Inflatable boats are a great, cost-effective way to enjoy recreational trips on a lake or river, fishing, camping or even if you want to just hang out in your pool all day. These boats are versatile, portable and make for easy storage as they take up almost no space.
Below we are featuring three excellent inflatable boating options from Intex and Newport Vessels. Our options range from two, four and five-person boats that will take you everywhere from your backyard pool to a calm river for fishing and everything in between.
In addition to being compact, these inflatable boats are all a snap to assemble, come with an air pump designed for your specific boat size and a set of oars. Made from heavy-duty vinyl, these inflatables are puncture-resistant and meant to resist damage from abrasion, impacts, and sunlight. Inflatable floors (or seats on some) for comfort and gear storage are just some of the included features, making these rafts a great option for a fun day of boating and/or relaxing.
1. Intex Excursion Inflatable Boat Set
The Intex Excursion Inflatable Boat has a five-person capacity and comes with the boat, pump, and oars. Key features include inflatable seats with backrests on each end for comfort, oar holders and locks, a gear pouch and two fishing rod holders on each side. This boat is also made from super-tough vinyl construction for durability and is lightweight and compact, making it easy to take wherever you go and making it our number one pick for best inflatable boats.
Pros: Included are three air chambers with an auxiliary air chamber for extra buoyancy.
Cons: The boat comes with a hand pump which can take a long time to inflate vs. an electronic pump.
2. Intex Seahawk 4 Inflatable Boat Set
The Seahawk Inflatable Boat by Intex is similar to their Excursion version, however, it seats four adults instead of five. Ideal for recreational boating or fishing on most lakes and calm rivers, this boat comes with everything needed to hit the water immediately. Made from extra-tough PVC vinyl, this boat resists damage from abrasion, impacts, and sunlight, allowing you to boat with confidence. Also included are two air chambers for safety, an inflatable floor and cushions, two oars and an inflation pump.
Pros: The PVC material of the boat is also unaffected by gas, oil or saltwater so no special precautions are needed around a motor or near a saltwater inlet.
Cons: The soft, inflatable floor may make it hard to stand up.
3. Classic Accessories Inflatable Fishing Boat
This inflatable boat from Classic Accessories was made for the placid lake on a Sunday with everything you need for a great day of fishing. It’s a large boat equipped with ten mesh pockets, 12 zippered pockets for gear, two insulated drink holders, oars, a fish ruler and a mount for a motor. It also has an anchor system so you can easily stay put once you find your sweet spot, a seat mount and footrests that can be adjusted to a wide variety of leg lengths. The boat is made with abrasion-resistant PVC material on the bottom, tough nylon on top and a powder-coated steel tube frame. It also has cold and heat-resistant bladders and the oars are aluminum and seven feet long.
Pros: Heavy duty design, anchor system, motor mount, reliable oars, adjustable seat and foot rests.
Cons: The valve design on the bladders is a bit difficult to maneuver and may allow a bit of air to escape when trying to close them.
4. Newport Vessels Inflatable Sport Boat
Newport Vessels’ inflatable sport boat was made for easy maneuverability on the water. It has a PVC hull, wood and aluminum floor panels to keep you stable and strong oars for movement. It also has a foot pump for easy setup and 18″ tubes for full stability when turning. It can hold a 10hp engine and reach a top speed of 20+ mph under the right conditions. If you’re looking for a dependable boat to take out on the water, this one’s a solid option.
Pros: Speed and motor capacity, sturdy setup, strong oars for movement, stainless steel D-rings for towing.
Cons: The floor is a bit complicated to install.
5. BRIS Inflatable Dinghy Boat
This inflatable dinghy boat from BRIS has heat welded seams that are quadruple reinforced for maximum strength and durability in fresh water, salt water and even extreme humidity. The sectional aluminum floor will give you a sturdy foundation for a range of water activities from diving and snorkeling to fishing. It has a few different air chambers as backups for safety on the water and durable rubber installed all around to prevent punctures. It has space for a motor and installed transoms to prevent back splash.
Pros: Durable seams, backup air chambers, strategic design to prevent backsplash, strong flooring.
Cons: The assembly instructions included in the box are not as detailed as one might hope, but there are plenty of resources online.