Why should you buy inflatable kayaks instead of rigid kayaks?

rigid inflatable kayaks
Written by ahmaddirar

Kayaks have become very popular with people of all age groups who are interested in spending time on the water. Some do serious fishing whereas some youngsters practice for competitive rowing on kayaks. Some are adventurous and go rafting in the river. Most of these people are increasingly choosing inflatable kayaks as opposed to the rigid ones of the traditional kind. 

If you are joining the ranks of kayak users and struck with the question of why you should choose an inflatable kayak instead of the rigid one, we can be of some help in clearing your mind. Your choice should fall on the inflatable kayak. The reasons for this are many. Let’s check it out.

Inflatable Kayaks are Easier to Handle

When it comes to the ease of storing, retrieving, transporting, and getting into and out of a kayak, the inflatable kayak leaves the traditional rigid kayak far behind. You can fold up the inflatable kayak to the size of a backpack and stack it away in a corner of your garage. When it is time to launch out to the waters, put the kayak on the rear of your car or truck, and set forth. 

Inflating and readying the kayak for the trip takes very little time. You can carry it in one hand and gently ease-in into the water. Hopping into the kayak is a breeze. Once you are done fishing or spending time out in the water, pull the kayak out and dry it. After it gets dry, fold it back. 

None of this is feasible with your traditional rigid kayak. Almost on every step outlined above, you will face issues. You need some help fixing the kayak on the roof of your car or on to a trailer. Again, launching it into water will need some help. Trust us since we have been there and done it before switching to the inflatable kayak. 

Delivers Better Performance on the Water

An inflatable kayak is a safe boat to be in, whether the water is still or rough. You wouldn’t venture out if the weather is too stormy or the wind speed is high. When it comes to actual performance in the water, there is documented evidence to show the inflatable kayak moves at a faster speed than the rigid kayaks. 

Way back in 1997, in the San Juan Challenge, an inflatable kayak recorded a speed of half a knot more than the rigid kayak running the same race. So, when we recommend that you go for the inflatable kayaks, it is not out of our imagination but based on hard facts.

Inflatable Kayaks can Deliver Better Stability and Safety

Many customers raise this question with us. They are concerned if the inflatable kayak would be safer to foray into the water. They are as safe as they come. It can be said with full confidence that inflatable kayaks exhibit better buoyancy in the water. The inflated chambers in the kayak distribute the buoyancy and this results in the kayak being more stable. There are very rare cases of the inflatable kayaks toppling over or sinking. People spend several hours out in the water and face no difficulty. 

You must just shed your apprehension, if any, on the safety of inflatable kayaks. They outscore the rigid kayaks on this aspect too.

Inflatable Kayaks can Carry More Weight

Consider this figure: A 25-pound inflatable kayak can hold up to 500 pounds. This means it can safely accommodate two persons of average build, plus more. Those using the inflatable kayaks for fishing will find this extremely useful.   


The cost of acquisition of an inflatable kayak is lower than a rigid kayak of the same size. You can always argue that the rigid one lasts much longer than the inflatable ones. That part may be true. On the cost of maintenance too, repairs to the traditional wooden kayaks or the more modern fiberglass rigid kayaks can be higher. This is due to the materials used for their construction.

The regular inflatable kayaks are made with special plastic materials with multiple layers. This ensures the walls of the kayaks are stronger and cannot be ripped easily. 

It may be important to note that some of the inflatable kayaks specially built for tougher applications are priced higher. 

Make an educated choice and invest in an inflatable kayak to suit your needs.

About the author


I am an avid traveler and adventurer, I love fishing, skiing, snowboarding, hiking and camping. when you want me you can usually find me on the water either fishing :) , paddleboarding or kayaking.

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