Update: We’re now using a new sleeping system – a DIY van life bed.
This post is for those of you who have been asking what we decided to do for bed cushioning since we elected not to order the cushions from Wayfarer Vans. To make a long story short, we started out using the cushions from our old vintage motorhomes. We had two cushions that we saved from the 1976 Toyota Sunline that we owned, three from the 1976 Chinook we owned and an old red sleeping bag that we used to prop our feet up. In other words, it was a situation. Neither of us slept well with that kind of configuration but we figured it was a way to save a little bit of money up front and eventually get into the comfort sleeping system that we wanted.
Caroline did a lot of research and found this mat called the SIM Comfort Duo 7.5. It’s out of Switzerland and though it was hard to track down and actually purchase, we finally found one and had it delivered!
The Exped SIM Comfort Duo 7.5 mat
We bought this mat for sleeping in our Ram ProMaster City cargo van. We realized that it would play really nicely with the Wayfarer Van Conversion kit (You can read more about why we chose the Wayfarer kit if you like). The reviews were really good online and the videos were helpful as well. It was a little hard for us to purchase something sight unseen but we crossed our fingers and remained hopeful.
Turns out that our bet was a good one!
The mat came delivered in a bag that has a strap for carrying it. We kept it with the thought that maybe it could double as a laundry bag. The first time we unrolled the mat from the bag it was really compressed and cold. But in about 30 minutes of being laid out flat, it was ready to go!
The SIM Comfort Duo 7.5 mat is thick and self-inflating. It also comes with a pump in case you want or need for it to be ready faster. Goodbye to almost passing out from trying to inflate a sleeping pad. As far as deflation it has two durable FlatValves that allow the mat to lose air rather quickly.
The valves are a nice feature because once we wake up we like to fold the mat in half so that we can access the other storage boxes. It’s takes a lot less time to do this than it does to move all of the cushions around like before.
Some more details about the SIM Comfort Duo 7.5 Mat:
Where to Purchase the SIM Comfort Duo 7.5 Mat
We tried to buy this at REI but it wasn’t in stock. They told us that they could order it but that it would take us another 2 months to receive. We finally found the Exped SIM Comfort Duo Self Inflating Air Mattress – 7.5 on Amazon and received it within about a week from ordering it. Purchases come with a 5 year warranty.
One thing we don’t recommend is letting your pets on this mat. The instructions make it really clear that toenails and other sharp objects will lead to a shorter life of the mat. In addition they recommend keeping it away from heat. Both of these are pretty common sense but worth remembering so you don’t end up having to buy another one.
The Exped SIM Comfort Duo 7.5 Mat Recap
We recommend this mat for anyone who values a good night’s rest while traveling. While it’s much too heavy for backpacking trips, it’s an excellent choice for van lifers and weekend car campers. We could see also see it doubling as way to host friends when they come to visit at your house, not just someone sleeping in a van.
What do you use for a sleeping pad or mat when traveling? We’d love to hear your thoughts about van life and camping gear. Please leave them in the comments below!
To purchase, click here: