. However, since I always store my mat unrolled, with both valves open under my bed, my mat self inflates very well, to almost 3/4 full.
Your mat will probably not self inflate to the degree mine does if you store it deflated and rolled up in its stuff sack. Store it unrolled, with both valves open. Then it will self inflate like it should...
I highly recommend watching the instructional videos for this mat on the Exped Youtube channel, by the way. They are very helpful.
Also, the mat is actually about 31 inches wide...your elbows will not fall off the sides of the mat if you sleep on your back.
Most Comfortable Pad EVER
I live in a '73 VW Bus full-time, and have for the last three years. I purchased this pad as an upgrade to my old Therm-A-Rest backpacking pad, and I have never had a better night's sleep. I am 6'1" and 170 lbs with a wide frame, and this pad is more than wide enough for me. My arms don't fall off the sides at all- this pad feels as large as twin bed mattress!
The Megamat 10 self-inflates super fast, and stays inflated.
It comes with a sweet hand pump that is made out of the pad materials itself, so it packs down to nothing and it can't be broken. The pump is a breeze (Literally) to use and brings the pad up to sleeping pressure very quickly. I think the pump is a big improvement over breath inflating pads because after prolonged use my Therm-A-Rest had a lot of moisture inside from me blowing it up all the time.
The pad's exterior fabric is soft to the touch. I have found it to be comfortable on my shoulders and arms if they are outside of my sleeping bag.
If you go car camping, this pad is the one for you. If you go car camping with a significant other, this pad is definitely the one for you. Buy a second one and attach your two pads together to form one huge mattress.
DO NOT buy this pad for backpacking. It is way too heavy and long to be of any use.
The Megamat 10 is an expensive pad; but a comfortable night's sleep is priceless.
Well Worth It
This product is a great addition to my river trip camping package. It is big, it is heavy, it is more difficult to pack than smaller pads. It is also very comfortable, your bag doesn't slide around, you feel great in the AM. I really like the vertical sides - first time I've used a pad with that feature and love it - you really do get the full width of the pad - and it's wide. If like me you spend two or three weeks at a time in the outback and you have a vehicle or boat that can absorb the weight and size of this pad - get it. Inflation, deflation and roll up go as advertised. It will add about 5 minutes to your normal tent/bag/pad set up process. If you're a river rat it will also be a good idea to get one of the "long and skinny" dry bags like you use for a sun/rain shade or tent.
Best Pad Ever
I've used this pad for the last 3 weeks, moving each night for the last 2 weeks. its very comfortable. more comfortable that most mattresses. its the best air mattress by far that i've ever slept on. and it very easy to inflate. if you have the time it self inflates almost all the way by itself. there is a hand pump included, but i just do it manually and it takes less than a minute to firm it up to where i want it. it deflates pretty easily too. a bit more work but no more than a few minutes at most. and the valves are genius. as you deflate it, the valve does not let air back in, so it stays compact and easy to pack. this isn't a backpacking pad obviously, but its not too heavy and could be used that way if. we'll see how it holds up, but I highly recommend this product. its worth the extra money.
Can't wait to sleep on the MegaMat
I camp ALOT. I got this pad as a replacement for a different brand that developed a leak. I got my money back from REI, and I stumbled apon this mat on their online site. I thought the old mat was comfortable at 3". This mat is 4" thick and is extremely comfortable. It makes sleeping on the ground, luxurious! I can't wait to get outdoors and sleep. It's easy to get the exact softness/firmness with the hand pump and the deflate valve. Simple. I have slept on it from 25-95 degrees, sleeping bag(20 degree) to sheets. Best nights sleep, EVER. I love the length and width. Almost like a twin bed! It's heavy. Definintely for car camping. Very well made. I hope this pad will last as long as my very first pad that is going on 25+years! (I gave that one to my best friend). Get the MegaMat 10, you will not be disappointed. WORTH EVERY DOLLAR!!!!!
Very comfortable and high tech but...
This is a great portable sleeping pad . Well made, good looking and reliable yet...once the amount of air is adjusted perfectly for you, feels EXACTLY like my REI-brand "Camp Bed XL". And the latter cost much less. I believe its because the Expeds extra half inch thickness offers no more comfort AND that the sleeping surface of the REI camp Bed XL is an amazingly soft material. I am still stunned I cannot tell which I am sleeping on. Kudos to Exped for a wonderful product, its just that the REI Camp Bed XL is less costly. To be comfy, order either pad. On a budget...get the REI Camp Bed XL. Both are amazing and are like sleeping at home. No kidding!
Excited to sleep on the ground
I got this pad to sleep on the ground in a shared motel room and also for car camping trips. I have ultralight pads for backpacking and they are great for the weight... but if you are looking for the most comfortable car camping mat EVER, this is it! It's way better than a motel bed and I've never been so excited to sleep on the ground before. The extra width means it's great for side sleepers. When you sit on it your bottom doesn't immediately hit the ground. The foot pump is easy to use and the precise inflation and deflation controls make packing / unpacking the pad super easy. If weight is not an issue get this pad immediately!
Better than my mattress
This pad is awesome! The quality is incredible and the comfort is the best I've ever had. If I could hike with it I would, however that is a bit much. For short hike to camp or car camping it is ideal. I use it at home when my back hurts and it also makes a great mattress for a guest if needed. The warmth is the most important reason I bought it. For winter tent camping it adds a level of warmth that makes the difference on a cold night. The size is a real plus too. It's large enough to allow you to move and adjust without getting cold or rolling off.
I have spent the last ten months in grad school, living in a small apartment with no furniture. This mat has literally been my bed every night for the entire duration. It's as comfortable as any real mattress and has held the same air I pumped into it over 300 nights ago, with absolutely no leaks. Quality of construction is without peer and I would absolutely set this up as a guest bed. Typically I've set up AeroBed air mattresses for guests but this mat is even more comfortable, and significantly more reliable. I give this product my highest recommendation.