Cost is an important factor to consider when buying a stand up paddle board. But when you start looking at SUP prices, you will find yourself confused. Some go for as low as $170 while others are more expensive than high-end kayaks!
So how much do paddle boards cost? Buyers want to know and it is hard to plan with such a wide price range.
Here, we will discuss the cost of paddle boards extensively. We will help you understand why some SUPs are cheap and what you get from the expensive models.
How Much Do Stand Up Paddle Boards Cost Overall?
Generally, paddle boards cost anywhere from $200 to $3000. Most of the super cheap ones are inflatables.
The high-end ones are mainly performance solid paddle boards, designed for specific purposes.
Rigid paddle boards tend to be more expensive compared to inflatable paddle boards.
Let’s take a closer look at each type.
How Much Do Epoxy Stand Up Paddle Boards Cost?
These are the traditional paddle boards. They don’t need to be inflated/deflated.
Solid stand up paddleboards feature an EPS foam core and layers of different materials. The materials commonly used as layers include fiberglass, epoxy resin, wood veneer, and carbon fiber.
There are also plastic and wood paddle boards.
Hard paddle boards range from $700 to $3000. However, you can get much cheaper models.
Here is what you can expect at each price point.
a. Cheap Epoxy SUP Boards
Most hard paddle boards under $700 are plastic SUPs.
The biggest advantage of plastic is durability. It is a flexible material and hardly gets dented in case of impact. This, and the price, are probably the only benefits of a plastic hard SUP.
Plastic stand up paddle boards are heavy. Some 10-foot SUPs weigh as much as 40 pounds, the same weight as a kayak. That’s a lot of weight to carry around.
They perform poorly too and are only good for kids and newbies who don’t expect to paddle much.
You can also find fiberglass paddle boards in this price range.
A good fiberglass paddle board is made using multiple layers of quality materials. Those materials don’t come cheap.
So fiberglass SUPs in this price range will feature underwhelming construction and a thin layer of fiberglass.
I would advise any serious paddler to avoid getting a stand up paddle board under $700. It will either be a heavy plastic hard board or a poorly made fiberglass/soft top.
You can get one to introduce your kid to stand up paddling. But an inflatable would be a better option.
b. Mid-Range Epoxy SUP Boards
These are hard boards that range from $700 to $1500.
They are good for enthusiastic beginners and intermediate paddlers. They perform decently, perfect for recreational paddling on flat water.
Mid-range hard SUPs are versatile. They are great if you still don’t know what you like.
SUP is diverse and is categorized into different activities–SUP yoga, racing, touring, fishing, etc.
An all-around paddle board can do it all. It will help you find your favorite activity. Once you do, you can splurge on a high-end purpose-specific SUP.
Boards that cost $700 to $1500 may be affordable but they are not low quality–at least most of them are not.
They are made using quality fiberglass layers and maybe real wood veneers. You can also get a nice wooden board in this price range.
They feature gorgeous designs and come with well-made accessories too.
A SUP board in this price range will also have a quality deck pad.
If you don’t have a huge budget, a hard paddle board in this range would be great. You can even get a good niche SUP with amazing performance.
c. High-End Epoxy SUP Boards
High-end epoxy SUPs cost from $1600 to $3000.
These are high-performance paddle boards designed for a specific SUP activity such as racing SUPs.
The epoxy paddle boards are made using expensive materials and innovative designs. The most common material in this category is carbon fiber. It is costly but super stiff. Carbon fiber paddle boards knife through the water exceptionally.
There are also remarkable wooden hard boards in this price range. (Some companies allow you to request custom designs for these wooden SUPs).
A high-performance hard board is ideal for the paddler who is looking to specialize in an activity.
However, know that these SUPs are not versatile. If you buy a specialized SUP surfing board, you will not be able to use it as a racing SUP.
How Much Do Inflatable Stand Up Paddle Boards Cost?
Inflatable paddle boards are cheaper than solid boards. Most people like them because they don’t take up much storage space and they are easy to transport.
But like epoxy SUPs, inflatable SUPs also vary greatly when it comes to prices. They cost anywhere from $200 to about $1500. If you look hard enough, you will find inflatable paddle boards that go for less than $200.
So let’s take a look at the inflatable paddle board price points.
a. Cheap Inflatable SUP Boards
Cheap blowup boards are typically priced below $400.
As you can imagine, most of them are mainly made using low-quality materials. They are single-layer PVC boards that cannot handle a lot of weight. You can’t expect these cheap SUPs to last.
Some of the really cheap ones flex, especially if you are heavy. There have also been cases of inflatable SUPs bursting when left under the sun for long.
The accessories that come with these boards are also cheap.
It’s not easy to get a good inflatable board in this price range.
I wouldn’t even advise a beginner to get one.
b. Mid-Range Inflatable SUP Boards
The inflatable boards that fall under this category cost $500 to $800. Most of them are made by reputable companies such as iRocker. They use military-grade dropstitch construction and materials.
Unlike the cheap paddle boards, these feature multiple layers of PVC. They are extremely rigid.
Some of them have a weight capacity of over 400 pounds. Their deck pads are well-made and won’t start coming apart after a few uses.
Here, you will find great all-around inflatable paddle boards and family boards. There are nice touring SUPs as well.
The inflatable stand up paddle boards in this price range balance quality and price. You won’t pay much but you will get some of the premium features found in expensive models. You will also get great accessories that you may not even need to upgrade.
Besides, the boards here are made by major brands. You are assured of good customer service and a long warranty period.
If you are buying a SUP for the first time, I recommend a mid-range board. You can easily find a good inflatable that will last without breaking the bank.
c. High-End Inflatable SUP Boards
Expensive inflatable paddle boards cost $900 to $1500, and sometimes more.
Like the high-end epoxy SUPs, most of them are designed for specialized use like racing or surfing.
The paddle boards are durable, made using advanced technology and materials. They have unique features and come with premium SUP accessories like carbon-fiber paddles.
These expensive inflatable SUPs are best suited for pros.
Are Cheap Inflatables Any Good?
Cheap paddle boards can seem like a good idea, especially if you are just getting started with stand up paddling.
But if the deal is too good to be true, think again. The manufacturers have to make a profit one way or another. This may mean cutting corners during production.
There’s no way a $200 SUP board was made using the same materials and technology used to make a $900 board.
That said, there are exceptions. Check whether the company is reputable. Also, see what other users are saying about the board.
Why Are Paddle Boards So Expensive?
Paddle boards are not as simple as they appear to be. That small vessel you see is built using layers of expensive materials.
Besides, reputable companies use advanced construction methods to give you a durable board that is also lightweight.
On top of that, paddle boarding is a popular sport and it is attracting more people every day. It seems like everyone is looking to buy a new SUP. The demand is high and this makes them expensive.
Another thing, almost every paddle board comes with an accessory package. That adds to the cost.
Does Cost Tell You Anything About Quality?
Sometimes, the price of a stand up paddle board can tell you about the quality. But this is not always the case.
For instance, you know that you can’t expect much from a $170 paddle board. But it is also a well-known secret that some paddle boards are overpriced. I’ve seen some pretty average SUP boards being sold for $2000+.
Do You Really Get What You Pay For?
A lot goes into determining the final paddle board cost. This may include the production cost, retailer markups, and advertising costs.
So no, you don’t always get what you pay for. Sometimes, you pay more for a paddle board because of what it took to get it to you.
This brings us to the next question…
How Much Do I Have to Pay for a Good Stand Up Paddle Board?
For a good inflatable paddle board, I would advise you to have a budget of $500 and above. You will have a wide range of options, especially if you are looking for an entry-level or all-around SUP.
Most reputable companies usually have low-priced entry-level models. iRocker has the Nautical while Bluefin has the Bluefin Carbon Cruise 10’8.
If you are looking for more features, you will have to part with $700+. For niche, high-performance inflatables, expect to pay $1000 or more.
The same goes for hard paddle boards. You can get a good epoxy paddle board starting from $700. These are the mid-range boards we’ve talked about. They are great all-around and beginner boards.
For exceptional special-use paddle boards, you will need $1500 or more.
How Much Does Stand Up Paddle Boarding Cost?
To get started with stand up paddle boarding, you need more than just a paddle board. You require a leash, paddle, and a life jacket.
Luckily, most paddle boards come with all the accessories (except a life jacket). The average inflatable paddle board package consists of a leash, manual pump, paddle, bag, and a repair kit.
So if you buy an all-inclusive inflatable stand up paddle package for $700, you will only need about $80 for a nice belt PFD. That’s all.
If your paddle board doesn’t include accessories, you will need about $200 for a paddle, leash, and PFD.
Of course, there are many other accessories that make your experience more fun, like SUP lights or electric pumps for SUP boards. But these are optional.
Final Thoughts: So, How Much Do Paddle Boards Cost?
Paddle board prices range from $200 to $3000. However, if you want a reliable paddleboard, expect to spend from $500 for an inflatable and from $700 for a hard SUP.
To make sure you get what you pay for, check other users’ feedback and the warranty period.
The right board doesn’t have to be expensive, but if it is extremely cheap, tread carefully.
Do you have any questions about paddle board prices? Ask us below!