Whether you’re heading to the beach, organizing a family BBQ, or putting together an outdoor event at your business or school, having a canopy within reach will help protect you and your group from the elements. But while there are many types of canopies on the market, choosing one that meets your specific needs and groupsize requires some careful planning. In addition to considering your desired shade size, you should also pay heed to the frame material, wind resistance, and setup and takedown time.

If you’re looking for a simple tent that can easily be set up by a single person, we recommend the E-Z UP Instant Canopy. This option offers an easy-to-use toggle leg adjustment and three different height options to provide a customizable amount of coverage. Its water-resistant design will protect you from the overhead sun, while its UV coating will guard against harmful rays.

This is a more sturdy option than our other pop-up picks, as it has a steel frame and can stand up to winds and rain with ease. We love that it comes with guy ropes and hooks to keep the best canopy prices in place, as well as a bag for storing the tent when it’s not in use. It’s also great that it comes with a variety of colors and includes reinforced banner attachment holes for personalization. However, this is the heaviest canopy we tested, so you’ll need to plan on lugging it from point A to point B, especially if you’re going with a larger group.

Another pricier option is the Hampton Bay 11-foot by 11-foot pop-up canopy. This option is ideal for a backyard barbecue or a beach outing, as it offers more space to sit and stand under. Its sturdy, powder-coated steel frame can withstand harsh weather conditions and is available in a number of vibrant colors. The canopy also boasts a waterproof rating of 1500mm and a UV protection factor of 50+, which means it will shield you from the sun’s harmful rays.

While you can find a canopy for less than $50, it’s worth noting that these will likely be low-quality and may not be able to withstand rough weather. We recommend investing a bit more in one that will last longer and can be used for multiple occasions.

When shopping for a canopy, be sure to consider the frame material and frame design, as well as fabric quality and color options. Additionally, you’ll want to consider the canopy’s sturdiness, which is influenced by factors such as the roof construction, the number of poles and their length, and the amount of cross-bracing or reinforcements. The sturdiness of a canopy can also be enhanced by utilizing sandbags or ground stakes.