Whether you’re spending your weekend alone or with friends or family near a lake or river, fishing is amongst the most fun thing you can do. And needless to say, the main piece of equipment you’ll require is a boat. But, the problem is not everyone owns one.
If you aren’t exactly a fishing enthusiast or lack the resources or enough room in your home to own a large boat, going for inflatable fishing boats will be an excellent option.
They’re great for recreational trips and fishing excursions on the lake and are cost-effective. Like regular boats, they have similar features and are quite safe.
Moreover, they’re quite robust and wide enough to accommodate your fishing gears along with a few people. Inflatable boats also help in solving the portability issue when visiting multiple fishing locations.
To help you find the best inflatable fishing boat, we have done all the necessary research and analysis and came up with 6 of the finest inflatable dinghies available in the market today!
Best Inflatable Fishing Boat Reviews
As you’ll come across a myriad of different inflatable boats for fishing in the market today, it can be quite confusing to choose. To assist you with that, we have listed 6 fishing inflatable boats that we think are currently the best ones available at the moment. So, let’s dive in!
1. Goplus Inflatable Boat – Best Overall Inflatable Fishing Boat
The one to top the list is the Goplus inflatable boat. It is also one of the best-looking models on our list. Other than its unique design, it has plenty of other things to offer – It’s quite stable, balances well, and has an excellent weight capacity of 350 lbs, allowing you to accommodate almost every gear you’ll need.
In terms of design and construction, it boasts a combination of sturdy 600D polyester and PVC, which protects it from sharp branches or rocks. The air bladder offers incredible buoyancy and ensures that the inflatable seats remain high above the water surface, preventing you from getting wet.
As the package includes an air pump, setting up the boat will be easy and quick. Additionally, you won’t have any problem deflating it. While it features a slightly larger packed tube, it doesn’t hinder its portability. The package also comes with two repair kits.
Its large mesh net at the back of the seat, which allows you to store your catch is another great thing about the Goplus inflatable boat. Besides that, it comes with backpack straps, Velcro rod holders, and storage pockets.
- Quick inflation and deflation process thanks to its high-capacity pump.
- Its sturdy PVC and polyester construction offers top-level durability.
- Adjustable side straps keep you secure and safe.
- Some customers may find the pump’s quality less than desirable.
- Its seat isn’t adjustable.
See This Boat in Action!
2. Intex Excursion 5 – The Runner Up
Next, we have the Intex Excursion 5, another popular inflatable fishing boat among anglers. This 5-person boat is quite roomy and is a perfect choice for spending a weekend on the lake, whether you cruising, fishing, or just camping.
Compact and lightweight, assembling the boat is a breeze and you get it ready for use in no time. Aside from boasting a durable PVC construction, it comes with a bench seat in the center, two inflatable chairs, motor mounts, and four-rod holders.
Despite its low price point, most anglers who used this boat claim that it performed incredibly well. While there were a few complaints regarding its oar-holders’ quality. Nonetheless, you can fit it using a trolling motor and eliminate this problem, allowing you to navigate through the water quickly and with ease.
This inflatable boat is an excellent choice for those looking for a reliable and cost-effective fishing boat. If you prefer to stand while fishing, It isn’t the best choice as it won’t be easy to fish while standing on this boat. Otherwise, it’s still stable and provides a comfortable ride.
Its three-chambered design may worry some anglers as the whole boat might sink if any of these is punctured. The boat has a weight capacity of 1300 lbs, which is quite impressive given its affordable price point.
- It’s I-beam floor offers ample comfort and rigidity.
- It can accommodate 5 persons.
- A massive capacity of 1300 lbs.
- It’s a bit heavier.
- Some anglers may not find the oar-holders’ quality decent.
3. Intex Explorer Boat – Best Budget Inflatable Fishing Boat
This is another excellent product from Intex and is the perfect choice for those looking to purchase a quality inflatable boat at a very low price point.
With a weight capacity of 210 lb, this boat can accommodate one adult or 2 small children comfortably. Despite being quite affordable, it boasts a sturdy plastic construction and comes packed with a few useful features.
It includes 2 oars, welded oarlocks, a repair patch, and two air chambers with dual valves for safety. Plus, its high-capacity pump allows you to quickly inflate or deflate the boat with ease. Though it lacks some of the features available in the previous models, it makes up for it in terms of performance and durability, considering its price. You might also want to note that it’s designed for calm waters so it won’t be an ideal choice for intense streams or rivers.
Overall, the Intex Explorer is a decent boat and will work just fine for most people who just need a boat to enjoy their weekend on a lake.
- Great value for money.
- Sturdy plastic build quality for improved durability.
- Assembling the boat is quite easy.
- Not ideal for rough waters.
- The oars’ quality could have been better.
4. Intex Seahawk 2
One of the best things about inflatable boats is the ability to enjoy the water without having to deal with the expense of traditional boats. You can store in your car’s trunk and take it anywhere with ease.
Whether you want to fish, row, or just chill in the water on a beautiful summer day, you can’t go wrong with the Intext Seahawk 2. The boat is appropriately sized and has a weight limit of 440 lb, which is enough to comfortably accommodate two people. However, it’s much more comfortable for solo trips.
In terms of durability, the Seahawk 2 stacks up pretty well with most high-end models. It boasts a 20-gauge vinyl, which is incredibly sturdy and can also withstand salt and grime, UV rays, or chemicals that may be found in the water.
While it’s not puncture-proof, it does a great job at withstanding punctures and takes a good amount of beating before it shows any damage. As for moving the boat, you’ll have no issue transporting the Intex Seahawk 2, thanks to its small size.
Deflating it won’t take more than a minute and you can simply keep it in your car’s trunk. Even so, you’ll have enough room to store other fishing gear in the trunk. Additionally, it features two handles at the back and front end, which makes it much easier to maneuver it into and from the water.
The three chambers further ensure the safety of the boat. It also includes two rod holders, two plastic oars, and a gear pouch.
- Its small size is ideal for solo trips.
- Comes with multiple safety features.
- Easy to transport and store.
- Oar’s quality could have been better.
- Can be uncomfortable for two people.
5. Bestway HydroForce Voyager
This is another awesome inflatable dinghy and is ideal for two adults. The HydroForce Voyager is quite versatile and allows you to fix a single seat if that’s what you prefer. The boat offers multiple features, making it an ideal choice for a joyful and comfortable ride on the lake.
Based on preference, you can attach both inflatable seats and if you need enough room for storing fishing gear, you can even install just one. Unlike some oars, the paddles on this boat are slightly longer, which ensures smooth and easy gliding.
It offers a weight limit of 594 lbs, which is enough to hold two adults and a child. It also boasts a solid, PVC construction for optimum durability and resistance against rocks or sharp branches. The aluminum oars are average yet tough, and its carry bag for storage is of decent quality.
While its floor is robust enough for holding your equipment, you can’t stand as it’s soft and not that strong to help keep your balance. Like most of the models mentioned on our list, the HydroForce Voyager is a breeze to assemble.
- Quick inflate and deflate process.
- Sturdy build quality
- Removable seats
- Not ideal for fishing while standing.
- Slightly on the expensive side.
6. Wistar Inflatable Boat
Finally, we have the Wistar Inflatable Boat – a powerful inflatable boat for fishing. Its hydrodynamic hull shape delivers an incredible fishing experience.
In terms of durability and sturdiness, it’s made with 600D polyester that can withstand abrasions and rocks. Its inflatable seat features an adjustable backrest for optimum comfort and support. Its spacious design offers enough room for you and your fishing gear.
Besides its spacious design, adjustable backrest, and sturdy construction, it comes with a foot pump, two large pockets on both sides, and a repair kit. The Wistar Inflatable boat is also quite easy to deflate and inflate. It has a weight limit of just 350 lbs and can only accommodate one person.
Overall, this dinghy offers decent performance and a stable platform to safely launch fishing lines. It’s a solid product featuring a padded seat followed by two secure storage bags for your equipment.
- Ideal for solo trips.
- Two secure storage bags for carrying fishing gear with ease.
- Adjustable backrest ensures optimum support and comfort.
- No paddles.
- Not the best model on the list.
Inflatable Boats for Fishing Buyer’s Guide
Buying fishing inflatable boats isn’t as easy as it seems. Every boat offers a unique performance and comes with different features. If you fail to pick the right one, you may be terribly dissatisfied after your first ride. This is why it’s so critical to consider a few features, if not all, of the item before making your purchase. Here are three key factors to keep in mind while shopping for inflatable dinghies:
Generally, inflatable boats are made using either Hypalon or PVC-coated fabric. As we are all aware that PVC isn’t just affordable but quite durable as well, it’s used for various boating equipment. PVC inflatable boats boast enough sturdiness for occasional usage. On the contrary, Hypalon is more robust and heavier. It’s used for improving the strength and performance of the dinghies, allowing them to withstand heavier loads, difficult weather conditions, and even remain docked and inflated for an extended period. However, as expected, Hypalon is heavier and costlier in comparison to PVC boats.
Most inflatable boats already come with locked paddles or oars. Other features include gear straps, docking, inflatable seats, waterproof bags, cup holders, coolers, fishing rod holders, and several others that make it suitable for recreational use. So before purchasing one, make a list of the essentials so it becomes easier to spot a model that suits your requirements.
Almost every inflatable boat features air chambers or high-pressure tubes that offer amply rigidity and structure to the floor. This helps in making the deck floor comfortable and squishy and ensures a gentler ride. Additionally, the bottom part of the boat is designed strategically and made of robust fabric to prevent it from getting scraped or punctured from underneath. Additionally, make sure the boat is comfortable and safe.
Inflatable Boat FAQs
In this section, we have highlighted some of the most commonly asked questions concerning inflatable fishing boats.
Are Inflatable Boats Good for Fishing?
Not every inflatable boat but the ones designed specifically for fishing are great choices. This is because most fishing inflatable boats offer rod holders, trolling motor mounts, and are puncture resistant. Also, one can easily maneuver the boat back and forth from the water by using a grab line. Unlike hardshell boats, they provide multiple advantages in terms of storage, portability, and performance. An inflatable pontoon boat with a swivel seat are also great options for fishing trips!
How to Install a Fish Finder on an Inflatable Boat
Unlike traditional boats, you can’t screw fish finders onto the inflatable boat’s console. While there are various methods of affixing a fish finder, the most common option is the use of a sturdy strap-on. Such fish finder straps work with all sizes of inflatable boats and are generally made of polypropylene.
Can Fishing Hooks Puncture an Inflatable Boat or Inflatable Raft?
Most inflatable boats for fishing are made with safety in mind. They are generally made using robust material, which prevents them from getting punctured by fishing hooks (unless you really try to).
Find the Best Inflatable Fishing Boat That’s Right for You
Inflatable boats or dinghies have undergone considerable improvements in recent years.
Today, you’ll find a wide range of options designed to cater to different needs and requirements. This is why we recommend listing key elements you want in your boat so you have a better chance of purchasing the best inflatable fishing boat. You can also check out the Sea Eagle fishing kayak here for another great inflatable option!