If there’s one thing that can turn a blissful night under the stars into a miserable and uncomfortable camping trip it’s the mosquito.
Those little buggers are nuisances, but if that wasn’t bad enough, they can be vectors for dangerous diseases like Dengue fever and Ross River virus.
When you’re out on a camping trip, it’s important to do everything you can to keep mosquitos away from you and your family.
However, with so many mosquito traps on the market, it can be hard to know what device will be best for your needs.
So, in this article, we’ve compiled reviews of the best mosquito traps and repellents available in Australia to assist you with your decision.
Our Top Pick: Thermacell Mosquito Repellent Unit
Duration: Effective for 3 hours (per ‘mat’)
Pros: Dispenses small amounts of repellent at a time, 21m2 bug-free zone, Allethrin is harmless to humans and pets, 98% effective against mosquitos, comes with 4 allethrin ‘mats’ and one butane gas cartridge
Cons: Requires replenishment of mats and butane
Super compact and incredibly effective, the Thermacell Mosquito Repellent Unit is our top pick in this review.
Its sleek, portable design makes it convenient to use wherever your adventure takes you.
The device uses allethrin, a known mosquito repellent that is harmless to humans and pets, so this is a great device for families with small children.
The 21m2 bug-free zone is large enough to protect the whole group at dinner, but multiple devices could be combined to increase the coverage zone.
The device includes four allethrin ‘mats’ and one butane gas cartridge, so it’s ready to go right out of the box.
The Thermacell Mosquito Repellent Unit’s reasonable upfront cost and ease of use make it a great option for most people.
Duration: Effective for 5000 hours (per lamp)
Pros: Attracts and zaps insects, Weatherproof, 200m2 bug-free zone, Removable insect tray with cleaning brush, Self-cleaning vertical grid, Works on all insects, not just mosquitos
Cons: Might be considered cruel or unsightly to some, Could be dangerous around small children or pets
The only non-chemical-based mosquito trap in our review, the Enforcer Insect Zapper relies on electricity to protect you from pesky mosquitos.
The Enforcer attracts and zaps mosquitos using a weatherproof 5,000-hour (yes, you read that right) lamp so you don’t have to worry about them ruining your evening meal.
Since it relies on electricity to operate, the Enforcer is effective against all flying insects, so you don’t have to worry about other small insects either.
The self-cleaning vertical grid and removable insect tray make maintenance of the Enforcer simple and convenient.
With a 200m2 coverage area, this is a very efficient mosquito trap.
Campers with families might want to consider that the electric bulb could be dangerous to pets or small children, so the device must be used appropriately.
Also, the indiscriminate killing approach of this type of device isn’t the optimal solution in terms of maintaining a healthy balance of insects.
However, the Enforcer’s very affordable upfront investment and minimal maintenance costs mean that it’s great for budget-conscious campers.
Duration: Effective for 3 hours (per coil)
Pros: Uses nature’s mosquito repellent – citronella, Comes with an aesthetically pleasing terracotta holder, Can be burned safely inside the holder, Smells pleasant, Environmentally- friendly
Cons: Requires replenishment of coils, Terracotta holder isn’t great for lightweight trips/backpacking
Environmentally-conscious campers in mosquito territory can rejoice with the Waxworks Citronella and Sandalwood Coils.
The coils use nature’s mosquito repellent – citronella – to effectively deter those flying pests without resorting to man-made chemicals.
Waxwork’s citronella and sandalwood coils safely burn for three hours each inside a purpose-built and aesthetically pleasing terracotta holder, so you can enjoy your camping vacation without worry.
Campers will have no regrets with this set-up from Waxworks as the coils are affordable, easy to use, environmentally friendly, and smell great when burnt.
We’d recommend the citronella and sandalwood coils for use while car camping instead of backpacking because the terracotta holder makes them a bit bulky for lightweight endeavours.
Duration: Effective for 4 hours (per mat)
Pros: Disperses allethrin into the air over a period of time, Includes water-resistant carry-pouch, 21m2 bug-free zone, Comes with 3 allethrin mats for 12 hours of protection (extra supplies and fuel sold separately), Compatible with camping gas canisters
Cons: Most expensive product in review
Yet another great mosquito trap from our friends at Thermacell, the Backpacker Mosquito Repeller fits securely on top of a camping gas canister and burns allethrin to keep the mosquitos at bay.
With a great 21m2 protection zone, the Backpacker Mosquito Repeller provides protection for the whole family.
The Backpacker comes with 3 allethrin mats for 12 hours of protection but a small 100g fuel canister can work for a whopping 90 hours with this little device.
The Backpacker Mosquito Repeller even comes with a water-resistant carry pouch to make transport a breeze.
The most expensive mosquito trap in our review, the Backpacker Mosquito Repeller is a great option for campers looking for quality and fuel efficiency in their devices.
This lightweight and portable mosquito trap is great for families and solo backpackers alike.
Mosquito trap buying guide
Here are the qualities you ought to look for in your mosquito trap:
Type of repellent
Not all mosquito repellents are made equal. Some are more effective at repelling mosquitos while others seem to attract them.
Additionally, some may risk harm to pets and kids, so they might not be ideally suited for families.
Duration of effectiveness
Some mosquito repelling systems require consistent replenishing of their repelling device or chemical while others rarely require any attention.
If you’re out for an extended period of time or you camp frequently, you might opt for a low-maintenance mosquito trap.
In addition to different types of mosquito-repelling chemicals, mosquito traps have different methods of emitting these chemicals, each of which has various advantages and disadvantages.
Some mosquito traps don’t emit any chemicals at all, instead relying on electricity to kill the mosquitos altogether.
Always a factor in determining what gear you’ll buy for your next camping trip, the price is important to consider when deciding between different mosquito traps.
Some traps have high upfront costs but require little maintenance or replenishment over the long term.
Others have small upfront costs but require frequent replenishment so they can be more expensive over their lifetime.
Mosquito Trap FAQ
Metofluthrin and allethrin based mosquito repellers are considered to be the most effective at repelling mosquitoes.
Eucalyptus oil and citronella oil are two of the most popular natural mosquito repellents due to their strong smells. Mosquitos dislike these scents and will avoid areas where they are present.
Mosquitos can smell the carbon dioxide you exhale, as well as lactic acid and other chemicals produced by your body. The best way to stop mosquitoes from biting you is to use an insect repellent containing DEET or Picaridin. DEET is considered to be the most effective mosquito repellent and contains a chemical called N,N-diethyl-meta-toluamide.