best inflatable kayaks

Best Inflatable Kayaks

two people paddling in kayak on a lake

So, you’ve decided to get an inflatable kayak? Congratulation – you are going to make a wise decision towards transportation convenience, innovation, and value! Down here you’ll find the most searched – therefore best inflatable kayaks based on reviews and ratings online!

Inflatable kayak = Blow-up kayak


Table of Contents

Best Single Kayaks
Best 2-person Kayaks
Best 3-person Kayaks
FAQ & Safety

Best Single-Person Inflatable Kayaks

A single-person inflatable kayak is an ideal way to explore any (Preferably still) body of water. An iKayak can also simply be an ideal watercraft to get from point A to point B in a convenient way – simply pack it up and carry it with you on the land when you’re done paddling.

Down here you’ll find a selection of the best-rated, best value, and most advanced one-person inflatable kayaks online.

Note: If you are planning to haul more gear along, you could look up for two-person kayaks down below.


INTEX – Challenger

Best one person inflatable kayak in 2019, 2020!

a person paddling in a intex single inflatable kayakSIZE: 10’2″ x W 33.5″ (L 310cm x W 85cm)
CAPACITY: 300 lbs. (136 kg) 1 Person
WEIGHT: 27lbs

The Intex inflatable kayaks have the best value on the market. Challenger 1 is their entry-level single person kayak that’s super easy and convenient to use. It’s hard to come by a better inflatable kayak on Amazon as it’s got so many positive customer feedback that will make it undoubtedly a hard deal to not consider.

The Intex Challenger seems to have the average inflatable kayak weight limit of 300lbs which is great for most recreational paddlers out there!


  • Made of durable, welded material
  • Inflatable I beam floors add stability
  • Cargo net to store extra gear
  • Grab line on both ends of the kayak
  • Inflatable seat with backrest
  • 84-inch aluminum oar
  • Repair patch
  • Hi output manual hand pump
  • Rugged vinyl construction

More kayaks by Intex

Challenger K1
Challenger K2
Explorer K2
Excursion Pro
Dakota K2

Check Availability at


a variety of inflatable kayaks by intex


SEVYLOR – Quikpak K1

A cheap yet trustful single person inflatable kayak

sevylor quikpak inflatable kayak bundle

SIZE: 8′ x 7″ x 3″ (2.62 m x.91 m)
CAPACITY: 400 lbs. (181.43 kg)

The Sevylor inflatable kayak is ideal for lakes and for exploring trips. Quikpak 1 is a noticeable deal due to the fact that the carry backpack converts into a seat! Other than that, there’s plenty of feedback to consider this as your next exploring kayak.

  • Easy-to-carry backpack system turns into the seat
  • 21-gauge PVC construction is rugged for lake use
  • Tarpaulin bottom provides durable protection from punctures
  • Multiple air chambers allow another chamber to stay inflated if one is punctured
  • Double lock valves use two locking points for easy inflation/deflation

Check Availability at



As close as you can get to a rigid kayak

a person paddling in a kayak on an ocean


On the higher spectrum of inflatable kayaks, the Advanced Elements EVO is great for someone who simply won’t trust the cheap inflatable kayaks. After going through most of the blow-up kayak reviews, the AirFusion EVO seems to offer great performance and stability, preferred by people who travel often and who are looking for a good alternative to rigid kayaks.

If you’ve gone through your fair share of cheap inflatable kayaks, but you still won’t for a rigid kayak – this might be one of the best choices to choose from!

NOTE – There are 2 different pressure recommendations for this:

  1. The drop stitch side chambers must be inflated up to about 6 to 8 PSI
  2. The thwarts for the bow and stern inflate to about 1.5 to 2 PSI
  • Hybrid aluminum frame
  • High-pressure drop-stitch air chamber design
  • Inflatable coaming for spray skirt attachment
  • Roll-top rear storage access hatch
  • Carrying duffel bag w/shoulder straps included

Check Availability –


AQUAGLIDE – McKenzie 105

Whitewater inflatable kayak

Cross-over kayak designed for running rapids, or finding the perfect swell

whitewater kayaking

SIZE: 10’2″ x W 33.5″ (310cm x 85cm)
CAPACITY: 300 lbs. (136 kg) – 1 Person

One of the most advanced inflatable kayaks to get, the McKenzie 105 1-person whitewater kayak is built for the moving water unlike the rest of the blow-up kayaks in this review. If you are the adventurous thrill-seeker and looking for a portable ‘vessel’ – you can’t go wrong with this one!

Aquaglide also offers a wide variety of inflatable products from inflatable docks and platforms to tandem kayaks and so on.


  • Duratex construction
  • EvoBeam technology
  • 4 mesh drains for rapid water evacuation
  • Posi-track fin
  • Velcro seat
  • Halkey-Roberts type valve
  • Core 2 seat with additional loops, floor clips and back straps)
  • Storage backpack

Check Price at


STAR – Rival Sit-On-Top

Best inflatable sit-on top fishing kayak

blow up fishing kayak

MSRP: $995
REI Co-op

SIZE: 12′ x 38″ x 6″
Recommended pressure – 8-10PSI

The ‘Rival’ by Star Inflatable Kayaks has the best features among the most inflatable kayaks on this list. The elevated seating offers a great view and stable ground to sit, which makes it a convenient solution for fishing! This inflatable sit-on-top style kayak allows you to carry plenty of gear, especially when you are thinking of going on overnight trips!

  • 9 in. inflatable side tubes act like outriggers to provide stability and promote tracking
  • Advanced-formula PVC material and state-of-the-art seam welding technology provide superior abrasion resistance, longevity, and air retention
  • Leafield™ C7 valves
  • Removable aluminum-framed suspended-mesh seat puts you in the optimal position for paddling, casting, and sighting fish; the seat folds down for easier transport
  • Seat quickly attaches to D-rings with included straps for easy setup
  • Screened drain port under the seat drains water from the deck
  • 5 Scotty® Mount Bases provide attachment points for rod holders, fish finders, anchor locks, and more
  • Includes carry bag, 5 in. removable fin, pump, and repair kit

Availability –


Best Inflatable 2-person Tandem Kayaks


Can one person paddle in a two-person inflatable kayak?

Technically yes, you can paddle solo in a 2-person kayak.

Although most rigid kayaks have the option to adjust one of the seats towards the middle section for best-optimized paddling. Although when paddling alone in an inflatable kayak – it is recommended to sit on the rear of the kayak to achieve the best steering qualities. Although, make sure that the water wouldn’t sweep in as there wouldn’t be too much weight on one end of the kayak!



Ideal for lakes, mild rivers, or bays

Score: 4/5 out of 31+ ratings

two woman paddling in a kayak on an ocean

MSRP: $530
REI Co-op

CAPACITY: 350 pounds
SIZE: 12′ x 35″
WEIGHT: 37 pounds

The Advanced Elements inflatable kayak falls above the entry-level range, offering some decent features to rely on. Features such as the PVC tarpaulin’ that is made by combining two sheets of PVC with a fabric mesh in the middle to make a durable finish. Its bow and stern have fixed rigid forms that help cut through the waves and keep you on course. When you want to know what’s trending – look for REI’s inflatable kayaks, as they are one of the largest outdoor equipment stores in the US.


  • Built-in rigid panels on the bow and stern to improve tracking
  • Quick-inflating Twistlok and high-flow Spring valves for easy setup
  • Padded high-support seats
  • Molded rubber-grip handles
  • Bungee deck lacing
  • High denier polyester with a PVC laminate
  • 1-year warranty

Check Price at


SEA EAGLE – 330 Deluxe 2

All-inclusive budget package – Suitable for up to Class III whitewater

cheap two person inflatable kayak bundle

SIZE: 11′ x 34
CAPACITY: 2 person / 500 lb capacity
WEIGHT: 26-lbs

Although being on the cheaper spectrum, the Sea Eagle inflatable kayak has one of the best ratings on this whole list! It truly seems to be the best cheap inflatable kayak for whitewater. This cheap inflatable 2 person kayak has got the whole bundle – An inflatable kayak with two telescopic oars, a foot pump, and a carry bag. Also, you’ll get a repair kit to patch the kayak if needed.

It is most likely the best cheap 2-person inflatable on Amazon.


  • 2 x AB30 paddles
  • 2 inflatable movable & removable SEC seats
  • Foot pump
  • Repair kit
  • Carry bag with convenient shoulder strap
  • Lashed down inflatable spray skirts with storage underneath
  • Open & close drain valve with 5 deluxe 1-way inflation and deflation valves
  • SE330 hull
  • K-80 polykrylar hull material
  • 9″ tubes
  • Self-bailing drain valve
  • Three deluxe one-way valves
  • Two skegs on the bottom for better tracking and speed
  • Pressure gauge and repair kit
  • Bow and stern grab line
  • 33-mil polykrylar hull material
  • High frequency welded seams
  • Inflated I-beam floor construction
  • Three inflated chambers in port, starboard, and floor
  • Warranty – Sea Eagle products include a limited three-year manufacturer’s warranty against defects in materials and workmanship

Check Availability at


AQUAGLIDE – McKenzie 125

A cross-over kayak designed for running rapids, or finding the perfect swell

mckenzie high end inflatable kayak

SIZE: 12’2 x 34.5″
Weight Capacity: 600lbs

One of the greatest option since if you are looking for a multi-purpose kayak. As it is designed for running rapids, it sure does a great job for touring and simple exploration, sightseeing trips on lakes and oceans. It is considered as a higher-end/mid-range blow-up kayak, it does not come with a pair of oars – which is actually a good thing.

  • Duratex construction
  • EvoBeam technology
  • 4 mesh drains for rapid water evacuation
  • Posi-track fin
  • 2x Velcro seats with additional loops, floor clips, and back straps
  • Halkey-Roberts type valve
  • Storage backpack

Check Availability at


Best 3-person Inflatable Kayak



SEVYLOR – Big Basin

sevylor big basin three person inflatable kayak

Best for lake use, with a solid team. Sevylor is a known name in the inflatable industry, and this three-person inflatable kayak racks up a staggering 4/5 rating after 100 reviews – which is… pretty good I guess. As it is designed to carry three persons, there are some plan-B constructions added to it!

  • Airtight System is guaranteed not to leak
  • Heavy-duty PVC construction
  • Tarpaulin bottom provides durable protection from punctures
  • Multiple air chambers allow another chamber to stay inflated if one is punctured
  • Boston Valve is double threaded for easy inflation/deflation
  • Adjustable seats can be move to fit when not in use with three persons
  • Carry handles
  • Spray covers block splashes – really handy with 3 persons onboard



Is getting the inflatable kayak a good or bad idea?

Are inflatable kayaks any good or not is most likely the most frequently asked question in this field

Inflatable kayaks, alongside with inflatable paddleboards and fishing boats offer a great alternative to rigid kayaks. If your main concern to not getting into kayaking is money, transportation, or storage – the inflatable industry offers the best way out!

Can you use an inflatable kayak in the ocean?

Are inflatable kayaks safe in the sea?

Theoretically yes. If you are aware of the local beach bathymetry, currents, tides, and swells – a good-quality kayak could do the trick for you. Don’t forget, that inflatable kayaks are slower and not as accurate going straight, so you might want to use a rigid, ocean kayak for the occasion.

Should I get an inflatable kayak?

If you are looking for a cheap and fun alternative to rigid kayaks, you should definitely get into it.

Do inflatable kayaks pop easily?

It all depends on the quality and thickness of the kayak materials, sharpness, and the angle of the object. But yes, the biggest weakness of inflatable kayaks is their technology – hence the reason you should be using those near the shore, and always wear a life vest.

How long do inflatable kayaks last?

If taken proper care of – inflatable kayaks can easily outlast their ‘price’. If you rinse the kayak after each use in saltwater and keep in a cool, shaded spot – an inflatable kayak can last a long time! To keep it in a good nick – it’s best not to fold it too tightly, or place anything on top the kayak when not in use for longer periods of time.

How durable are inflatable kayaks?

Depending on how and where will you be using the kayak, don’t forget that inflatable kayaks are built to carry moving weight on the water – so they have to have some decency in matters of weight capacity. Just like with anything – if you’ll take proper care of – it will last! Also, make sure to check out the most popular inflatable kayaks on Amazon to seek out the ones with the best feedback, and make your decision based on that!

Where to buy an inflatable kayak?

  • REI
  • Amazon
  • Costco
  • Walmart

Inflatable vs hard shell kayak

Inflatable Kayaks are a great choice due to the following factors

  • Cheaper.
  • Easier to store.
  • No roof racks needed.
  • The most accessible way to get on the water.
  • Great for those who wouldn’t want to invest too much money, time, and space towards the hobby.

Stand-up Paddleboard compared to a Kayak

Kayak vs SUP – Standing or sitting, which option suits you the best?

  • Kayaks are built A to B.
  • Kayaks are faster.
  • Kayaks are more stable.
  • Kayaks allow to carry heavier items onboard.
  • Cheap kayaks can be uncomfortable to sit in.

SUP vs kayak

  • A stand-up paddleboard offers a better view.
  • SUP allows you to sit, stretch and move around.
  • You can surf small waves on a SUP.
  • Sups are not good as going straight.
  • The chances of capsizing are higher, therefore kayaks are more stable.

What is the difference between different inflatable kayak price ranges?

How to choose an inflatable kayak?

Cheaper inflatable kayaks – up to $300

  • Made of single-layer vinyl

Mid-entry inflatable kayaks – $300-$700 range

  • Vinyl is used in fabric

Mid-range, $700+ kayaks

  • Made of thick PVC

What is the difference between a raft, canoe, and a kayak?

  • Raft – For whitewater use, terribly slow on flat water
  • Canoe – Good in whitewater and flatwater, slower than kayaks
  • Fishing kayaks – Sit-on-top type (Not sit-in), usually have an upright position for the best mobility
  • Sit in kayaks – Traditional kayaks


Are inflatable kayaks safe?

If you are new to the ‘water world’, the inflatable kayak might have some hidden dangers.

  • Always wear a life vest!
  • One has to take exceedingly great care and avoid all grazing on any rough surface!
  • Check out the inflatable kayak weight limit
  • Inflatable ocean kayak? Probably not a good idea if we’re not talking about $1000 iKayaks




Paddleboard vs Kayak

kayak and paddleboard

44 Best Paddle Board Brands

41 best paddleboard brands

Published by:

I created Nulltuul to share my experience, research and analysis with other surf enthusiasts out there. If I'm not surfing on my travels - I like to photograph waves, surfers, and the surf lifestyle in general.

2 thoughts on “Best Inflatable Kayaks”

  1. Cassey New Andrel

    This is a great explanation of such an topic but iam looking for a 3 person kayak which has to be good in quality and have a fair price range?

  2. This is such a great explanation and quite intresting to read too but are these kayaks really good for fishing?

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Scroll to Top