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A tent is a tent – or is there more to it than that?

Photo: KarTent

Summertime is the time for festivals. In Europe alone, more than 500 multi-day music festivals take place each year between May and September, attracting millions of visitors. Most of them will camp on the festival site itself. But one in four simply leave their weekend accommodation behind at the end of the festival. Taking down the tent and packing it away seems like too much hard work after a weekend’s partying. Every year 25,000 tents are abandoned at festivals in the Netherlands alone. That’s a lot of rubbish. And that’s exactly what the Dutch design team Wout Kommer and Jan Portheine thought. In response, they came up with a 100% recyclable tent made from cardboard.

Photo: KarTent

The KarTent is made completely from uncoated cardboard and can re-enter the cycle after use. Up to 30 different materials are used in a conventional tent. What’s more, producing a cardboard tent generates around 50% less CO2 emissions than a standard tent. With 1.50 x 2.20 metres of floor space, the tent is designed to accommodate two people. And they don’t need to fear the obligatory festival rain: according to the company, the tent can withstand up to three days of continuous rainfall. And the KarTent has another advantage: it resists the morning sun. The tent remains dark inside, and it doesn’t heat up too quickly.

Photo: KarTent

The KarTent was primarily developed for festival organisers, who can rent them out at their events. The non-folding tent is naturally much more difficult to transport than its roll-up fellows. The tents can also be easily printed with sponsors’ logos or slogans. For music fans who will only use a tent once, they are a more environmentally friendly alternative, which KarTent disposes of in the local recycling centre after the festival. Eco-conscious festival goers bring their own tents with them in any case.