The Best Rechargeable Lanterns for Camping

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A rechargeable lantern being used at night for camping

When it comes to camping, much of the fun can come after the sun goes down. But it’s hard to have a great time around the campsite if you can’t see what you’re doing or the people around you! Unfortunately, traditional camping lanterns can run out of energy at the worst moments – and if you’re far from the store, you’re out of luck. Thankfully, campers can now opt for a rechargeable lantern for their next trip, improving many aspects of an old-school light. 

Let’s take a closer look at a few of the best. 

What Is a Rechargeable Lantern?

A rechargeable lantern is any type of lantern-style light source powered by a battery you can repeatedly charge when it runs out of juice.

This is in contrast to some lanterns that use disposable, single-use batteries or others than run on propane, butane, or other consumable fuels. 

Rechargeable lanterns offer lower costs for owners who no longer need to purchase expensive batteries or fuel. They can typically charge via USB or 12V car charger, making them as easy to juice up on the go as at home. 

Things to Look For When Selecting a Rechargeable Lantern

There are tons of rechargeable lanterns out there. So what makes one better than another? Here are some of the key factors buyers should consider.

Number of Lumens 

A lumen is a measure of brightness for any light source. They allow apples-to-apples comparisons regardless of the type of lightbulb or light source. The more lumens there are, the brighter the light. 

Some lanterns will also have different settings with varying lumen levels for different uses, from lighting up a large campsite to casting a soft glow in a tent before bed. 

Use Time Between Charges

It’s crucial to purchase a lantern with enough battery life for your needs. Those only buying for an occasional night at a developed campground won’t need more than a few hours of capacity. 

However, backpackers and others who’ll be away from reliable electricity for extended periods should carefully consider how long the lantern will light up before it runs out of power. 

Special Features

A rechargeable lantern can distinguish itself from its competitors when it comes to special features. For example, some are waterproof, making them perfect for canoe trips or kayaking to campsites. 

Others are collapsible to stow easily in nearly any bag or pocket, and many are hangable or even magnetic for easy use in various spaces.

Certain models even offer hi-tech features like solar charging or the ability to act as a power bank for other devices.

A rechargeable lantern by a campfire

How Many Lumens Is Good For a Lantern? 

How you plan to use your rechargeable lantern will determine the number of lumens you’ll need. Those who only need a bit of light to find things in their tent or other small tasks can get away with only a few hundred lumens. 

However, if you’re looking to light up large parts of your campsite or provide enough light for detailed tasks, you should look for lanterns close to 1,000 lumens or more.

Luckily, many modern lanterns have multiple settings for different uses. That can help conserve power when the most light isn’t needed. 

The Best Rechargeable Lanterns You Can Get Online 

With so many rechargeable camping lanterns, it can be exhausting to compare them all. Luckily, we’ve done the work and found five of the best in various categories.

Our Pick: Collapsible Portable LED Camping Lantern

Rating: 4.5/5

Lumens: 300

Wattage Equivalent: 3 to 4 watts (LED), 20 watts (incandescent)

There’s a lot to love about this four-pack of high-quality rechargeable camping lanterns that sells for about the same price as many single lanterns!

These lightweight, durable, waterproof LED lanterns are collapsible for easy transport or to transform into a flashlight for concentrated light. 

The 1600mAh battery is rechargeable via a built-in solar panel and USB and provides 25 hours of light. While they may not have as many lumens individually as others, the four lanterns can work together to light large spaces in highly customizable ways.

Collapsible Portable LED Camping Lantern XTAUTO Lightweight Waterproof Solar USB Rechargeable LED Flashlight Survival Kits for Indoor Outdoor Home Emergency Light Power Outages Hiking Hurricane 4-Pack
  • 【360° Lighting Coverage】Adopts 6+1 high-intensity LED chips, energy efficient/with wide range of visibility....
  • 【Lightweight & Portable】Collapsible design, as small as a phone when collapsed, easy to carry. With folding handle,...

Highest Rated: Energizer Rechargeable LED Camping Lantern

Rating: 4.6/5

Lumens: Up to 1150

Wattage Equivalent: 12 to13 watts (LED), 75 watts (incandescent)

This rechargeable lantern is a fan favorite, and it’s easy to see why. It’s got four light modes, including cool, warm, and strobe lights. It can provide up to 1,150 lumens, enough to light even a large campsite, and lower-light modes to extend battery life. 

This Energizer lantern lasts four to 10 hours and can stand up to nearly anything with a shatterproof lens and water-resistant construction. In addition, it also functions as a power bank to charge other devices. 

ENERGIZER LED Camping Lantern X1000, Bright and Rugged Tent Light, Water Resistant Lantern for Camping, Hiking, Fishing, Emergency (USB Cable Included)
  • [IDEAL CAMPING LANTERN]: One (1) Energizer Rechargeable LED Lantern with one charging cable
  • [VERSATILE 360 DEGREE LIGHT]: The LED lantern has a removable cap and hanging hook to deliver 360-degree area lighting

Budget-Friendly: Consciot Rechargeable Camping Lantern

Rating: 4.5/5

Lumens: 350 to 1000

Wattage Equivalent: 4 to11 watts (LED), 23 to 68 watts (incandescent)

At less than $20, it’s hard to find another lantern with this combination of quality and price. It offers many of the same features as higher-priced options, like a waterproof design, multiple light settings, and the ability to hang itself and charge other devices.

It’s also equipped with a translucent reflector cap, helping provide 360 degrees of light. 

LED Camping Lantern Rechargeable, Consciot Camping Lights, 1000LM, 4 Light Modes, 4400mAh Power Bank, IPX4 Waterproof Tent Lights, Dimmable Flashlight for Emergency, Power Outages, USB Cable Included
  • 🌟 Ultra Bright - The led lantern emits up to 1000-Lumens of light and covers 360 degrees full-beam angle to...
  • ✨ 4 Lighting Modes & Dimmable - Short press the button to switch light modes: cool white, warm white, combined white,...

Best Compact Option: Mini Lantern with Magnetic Base

Rating: 4.6/5

Lumens: 310

Wattage Equivalent: 3 to 4 watts (LED), 21 watts (incandescent)

When space is your top priority, this rechargeable lantern is your best bet. It’s less than 3 inches high, wide, and across, making it simple to fit in just about any bag.

It also weighs less than half a pound, allowing even ultralight backpackers to bring it along without overburdening themselves. It also offers five different lighting models for various uses around the campsite. 

LE LED Camping Lantern Rechargeable, 310LM, 5 Light Modes, Power Bank, Waterproof, Mini Flashlight with Magnetic Base for Hurricane Emergency, Outdoor, Hiking, Home and Car
  • Enhanced Version with 5 Adjustable Brightness Levels: Experience the versatility of five different light settings. This...
  • Integrated Power Bank: This lantern boasts a built-in rechargeable polymer battery (USB cable included), and a 5V 1A USB...

Best For Your Emergency Kit: CapeTronix Emergency Lantern 

Rating: 4.5/5

Lumens: 400 to 1500

Wattage Equivalent: 4 to 17 watts (LED), 27 to 94 watts (incandescent)

Whether it’s bad weather, power outages, or other emergencies, it’s critical you’re prepared before the lights go out.

This CapeTronix rechargeable lantern is perfect for stowing in your emergency kit. It provides up to 1,500 lumens, enough to comfortably light even the largest rooms, tents, or campsites. 

Plus, the 4400mAh battery offers up to 16 hours of light, more than enough to get you to daylight.

You can also use this extensive battery capacity to charge other devices through the lantern’s battery bank function. It’s even got an SOS function for alerting others from afar that you need help. 

LED Camping Lantern Rechargeable, CT CAPETRONIX Upgraded Camping Light with 5 Light Modes 1500LM 4400mAh Power Bank, Emergency Lantern Flashlight Tent Light for Camping Power Outage Hurricane
  • 【2-in-1 Lantern and Flashlight!】CT CAPETRONIX camping light has updated the design so that you can get the lantern...
  • 【3-level Brightness, SOS Mode & Flashlight Mode】Our camping light with 3 levels of brightness and memory function to...

Are Rechargeable Lanterns Worth It? 

For nearly any camper, a rechargeable lantern is a worthwhile purchase. Generally, it’s comparable in price to many traditional lanterns, even without factoring in the cost of disposable batteries or fuel. 

Comparatively, the cost of keeping your rechargeable lantern lit is next to nothing, making them an even better value over time. Plus, you’ll save yourself valuable time and frustration by eliminating annoying last-minute trips to the store for fuel or batteries. 

A rechargeable lantern attached to a tent

Don’t Be in the Dark About the Best Rechargeable Lanterns

The days of old-school camping lanterns are over. It’s the era of the rechargeable lantern!

With their excellent ability to illuminate, affordable price, and long-term value, they’re an easy way to improve any set of camping equipment. 

Keep these five models in mind, and you’ll never find yourself stuck in the dark again. 

Last update on 2024-02-22 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

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