The 9 Best Bounce Houses to Buy in 2019

Bounce houses! Kids love ’em, parents who are feeling silly love ’em, and rental companies love taking lots of your money for ’em.

If you have a lot of birthdays to deal with, host a lot of sleepovers and play dates, or just have a kid who loves to bounce, it can actually make pretty good sense to buy your own instead of renting.

But even a small inflatable can run you a few hundred dollars – that’s a big purchase. Fear not, we’ve spent nearly 13 hours researching the market and we are confident that the following list contains the best bounce houses your money can buy.

Editor's Choice

Blast Zone Magic Castle Inflatable Bouncer

It’s well-made, offers space for a few kids, and is easy to use indoors or outdoors.

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Things to Consider Before Purchasing a Bounce House

Residential vs. commercial?

Commercial-grade inflatables are intended for businesses such as rental companies or play centers, and are usually made of heavier-grade PVC-coated vinyl for longer wear. Residential-grade inflatables, like the ones on this list, are made of lighter fabrics, although many of them use commercial-grade vinyl on their bounce and slide surfaces. Residential-grade inflatables also tend to come with less powerful blowers.

Of course, commercial-grade inflatables are also a lot more expensive. Even the simplest commercial-grade bounce castle can cost over $1,000, and more elaborate models can quickly run into the multiple-thousand-dollar range. If you’re buying a bounce house just for your kids’ (and possibly your) personal use, you should consider whether you really need to go to the extra expense.

Indoor or outdoor?

Most of the bounce houses on this list are suitable for either indoor or outdoor play. Just keep an eye on the dimensions of the house and make sure it can fit in the desired space before you start inflating. Bounce houses need a continuous flow of air to stay inflated, which means the blower will have to stay plugged in for the duration of playtime. You’ll need an outlet nearby or have to run an extension cord. Be warned that running a blower for long periods of time can noticeably affect your power bill! Most blowers run fairly quiet, but you may want to look up your neighborhood’s noise laws as well just to be safe.

Also note that bounce houses need to be anchored for safety’s sake. Most houses come with a set of stakes to spike them to the ground outdoors, but of course these aren’t much use indoors unless you’re reading this in 1850 and have dirt floors. If your inflatable comes with plastic spikes, throw them away and get metal ones instead; they last longer and keep the kids safer. For indoor stability, you’ll have to replace the spikes with sand bags, which may mean a separate purchase. When in doubt, contact the manufacturer.

Roof or no roof?

Most residential-grade bounce houses save money by going roofless. This isn’t a safety hazard — your kids are unlikely to bounce *that* high. But if you’re using a roofless bounce house outdoors, unshaded PVC can get unpleasantly hot in direct sun, even on cool days. Putting the bounce house in a shady area, or putting a canopy over it, can help avoid this problem.

Will you need a tarp?

If you’re putting a bounce house outdoors, it’s a good idea to lay down a tarp that’s at least a foot larger than the bounce house in all directions. This will help keep the house’s bottom clean so it lasts longer, and will also give kids a place to manage their shoes without having to put socks directly on the possibly muddy ground.

Where will you store it?

Most inflatables can roll up surprisingly small once you deflate them (pro tip: a reversible blower will make this a lot easier than trying to squeeze every air pocket out by hand). But you’ll want to prepare a dry, cool area to keep the inflatable when it’s not being used in order to extend the fabric life as long as possible. If the inflatable includes a ball pit, you’ll also need to consider ball storage as well.


Our Top Picks

#1 Blast Zone Magic Castle

Editors Choice

The Blast Zone Magic Castle (check price on Amazon) inflatable bouncer features safety netting on all four sides, so there will be no kids trying to use this to launch themselves across the room. The manufacturer doesn’t recommend this house for kids over 8. However, the construction of this house is tough enough to stand up to adult bouncers, so no matter how crazy your kids are, you can look forward to getting years of use out of this bounce house.

While this isn’t the biggest bounce house on our list, the convenient design combined with durability, color, and fun make this our Editor’s Choice.

What We Love: Doesn’t take up a lot of room; easy to store; well-made and durable

Watch Out For: Small size makes it less suitable for older kids or large parties; no roof

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#2 Blast Zone Sidekick Castle

Upgrade Choice

If you like the Ball Pit Bopper but it’s too small for your purposes, look no further. The Blast Zone Sidekick (check price on Amazon) bounce house features a combination bounce house and inflatable ball pit, but much larger — 14′ x 14′ x 7.5′. With this extra space, the Sidekick can accommodate six kids at once — four in the bounce area and two in the ball pit.

The Sidekick is a colorful, eye-catching addition to any backyard or, if your house is big enough, playroom. Like the Inflatable HQ house above, it features a commercial-grade PVC bounce “floor,” although the remainder of the framework is lighter material. And like the My Bouncer Little Castle, it includes full safety netting and a ball hoop in the bounce area.

This is not a cheap set, even before you factor in the cost of the balls, but it is a high-quality product that should give you years of fun and pay for itself several times over. Accordingly, this is our Upgrade Choice.

What We Love: Provides lots of entertainment for lots of kids simultaneously.

Watch Out For: No roof and, yes, the balls are going to cost you extra. Expect to buy about 1,000 balls (depending on size) to fill the pit to a playable depth.

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#3 Little Tikes Inflatable Jump ‘n Slide

Best Budget Buy

From the Hummer of bounce houses, we go to the Mini Cooper. Measuring in at 12′ x 9′ x 4′, the Little Tikes Inflatable Jump ‘n Slide (check price on Amazon) is definitely designed for the smaller set. It can hold up to 3 kids and 250 lbs, and any grownups thinking of trying it out probably shouldn’t.

However, for small kids who want a bounce house of their own, this is a fun starter. It includes mesh on three sides to help keep kids contained, as well as mesh side pockets to hold shoes, snacks, and more. The small footprint makes it easy to find space for, and the lightweight construction means you can take it anywhere. It probably will not be as durable as some of the other houses on this list, but it will still give your kids hours of fun for a low cost, so we call this our Best Budget Buy.

What We Love: Just the right size for smaller kids to have fun in; lightweight and convenient; inexpensive.

Watch Out For: They’ll outgrow it faster than some others

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#4 Blast Zone Big Ol Bouncer

Best bounce house for older kids

While the Blast Zone Big Ol Bouncer (check price on Amazon) is also suitable for indoor use (7′ high), its 12′ x 15′ footprint may make it a bit more difficult to fit inside the average house. However, all that space means that 5 or 6 kids can be inside at once (weight capacity: 600 lbs). This makes it an excellent choice for parties and sleepovers.

Like the Magic Castle, the Big Ol Bouncer includes safety nets on all four sides and comes with a blower that can inflate the bouncer in minutes. And when deflated, it’s still easy to roll up, store, and transport, so it can be a fun addition to picnics, cookouts, and other outings. Note, though, that this bouncer has no roof, so be careful with it on hot days. Based on its size and durability, we’re calling this our Best Bounce House for Older Kids.

What We Love: Tough construction; plenty of space; easy to set up and collapse

Watch Out For: No roof

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#5 Jumper Castle Commercial Bounce House

Best commercial grade bounce house

Okay, the Big Ol Bouncer isn’t enough for you. Then it’s time to go big with the Inflatable Jumper Castle Commercial Bounce House (check price on Amazon) this massive 13′ x 13′ x 14′, fully enclosed bounce castle. Unless you have a big family or host a lot of parties, this is probably overkill, but it’s an excellent choice to add fun to school, church, or block parties and other large social events.

Despite the name, this isn’t a completely commercial-grade product. The base and slide are heavy-duty PVC, but the remainder of the castle is made with lighter (although still sturdy) material. It can easily hold a dozen kids at a time, although older (12+) kids may challenge its containment abilities. It also includes a corner-mounted basketball hoop, although you’ll have to supply your own ball.

Even if it isn’t as solidly made as a rental house would be, this bounce house is our Best Commercial Grade Bounce House because it’s the closest to commercial grade that most families can afford.

What We Love: All the space you’re going to need unless you have an army of kids to entertain.

Watch Out For: Ow, your wallet. Also ow, your back, when it comes time to deflate and move it.

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#6 My Bouncer Little Castle Ball Pit Bopper

Best bounce houses for indoors

The Bouncer Little Castle Ball Pit Bopper (check price on Amazon) is almost exactly the same model as the Ball Pit Bopper listed above — a small (118″ x 78″ x 72″) indoor combo ball pit and bounce house with just enough space for a couple of kids. However, we’re calling this one our Best Bounce House for Toddlers based on a simple design difference.

Where the Ball Pit Bopper has a slide entrance that can be difficult for toddlers to navigate, this model has a simple step to enter the bounce area. While it does mean missing out on the fun of sliding, it is easier for less coordinated little kids to manage. Kids as young as 2 will be able to get inside and play with minimal hand-holding required from you.

Like the Ball Pit Bopper, this is one of the best bounce houses for indoor areas because it’s easy to find space for, and the multiple play options make it sure to keep your kid occupied.

What We Love: For once, balls are included!

Watch Out For: No roof

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#7 Blast Zone Princess Dreamland

Best princess castle bounce house

If your daughter is a part of the princess-industrial complex, the Blast Zone Princess Dreamland (check price on Amazon) is going to be the bounce house she wants. The castle is large enough (8.5′ x 11′ x 8′) to accommodate about three kids, but still reasonably sized enough to be used for indoors or outdoors play, and is easily portable when deflated.

Like the other Blast Zone products on this list, the Princess Dreamland castle is comfortable and solidly constructed, with complete safety netting. It features fun castle styling and princess decorations that make it useful for pretend play and tea parties as well as just simple bouncing. This attractive design makes the Princess Dreamland castle our Best Castle Bounce House.

What We Love: A simple, fun little bounce castle that girls will love.

Watch Out For: Not for people with an allergy to pink; no roof

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#8 My Bouncer Little Castle

Best bounce house for toddlers

The My Bouncer Little Castle Bounce House (check price on Amazon) is almost exactly the same model as the Ball Pit Bopper listed above — a small (118″ x 78″ x 72″) indoor combo ball pit and bounce house with just enough space for a couple of kids. However, we’re calling this one our Best Bounce House for Toddlers based on a simple design difference.

Where the Ball Pit Bopper has a slide entrance that can be difficult for toddlers to navigate, this model has a simple step to enter the bounce area. While it does mean missing out on the fun of sliding, it is easier for less coordinated little kids to manage. Kids as young as 2 will be able to get inside and play with minimal hand-holding required from you.

Like the Ball Pit Bopper, this is one of the best bounce houses for indoor areas because it’s easy to find space for, and the multiple play options make it sure to keep your kid occupied.

What We Love: A simple, fun little bounce castle that girls will love.

Watch Out For: Not for people with an allergy to pink; no roof

Check Price on Amazon

#9 Bounceland Royal Palace with Slide

Best bounce house with slide

At 13′ x 12′ x 9′, the Bounceland Royal Palace Inflatable Bounce House (check price on Amazon) is one of the biggest inflatables on this list and definitely the tallest. The extra height is to accommodate a ten-foot-long slide that can be accessed through the bounce house. The bouncing area itself can hold up to five kids and 500 pounds, so there’s no shortage of play space. The castle has complete safety netting, and there is also a net over the top of the slide in case any kid gets the bright idea to use it as a diving platform.

Another good point about this castle is that the slide has an extra layer of fabric attached to its surface, which can be removed and replaced when it gets worn. This feature ensures that when the slide wears out (and it will, with all the friction it will receive!), it doesn’t immediately make the house useless. This thoughtful design, combined with a slide that none of the other houses on this list can match, makes it easy to call this our Best Bounce House with Slide.

What We Love: Does come with a (removable) roof; a great alternative to a more expensive permanent playset

Watch Out For: Probably won’t fit indoors

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And the Winner is…

All of the inflatables on this list have their strong points, and one or the other may indeed be the perfect bounce house for your kid. However, all bells and whistles and balls and slides aside, there’s something to be said for the classic bounce castle. That’s why we picked the Blast Zone Magic Castle (check price on Amazon) as our Editor’s Choice. It’s well-made, offers space for a few kids, and is easy to use indoors or outdoors. Another, more complex inflatable may better suit your needs, but it’s hard to go wrong with simplicity

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