Sitting on the dock of the bay with a fishing rod in hand doesn’t quite compare with the feeling you get in the middle of the ocean when you are sitting inside your very own boat. We hear you loud and clear. You are ready to get out on the water. No, you need to get out on the water in order to stalk your prey, but you don’t want to spend a fortune. We have some great news for you: you don’t have to cash out your life savings to afford a fishing boat.
Below you will read our reviews of cheap fishing boats. We have selected a top model for three different types of boats: inflatable, kayak, and row. We hope that one of these models will be the right option for you.
Boat on a Budget
We know what you’re thinking. When you think fishing boat, a float tube doesn’t exactly come to mind. But consider the Cumberland Inflatable Fishing Float Tube with backpack straps. Sure, it’s unconventional, but it may very well be the ultimate vehicle for fishing. With a price tag of under $300, you can keep saving for Junior’s college and still head to the riverbank with your buddies.
You’re thinking the guys might laugh at you? Well, they won’t be laughing for very long. This float tube has adjustable straps for easy carrying. That’s right, you’ll be the one laughing as they haul their much bigger and much heavier craft to the water. It has a hydrodynamic hull shaped for superior tracking and steering, a thickly padded seat and adjustable backrest, two fishing rod holders, two cargo pockets and a back mesh storage platform. At 47 x 17.5 x 56 inches (W x H x D), this portable craft is big enough to accommodate the largest of anglers. The craft inflates easily, and once you take it out in knee-deep water, you can sit down and propel yourself to the perfect position for your quarry.
A Compact Fishing Kayak
This more traditional craft is affordably priced at slightly over $500. The Old Town 10-Foot Vapor 10 Angler has a stable polyethylene hull with a roomy cockpit and outfitting. The comfort flex seat is adjustable and padded. Thigh pads and adjustable floor braces add to the comfort and control of the boat. The cockpit also features a molded dashboard, cup holder and paddle park.
Molded carry handles make it easy to get this craft on the water, and there is also a day well for storage in the stern and a drain plug for any water that gets inside. Angler-specific features include two flush-mounted rod holders behind the seat, an anchor with a trolley system and a deck bungee.
The boat is 28.5 inches high and 16.75 inches high, with a cockpit that is 19.5 x 48 inches. She’s a real lightweight, tipping the scales at 44 pounds, but she’s all business and capable of accommodating a 325-pound load.
Best Traditional Boat
The Sun Dolphin Water Tender Row Boat is the priciest of the bunch, coming in at close to $900. However, her beauty is in her versatility. The Water Tender can be used as a dinghy, fishing boat or utility rowboat. She can be transported in the bed of a truck or via trailer to your favorite body of water.
The hull is a modified cathedral-style, tri-hull design constructed of UV-stabilized fortiflex high-density polyethelne. This means that you’ll find it big and stable, and it meets NMMA and Cost Guard safety standards. Other features include dual stainless-steel oarlock sockets so you can row from the center or bow seat, molded bench seats, drink holders, and the all-important drain plug. Best of all, it’s made in the United States and backed with a two-year warranty on the hull and parts.
For those of you who love specs (you know who you are), here’s the low down. The Water Tender is a stunning 9 feet, 4 inches, with a 55-inch beam. She weighs 114 pounds and can carry a maximum weight of 440 pounds. You can propel this beauty with a motor up to five HP to speed to your favorite locale.
With excellent stability and a low draft, the Water Tender 9.4 rows true and straight. You won’t be disappointed with this solid boat.
So, whether you want to throw your boat on your back (Cumberland Inflatable Fishing Float Tube with Backpack Straps) or in the back of your truck (the Old Town 10-Foot Vapor 10 Angler Recreational Fishing Kayak or the Sun Dolphin Water Tender Row Boat), there are affordable boats out there to buy. So what are you waiting for? Get out on the water by either floating, paddling or motoring your way to your next big catch!