Canoes & Kayaks

Tips on Buying an Inflatable Canoe & Kayak

Chris King
Tips on Buying an Inflatable Canoe & Kayak

Gone are the days when you had a desire to explore the waterbody but the boats, kayaks and canoes were limited. Now you can own your own canoe which is portable, available and reliable. Gone of the days when an Inflatable Canoe & Kayak was just for kids in the pool these are now serious boats and leading the way on the market for serious canoeists.  Inflatable kayaks have become much better than their intended purpose and are now rivalling hardshell boats in terms of performance.

Inflatable Canoes & Kayaks are available in variety of sizes, shapes and features, so to make it easy for you, we have guidance. So how do you know which to choose and buy when it comes to the finest, most versatile inflatable watercraft on the market.

Inflatable Canoe Buying Guide

When it comes to buying a canoe there are lots of models on the market and a few key important areas to consider when deciding what you want and which to buy.


One of the great things about an Inflatable Canoe & Kayak over a hardshell version is it’s portability, being able to easily pack it away and put it into the boot of your car makes it very helpful and useful. No need for a roof rack or trailer, it also makes it easy if you have to walk down to the water where you can then inflate it and set it up. Ensure that the model you are buying is easy to set up and also check out its compacted size when it is defaulted and packed in its bag. Ensure you will be able to carry it and that it will fit in your car, the Kokopelli inflatable packraft weighs less than 10 lbs, now that is easy to carry.

Tips on Buying an Inflatable Canoe & Kayak

Tips on Buying an Inflatable Canoe & Kayak


The ability to paddle, do you want to paddle alone or want someone else to paddle with you? This is an important question that helps you choose your canoe, there are types who would rather paddle alone because they prefer their own speed, then a single canoe will work for you and there are some who will want to go out as a couple or with a friend and don’t want to do it alone. If you are confused on which to choose then go for the one that have fixed seats. This will allow you to be flexible, if you are solo paddle on the center if two go to both ends and paddle.

The weather conditions

Calm waters and disrupting waters cannot use the same canoe, first confirm where you would want to explore the waters then see what canoe would work best in such weather. This will help you know what type of canoe you the enclosed or open canoe. Be sure if rain, heat may be an issue.

Weight and height

Look at the design in terms of width, length especially the leg length. If a canoe is tall is meant for the tall people.Always compare the carrying capacity of the canoe compared to your weight or the intended people who will use the canoe. This will help0 you know the best canoe or gear. Ensure you are comfortable in your own canoe. A good brand that considers this is; Hobie Kayaks Mirage Outback


What is the boat for? Is it for long or short excursion? This may not look important but it actually matters a lot. This will help you to determine the storage space for your out. Will you be fishing or scuba diving, do you need easy accessibility or need more protection.


What type of material is it? Material comes with durability. There are 4 major types of materials used in canoe: hypalon,polyurethane,nylon or PVC. Hypalon is the most durable but it weighs more. Do not forget to look at the rigidity when it is inflated: PVC. is a bit rigid compared to others. Remember what do you want, durability versus stability.


What type of seats do you want, it can either be single, double or triple seating. This comes with the question how many people do you want to accommodate, or is it for leisure. If that is the case for touring kayak you need to accommodate 2 or 3 passengers. Check on whether you want inflatable seats that are detachable or fixed.


Accessorised items of the canoe is important, look at what it comes with, is it relevant and will it ensure safety to you and your loved ones or customers. They should come with paddles, life vest air pump and storage bag. These are necessary for survival in the water.

Self-bailing Option

Self-bailing canoes have holes in the bottom, this enables the water that gets in the canoe to pass out through the holes. They come with plugs that can open or close the holes as needed. This depend on what waters are you in, if it is calm, you don’t need the self-bailing option and are more intended for use in whitewater situations where you will being getting wet.

Ease to assemble

Don’t forget to check on the ease of assemble it. The folding canal has many countless parts that need to be assembled. For it to be successful need to accurate and precise. With an inflatable boat no need to worry you simply need to pump the chambers which may need only 5-10 minutes, then you insert a clip on a rudder then you are good to go.

Take your time when you choosing the canoe because it what determines your adventure and fun. There are many types of canoe, but a well-made canoe is advantageous by far compared to hard shells.

Best Inflatable Canoe & Kayaks

Now you know what to look for and consider we have rounded up some of the best inflatable Canoes and Kayaks on the market.

Intex Explorer K2 Kayak


This is one of the best selling inflatable Kayaks on Amazon and you can see why, a great twin seater that is perfect for lakes, canals and rivers. An easy to set up and inflate boat it comes with oars and inflated seats. It is comfortable and easy to direct and rides along smoothly.

Intex Explorer K2 2 Person Inflatable Kayak Set with Comfortable Backrest, Aluminum Oars, and High Output Air Pump for Fast Inflation, Yellow
  • Outdoor 2-person watercraft kayak is made of rugged 30-gauge vinyl for stronger durability, ideal for lakes and mild rivers
  • Inflatable seats and backrests are adjustable for a comfortable ride and feature grab lines on both ends with a maximum weight capacity of 400 pounds

Intex K2 Challenger Kayak 2 Man Inflatable Canoe


Another great canoe from Intex, the challenger comes with a fin to the base of the boat and is made from a rugged vinyl construction. It Inflates in just 3 minutes and is quick and easy to set up. Just inflate the different sections in the numbered order and then attach the seat back and place it in the water ready to go. This is great for the price and exceptional value. 

INTEX Challenger Inflatable Kayak Series: Includes Deluxe 86in Kayak Paddles and High-Output Pump – SuperStrong PVC – Adjustable Seat with Backrest – Removable Skeg – Cargo Storage Net
  • INFLATABLE KAYAK: The Intex Challenger K2 2-person inflatable kayak has a 350 pound capacity making it great for boating or fishing with friends. The kayak only weights 40 pounds and is U.S. Coast Guard I.D and TUV approved
  • COMFORTABLE: Comfortable and spacious cockpit with inflatable seats and backrests and a cargo net to keep personal belongings in the boat; Streamline design for easy paddling and removable skeg for directional stability

Sevylor Riviera Two Person Kayak


The Sevylor Riviera Two Person Kayak is another popular choice, quick and was to inflate it also comes with a backup to carry too. It is east to guide and comes with two inflatable seats. This is perfect for two adults or kids and will take the weight just fine. It has 2 inflatable side chambers for safety and comes with plastic oars too.

About the author: Chris loves the outdoors and has developed a love of gadgets and inflatable toys, from kayaking and paddle boarding to relaxing in his hot tub at home. The founder of WhichInflatable and has been the editor for 7 years.

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