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Best Fishing Kayak Under 400

The Best Fishing Kayaks Under $400 in 2021 – Buyer’s Guide

This list of the top fishing kayaks under $400 would be a great resource for anyone who is a keen kayak fisherman. You won’t get a top-of-the-line option, but you can focus on the right features, plan your trips, and you’ll be able to make the most of it.

These include the kayak’s weight and ease of use, its dimensions and the storage space where you can keep your gear and essentials.

Let’s get into the details and discuss the pros and cons of each kayak so you can make the right decision.

Our Top Picks

Weight Capacity

Sun Dolphin Excursion

Best overall fishing kayak under $400 41 lbs. 250 lbs.

Intex Explorer K2

The Most Affordable Option

23.9 lbs. 400 lbs.

Tamarack Angler 100 for Life

Best for Safety

51 lbs.

250 lbs.

Sevylor Coleman Colorado

Best inflatable fishing kayak

41 lbs. 41 lbs.

Sea Eagle 370 Pro

Best for Weight/Capacity Ratio

32 lb

650 lb.

Sevylor Big Basin

The Best Lightweight Option

34.8 lbs. 490 lbs.

1. Sun Dolphin Excursion – Best Overall Fishing Kayak under $400

Sun Dolphin Excursion

This sit-in kayak, measuring 10 inches in length, is an excellent choice for beginners who plan to kayak in rivers or lakes.

It weighs in at 41 pounds and is easy to move. It is also made of Fortiflex polyethylene, a high-density and UV-resistant material that makes it very stable and allows it to track easily.

It is a sit-in kayak but offers plenty of room to maneuver in its large cockpit. You will also find two flush mount rod holders and one swivelrod holder.

It also has ample storage space so you can pack everything you need for your fishing trip. You can fit up to 490 pounds in it, so you can bring a friend along with you and still have enough weight to carry everything you need.

The Sun Dolphin Excursion has a comfortable design. It comes with padded thighs, a padded seat and footpads. There is also shock cord deck rigging and carrying handles that allow you to easily transport it from one location to the next.

Pros

Relatively light

Construction that is strong and lasts

Storage space that is adequate

Rod holders

Footpad and seat adjustable

Shock cords

Cons

Prices vary depending on the color you choose

It is not as easy to transport as other inflatable models.

Bottom line

Sun Dolphin Excursion offers affordability, convenience, stability, and a beautiful design combined with durable construction. It’s lighter than the other fishing kayaks, but it’s still one of the most portable and easy-to-transport.

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2. Intex Explorer K2- The Most Affordable Fishing Kit

Intex Explorer K2

Because it is one of the most reliable and affordable fishing kayaks, the Intex Explorer K2 ranks high. It’s a great value for money at less than 100 dollars and has many advanced features.

It weighs only 23.9 pounds and measures just 123x36x20 inches. This makes it compact and light, making it easy to transport and maneuver.

The Intex Explorer K2 is small in size, but can hold up to 400 pounds. This is a great ratio. This weight allows you to kayak fish with friends and carry a lot of equipment and gear.

The Explorer K2 also features comfortable seats with backrests that can be adjusted to your preferred position. The kayak is also equipped with two aluminum canoes and an air pump to inflate it quickly and smoothly.

The kayak also comes with a removable steel skeg for maximum directional stability. This allows you to fish for extended periods of time without worrying about your kayak drifting.

It’s easier to spot and identify if you have an emergency with its bright yellow color.

Pros

Cheap

Skeg can easily be removed

Bright, visible, bright yellow color

Aluminum oars

Inflatable seat

Portable

Cons

It doesn’t work in harsh conditions

Bottom line

The Intex Explorer K2 is affordable. The Intex Explorer K2 is packed with great features, making it the ideal choice for lake-fishing.

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3. The Best Safety Product – Lifetime Tamarack Angler 100

Lifetime Tamarack Angler 100

The Tamarack Angler 100 is a great budget fishing kayak.

It is made from high-density UV protected polyethylene which makes it extremely durable and increases its life span.

It’s equally well-thought out when it comes to inner construction. This kayak offers a comfortable and easy fishing experience with its adjustable padded seats, back support, flush-mounted fishing holders and a top-mounted one.

The Lifetime Tamarack Angler 100 has front and rear shocks straps to protect you in an emergency. There is also a 6″ storage compartment that can be used to store all your equipment and essentials without getting wet.

It is however 51 pounds heavy. It has deep tracking channels in the hull that make it easy to transport, but if you don’t plan on getting your kayak into the water for fishing you might consider a lighter option such as the Intex Explorer K2 and the Sevylor BIG Basin.

It can also hold 275 pounds. This means that you won’t be able to spend a lot on gear.

The Lifetime Tamarack Angler 100 is a very stable kayak, thanks to its chine rails as well as a solid bottom. This does not mean that you will be sacrificing speed.

Pros

Affordable price

Storage space that is adequate

Flat bottom for more stability

Back support provided by adjustable, padded seat with back support

Plenty of leg room

Cons

It doesn’t work well in choppy water

Common problems with hull cracking

Bottom line

The Lifetime Tamarack Angler 100 kayak is an excellent choice for anyone looking for a high-quality kayak that’s under $400. This kayak is a solid choice if you don’t need speed or prefer to fish in shifting water.

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4. Sevylor Coleman Colorado: Best Inflatable Fishing kayak

Sevylor Coleman Colorado

The Sevylor Coleman Colorado is more budget-friendly than the Tamarack Angler 100. The Coleman Colorado is an excellent choice if you have a tight budget.

It doesn’t lack in construction or performance, however. The kayak is constructed of strong PVC material, making it ideal for paddling on rough lakes.

It weighs in at 41 pounds. However, its ability to hold up to 470 lbs is impressive for an entry-level kayak.

Colorado also comes with safety and protection features. It has a tarpaulin base that uses a nylon cover. This covers protects it from punctures and increases its durability. It also has multiple chambers to keep it afloat in case one of the chambers is punctured. It uses an airtight technology to seal the deal that eliminates any possibility of leakage.

The Coleman Colorado has adjustable rod holders and paddle holders for easy fishing.

It’s also easy to inflate and deflate, has mesh storage, reliable performance, and is simple to use. But, this product is not designed for extreme durability.

Pros

Best option for your budget

Motor for safe trolling

Technology that is airtight

Tarpaulin bottom construction and 18-gauge PVC construction

D-Rings

Convenient holders

Multiple chambers keep it afloat in the event of puncturing

Cons

It does not include a pump, paddle or other accessories

For tall people, uncomfortable seats can be a problem.

Sidewalls can be heavy.

Bottom line

The Sevylor Coleman Colorado fishing kayak is one of the most affordable under $400. It offers great value for money. It is extremely convenient and reliable. It’s not the best choice for long-term use.

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5. Sea Eagle 370 Pro – Best Weight/Capacity Ratio

Sea Eagle 370 Pro

The Sea Eagle SE370 Pro inflatable kayak is lightweight and compact. It also comes with a deluxe package. It is easy to set up, has smooth paddling, durability, stability, and has a steady paddle.

It is lightweight at 32 pounds and can hold up to 650 pounds. This means you can kayak fish with two friends.

To enhance tracking, there are two support skegs at your bottom. This kayak can be used in whitewater, lakes, and even at sea.

Although it isn’t as spacious as some other options, the storage space can hold enough items to keep you busy for a day.

Its construction is strong and can withstand significant impact. This is due to its Polykrylar hull design, which improves strength and allows it to withstand sharp objects such as dog nails.

Although the sturdy air valves and removable inflatables eats can be useful additions, inflatable seats may not offer as much support.

The Sea Eagle SE370 Pro is a great choice for beginners and experienced kayakers, regardless of your price.

Pros

Multifunctional

Amazing performance

Transportable and lightweight

Sturdy construction

Three fishing rod holders

Foot and seat cushions adjustable

Cons

Inflatable seats provide subpar support

Storage space is limited.

Bottom line

The Sea Eagle 370 Pro fishing kayak is lightweight, portable, and sturdy. It is not as spacious as other kayaks, and can only hold 650 pounds. If you have three anglers on the same trip, this is the best choice.

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6. 6.

Sevylor Big Basin

It takes some time to inflate the kayak. However, it is capable of handling rugged tasks and heavy-duty tasks. The Sevylor Big Basin kayak is safe to use.

It has an airtight design to prevent any leaks, and a Boston valve which makes it easy to inflate and deflate.

This kayak also has adjustable seats, which you can adjust to suit your preferences for the most comfortable position.

A spraying kit is also included that helps to block any splashes and keep your kayak dry. You can also rely on the kayak’s PVC construction to withstand storms, while the sturdy cover will keep you protected in case of accidental punctures.

Even if you get punctured, the Sevylor Big Basin has multiple chambers that will keep you afloat.

Pros

Suits for rugged use

Tarpaulin for superior protection

With an airtight system, you can be leak-proof

Multiple air chambers

Seats that can be adjusted

Kayaking requires a lot of protection

Cons

The cockpit is quite congested

It is a little bit difficult to dry and clean.

Bottom line

The Sevylor Big Basin is a great fishing kayak for those who are willing to give up some cockpit space to get a lightweight fishing kayak. It costs less than $400.

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1. Sun Dolphin Excursion 10 Fishing Kayak – Best Sit In Fishing Kayak

Sun Dolphin Excursion 10 Fishing Kayak Review

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The Sun Dolphin Excursion 10 Fishing Kayak is our top pick for Best Fishing Kayak under 400 Dollars. This kayak is an excellent fishing kayak and it comes in at a very affordable price of only $400. It has a sit-in design to protect you from any water entering the kayak. This kayak is ideal for calm water like lakes, but also for whitewater rivers.

This lightweight kayak weighs only 41 pounds. Two T-handles are located on the kayak’s side for portability and efficiency. The kayak measures 10 feet and is ideal for storage.

Additionally, the rod holder can hold three fishing poles simultaneously thanks to its two flush mount rod holders and one swivel rod handler. The kayak’s cockpit has a padded seat that rests against the kayak’s rim, providing significant back support. You can fish all day with the Excursion 10 Fishing Kayak’s comfortable padding.

A storage compartment is located in the stern, as well as a water bottle holder. The paddle holder can be used to store your paddle and allow you to relax while paddling or fishing. You can adjust the height of your seat and use foot braces. You can rest your legs inside the cockpit with two protective thigh pads. The Sun Dolphin Excursion 10 Kayak offers exceptional fishing at a very affordable price.

Pros

The kayak’s sit-in design prevents water from getting into your kayak

The kayak weighs just 41 pounds and is light and portable.

The kayak is made of high-density polyethylene, which makes it strong and durable.

Two flush mount rod holders and one swivelrod holder are included.

Padded seats that are positioned against the kayak’s cockpit rim

Storage compartment at the stern

Foot braces and adjustable seats

Two protective thigh pads

Cons

Some customers complained about the build quality

2. Sun Dolphin SS 10 Feet Bali Sit on Top Kayak- Best Lightweight Youth kayak

Sun Dolphin SS 10 Feet Bali Sit on Top Kayak Review

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Sun Dolphin SS 10 foot Bali Sit On Top Kayak features a sit-on top design that allows for ample movement while fishing. While the 12-foot and 10-foot models of kayaks are the most popular, the Bali SS is more maneuverable and can make sharper turns. This kayak is great for youth and beginners.

The Bali SS comes with a unique Portable Accessories Carrier (PAC). It is located at the rear of the kayak and can be pulled out to be towable if necessary. The kayak can be used to store fishing equipment and accessories.

The only problem is that you won’t be able to attach your fishing rods with the included fishing mounts. You can also use the paddle holder or water bottle holder to give you more mobility and keep your fishing rods easily accessible. There is ample storage with the side pocket and the bungee cords at the kayak’s edge.

The sides have thick padding that allows for a comfortable position for your legs. This is ideal for anglers who are not accustomed to using the kayak. The kayak’s comfort is enhanced by an adjustable seat pad. You can choose from a range of colors for the lightweight kayak. The kayak has two handles with corded handles on the front and back for portability. The Sun Dolphin SS 10 Feet Bali Sit On Top Kayak is compact and lightweight at 250 pounds.

It is considered one of the best fishing kayaks under $400 because of its exciting and unique features.

Pros

Dry storage with stretch cord riggings

For carrying, there are handles at the front and back

It is easier to get in and out of the open cockpit.

Comfortable thigh pads

Side mesh compartments are available for additional storage

Foot braces that adjust easily

Available in multiple colors

Portable accessory carrier that can be removed

Cushions for the soft seat

Cons

Some users were unhappy with the quality control

3. 3.

Lifetime Tamarack Angler100 Fishing Kayak Review

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Scrolling down the list of Best Fishing Kayaks Under $400, you will find the Lifetime Tamarack Angler 100 fishing kayak at number 4. Another excellent sit-on top fishing kayak for under $400. It weighs only 52 pounds. Two carrying handles make it easy to transport the kayak. It is 10 feet long, which is slightly less than the average kayak. However, it adds to the kayak’s transportability.

The Tamarack Angler 100 Fishing Kayak has a lifetime warranty and is extremely stable. It is durable and can withstand any impact for a lifetime. The kayak has a flat bottom that makes it stable. However, you will need to practice before you can start your stand-up fishing adventures. The two deck hatches have a paddle keeper and an accessory storage area.

This kayak is suitable for still water, but not for choppy. Two carved stability channels help balance the kayak in water. Two flush-mounted fishing rod holders are included, along with an adjustable holder to hold your fishing rods. This three-hands-free fishing rod holder makes it easy to fish and is included in the Best Fishing Kayak under $400.

A bow or stern storage area with shock chords is also available to store your catch. This kayak is covered by a 5-year limited warranty that ensures its durability. The Lifetime Tamarack Angler100 Fishing Kayak is one of the most popular sit-on top kayaks on the market.

Pros

Two handles allow for easy transport

Highly stable and long-lasting

It is durable and can withstand any impact for a lifetime

Two stability channels are carved into the kayak to help it balance.

Two flush-mounted fishing rod holders and one adjustable holder

Storage location for bow and stern gear with shock chords

Limited warranty for five years

Cons

Practice is key before you can start your stand-up fishing adventures

Not recommended for waters with high levels of salt

4. Sevylor Coleman Colorado 2-person Fishing Kayak – Best Tandem Fishing Kayak

Review of Sevylor Coleman Colorado Two

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The Sevylor Coleman Colorado 2-person Fishing Kayak is another top-rated kayak under $400. This kayak is great for fishing with a friend and comes in a very affordable price of $400. The inflatable kayak is very portable and has plenty of storage options. Tough nylon and PVC are the main materials used in this kayak, which ensures its durability.

Multiple air chambers prevent the kayak’s deflation. The kayak will not deflate if one part of it does. This ensures maximum safety. The maximum weight capacity of the Sevylor Kayak is 470 pounds. It also has plenty of storage space.

The seats can be customized to your liking by being adjustable, comfortable, padded, or customizable. The side has paddle holders that allow you to cast and retrieve freely. Berkley Quick Set Rod Holders allow for hands-off fishing.

You can also keep your lunch and snacks inside the kayak’s mesh pockets. A trolling motor can be connected to the kayak to make it easier for you to paddle all day. The Sevylor Coleman Colorado Kayak 2-Person Fishing Kayak makes a great family fishing kayak and is ideal for all family fishing adventures.

Pros

It is very portable and has ample storage.

PVC and nylon are strong, which ensures durability

Multiple air chambers prevent the kayak’s deflation

Berkley Quick Set Rod Holders permit hands-off fishing

Kayaks with mesh pockets built in

You can connect a trolling engine to propel the kayak automatically

You can adjust the comfort of your seat by using the adjustable, padded and padded options

The cockpit has more space because of the paddle holders to the sides.

Cons

Some kayakers complained about the leakage.

5. 5.

Sevylor Big Basin 3-person Kayak – Best Family Kayak Review

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The Sevylor Big Basin 3-Person Kayak is also included in our Best Fishing Kayaks Under 400 Dollars list. This kayak is lightweight and portable, making it ideal for family trips. It weighs just 35 pounds and measures 12 feet in length, making it ideal for family outings.

The kayak can carry 490 pounds. Because it is made of heavy-duty PVC, the kayak is extremely durable. Multiple air chambers are available to prevent full deflation in the event of accidental puncture. Although the kayak’s bottom is rugged, it can withstand light scraping. However, excessive abuse could cause the kayak to be punctured.

The adjustable seats on the Sevylor Big Basin 3-Person Kayak allow you to take out any extra seats and place your seat where you like. Although the kayak is great for fishing in calm waters or lakes and rivers, you may need to practice before you go on your next adventure.

The kayak also has a spray skirt that protects you and your family from any water splashes. There are no fishing pole holders so you can fish hands-free. Comparable to other kayaks, the storage space is very limited. The Sevylor Big Basin 3-Person Kayak can be used for family fishing adventures.

It is a top-rated fishing kayak under 400 dollars due to its features and specifications.

Pros

Maximum load capacity is 490 pounds

It is made from heavy-duty PVC and is extremely durable

Multiple air chambers are used to prevent accidental puncture

Light scraping can be handled by the rugged bottom

You can remove extra seats with adjustable seats

The kayak is ideal for calm water, lakes, or rivers

Spray skirts keep you and your family dry

Cons

Fishing hands-free with no fishing pole holders

Comparable to other kayaks, this kayak has a smaller storage capacity.

 

What can you expect from a fishing kayak under $400?

A $400 fishing kayak should not be considered a bargain. A budget kayak will prioritize certain features over others. These features are what you get for the price.

You could choose a kayak that is extremely stable, but this would compromise your paddling efficiency. A budget kayak that is well-trained and capable of paddling and tracking would likely lack stability and balance.

A kayak that is affordable uses soft materials, rather than the more rigid, puncturable materials used on higher-end models.

Also, don’t expect too many bells and whistles such as footrests, fishing rod holders, or extra cargo room.

What you should look for in a fishing kayak

A kayak that isn’t of high quality or performance doesn’t necessarily have to be your only choice if you are looking for one with a low price. Consider the following important features of fishing kayaks:

1. Type: Sit on-Top vs. sit-in Kayak

There are two types of kayaks available: sit-on top and sit-in. They are both great for different purposes in largely different conditions.

Sit-on Top Kayaks

Sit-on Top or SOT kayaks offer more space for you to move about or store your equipment, but they are not as secure. They are recommended if you fish in calm waters and don’t have to balance as much.

They are also easy to access and allow you to stretch or bend your knees as you please.

However, SOT kayaks are heavier and more bulky than sit-in models, making them less portable.

Kayaks for Sitting-In

Sit-in kayaks are more secure than sit-ins. They have a small space where your legs can go and another area where you can store your fishing gear and belongings. This design makes sure that your kayak is always attached to you.

They aren’t any different from SOT kayaks except that they have cockpits. They are ideal for adventures in the most challenging waters.

2. 2. Stability and Tracking

You may find yourself wanting to stand while fishing in order to increase your power and casts. A stable kayak will allow you to do this easily.

A wide beam is usually associated with stability, especially if it is larger than the kayak’s length. If your kayak is 12 feet in length, the beam should be 30 inches. You could compromise stability by doing this.

It is important to note that the beam length must be equal to the kayak’s length. If your kayak is 12 feet long, the beam should be 30 inches or more. Your kayak might lose significant stability if the beam is narrower.

These are difficult to maneuver and paddle, so it is important that you choose the best combination.

Tracking is how well your kayak stays on course when it’s underway. Good tracking will ensure that your kayak can maintain its course even under a sweep stroke or other turning force.

3. 3.

Your level should dictate how responsive the paddle is to your stroke. If you are a beginner, it is important to choose a paddle that is easy to turn when you give input. This will give you more stability and confidence as you learn.

A wider cockpit is better for beginners because it allows them to explore how different movements can affect the stability and balance of the kayak.

If you are a more skilled user, you may want to choose a tighter fitting cockpit for more control and effective paddling.

4. 4.

Kayaks are becoming heavier despite all the technological advances and improvements in construction. You need to decide whether your kayak will be able to go straight into the water, or if it will have to be dragged along some routes before you do so. This scenario calls for a lightweight model. It could be either a sit-in or inflatable.

5. 5.

A kayak that has plenty of storage space will keep valuables, equipment and gear dry from water. You should ensure that storage areas are easily accessible, securely sealed, and simple to open and close.

You should also have enough space behind your seat to store a milk container, a bucket or any other small items. Bungee tie downs that run across the well are a great option that saves you from constant clasping or unclasping.

Your kayak’s maximum weight should not exceed 100 pounds. This includes your own weight as well as the combined weight of all your equipment. This is so that your kayak can hold you and all of your belongings.

6. Comfort

You’re likely to spend hours in your kayak while fishing, so you want maximum comfort.

The seat should also be adjustable and padded. A lower back support will increase comfort. Adjustable footrests provide the proper knee position for paddling. Mesh covers will make your seat more comfortable on hot days and increase breathability.

You should also look for self draining scuppers.

Last Thoughts

The six choices I have chosen are all good fishing kayaks under $400. But there are a few that stand out.

The Sun Dolphin Excursion is a great choice for anyone who wants to have a little of everything: affordability, storage space and portability.

If you are on a tight budget or want something light, the Intex Explorer K2 is a good choice.

If you are going to fish in rough waters or in choppy conditions, the Sea Eagle 370 Pro is your best choice.

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