Best Fishing Kayaks Under $1000 in 2021 – Buyer’s Guide
Fishing from a kayak makes the fishing experience a lot different. They are designed for anglers to enjoy fishing and have a better experience. Another advantage is that you get to do some exercise besides fishing.
Spending around $1000 sounds reasonable for a fishing kayak. However, not all kayaks are the same, so you can’t just pick the first Kayak under $1000 that pops onto your screen.
Some kayaks are suitable for rivers, others for oceans; some move using paddles, and others with pedals. The bottom line is, every Kayak has its own features that make it of best use in particular circumstances and to different types of anglers.
In this article, we will talk to you about the best kayaks under $1000 to help you find the right one for you. Also, we will tell you how to pick an excellent Kayak to make sure you don’t waste your money.
List of the Best Kayaks Under $1000:
- Sevylor Quikpak K1 1-Person Kayak – Best Overall
- Intex Excursion Pro Kayak – Best Ocean Fishing Kayak
- SUNDOLPHIN Sun Dolphin Aruba 10 – Best Sit-In Kayak
- Lifetime Tamarack Angler 100 Fishing Kayak – Best Design Kayak
- Sea Eagle SE330 Pro – Best weight Capacity Kayak
- Lifetime Youth Wave – Best Kayak for Kids
- SUNDOLPHIN Sun Dolphin Journey 10 – Best Kayak for Beginners
- BKC UH- TK 181 – Best Tandem Fishing Kayak
- Vibe Kayaks Sea Ghost 130 – Best Stable Kayak
|Kayak||Type||Dimensions||Weight||Material||Max. capacity||Personal capacity|
|Sevylor Quikpak K1||Inflatable sit-on-top||103 x 36 x 30-in.||18 lbs.||21-gauge PVC fabric with a tarpaulin bottom||400 lbs.||1 person|
|Intex Excursion Pro Kayak||Inflatable sit-in||151 x 37 x 18-in.||39 lbs||Super-tough PVC Vinyl||400 lbs.||1 – 2 people|
|SUNDOLPHIN Sun Dolphin Aruba 10||Solid sit-in||120 x 30 x 13-in.||40 lbs.||UV-stabilized High-Density Polyethylene (HDPE)||250 lbs.||1 person|
|Lifetime Tamarack Angler 100||Solid sit-on-top||120 x 31 x 14-in.||51 lbs.||High-Density Polyethylene (HDPE)||275 lbs.||1 person|
|Sea Eagle SE330 Pro||Inflatable sit-on-top||133.9 x 33.9 x 13.4-in.||26 lbs.||33 ml polykrylar||500 lbs.||1 – 3 people|
|Lifetime Youth Wave||Solid sit-on-top||72 x 24 x 9-in.||18 lbs.||High-Density Polyethylene (HDPE)||130 lbs.||1 person|
|SUNDOLPHIN Sun Dolphin Journey 10||Solid sit-on-top||114.5 x 29.50 x 15.75-in.||44 lbs.||Rugged UV stabilized High-Density Polyethylene (HDPE)||250 lbs.||1 person|
|BKC UH- TK181||Solid sit-on-top||150 x 34 x 20 inches||68 lbs.||High-Density Polyethylene (HDPE)||440 lbs.||1 – 2 persons|
|Vibe Kayaks Sea Ghost 130||Solid sit-on-top||156 x 33 x 15 inches||75 lbs.||Single Piece Rotomolded||550 lbs.||1 person|
The 9 Best Kayaks Under $1000 in 2021
1. Sevylor Quikpak K1 1-Person Kayak – Best Overall
This is one of the unbeatable and most durable kayaks you can currently find. The Kayak is made of 21-gauge PVC with a tarpaulin bottom. Moreover, it’s equipped with multiple air champers to prevent it from sinking. This design makes it more resistant to punctuation.
It weighs 18 lbs. Which means you can move it from one place to another effortlessly. The first thing you will notice about this kayak is how easy it is to set up. It won’t take you a couple of minutes to be ready to get it into the water.
Secondly, Sevylor Quikpak can handle a tremendous weight. It has a weight capacity of 400 pounds, which is its highest selling point.
One last thing to mention is how secure it is with double lock valves and an airtight system.
All in all, it is safe, comfortable, and easy to move around even for females.
- Tarpaulin bottom that helps deal with rigors
- Multiple air chambers that prevent it from sinking
- Lightweight and easy to carry
- Easy 5-minutes set up
- Can handle up to 400 pounds
- Secure and durable
- It’s not the best to use in fast-running water
Sevylor Quikpak K1 1-Person Kayak is one of the best kayaks under $1000 that is suitable for everyone despite their age. It is comfortable and easy to set up for you to spend more time out on the water.
2. Intex Excursion Pro Kayak – Best Kayak for Ocean Fishing
Intex Excursion Pro is one of the most professional yet budget-friendly fishing kayaks.
It is crafted from a 3-ply laminate PVC with a polyester core. The weight capacity isn’t any less than the previous model; we’re still talking about the same 400 pounds. Meanwhile, it weighs 39 lbs.
What makes this Kayak stands out is that it comes in a set that makes it convenient for a lot of users. This set contains two adjustable seats, two floor-mounted footrests, two integrated recessed fish rod holders, and two removable skews for shallow and deepwater depths.
Furthermore, you will find a mounting bracket that you can use to attach the GPS systems, the fish finder, and many other accessories.
The Intex Excursion Pro depends on high-pressure inflation; however, it features a pressure gauge to avoid over inflation.
- Easy to carry because of its lightweight
- Plenty of storage place
- Strong and stable construction
- Adjustable footrests provide a comfortable experience
- Removable seats and brackets
- Can attach accessories to the boat
- Starts deflating after few hours from inflation
Intex Excursion Pro is one of the best kayaks under $1000. It is more professional than any of the other kayaks on our list with high safety and supportive measures.
If you are going fishing in the ocean and are looking for more options, you can check my guide to the best ocean fishing kayaks here.
3. SUNDOLPHIN Sun Dolphin Aruba 10 – Best Sit-In Kayak
Sun Dolphin is one of the most popular kayak brands. The Aruba 10 is one of their most compact and convenient kayas that has excellent construction.
It is made from UV-protected Polyethylene, but unlike other models that are made from the same material, this one is thinner without any compromises in terms of strength and durability. This is a bonus in terms of weight, speaking of which, it is 40 lb and offers a maximum capacity of 250 lbs.
It isn’t the largest Kayak you can get, but Sun Dolphin focused on offering a comfortable seat with several footpegs positions. This gives you a chance to adjust your seat and take a relaxed pose.
The model lacks a portable accessory carrier (PAC) and a rod holder, but that’s only because it is designed to be a compact and straightforward one-person kayak.
- Lightweight and easy to store
- Offers excellent stability
- Adjustable seat and footrests
- The storage compartment lies behind so it can be hard to reach
- Lacks an accessory carrier and a rod holder
- No seat padding
SUNDOLPHIN Sun Dolphin Aruba 10 is a fantastic one-person kayak that makes an excellent option for those who want an affordable and compact kayak. It is best to use it in calm water.
4. Lifetime Tamarack Angler 100 Fishing Kayak – Best Comfortable Kayak
Tamarack Angler 100 makes a great fishing kayak for many reasons. However, if there is one feature to highlight, it is an excellent design that makes it the comfortable Kayak it is.
For starters, it features multiple footrest positions with a seat back and a seat pad. Moreover, it has two mounted fishing rod holders and a stable flat bottom. The front and rear handles make dragging the boat from or into the water an easy task.
Lifetime Tamarack Angler 100 Fishing Kayak is crafted UV-protected Polyethylene. This means that spending long hours fishing in the sun won’t damage the boat or change its color even after years of frequent usage.
Another thing that I should mention is the storage space. This is the best I’ve seen in a boat; it’s divided into six well-organized compartments; many will find it satisfying.
It weighs 51 pounds and can handle a maximum weight capacity of 275 lbs.
- Offer great stability
- Extremely comfortable
- Adjustable footrests
- Well-organized multiple storage tanks
- Features a paddle and a fishing rod holder
- UV protected with great durability
- Comes in one color only
Lifetime Tamarack Angler 100 is one of the best fishing kayaks that are worth much more than their actual price. It is perfect for anyone who spends long hours fishing or has back issues and is looking for a comfortable kayak.
5. Sea Eagle SE330 Pro – Best weight Capacity Kayak
Sea Eagle is one of the well-established Kayak brands that started back in 1968. You can trust their kayaks with your eyes folded, not to mention the 3-years warranty they provide their customers with.
Back to this model, well, as you can tell from the title, this one stands out because of its capacity. It is the only Kayak on the list that is designed to handle for up to 3 people – 500 lbs.
With that being said, you probably expect that it is a heavy solid kayak, but that’s not at all true. It is an inflatable sport kayak, and surprisingly enough, it is lightweight.
SE330 Pro is crafted from 33 mil Polykrylar and features a storage bag, foot pump, 2 8-floor AB30 paddles, and two removable seats that are perfectly comfortable.
- Excellent material quality
- Great weight capacity
- 3-years warranty
- Comfortable and lightweight
- User friendly with adjustable seats
- Can be a little time consuming to inflate
Sea Eagle SE330 Pro is a steal deal. It offers so much and costs so little. It’s the best if you don’t go fishing on your own and you want to enjoy your time in good company.
6. Lifetime Youth Wave – Best Kayak for Kids
Lifetime youth is the smallest Kayak on our list. It is designed for kids and teenagers who are willing to practice fishing on a kayak. The weight of the boat is about 18 pounds, and it features a widened hull now to be more comfortable.
Furthermore, it has multiple footrest positions, and two molded finger handles to make it easier to carry the Kayak for longer distances.
In terms of the material, this model is crafted from high-quality plastic, which is both strong and durable. It provides a weight capacity of 130 lbs.
- Designed in a way that allows easy re-entry when kids fall off
- Multiple footrests make it easy for children and teenagers of different heights to accommodate
- High resistance to impact
- Comes with 5-years warranty
- Not inflatable
- You will have to drill to attach the seat
Lifetime Youth Wave is the best Kayak under $1000 for kids. It will give your child the chance to practice and stay away from the digital world for a while.
7. SUNDOLPHIN Sun Dolphin Journey 10 – Best Kayak for Beginners
Journey 10 is a user-friendly kayak. What makes it unique is its short length. For an experienced angler who is used to longboats, this may not be a privilege. However, for someone who just started fishing in kayaks, this is a great advantage because every single part of the Kayak will be accessible to you.
When it comes to storage, it features two hatches for storage. The first is at the bow, and the second one is behind the seat. Both hatches feature watertight protection.
Also, there is a small dry bag on the front seat that functions as a cup holder.
There is even more! The kaya has three-rod holder positions. One is in front of the cup holder we just mentioned, and the other two are on both sides of the boat.
The overall design makes it easy for anyone to do pretty much whatever they want when it comes to attachments and adjustments without the need to get up. It is 44 pounds with a maximum weight capacity of 250 lbs.
- Great stability
- Three functional rods
- Multiple storage compartments
- The drainage system isn’t the best
- The speed could be enhanced
SUNDOLPHIN Sun Dolphin Journey 10 is the best kayak for beginners. It is user-friendly, and it offers excellent maneuverability. Also, it is one of the most affordable kayaks you can currently find.
8. BKC UH-TK 181 – Best Tandem Fishing Kayak
Tandem kayaks are great for fishing across a stream, and this specific model is the best you can get under $1000.
BKC UH- TK 181 is crafted from high-density Polyethylene with UV resistance. It weighs 68 Ibs. So, it isn’t exactly the lightest Kayak. However, it has so many features that make it a great kayak.
It features seven holders, 4 of which are flush mount rod holders, and the other three are adjustable. Also, there are multiple compartments for your necessities, all of which are waterproof. Also, there are eight scupper holes in case there was a need for emergency drainage.
Furthermore, this Kayak comes with aluminum dual paddle rests and excellent seats with extra cushions for the anglers who struggle with the back pain. One last thing to mention is that it can handle up to 440 pounds.
- Excellent construction
- Ergonomic and comfortable seats
- Waterproof storage and eight scupper holes
- 7-rod holders
- Excellent stability
- 5-years warranty
- Some anglers will find it a little too heavy
- Not the best when it comes to maneuvering
BKC UH- TK181 is another excellent kayak that is excellent for choppy water fishing. It has many features that make it the best option for professional anglers who spend many hours in the water and are looking for comfort and efficiency.
You can also check my guide to the best Tandem kayaks here.
9. Vibe Kayaks Sea Ghost 130 – Best Stable Kayak
The Sea Ghost 130 from Vibes makes an excellent kayak for those who prioritize stability. It excels when it comes to tackling, and it can be used on oceans, rivers, or even lakes.
This Kayak features a controlled rudder system, a center console for storage, and a tackle tray holder. Moreover, there are extra rod holders, and the hull is extra wide to allow you to surf freely through the water without compromising your stability. In addition, it is equipped with a transducer port that acts as a fish finder; it comes in very handy.
When it comes to comfort, the Vibe Kayaks Sea Ghost won’t fail you. It offers Great seats with a moderate speed that provides comfort and safety to your experience. This kaya is 75 pounds and allows you a storage capacity of 550, pretty impressive.
- Excellent stability
- Super comfortable seats
- Sufficient storage place
- Features a rudder system to help you locate the fish
- Relatively heavy
- Average maneuverability
- Could be a little faster
Vibe Kayaks Sea Ghost 130 is one of the best kayaks under $1000 that offer high stability. Whatever the circumstances, it will nail its job because it suits all types of anglers no matter where they’re fishing.
What to Expect From a $1000 Fishing Kayak
You can get a decent kayak under $1000. It is all about how much you are willing to compromise.
It all comes down to how often you go fishing and what your priorities are.
My advice here is to go through the specs then read the reviews to check if the kayak you have in mind is missing any of the features than you need.
What to Look For When Buying a Fishing Kayak
1. Sit-on-Top vs. Sit-in
The general rule is, Sit-on-top kayaks are more user fisherman-friendly; however, a sit-in kayak might be a better option in some conditions.
- They are more comfortable because you have many seating options
- Easier to get in and out from when needed
- They offer more storage options
- They are self-bailing, so the chance of flooding is minimal
- You have a better view of the water
- You can attach accessories like fish finders and more rods
- They are more prone to flooding
- No space to change your seating
- Little space for belongings and accessories
However, the main advantage of sit-in kayaks is that they are more secure, which makes them exceptional for challenging water streams. You can check my full Sit-on-top vs sit-in Kayak comparison here.
2. Length of the Kayak
This is one aspect that can dramatically impact your fishing experience. The determining factor here is the water you will be fishing from.
The main rule is that long kayaks are faster, but they don’t offer much maneuverability. On the other hand, short kayaks are more maneuverable than speedy.
The question here is, do you go to your local ponds and creeks for fishing, or is it big rivers or the ocean?
Short kayaks make an excellent option for small lakes and ponds, but if you like fishing in more open water, then long kayaks will do better.
Another thing to look at is your body size. How tall are you? Tall and heavy anglers would need a kayak that is at least 132 inches.
Stability is one of the key features when buying a kayak. No one wants a notoriously tippy kayak that makes things complicated.
There are many stable models available today that allow anglers to stand up without exerting much effort. However, the more stable the kayak is, the more difficult it is to maneuver, so the best thing to do is to find the perfect balance.
If you cover lots of water in a day, then a less stable model that paddles easily will make a better option.
Fishers have much gear, so there’s always that burden of thinking about where everything should go.
It’s crucial to find a kayak that will accommodate all your necessities. Sit on top kayak models offer internal hatches that are great for storage. On the other hand, sit-in models provide more open space in the hull.
Recently, we’ve seen more advances when it comes to stability and storage than ever but all at the expense of portability.
To decide what’s best, consider how often you go fishing and whether you go straight from your truck to the water, or you need to drag your kayak for a while to get there.
Generally speaking, solid sit on top models are much heavier than the inflatable sit-in ones.
6. Weight Capacity
There isn’t much to say here. Just pointing out that it’s one of the aspects to think about. Do you go fishing alone or with a sibling or friend? How heavy are your necessities?
The best fishing kayaks under $1000 isn’t the same for everyone. I believe the Sevylor Quikpak K1 1-Person is the choice that will suit most of the anglers. However, this is not true in all cases. For incidence, the Lifetime Youth Wave is a far better option for kids. It all depends on the features you are looking for.