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Best inflatable kayaks for fishing : Ultimate Guide in 2017

Inflatable kayaks are, undoubtedly, an excellent solution for fishing; they are portable, roomy, lightweight and do not require a lot of space. Therefore, you can take them anywhere in the world when you travel and want to fish or just to explore things out.At the moment, there are a lot of inflatable kayak types available, coming in different shapes, colors, sizes, prices and, of course, characteristics. That’s why you should know more about them in order to choose the best one for you.

Inflatable Kayak Types

Depending on the manufacturer, an inflatable kayak can be made of PVC (polyvinyl chloride), Hypalon (a synthetic rubber – the strongest, the most resistant and the most expensive, of course) or of Nitrylon (a lamination of nitrile synthetic rubber).

They can be inflated by foot, hand or with electric pumps.

Although we will review later what to consider when buying an inflatable kayak, you should know the most important types of kayaks are: self-bailing kayaks (best used in whitewater), sit-on-top kayaks (best for warmer temperatures or if you are claustrophobic), sit inside kayaks (a classical design of kayaks, used mostly in colder weather), tandem inflatable kayaks (multi-use boat), canoe-style, open style kayak, standup paddle board, tracking fin, fishtailing kayak etc.

Why choosing an inflatable kayak and not a hard sided kayak?

As you may guess, choosing a kayak depends a lot on your needs, lifestyle and preferences.

Hard sided kayaks are usually made of wood which can make them more attractive, but, instead, they are hard to maintain in a good condition. The hard side kayaks can be also made of plastic, fiberglass or carbon fiber, but these also have some shortcomings as they can be rigid or very expensive.

On the other hand, inflatable kayaks are portable, lightweight, easy to handle so they can be the best solution for someone new in this hobby. They are appropriate for easy paddling, but also for whitewater rapids. Last, but not least, the prices are more affordable when we talk about inflatable kayaks.

Sit-on-top or sit-inside for Inflatable Kayaks?

Each one has pros and cons, so you have to know them in order to make the best decision, according to your needs and preferences.

Sit-on-top inflatable kayaks​

If you want more room to move or you are claustrophobic, you should choose this one. It looks like a traditional inflatable kayak, but the cockpit is slightly raised. Therefore, it’s easier to get in and out.

Sit-in inflatable kayak​

Most people tend to opt for this type of kayak, which is, in fact, the most traditional and the most used one. It has high walls and the lower body is concealed inside it. It’s the best choice when fishing kayaking on a cold weather.

Fishing and Inflatable Kayaks

Before buying an inflatable kayak for fishing you must gather all sort of information about it.

To sum it up, you should consider two things: price and fabrics (therefore, quality) and the product requirements.Each inflatable kayak comes with some manufacturer specifications and requirements and you should read and apply them accordingly.

As for the price/materials, keep in mind this small guide:

- Hypalon material

It’s a synthetic rubber that has the longest and best resistance in inflatable kayaks. The shortcoming would be that, as you may guess, it is also the most expensive.

- PVC material

The kayaks made of polyvinyl chloride are durable, portable, easy to patch and cheaper, but they are not very resistant to many factors, from abrasions and chemicals to temperatures and sunlight.

- Nylon material

This is a lamination of nitrile synthetic rubber, an eco-friendly alternative to PVC as many say that has environmental harmful effects. The kayaks made of nitryl on are stronger than the ones made of PVC, easier to patch and more suitable for cold weather, but, on the other hand, can be very heavy.

What to consider before buying an inflatable kayak?

The most important thing before buying a good inflatable kayak would be the material, as this gives the durability and also the safety of an inflatable kayak.Then, think about other things like if you want a solo or tandem kayak, what will the water and weather conditions be, if you are going kayaking on a whitewater or on a calm lake, your size, and height, but also the dimensions of the kayak, if that specific product comes with extra security features etc.



Designed especially for anglers, this multi-layer, polyethylene material made kayak has a high-back seat, two rod holders, and an inflatable lumbar support, In addition, the mounting rail is removable.It is foldable, it weighs 40 pounds, 300 pounds weight supported and its dimensions are 16.93 x 10 x 29.92 inches.


  • Advanced Elements Straitedge Angler Kayak is indeed a high-quality product. The customers say it is very stable, durable, comfortable, and great to paddle it in the wind too.
  • Besides, inflation takes just a few minutes, so this won’t be a problem, as well as the storage.


  • The shortcomings mentioned by the customers are all about some design flaws like the paddle that is not so solid
  • The plastic couplings, the seat that might seem too small for some people etc.


This tandem kayak has an air cell system 2-layer construction with PVC tubes and a PVC floor.

The seat and float bags are adjustable and it has two sets of drain holes, twelve sets of cargo loops and a bow/stern carry handles.

The repair kit is included in the package/price.


  • it’s a strong, durable kayak with a lot of extra features


  • The price may seem a little too high, so it is not a kayak for every budget


This is also a tandem kayak (but also can be used by one person too), with 6 D-rings to secure seats). It gas bow/stern grab handles, front and rear spray skirts with storage and lacing. The material is resistant and durable. Besides, it also has two high capacity self-bailing drain valves and some features to improve speed.


  • It seems this kayak tracks very well, it’s comfortable and roomy. There are customers that say it would be room for a child, for example. Besides, Sea Eagle 385 Fast Track it easy to set up and to transport.


  • Although the features recommend it for being durable, it seems there are some customers complaining about not being sturdy or safe enough


This kayak is made of PVS drop-stitch material. It weights 26 lbs and it has a load capacity of 200 + lbs. With 1 thwart, 4 air chambers, 2 D-rings, and 2-handles, NRS OUTLAW kayak also has a very good price


  • Very easy to handle, the customers say this is a stable, durable product
  • It’s easy to get in and out, it has a firm floor and it is not heavy


  • For the moment, thigh straps can be purchased for an extra money, so it would be a great idea for them to be included in the fixed price.Also, there are customers who complain about the seat, that does not offer much support.


Buying an inflatable kayak for fishing is not just a random thing. You should be organized and you should research a lot before deciding anything. Prioritize your needs and requirements such as budget, security, features, where and when you are going to use the product etc. One thing is for sure: you can make the best decision only by knowing exactly what you are looking for.

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