How Much Do Tarps Cost? – 10+ Examples For a Perfect Camping Trip

How Much Do Tarps Cost?
Tarp Pricing

Tarps are extremely versatile. It’s a good idea to bring one or two along on every camping trip, just in case.

A basic, water-resistant, thin 8 x 10-foot tarp often costs less than $10. A heavy-duty waterproof tarp will end up costing you closer to $30. A canvas tarp jumps up in price, costing closer to $50.

I’ve done more extensive research on tarps cost and included a summary table – 

Tarp Size9 x 12 feet10 x 10 feet10 x 20 feet12 x 12 feet18 x 24 feet
7mil Price$20-25$20$35-40$20-25$50-55
14mil Price$30$30$50-55$35-40$85-90

How Much Does A Tarp Cost? – How Much Do Tarps Cost?

A tarp’s price varies depending on where you buy it, but there’s not that much price variance from place to place. Instead, the price depends on the type and size of the tarp.

Let’s look at three tarps of the same size below.

Standard Poly Tarp – How Much Does a Tarp Cost?

Not all tarps were made equal. Some are advertised as “heavy-duty,” but they’re quite thin, and they’re water-resistant rather than waterproof.

You’ll often find tarps like these for under $10, and some are just over that $10 price point. You’ll see an example of this here.

Heavy Duty Waterproof Tarp – How Much Does a Tarp Cost?

When you move on to an actual heavy-duty tarp, the price jumps up. There are a lot of heavy-duty tarps sold at $15–$20, and some of the thickest ones are almost $30.

Thicker, fully waterproof tarps require more skill and material to make. This means they’ll cost more, but the price is often worth it. They’ll keep you and your gear dry!

Canvas Tarp – How Much Does a Tarp Cost?

Canvas is a whole other story. They don’t come waterproof by default but learning how to waterproof a canvas tent will teach you how to waterproof a canvas tarp, too.

There are lots of pros and cons of the canvas, but the pros are that it’s long-lasting and incredibly durable. It’s a great tarp material for people who’ll use their tarp regularly for years to come.

However, their durability and longevity are reflected in their price. As you can see with this tarp, you’ll pay close to $50 for one!

Tarp Cost By Size – How Much Do Tarps Cost?

Tarp price increases with tarp size. So, how big should your tarp be? It depends on what you’re using it for.

Below, you’ll find tables that outline the price increments you can expect at different tarp sizes with high-quality tarps.

Heavy-Duty Polyethylene Tarp – Tarp Cost By Size

We’ll start with a 9 x 12-foot tarp, which would be good for a solo camping trip, then we’ll work our way up to tarps that can be used with enormous cabin tents.

Tarp Size9 x 12 feet10 x 10 feet10 x 20 feet12 x 12 feet18 x 24 feet
Tarp Price$30$30$50-55$35-40$85-90

Canvas Tarp – Tarp Cost By Size

With canvas, the price jumps are a little more extreme.

Tarp Size10 x 16 feet12 x 16 feet12 x 20 feet16 x 20 feet20 x 20 feet
Tarp Price$70-75$85-90$110-120$140-150$170-180

Tarp Cost By Thickness – How Much Do Tarps Cost?

The price difference due to thickness can be small. For example, a 7mil 8 x 10-foot heavy-duty tarp can cost under $20, but a 14mil 8 x 10 costs just a little under $30.

Jump up to a 12 x 16-foot tarp, and a 7mil tarp can cost almost $40. Its 14mil counterpart could cost over $50.

I always recommend a thicker tarp. You’ll find that the price increase is worth it.

Why Are Tarps So Expensive? – How Much Do Tarps Cost?

Tarps can be quite expensive due to their vast size and the high-quality waterproofing material used in their construction. Heavy-duty tarps always cost more than light tarps, and larger tarps are far more expensive than smaller ones.

Why Might You Need A Tarp While Camping? – How Much Do Tarps Cost?

There are plenty of situations where you’ll need a tarp while camping. Let’s look at the main ones:

Where Can You Buy A Tarp? – How Much Do Tarps Cost?

Most hardware stores sell tarps, and you can also buy them from online retailers. Some retailers specialize in selling tarps, but you won’t often need a specialist tarp. Getting one online or from a hardware store is always your best bet.

How Much Do Tarps Cost?
Tarp Pricing

Conclusion – How Much Do Tarps Cost?

Tarp price and quality vary, and it often takes experimenting to find a tarp that works at a price you feel is worth it.

Small tarps are rarely too expensive. Consider purchasing small tarps (6 x 10 feet) from different manufacturers to test their quality. When you find one that works, invest in a larger tarp from that manufacturer that fits your needs.

Frequently Asked Questions – How Much Do Tarps Cost?

How Do I Make a Tarp Shelter? – FAQS

Making a tarp shelter while camping is an excellent way to protect yourself from the elements.

Here are the steps for making a simple tarp shelter:

  • Select your location: Find a suitable location for your shelter that is not too close to any trees or other hazards.
  • Collect materials: You’ll need a tarp, some rope, and stakes or rocks to secure the tarp’s corners.
  • Tie one end of the rope to a tree as follows: Choose a sturdy tree that is close to where you want to build your shelter.
  • Roll out the tarp: Place the tarp on the ground, with one end touching the rope you just tied to the tree.
  • Place opposite corners: Stake two opposite corners of the tarp into the ground with stakes or rocks.
  • Protect the remaining corners: Lift the tarp’s remaining two corners over the rope line and stake them into the ground as well, ensuring that all four corners are securely anchored.
  • Tighten the ropes: Return to where you tied off your rope in step 3 and pull it tight to create tension on the tarp and help it stay in place.
  • Adjust the height of your rope: If necessary, adjust the height of your rope so that it raises or lowers your shelter as needed.

If you expect heavy rain or wind, consider adding extra support by tying more ropes from trees or other anchors to help keep your shelter stable.

You can make a simple but effective shelter with just a tarp, some rope, and stakes or rocks if you follow these steps. Remember that this is only one example of how to make a tarp shelter; there are many other ways to customize this design based on your needs and preferences.

How Can I Fix a Hole in my Tarp? – FAQs

Tarps are an excellent way to protect your camping equipment and personal belongings from the elements, but they can develop holes or rips over time.

Here are some methods for patching tarp holes:

  • Duct tape: Duct tape is one of the simplest and most common ways to repair a small hole in a tarp. Simply cut a piece of duct tape slightly larger than the hole and adhere it to the top.
  • Tarp repair kit: If you’re going on a long camping trip, it may be worthwhile to invest in a tarp repair kit. Patches made from the same material as the tarp are usually included, as well as adhesive or heat-activated glue for attaching them.
  • Sewing: For larger holes or tears, you may need to use a needle and thread to repair the damage. Make use of a heavy-duty needle and thread that can withstand outdoor conditions.
  • Hot glue gun: You can also use a hot glue gun to repair small holes or tears in your tarp. Apply glue around the edges of the hole or tear, then press a piece of fabric (such as nylon) onto the glue and hold it in place until the glue dries.
  • Heat sealing: If you have a heat sealer, you can use it to melt two pieces of tarp material together around the edges of a hole or tear.

You can quickly and easily patch up any holes or tears in your tarp using one of these methods, ensuring that it remains durable and reliable for all of your camping needs!

Ben Wann- Tent Camping Expert

My name is Ben Wann, and I’m a lifelong tent camper and backpacker who jumps on every opportunity to get out and enjoy nature! I created this site to inspire others to get outside and to make the process easier for you.