Fishing is an undying hobby because it’s fun, rewarding, and almost anyone can enjoy it. Some will start on the banks while others will take it farther off-shore. While you might be thinking of dinghies or yachts, there’s a much cheaper alternative to reach deeper waters: the best fishing kayak for the price. Kayaks allow you to scour the river or lake for the best fishing spots. It’s also easier to transport than boats, and maintenance is also a breeze.
If you’re looking for your first fishing kayak? The following are the best picks in the market:
|FISHING KAYAK||BRAND||EXPERT RATING||CHECK PRICE|
| Our Top Pick! |
PUNGO 120 Kayak
|Old Town Topwater |
106 Fishing Kayak
|Lifetime Tamarack Angler |
100 Fishing Kayak
|Emotion Stealth |
Angler 118 Kayak
|Perception Pescador |
Pro 12 Fishing Kayak
Benefits of a fishing kayak
Fishing kayaks are popular among anglers and for good reasons. If you’re wondering if it’s a good choice, the following benefits may help you decide:
- Easier to transport. If there’s one benefit from fishing on a kayak, it would be its portability. You can carry it around in your car if you’re going for fishing trips. Unlike boats, kayaks don’t need trailers, so it’s much easier to maintain and use.
- Cheaper options. Fishing boats cost a fortune – something that most avid anglers can’t afford. Still, it doesn’t mean you can’t go to the water anymore. This is what fishing kayaks offer at a much lower cost.
- No fuel needed. While some kayaks can be fitted with an electric motor, most are operated through paddling or pedaling. It’s cost-effective, and you can sail as long as the weather allows.
- No registration needed. Kayaks don’t need to be registered with the coast guard. You only have to secure a permit to the locality where you’re planning to launch it and fish. That means less paperwork and easier time fishing.
- Easier maintenance. Kayaks are smaller than boats, so that that maintenance won’t be much of a headache. It comes with a repair kit to fix minor dings.
- Increased water access. Instead of limiting yourself by the banks, you can get a fishing kayak for better water access. This way, you can reach deeper parts of the lake where you can catch more fishes.
- Better casting angles. Being closer to the surface of the water has its perks. You can easily maneuver your kayak to achieve the right position for casting a line. It will also keep your lure closer to the strike zone as compared to casting at the bank.
Best Fishing Kayak For The Price – Top 5 Picks!
OUR #1 CHOICE
OUR TOP PICK: Wilderness Systems PUNGO 120 Kayak
Product Name: Wilderness Systems PUNGO 120 Kayak
Product Description: If you’re looking for the best fishing kayak for the price, you’ll never go wrong with the Wilderness Systems PUNGO 120 Kayak. This is a sit-in kayak suitable for small to medium-sized anglers. Moreover, this has a hull that offers speed and stability while casting your line. It also comes with the Phase 3 Air Pro seat to adjust to achieve the utmost comfort. This allows better airflow, so you remain cool and dry while you wait for a catch. Aside from that, the kayak has two adjustable footrests for your comfort. It also has a removable dry box, two cup holders, and sidetracks to accommodate fishing accessories. I also like the recessed design of the kayak that will keep electronics in place.
Offer price: $$$
In addition, this kayak has a rear hatch where you can stash other tackle you don’t want to get soaked. You can also mount a rod holder in front so you can paddle with your line in tow.
Overall, this fishing kayak has a 320-pound capacity on its 12’2” long body. It’s also 29” wide and weighs 49 lbs. It’s well worth the price if you’re in the market for durable and reliable fishing kayaks.
Removable skid plate
Innovative dashboard with dry box
Phase 3 AirPro Seat
Narrower than other kayaks (great for speed, though!)
Old Town Topwater 106 Fishing Kayak
If you’re not a fan of sit-in fishing kayaks, I highly recommend the Old Town Topwater. This is a sit-on-top model with EVA foam deck pads as well as three rod holders, tackle storage, and rear and front hatches. It’s a powerhouse kayak for avid anglers who are bringing lots of gears.
For a length of 10’6”, this fishing kayak packs a lot of space. It also has a drive system that allows you to operate the kayak through a pedal. This PDL drive is saltwater-safe and very easy to maintain.
I also like the comfortable seating of this kayak using the ElementAir seat. It’s also suitable for stand fishing because the kayak is stable and won’t tip easily.
The ultra-stable double hull of this kayak offers unmatched stability. It’s also precise and boasts excellent tracking on calm waters. And since it’s shorter, this kayak is very easy to transport and carry around. It can easily fit on top of your car roof!
You should also check the universal transducer mounting system of this kayak. It’s designed to accommodate almost any fish finder device.
Overall, this kayak has an unbeatable capacity of 450 lbs. With a cockpit of this design and quality, it’s quite surprising that the Old Town Topwater kayak is in a lower price range than Wilderness Systems.
Lifetime Tamarack Angler 100 Fishing Kayak
I’m no stranger to Lifetime Tamarack kayaks, but their Angler 100 model really hit the nail right on the head. It has multiple footrest positions to suit anglers of different heights. This kayak also has a paddle keeper so your oar will not drop into the water.
Aside from that, the Angler 100 kayak has deep hull channels for improved tracking. This is paired with chine rails to boost the stability of the vessel. And to ensure that your kayak will last for years, this has a UV-protected PE body.
Onboard, it has rear and front shock cords as well as T-handles on both ends. This kayak also has two hatches beneath the deck so you can carry and secure your tackle.
The best part here is that this kayak is already fitted with flush-mounted rod holders. It’s ready for launching and fishing straight from the package.
On top of that, this has a padded seat and backrest to keep you comfy on long hours of use. Overall, this kayak can carry 275 lbs. of load 10” construction. This is just 52 lbs. so it’s very easy to transport at the roof of your car.
Emotion Stealth Angler 118 Kayak
Another sit-on-top fishing kayak that I recommend is the Emotion Stealth Angler 118. This has an adjustable framed seating system that you can set in high, low, and reclined positions. This is great for anglers with back problems.
Aside from that, this fishing kayak has a combination tunnel hull. It’s designed to cut through the water for the best tracking and speed.
This kayak also has a high initial stability hull for stand-up casting. Aside from the vessel, you will also receive two tackle boxes and two flush mount rod holders.
There’s also front storage hatched and a rear storage slot with webbing to secure your belongings. Aside from that, Emotion Stealth also has 12-inch sections and a universal YakAttack Gear Trac that you can use as an accessory mount.
Overall, this has a maximum weight capacity of 375 lbs. It’s also perfect for tall users since it has enough room and excellent stability, even on ocean waves. I also like how easy it is to climb back to the kayak in case you decide to go for a swim.
The only thing I noticed is that the drain plugs are not located on the rear. Other than that, this is a kayak worth the money.
Perception Pescador Pro 12 Fishing Kayak
Last but not the least, I recommend the Perception Pescador Pro 12. This fishing kayak has large front and rear storage where you can secure your cooler tackle. Overall, this kayak is a single-piece, so there’s a very low risk of leaks. The buoyancy is also excellent for mild and moderate water movements.
Moreover, this has integrated accessory rails on both gunwales. You can use this to mount your rod holders, fish finders, and other accessories.
This 12’ kayak is long and has great traction. The extra length offers more storage space for busy anglers. It’s also 32.5” wide, which is suitable for most users. Its weight limit is also slated at 375 lbs. on its 64-lb. build.
Comfort-wise, the Pescador Pro 12 has 2-level seat adjustments made of breathable mesh. It keeps you comfy and cool, even on the hottest days. This has quick adjustments for the footrests to suit all paddler heights.
I also like how stable this kayak is when casting a line standing up. If you’re an avid angler, you’ll love this kayak. It’s perfect for day trips and long hours of fishing. Bigger guys will also find it spacious.
How to choose a fishing kayak
When it comes to the best fishing kayak for the price, you have to be meticulous with your options. You must consider the following points:
- Size. Kayaks come in different sizes, ranging from 10 to 15 feet. For most anglers, 10 to 12 feet is more than enough since it’s easier to maneuver and transport. However, if you’re a tall person, you’d likely gravitate toward longer options.
- Kayak type. Fishing kayaks can either be sit-in or sit-on-top. With sit-in kayaks, your legs are contained inside the cockpit, and there’s only a small opening for your torso. Meanwhile, sit-on-tops are open and allow for stand-up casting. The choice depends on your fishing method and the mobility you want to enjoy.
- Weight capacity. One of the most important part to consider is the weight limit of the kayak. It can be anywhere from 250 to 450 lbs. depending on the buoyancy and overall build. When checking the weight limit, you should factor in both your body weight and the weight of the tackle you’re planning to bring. Usually, you should only occupy 80% of the total capacity to prevent capsizing or tipping.
- Rod holder. Some fishing kayaks are readily equipped with rod holders, while others are not. If so, make sure that there’s a rail on the kayak where you can mount a separate holder. This is also useful for other accessories like fish finders.
- Storage. For anglers, storage spaces are indispensable. Look for a sealed hatch where you can stash items you don’t want to get wet. You can also utilize webbed storage slots for items you want to keep handy. Again, the amount of storage will depend on your needs and fishing technique.
- Transportation. If you’re planning to bring your kayak on out-of-town fishing trips, consider smaller and lighter options. This will let you secure the kayak at the roof of your car without any trailer needed.
- Power. Fishing kayaks can be operated through a pedal, paddle, or motor. All sit-in kayaks are only available in paddle operation. Meanwhile, sit-on-tops are suitable for pedal and motor operations. If you want a kayak that you can use anytime, a traditional paddle-operated option is ideal.
- Seating. Kayak fishing can be pretty challenging since you’ll be seating most of the time. Make sure that the seat is padded and can be adjusted to different positions.
The best fishing kayak for the price will give you better opportunities to catch bigger fishes. Instead of splurging on expensive boats, a reliable kayak is a good start. Just make sure that your choice has excellent buoyancy, accessories, and features to suit your needs.
What do you think of these fishing kayaks? Have you used any of it before? Let us know below!