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October 19, 2020Now Trending

Are you planning an outdoor event and considering an event tent to create a welcoming atmosphere? The decision to buy or rent can be a tough one, especially since both options require a significant investment. It's a bit like choosing between a quick sprint and a long-distance run. Just like in running, both options require an investment, but they offer different benefits. To help you weigh the pros and cons, we've put together this guide that breaks down the differences between buying and renting an event tent. From cost-effectiveness and flexibility to customization and storage, we'll cover everything you need to know to make an informed decision. So, take your time to weigh the pros and cons, consider your needs, and choose the option that will get you to the finish line.

event tent with side walls


Ready to talk numbers? Just like in a race where you need to pace yourself and strategize, it's important to weigh your options and do your research to ensure that you're making the right decision for your budget and needs when it comes to investing in a tent for your event.

Here is a side-by-side comparison of the average rental tent costs and the current American Tent purchase prices of three popular sizes of frame tents:

Average Rental Price American Tent Purchase Price
10 x 20 $250 - $500 $2,400
20 x 40 $725 - $1,200 $5,600
20 x 80 $1,200 - $2,000 $10,500

Renting a tent may seem like a no-brainer for a one-time event, but it's important to consider the recurring costs that can quickly run up. If you're planning to pitch your tent multiple times, buying is where it's at. With a purchased tent, you'll have a faithful companion for all your future events and business needs. Plus, you'll have the freedom to choose the quality and style that suits your needs, without the hassle of availability or rental fees. American Tent has got your back with our top-of-the-line, commercial-grade event tents that are built to last a marathon of events. And with our affordable purchase prices and financing options, investing in a tent has never been easier. Whether you decide to rent or buy, we're here to help you make the right call.

While purchasing a tent definitely has its perks, it's important to also consider the advantages of renting. If you're planning a short-term event and need a tent, renting can provide the agility and speed you need to make it happen without breaking the bank. And let's not forget about the stress-free benefits of renting: maintenance and storage are taken care of by the rental company, so you can kick back and enjoy the event. Plus, if you're not quite ready to make a big purchase, renting can be a budget-friendly option. At the end of the day, it's all about finding that sweet spot between cost and value that works best for you.


The wonderful thing about most event tents, rentals or purchased, is that they offer a clean, blank slate to build any kind of atmosphere you want in your tent. However, this can get a bit tricky when you’re decorating a rental tent, versus one that you own.

custom event tent

Like any rented product, renting an event tent usually entails signing a contract and even paying a security deposit in some cases, to ensure that any damage caused to the tent will fall on you, the renter, and not the rental company. This means you’ll have to tread lightly and be much more careful about the decorations you use in your tent. Even something as simple as a stain from decor that got wet, or sticky residue or tears from hanging decorations, could incur a hefty fee when it comes time to return the tent.

Purchasing an event tent gives you the freedom to unleash your creativity without limitations and achieve your personal best. Our custom fabric colors and printing capabilities make it easy for you to showcase your brand and leave your competitors in the dust. Plus, our custom-sized frame tents fit your event space like a glove, ensuring that every inch is utilized to its full potential. Not only are you investing in a high-quality, durable product that will last for years, but you're also investing in the success of your event. So don't settle for a rental tent that limits your options—choose American Tent for a one-of-a-kind experience.

Ease of Use

When it comes to the uses for event tent rentals vs. a wholesale event tent for sale, there aren’t many differences. Unless your rental company has specific rules on when and where you can use your tent, both options will work for your outdoor event. What really makes a difference is the ease-of-use between these two options.

In general, using a rental event tent is typically the easiest option if you’re looking for a stress-free event. Couples planning weddings and others putting on simple one-off events generally go for rental tent companies because, in most cases, the rental company takes care of everything for you, from delivery and set up to take down and removal. By saving time and effort, you can sprint to the finish line of your event without having to worry about buying your own tent, transporting it to the event location, and setting it up yourself.

If you’re planning to use your event tent on multiple occasions, it can be much easier having an event tent on hand. With a tent at your disposal, you can host last-minute events without having to worry about rental availability or booking in advance. Owning a tent will require some extra labor. While you will have to set up the tent yourself, at American Tent, we provide our customers with helpful installation tools and resources to make the process easier. Our tents come with detailed instruction manuals, and our expert staff is always available to provide coaching on how to set up your tent. We also offer helpful resources online, including YouTube videos, that provide helpful tips and tricks. We also understand the importance of fast lead times for last minute events. That's why we offer quick turnaround times on our tent orders, so you can get your tent fast and be ready for your event in record-breaking time.

party tent without sidewalls

Post-Event Considerations

Additional Costs

Don’t forget these additional event costs that typically come with using an event tent for an outdoor venue, as these may help you determine whether or not it makes financial sense for you to buy or rent your event tent:

  • Set-up & Tear-down - most event tent rental companies charge a set-up and tear-down fee, and you’ll certainly want to choose this option for a wedding or other big event when you don’t want to be bothered by the stress of setting up your venue.
  • Sidewalls - Sidewalls class up your event tent and can be an additional charge for each panel ordered for your tent.
  • Flooring - flooring is essential for event tents on soft grass or other grounds that don’t work well for the interior of your event; it’s important to know how much flooring you’ll want, as this can drastically change the price of your total rental.
  • Heating/Cooling - your event tent isn’t the only way to protect your guests from harsh weather conditions; keep in mind that you might need to add industrial fans or heaters to the interior of your tent to help guests stay comfortable during your event.

Renting vs. Buying: Overall

When it comes to putting on an amazing outdoor event for your wedding, graduation celebration, corporate gathering or more, you can never go wrong with an event tent! If it’s your first time looking to use an event tent and/or need a simple, stress-free experience, there are many rental companies out there to help make your day perfect with an event tent rental. While purchasing a wholesale event tent for sale can be a big investment, having an event tent on hand is the perfect way to be prepared for any outdoor event that comes your way. 

Regardless of whether you choose to rent or buy, at American Tent, we're here to help you make the right decision. With our affordable purchase prices and financing options, we have everything you need to create the perfect atmosphere for your event. So take a deep breath, lace up your shoes, and get ready to make the best choice for you and your event. To get your own event tent, you can contact us, and we will be happy to help you by offering one of our best-quality event tents that completely meet your needs. 


Tony Ehrbar's headshot

Tony Ehrbar

Owner & CEO

Tony's entrepreneurial spirit is woven into the fabric of American Tent (an Inc 5000 company), shaped by his experience running a successful event venue & tent rental service. His recognition as the Young Entrepreneur of the Year in 2019 is a testament to his impact & dedication to his community. As the Co-founder and CEO of Renegade Plastics, Tony is leading initiatives in the tent industry to integrate eco-friendly, recyclable materials. Contributing as a board member for the Advanced Textiles Association (ATA) & the Green Bay Area Public Schools Foundation and being featured by Entrepreneur, Oracle, & Modern Weddings, Tony plays a pivotal role in enhancing the growth and success of the textile industry.

Order Your Event Tent Today!

If you enjoyed today’s entry, be sure to bookmark our blog page and check back frequently for the latest updates.

We regularly post helpful resources that can help you plan great events and learn more about our event tents.

Our friendly customer service team is always happy to answer any questions you have about pole tents, frame tents, and sidewalls, so don’t hesitate to reach out to us if you need more information!

Find out how much better it is to have Shelter. Simplified.

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