The state of the economy is such that we must be aware of all of our purchases even on items we only purchase once every few years such as a mattress. I am not suggesting an air mattress as a permanent solution but this is not unheard of.
I researched air mattresses when I went back to school to obtain my masters degree. When you are a college student you typically do not have a lot of money so you have to be creative when putting together an apartment. Instead of hauling my cumbersome queen sized bed I decided I would look up an affordable alternative.
There are a few popular brands out there such as The AeroBed brand of mattresses other brands include Coleman, Intex, Sealy, Eddie Bower, Swiss Army and Wenzel. The brand of air beds people are most familiar with are the ones used for camping or those used as guest beds. These are the lower end of the spectrum of air beds. These are only intended for short term use and are usually inexpensive and not of the highest quality. They are also beds that are on the floor and use a foot pump which can be an exhausting task to inflate the bed in this manner.
Most products come in three categories such as Luxury, Quality and Value brands. When searching for an air mattress that you are going to use for an extended period of time it is important to read reviews and understand how each bed is being used. Remember that some of the beds are being used only once in a while so the review may be great for the intended use but not for your individual usage. The quality beds for longer term use seem to be those that are raised. The beds are at a level of a normal bed when fully inflated. To the naked eye they are no different from a regular bed especially when all the bedding is placed upon the bed.
The AeroBeds as well as the Wenzel Air mattresses come with an internal pump so all you have to do is plug it in and let the bed fully inflate. The Wenzel beds are durable and very comfortable they are also very reasonably priced only about $100 dollars for a quality raised queen sized bed. The AeroBeds are much more expensive and do not provide a significant difference in comfort or durability. The bed I purchased has lasted me 10 months so far without any issues.
The biggest benefit to me in comparison to traditional beds is that I no longer suffer from back issues. On a regular spring mattress I assume the pressure points would really do a number on my back, the air bed seems to support me as if im sleeping on a cloud of comfort. I wake up feeling very rested and never really have any complaints. The bed is able to support two full sized adults but I would say this is intended as a single person bed even though it is a queen. The version I have is an adjustable bed, I am able to sit up and read a book if I so choose or I can collapse it to make it back into a bed. It is ideal if you have a television in your room.
The Wenzel brand of air mattresses are affordable, comfortable and their customer service is top notch. I called to replace a bed I purchased from them years ago and with the lifetime warranty they replaced it with no questions asked. I even got an upgraded model, which is rare nowadays to receive something better on a return. They are focused on making quality products; the company also has a line of camping gear like their competitors such as Swiss Army and Coleman. Their beds though are the best quality for the dollar and can prove to be an affordable alternative if it fits what you are looking to accomplish. I would highly recommend this for college students, people who entertain guests/Family or those who know they are going to be in a new place for less than a year.