If you’re thinking of buying new sun loungers for your caravan holidays, how will you judge between the myriad of camping chairs and recliners on the market?

Until you start researching camping products thoroughly you can’t know what’s available. So we collected a good selection of comfortable reclining chairs together on the Practical Caravan accessories test bench. Here’s a quick run-down of what we were looking for.

Firstly, we looked for lightweight sun loungers that would pack away neatly in transit and yet be comfortable on holiday. Where the chairs came with a separate footstool, we checked that they were easy to put together.

Most of all, we looked at the comfort of these sun loungers, checking out the padding and fabric used, as well as how easy it is to get into and out of the chairs when they’re in their most upright positions. We wanted recliners that go completely flat for sunbathing face-down as well as lying flat on our backs, gazing at the cloudless blue sky. 

Sun loungers that you can put in a more upright position for eating were especially pleasing, since this could mean that you only need to take one camping chair per person on holiday in order to enjoy eating outside the caravan, either in the awning or in fresh air. 

Another important factor when you’re choosing camping chairs and sun loungers is the maximum load weight of each product. We found that most reclining chairs are designed to suit people up to 100kg or 120kg (roughly 15.5 stone to almost 19 stone). Some sun loungers are more robust and can hold people up to 150kg (almost 24 stone). Even if you’re significantly lighter than these maximum weights, it’s good to know your chairs won’t collapse if two children share it, or a heavier friend pops over to see you!

Prices and value for money are always on our minds when we’re testing camping accessories. Do you always get what you pay for? We look closely to find out.

We’ve tested a few sun loungers that are actually camping chairs with footstools, such as the Westfield Avantgarde Noblesse Chair with Breeze Stool, costing £104.99 for the chair and £34.99 for the stool. Another is the Kampa Comfort Tuscany Chair and Stool, costing £35 for the camping chair and £19.99 for the stool. Our third chair-and-stool combo was the Outwell Melville Chair and Dauphin Footstool, £59.99 plus a further £17.99 for the footstool.

As well as these two-part recliner-plus-footstool sun loungers, we tested the simple Argos Folding Sun Lounger, £19.99, the well padded Kampa Verona Indulgence Deluxe, £105, the Quest Elite Ragley Sage Stepless Relaxer, £69.99 and the Kampa Opulence Amalfi, £74.99.

In this review we’ll focus on the Kampa Comfort Tuscany Chair and Aluminium Stool, which costs a total of £54.99 for both parts, which certainly sounds like good value for money.

Kampa’s take on the chair-plus-stool concept differs from Outwell’s and Westfield’s: their footstools attach to the chairs, while Kampa’s version simply slides underneath. In some ways this is better, because moving the footstool out of the way to sit down is easier than sitting on an attached stool and sliding back between the chair’s arms. Then again, having to perch, legs akimbo, while you position the stool is a bit of a faff.

Like all the chair-and-stool combos, this works admirably as a relaxer and a sit-at-the-table camping chair. We like the fully adjustable headrest, but feel that the backrest slightly lacks lumbar support in chair mode.