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Inflatable Kayaks

Are inflatable kayaks any good?

Do inflatable kayaks pop easily?

It's very rare that inflatable kayaks spontaneously "pop" or get punctured to the point they deflate. These products are made from very durable materials & pressure tested before being distributed. More anecdotally, users of inflatable sups and kayaks do not have issues with their kayaks being popped. The only time this would happen is if there is a serious trauma to the craft, unlikely to happen if you're just using your kayak on the ocean or using it on a still lake / body of water. Also check out our recent article: Are inflatable kayaks safe?

Are inflatable kayaks better than plastic?

They are better than hardshell kayaks (or "plastic kayaks" as we're referring to here) in multiple ways, for example: 
  • An inflatable kayak is more portable and lightweight than a normal hardshell kayak. This means you can take it to more remote locations. If you so fancy, you can pack up your kayak, and even go kayak camping; this is because all you'll need is your packed up kayak, paddles and pump (all of which can be packed into a backpack).
  • They're easier to store. If you're lacking space, for example let's just say you live in an apartment, it's not easy to store an 11ft Hardshell Kayak. Instead, an inflatable kayak is perfect.

Are inflatable kayaks good for beginners?

Kayaks which are inflatable by nature are absolutely perfect for beginners looking to get into kayaking, or looking to explore their local areas a bit more, without splashing out money on expensive hardshell kayaks. They are good for beginners because they are lightweight, typically cheaper than larger more traditional kayaks, and can be stored away quickly and efficiently.

So, what are the best inflatable kayaks for beginners?

See the links to the right, we personally recommend crafts by Intex, as we've personally used them and can attest to the quality of their products. The Intex Explorer K2 is probably one of the sturdiest, most robust 2 person inflatable kayaks that we've used.

Are inflatable kayaks hard to paddle?

Compared to a hardshell kayak, inflatable kayaks are not hard to paddle at all. They're often much wider than traditional plastic kayaks and therefore have slightly more stability around the central portion of the raft. That being said however, from side to side you may find balancing an issue. From our personal experience using Ocean Kayaks, they normally come with more robust inset seat and foot placements making steering the craft a bit easier.

Are cheap kayaks worth it?

We wouldn't recommend purchasing a cheap kayak. If you want a product that will last longer, go for something that is above the £250 price range that you see with Intex and Sevylor.

Check out our guide on the Intex Challenger K1 Inflatable Kayak

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This number can vary greatly. Intex and Sevylor, along with other brands such as Bestway, offer their products from a starting range of £200 (one person intex challenger). You would not want to go for anything cheaper than this, as a cheaper raft means cheaper quality and could result in poor performance.Most kayaks will be able to accommodate for larger sized people, due to the nature of their construction. The only thing you may need to consider is the actual seat itself, check the dimensions on the manufacturer's website for the dimensions to double check.Can an inflatable raft such as a kayak handle the claws of a dog and or biting/scratching? The answer is yes, you can take your dog on an inflatable kayak, just be careful and intelligent when choosing the location. Ideally you want still waters as to not frighten your dog.

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