Inflatable boats are a relatively new addition to the options available for those who want to go on the water. Traditionally, only hard-bodied canoes and kayaks were easy to find and buy.
Without forgetting that the best inflatable rafts must be robust, resistant and puncture-proof. With newer and better inflatable boats on the market today, it is easier to find an inflatable boat to meet your needs.
If you’ve never thought about buying a new inflatable boat, there are a few things you might miss that are very important!
When we are considering acquiring a new inflatable boat for children or for the family, it is essential to know roughly the type of boat we have in mind, so that our purchase goes smoothly.
Among the undeniable characteristics to which it is good to pay all our attention, we will note inter alia the variant and the material of manufacture, the size and the use of the boat, without forgetting the type of bottom.
If you are short of time despite your desire to read our buying guide and the models, we have selected for you, here is a brief description of the best inflatable boats of 2020 that we recommend.
The Best Inflatable Boats Reviewed
|Our Top Pick||Intex 68325 Inflatable Excursion Game|
|Alternative Top Pick||Intex 68349NP 3-Person Inflatable Boat Seahawk 300|
|Best Budget Option||Intex Explorer 200, 2-Person Inflatable Boat Set with French Oars and Mini Air Pump|
Our Top Pick: Intex 68325 Inflatable Excursion Game
Our Top Pick
This Intex inflatable canoe is appreciated for its large capacity. It can support up to 455 kg of loads. It is the ideal equipment if you want to go on a family excursion or in the company of your friends.
It weighs a little heavy, which is only to be expected due to its large dimensions. For its inflation and its displacement, it requires a large volume of air.
Compared to other inflatable boats, this model has many advantages. It is wide, solid and stable. Assets to enjoy a friendly excursion.
What We Like:
- Capacity and accessory | This inflatable boat will surprise you with its fairly large dimensions. Indeed, unlike other standard models, it can accommodate up to 5 people. It can support a maximum load of 455 kg. It should be noted that this equipment measures 366 cm long, 168 cm wide and 38 cm high. So, you can use it to enjoy a good picnic or fishing time with family or friends.
- Ideal equipment for fishing | This canoe gives you the opportunity to practice your favorite activity, fishing. With this boat, you can reach places where fish are plentiful. In addition, it is well equipped so that you can catch them in the right conditions. This equipment is provided with 4 supports for fishing rods. Whether you are a novice or a professional in this area, this product will be essential to centralize your fishing area. It will also prevent you from getting tired quickly.
- Safe and comfortable | This inflatable canoe is secure equipment. Indeed, it is made with a high-quality material which is vinyl. With a thickness of 0.75 mm, it is resistant and robust. You can use your boat for several years, without changing its quality.
Check the latest price on Amazon.
Alternative Top Pick: Intex 68349NP 3-Person Inflatable Boat Seahawk 300
Alternative Top Pick
Indeed, this multicolored 3-seater model intended for use on lakes, as a fishing tire on a large pond or for fishing in fresh water could perhaps suit you.
This inflatable boat in resistant plastic is accompanied by 3 independent air chambers which will therefore ensure a minimum of safety in the event of deflation of part of the boat following an impact. It is especially appreciated for its compact and practical side and its excellent value for money.
It is an inflatable boat model without bad surprise thanks to the presence of the handle which will facilitate not only its port, but also its launching. The Intex 68349 is initially fitted with a rod holder and a paddle holder on both sides of the inflatable boat. However, be sure to bring a storage bag at the start of your expeditions, because this model does not provide one.
If you want to go further during your walks, fixings have been provided so that you can install an engine.
If you want an inflatable boat for your moments of leisure and relaxation, very easy to use, practical, space-saving but with all the features common to inflatable boats, the Intex 68349NP will suit you.
What We Like:
- Functional and practical| Easy to use, this boat is however endowed with all the useful options for such a boat: pull handle, paddle eyes, support for fishing rods, fixing for motor installation. You also get a good value for money.
- Safety | Equipped with 3 independent air chambers, the boat offers more safety in the event of a puncture.
Check the latest price on Amazon.
Best Budget Option: Intex Explorer 200, 2-Person Inflatable Boat Set with French Oars and Mini Air Pump
Best Budget Option
Those who do not know which inflatable boat to buy, can always turn to this 2-seater model, ultralight, which weighs only 3.2 kilos in all.
It is a boat that hardly takes up space with its optimal dimensions of 196 x 102 x 33 cm. You can easily store it in the car once deflated.
This model is very successful with those looking for a good quality boat on which it is possible to have fun and make trips to lakes or even to the sea, during their holidays.
It will delight the little ones with its attractive color and its ability to act as a mattress for their napping sessions, all without getting wet. As for adults, they can use this inflatable boat to replace a mattress, for their napping sessions.
What We Like:
- Quality and resistance | Compared with other products in the same category, the Intex 58356 offers remarkable resistance thanks to its 0.35mm PVC design. It is really of quality considering the price it displays.
- Compact and light | The inflatable boat Intex 58356 is to be classified among the ultralight with only 3.2 kilos in the balance. It is also compact and can be stored everywhere with its optimal dimensions of 196 x 102 x 33 cm.
Check the latest price on Amazon.
Frequently Asked Questions
Why choose an inflatable boat?
The answer may seem obvious to those looking for an inflatable boat for their children, but if you are wondering why buy an inflatable boat rather than a conventional boat, there are many reasons that can push you to do this, such as:
- Significant space savings during transport and storage.
- Much lighter than a conventional boat.
- Different types of boats depending on the type of use and the number of people.
- Motor models consume much less fuel, which is economical and environmentally friendly.
- Is cheaper to buy than a classic pleasure boat.
What are the different possibilities for using an inflatable boat?
An inflatable boat has several possibilities of use, depending on the type you choose, the model, but also and above all according to your desires.
Among other things, it is possible to use an inflatable boat for:
- Going out to sea: probably the best-known use of all, inflatable boats will allow you to enjoy the sea and take a leisurely stroll, which children greatly appreciate.
- Take a stroll on fresh water: it is possible, in some places, to use your inflatable boat in a lake or a river in order to enjoy a quiet walk during your vacation.
- Enjoy fishing: concerning especially the models of inflatable motor boats, it is not uncommon to see some people acquire this type of boat in order to enjoy their leisure such as fishing.
What are the safety measures to take with an inflatable boat?
In order to ensure that your inflatable boat ride goes as smoothly as possible and to avoid any accident, there are a few safety measures to follow:
- Always respect the number of people and the maximum weight allowed on the boat.
- Always wear a life jacket suitable for your age, size and body type.
- Always have a distress rocket (visible between 3 and 9 km) with you if you move away from the coast.
- Avoid shaking or standing while the boat is moving.
- If you are taking children with you, always keep an eye on them to prevent them from falling into the water or being injured.
- Always have a repair kit and a pump with you in case you have a problem with this.
- At sea, do not venture beyond the authorized limit, but moreover, check that the sea is calm before even leaving on your inflatable boat.
How to properly maintain your inflatable boat?
- What to do if the strands of the boat have become sticky?
As can sometimes happen, if the strands of your boat have become sticky, you will have two choices. Either you take a cloth, soak it in a butanone solution and rub the strands of your boat gently in a circle, or you buy a special cleaner in a store selling products for inflatable boats.
- What to do in case of loss of color?
If your boat loses its color from being used at sea, because of the salt, but also from the sun, then the only solution not to buy a new one is to repaint it. However, be aware that you will not be able to use any type of paint, but a special paint for this type of boat.
- What to do to protect the boat from dust, sand and sea salt?
The only way to effectively protect your boat from premature wear and tear caused by dust, sea salt or sand is to always make sure you rinse the boat well after each use. This will allow you to remove absolutely all the residue in a short time, but do not forget to dry it immediately to prevent dust from getting stuck again.
Other Worthy Mentions
These are ones that didn’t quite make the cut as one of the top picks, but are still interesting enough to be worth a look.
Ideal for use during family excursions on river beds or for fishing sessions with friends, this boat can support up to 2 people in total, for a maximum weight.
- Large capacity
- Several useful equipment
The Classic Accessories Colorado Inflatable Pontoon Boat will be a great benefit to lone wolves for its combination of incredible stability, easy portability, generous storage capabilities and fully adjustable seating arrangement.
- 3 oar lock positions.
- Multi-positional rod holder.
- 20 storage pockets.
- Adjustable foot rests.
- River capable.
- 2 position motor mount.
- Weight capacity 400 lbs.
When Airhead says “6 people”, they mean 2 adults and 4 small children. This has a movable seat, rotary ratchet locks to improve handling and 4 drain plugs so as not to store a lot of water with the boat at the end of the day.
- Capacity of 6 people.
- Movable seat.
- Electronically welded seams.
- 2 fishing rod holders.
- 140 x 66.5 inches.
- Wrap around the catch lines.
The killer whale by inflatable Sport Boats has been designed by nautical engineers to offer rear buoyancy which allows you faster planning at take-off.
- Incredibly portable
- Easy to assemble and disassemble within 10 minutes
- Removable seat cushions
- Exterior heavy-duty handles for carrying the boat
The boat is made with material that is heavy grade PVC. It gives superior strength, and it can withstand extreme nautical conditions. It can survive petroleum and UV exposure too.
- Aluminum floor
- Pressure gauge to monitor the level of air pressure
- Hammer hand inflation pump
- Durable carrying bag
The Bris Boat Inflatable Boat is a 10.8 feet long fishing boat which has pontoon style design. This boat is a good choice for a larger portable dinghy or a primary boat for rivers, lakes, and bays.
- It can carry up to 5 people
- Built-in oarlocks
- Stainless steel D-rings for easy towing in and out of water