How Much Is A Kayak On Average

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Kayaks are becoming more popular internationally, and as demand for these water vessels increases, so does the supply. There are several kayaks available on the market today, all in different price and quality ranges, but how much do kayaks cost, and what should you pay for a good one?

Kayaks cost anywhere from $130 to $800 depending on what type of kayak it is, what the kayak is used for, the build quality of the boat, the accessories and equipment installed, the brand, and what materials the vessel is made from. Good quality kayaks cost $300 to $1000 or more.

Buying a kayak is a personal endeavor. No one can choose your kayak for you. Every paddler’s preferences and requirements are different, and the best kayak for you is your own decision. However, the price of a kayak is important, and it plays a large role in which kayak you should consider buying. Let’s explore the price range of kayaks and find out which is best for the money.

How Much Do Kayaks Cost?

There is a myriad of kayaks available on the market today, made by hundreds of different manufacturers and companies and sold by even more retailers. The range of kayaks can be overwhelming, and it can be difficult to determine the price of kayaks in a sea of various products.

Kayaks can cost anywhere from $130 to $8000 depending on the build of the kayak, what its intended purpose is, and the extras that are installed on the vessel. The construction materials used to make the kayak affect the price as well, as well as the brand of the kayak. 

Typical beginner kayaks are not very expensive at all. These kayaks also tend to not be the best quality, and are made from inexpensive plastics, and have very few features. These kayaks are not usually used by serious paddlers but rather those who will use them on short, small dam excursions.

Beginner kayaks usually cost around $140, but it depends on what the kayak is used for. Advanced level kayaks are much more expensive and are used by serious paddlers and sportsmen who need the most performance from their vessel.

The price of every kayak is typically determined by two things: the quality of the kayak and the type of kayak. There are generally seven types of modern kayaks, including fishing kayaks, whitewater kayaks, sea kayaks, recreational kayaks, touring kayaks, inflatable kayaks, and tandem kayaks.

High-end fishing kayaks are the most expensive kayaks on the market, while recreational kayaks and kayaks made for kids can be very affordable. Let’s inspect each of these types of kayak, learn what they are used for, and how much they usually cost.

Recreational Kayaks

Recreational kayaks are the most readily available type of kayak. These vessels are not intended for professionals or for serious paddlers, but they are intended to be multi-purpose boats that anyone can use to enjoy a day on the water.

These kayaks are available as sit-in kayaks, sit-on kayaks and come with various accessories and features that are useful for recreational kayaking.

Recreational kayaks typically cost $300 to $1000, depending on the quality of the vessel.

Fishing Kayaks

Fishing kayaks are the most expensive type of kayak. This is generally because these boats are far more specialized than other types of kayaks and must be capable of the most versatility and utility possible.

This type of kayak must be stable, sturdy, able to handle rivers, lakes, dams, and even the ocean with ease while carrying the fisherman, fishing tackle and equipment, and any fish that may be caught from the kayak.

These are very specialized kayaks, and they are all packed full of features, which is what makes them so expensive.

Fishing kayaks can cost $500 for entry-level boats, up to $8000 for the most high-end, mot well-equipped vessel.

Whitewater Kayaks

Many believe that whitewater kayaks are the most expensive kayaks, but this is not true. Whitewater kayaks must be sturdy, well built, tough, and able to handle very rough water, but they are not always the most well-equipped kayaks, and many of them are built within a price range that would not hurt too much if the boat is severely damaged.

Whitewater kayaks are designed specifically for tackling intense whitewater river rapids. The kayaks are streamlined and tough; they are fast and very lightweight. These are the best kayaks for the adrenaline-seekers who chase that whitewater rush.

This type of kayak usually costs $700 to $1400 dollars, depending on how well the vessel is constructed and what it is made from.

Touring Kayaks 

Touring kayaks are designed for experienced and serious paddlers. These boats are longer than recreational kayaks, they are built tougher, and they are designed to ride a little higher to cope better with rough water and intense winds.

These are some of the most well-equipped kayaks available, and they are more expensive than most other kayaks as well. Touring kayaks can cost $1000 to $2100 per kayak.

Sea Kayaks

Sea kayaks are named for their intended purpose: paddling on the open ocean. These boats are maneuverable yet very stable. They can withstand rough waters, and they are very lightweight. These kayaks handle smooth waters as well as rough winds and waves, and they are specialized for what they do.

Sea kayaks are very well equipped, and they come in several shapes, sizes, and varieties. These kayaks usually cost $1000 to $2000 but are then upgraded with accessories and equipment according to the desired specifications of the owner.

Inflatable Kayaks

Inflatable kayaks are somewhat controversial in the addling world. There are incredibly cheap, very low-quality inflatable kayaks that cost almost nothing, but there are also some very high-end inflatable kayaks that can even be used for whitewater kayaking.

For now, let us leave out the very cheap inflatables, as these are not considered real kayaks. The high-end inflatable kayaks are very sturdy, and they are more well equipped than many realize. These kayaks store more easily than others, but they are typically heavier and more easily damaged than solid kayaks.

Good inflatable kayaks usually cost $500 to $800

Tandem Kayaks

Tandem kayaks are kayaks that are designed for use by two people simultaneously. This means that the boat has to be bigger, have a larger weight capacity, must be more stable, and they must be well-built.

All of this adds up to a higher cost for tandem kayaks, but those that use them swear that they are worth the cost. Tandem kayaks cost $500 for basic models and up to $2500 for more advanced versions.


Kayaks are becoming more popular, but there is a wide variety available to suit the preferences and needs of every paddler. Kayaks do not have to cost a fortune, and anyone can get started for around $200 or so for a decent quality kayak.

The more you spend on a kayak, the higher quality it will be, but regular kayaks with regular price tags can be as good as the high-end versions. Take your time and choose a kayak that suits your budget, rather than trying to buy the most expensive kayak you can find.