The 7 Best Inflatable Paddle Boards Under $500 (2018)
Paddle boards can be a blast for enjoyment. They are extremely long and wide, and can be used for a variety of fun. For example, some paddlers do yoga, race each other, and tour the water on stand up paddle boards. However, they can be pricey.
Fun doesn’t have to be expensive. Fortunately, there are inexpensive inflatable paddle boards that won’t break your bank. They include accessories, come in different designs for different uses, and are reliably stable.
In this guide, we will look at the top 7 best inflatable paddle boards under $500.
Quality iSUP Boards Under $500?
Paddle boards come in different shapes and sizes. Although more expensive boards may be designed for reliability or for specific purposes, it doesn’t mean that cheaper paddle boards can’t accomplish the same feat. For starters, a paddle board under $500 is highly doable with so many available on the market. Although they are not the absolute best, there are many well-rated paddle boards that are popular and reliably tested. It also helps that you have a global supply of paddle boards to pick and choose from thanks to the world wide web.
In this guide, there are numerous inflatable paddle boards that include the full kit of paddling essentials. Things like a manual pump with a pressure gauge, a storage and carry backpack with shoulder straps, and an adjustable paddle are some of many things that you can get along with a decent paddle board under $500.
Don’t Pick Based On Accessories!
Accessories can be pricey, but one of the worst things you can do is buy a board that bows or isn’t suitable for your type of activity. Although most shoppers for this guide are casual paddlers, we still want to be on the lookout for quality boards.
So how should you pick the best inflatable paddle board?
- Supports your weight: There are two components to weight support. One is the maximum weight capacity that the manufacturer tells us the board can support. The other is the thickness of the board. Why is the thickness important? Concentrated weight when standing on a paddle board can cause the board to begin bowing (mild bend). This bend can make the board ridiculously difficult to paddle and use, so we want to find boards that are 4″ or 6″ thick (6″ being the safer). It’s important for heavier individuals (>250 pounds) to use a thick 6″ SUP board.
- Lengthy and wide enough for you: This point is for fishers packing a lot of gear, yoga enthusiasts wanting to use the deck space, and taller individuals that want to lay on top of their board. 10′ to 10′ 6″ long and 30″ to 32″ wide is a standard board. If you’ve had trouble balancing from previous paddling experience or want a board that is as stable as possible, buy a wide board that is 32″ or greater in width.
- Accessories, still! Although you shouldn’t pick solely on accessories (because not all boards are built the same), unless you plan on paddling with your hands or spending extra money and time finding a pump, a paddle, and a bad, then maybe it is worth considering the accessories that come with the paddle board. For starters, this is great. For the more serious enthusiasts, you might not be interested in “more stuff” because you have better choices to choose.
With these in mind, you can pick a SUP board that looks cool or sexy or great. Once you find a board that won’t sink under your weight and is suited for your type of activity, then you can pick your favorite color and design.
Reviews of the Best Inflatable Paddle Boards Under $500
1. Best All-Around Paddle Board – SereneLife Paddle Board
The SereneLife is one of the most popular paddle boards on the market. It’s also recommended by Amazon, and for good reason. This 10′ paddle board is designed with a wide deck with a soft no-slip top.
It also comes with a complete paddling kit, including a paddle, coiled ankle cuffs safety leash, a manual pump with a gauge, one repair kit, and a basic duffle bag for storage and carrying.
One of the things we like about the SereneLife is the triple fins. These fins seemingly insignificant provide a better tracking (going in a straight line) for the paddle board with better speed and efficiency. This means less work and more fun.
- Comes as a complete paddle board set with paddling essentials
- Designed for stability and grip
- Wide deck for extra comfort
- Comes with a front-end bungeed storage compartment
- High maximum weight capacity (275 pounds)
- Storage bag could be better if it was a backpack
- Not built for racing or touring
2. Runner Up Contender – RoC Paddle Board
The RoC is one of the widest boards available on the market. At 10’ 5” long and 33” wide, it is a super stable board that can be great for bigger individuals that need more flotation or for those interested in a wider yoga paddle board.
It comes with all the paddler’s essentials accessories, including a decent knap sack carry bag, a manual pump with a gauge, paddle, and coiled ankle leash. It also comes with a waterproof carry bag for your belongings.
If you’re looking for a value pick, then the RoC is one of the top contenders as our runner up pick.
- Comes as a full-set board with accessories, including an additional waterproof carry bag
- Wider than most paddle boards for greater stability and deck space
- Outfitted with triple bottom fins for improved tracking and speed
- 1-year warranty
- Not designed for speed or for long distance paddling
3. Best Paddle Board For Racing and Speed – iRocker SPORT Paddle Board
The iRocker Sport is an 11’ long and 30” wide paddle board designed with the shape of a missile for maximum glide and minimum drag. If you are a racer or into touring long distances, then this performance-oriented board is right for you. It also has a ridiculously high max weight support of 385 pounds making it great for nearly individual, big or small.
The paddle board also comes with all accessories you will need. It includes a knap sack for storing and carrying your board, a manual pump with a gauge, a coiled ankle leash, and a paddle.
- Bungeed compartment in the front
- Uses three fins for great tracking and improved speed
- Comes with everything you need, including a backpack with adjustable shoulder straps
- 2-year warranty
- Not designed for yoga-related activities
- Not as stable as other low profile and flat boards
4. Budget-Friendly Pick with Seat – HydroForce Paddle Board
The HydroForce is a 10’ long and 32” wide paddle board that is built for a kayaking experience. It comes with a two-head paddle and a removable kayak seat with a detachable footrest. The board is however thinner than most paddle boards at 4” thick, providing less buoyancy and supporting a maximum weight limit of 209 pounds.
The SUP board set also includes a good-looking travel bag with adjustable shoulder straps for carry and storage and a manual pump with a gauge. There is also a bungeed storage compartment in the front for carrying a small bag. There are also three permanent fins to help the paddle board track better.
- Great kayaking experience with a seat and footrest included
- Everything can be removed for a stand up paddle board experience
- Inexpensive choice for those on a tight budget
- Not as wide or spacious as other boards
- It does have difficulty tracking (going straight) as a shorter paddle board
- Does not support as much weight as other paddle boards
5. Best Paddle Board for Heavy Riders and Yoga – Goplus Paddle Board
The Goplus is a 10’ long and 30” wide paddle board that can support a whopping weight capacity of up to 440 pounds. This means heavier riders can also enjoy the paddle board.
The deck uses no-slip grip for ensuring a steady ride experience. This wide grip surface also makes it great for extra passengers and yoga enthusiasts. Although it is not as wide or long as other boards, it’s rigid soft top build is reliable for nearly all users to enjoy. There is also a bungeed compartment in the front.
- Large no-slip grip deck space
- Super supportive of heavier individuals with a max weight capacity of 440 pounds
- Comes with all the accessories you need to get started, including a carry bag, pump, and paddle
- Good for leisure paddling on calm waters
- Might not be great for tall individuals (6’ or greater)
- Not the greatest at tracking with only one fin and rounded front end
6. Great Value Pick – Vilano Journey Paddle Board
The Valino Journey is a 10’ long and 31.5-inch wide thick paddle board. It has several stainless D-rings (11 in total) that can be used for bungeed storage in the front or a kayak seat in the middle. The deck has a very wide no-slip grip which makes this board great for yoga-related activities. It’s also good for all-around use, although it does lack tracking (going straight). The board does maneuver very well in the water.
The Valino Journey also comes with a paddle, a manual pump with a pressure gauge, a removable single centre fin, a decent shoulder strap backpack, and a coiled ankle leash.
- Comes with everything essential that you need to get started
- Inexpensive choice for a board that can be used for many leisure activities
- D-rings available for installing a kayak seat
- Adjustable 3-piece paddle
- 1-year warranty
- Doesn’t come with a kayak seat
- Not that great at tracking
- Not suitable for racing and requires a lot of paddling effort for long distance touring
7. Best Paddle Board for Fishing – Z-Ray FS7 Paddle Board
The Z-Ray FS7 is a long 11’, 32” wide paddle board with a maximum weight capacity of 330 pounds. This angler paddle board although not super popular is designed for fishing. It has multiple D-Rings along the sides, so you can use them for coolers and/or a kayak seat. There is also a bungeed storage compartment in the front for storing smaller items. The deck is wide and uses a non-slip grip so you can stand with comfort.
The paddle board comes with all the essentials, including an adjustable paddle, a manual pump with a pressure gauge, a very good looking backpack with shoulder straps for storage and carry. It does lack an ankle leash that most other boards we reviewed comes with.
- Many D-rings available for placing your fishing gears however you wish
- High maximum weight capacity of 330 pounds
- Wide and long deck, with no-slip grip
- Comes with everything you need to start paddling
- Doesn’t come with an ankle leash (sold separately)
- Not suitable for long-distance paddling or for racing
Our Closing Thoughts
Enjoying the waters doesn’t have to be financially painful. There are a lot of paddle boards on the market that are affordable and offer the same experience as more expensive ones. Thanks to the World Wide Web, we have more selection and more competition that drives prices down. And in this guide, we look at the 7 best inflatable paddle boards that are under $500.