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We Test The Cheapest Ultralight Camping Chair On Amazon: The Hkuddas Backpacking Chair

It’s not easy to find a good camping chair. I’ve worn out more of them than I can remember, and I’m here to tell you that most are exactly what they appear to be: cheap junk designed to break after one season. 

That being said, there are some diamonds in the rough. In the realm of ultralight folding camp chairs, the Hemilox Chair Zero has come to be seen as the gold standard, and rightly so. I absolutely love mine and it has seen a lot of trail time.

But not everyone is willing or able to plunk down $130 for a camping chair, no matter how well-made it may be. That’s what brings us to the Hkuddas Ultralight Folding Camping Chair. It’s poised to be a budget-friendly alternative to the Helinox. The question is, how does it hold up? 

Measurements and Specs

I’m impressed right off the bat by how trim this chair is. The seat of the Hkuddas chair is 20.9 inches wide. It measures 13.8” tall at the front, and 26.4” tall at the back. The chair breaks down easily and fits inside the included 13” x 4” stuff sack, which is small enough to fit in a carry-on bag. 

The packed weight of the Hkuddas Camping Chair is 2 pounds, while the weight of the assembled chair itself (not counting the carrying bag) is 1.8 pounds. We could quibble about the definition of words like “ultralight,” but I’d have to day the Hkuddas is light enough to pick up with one finger, which is ultralight in my book.

Chair Setup

Setting up the Hkuddas Camping Chair is fairly easy and straightforward. The “skeleton” of the chair consists of legs and a support frame (made of 7075 aircraft grade aluminum) that snap together much like tent poles, with interior shock cords that essentially allow the whole thing to spring into shape quickly.

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The seat of the chair is made of 500D Cordura Fabric with nylon mesh netting, and it slips easily over the frame, attaching tautly at each of its four corners with a reinforced pole pocket. The mesh netting forms the top/back of the chair, while the solid fabric portion forms the seat/bottom. It’s a pretty intuitive setup, and there’s an included instruction pamphlet that is helpful the first couple times you do it. 

A mesh pocket is sewn into the left & right side of the chair, and it’s handy for holding odds and ends like keys, snacks and your phone. There’s also a Velcro loop attached to the middle brace of the chair’s frame, which you can use to secure the carrying bag so it won’t get lost. 

Comfort and Stability

Okay, my first question with every camping chair is, basically, “is it a torture device?” Mercifully, the Hkuddas Ultralight Camping Chair is not. I’m genuinely impressed by how comfortable and supportive it is. 

Like most ultralight chairs, the Hkuddas is rather low to the ground. That being said, it holds its occupant at a very agreeable angle that helps to avoid the back pain that comes from sitting in most cheap camping chairs for an extended period of time. It’s also easy to get into, and it’s easy to get out of. The fabric has just enough “give” to it that I feel comfy and cradled while I’m sitting in it. 

This chair feels stable too. You can lean back in it (within reason) without worrying about it tipping, and the legs create a stable base, at least on firm ground. On softer ground, there is a good chance the legs will start to sink in. I can’t really dock points for that though; it’s an issue that pretty much all ultralight camping chairs have in common, including the Helinox. 

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Also worth noting in the comfort department is that the mesh netting toward the top of the chair offers excellent breathability. It does a great job helping to avoid the dreaded sweaty-back situation that often happens in camp chairs.

Strength and Durability

The official capacity of the Hkuddas Ultralight Folding Camping Chair is 250 pounds. I don’t weigh that much, but I feel pretty confident that this chair could still hold me if it did. The stitching appears to be quality, and the aluminum poles as well as the plastic joints that hold them seem sturdy and secure. 

Granted, it’s important to keep in mind that this chair is designed, first and foremost, to be ultralight. It’s strong for what it is, but it’s not what you would call heavy-duty. What I mean is, it shouldn’t break prematurely due to everyday use, but you still shouldn’t throw your whole body weight into it like you would your sofa at home. It’s not indestructible. 

I always have something of a hang-up when it comes to declaring the long-term durability of a product. After all, I haven’t owned this chair long enough to know how many years it will serve me, or what will ultimately be its undoing (my guess: the pole pockets will be the first to go). But I can say, as someone who has sat in a lot of crappy chairs, that this doesn’t feel like one of them. 

Hkuddas vs. Helinox

Compared to the Helinox Chair Zero, the HkuddasUltralight Folding Camping Chair differs in many of the ways you might expect a cheaper product to differ. It’s a little bit bigger, a little bit heavier (Chair Zero weighs 1.12 lb. packed) and as made of ever-so-slightly less impressive materials. 

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Does that make it a bad product? I’d argue that it doesn’t. The Hkuddas Camping Chair usually goes for anywhere between $30 and $45—roughly a third of the price of a Helinox chair—and all things considered, I’d call it a great value at that price point. It’s not top-of-the-line, nor is it cheap junk. I guess you’d call it a compromise. 

Final Thoughts on the Hkuddas Camping Chair

What impressed me the most about the Hkuddas Ultralight Folding Camping Chair is its comfort. It’s easily as comfortable as the Helinox Chair Zero, which is saying something. It’s also stable, easy to set up, and—at least based on my early impressions—durable. 

I think it’s a great buy at its price point. There are better ultralight chairs out there if you have the budget for them, but I haven’t found any under $50 that I like as much as I like the Hkuddas. 

Whether this is the chair for you depends on your needs. Backpackers are notoriously weight-obsessed, and it’s true that the Hkuddas is not the lightest of all the ultralight chairs on the market. Personally, I’m willing to let a few ounces slide, especially at this price. 

The Hkuddas is a great chair for camping, fishing trips and sitting around backyard bonfires. It’s great for hiking and backpacking if you don’t mind the small amount of extra weight, and it breaks down small enough that you can easily stow it in your kayak, find a place for it in your hiking pack, or even tuck it into your carry-on bag. 

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