We Tested the Best Inflatable Stand-Up Paddleboards to Take Anywhere

We took inflatable SUPs onto alpine lakes and the Pacific and like Atoll's best

We independently research, test, review, and recommend the best products—learn more about our process. If you buy something through our links, we may earn a commission.

Best inflatable SUPs
TripSavvy / Nathan Allen.

Whether your next paradise getaway on a fantastic beach setting is Turks and Caicos, San Diego, or Antigua and Barbuda, you might want to do more than soak up the sun on the beach. How about exploring it? Stand-up paddleboarding is a growing sport, and that growth is thanks to inflatables making the sport more affordable and practical for a wider group of people. Not only are inflatables generally cheaper than rigid boards, but they are easier to transport. Most paddleboards are at least 10 feet long and up to 3 feet wide, making them impractical for most vehicles besides large trucks. The wide array of inflatable SUPs lets you take your paddleboard on vacation, down the street, or even deep in the backcountry to an alpine lake. We researched top paddleboards across several categories, considering their size, shape, and accessories so you can find the one that lets you paddle the way you prefer.

Read on to learn more about the best paddleboards available.

Best Overall: Atoll 11' Inflatable SUP

4.8
Atoll 11-Foot Inflatable Stand-Up Paddle Board

TripSavvy / Justin Park

What We Like
  • Larger weight limit

  • Good for beginners

  • Stylish

What We Don't Like
  • Harder to maneuver

From the buffalo icon logo to the extra thick and burly build to the military green colorway, the Atoll iSUP is a heavy-duty paddleboard. Larger paddlers can struggle with boards with thinner profiles and lower maximum capacities. Not so with the Atoll, which is a full 6 inches thick, 32 inches wide, and rated up to 400 pounds for a single rider and 750 pounds with two.

The board is also performance-oriented for its size, with a squared tail and pointed nose for better planning and steering. The thruster fin setup means you can get moving and keep moving straight ahead when you need to cover ground. Many D-ring attachment points and built-in elastic straps will help tie down your gear. We found that the included fiberglass paddle is high quality, and the leash feels like one that you'd find on a surfboard.

Once properly inflated, the Atoll 11-Footer feels rigid and stable—something I immediately noticed when I stepped onto it in the water. I didn't notice the flex that's common in some cheaper inflatable options. Also, its shape, rugged construction, and 6-inch thickness made it easy to cruise along. However, this thickness had one drawback compared to surfboards or fiberglass SUPs (often in the 2- to 4-inch range): I could feel the wind catch the board during a windy day of testing, forcing me to fight more to stabilize it via paddling.

In terms of speed, inflatable SUPs tend to be slower than their solid counterparts, but I felt the Atoll is firm enough for the difference to be marginal. Another area where inflatable boards fall short is in their turning capabilities. I never expected the Atoll to turn on a dime but was pleasantly surprised at what I observed: The pointed and slightly upturned nose made it more maneuverable, despite its flatwater design. Although it's a step ahead of more giant platform inflatables, it's still not a precision wave surfer, and it takes some effort and time to wheel it around. Overall, the Atoll offers a complete SUP package at a competitive price.

Size: 132 x 32 x 6 inches | Material: PVC | Warranty: 2-year manufacturer's | Weight: 21 pounds

Atoll 11-Foot Inflatable Stand-Up Paddle Board

TripSavvy / Justin Park

Best Budget: Body Glove Performer 11' Inflatable SUP

4.5
Body Glove Performer 11 Inflatable SUP
What We Like
  • Includes an electric pump

  • Cuts through choppy water well

What We Don't Like
  • A little shaky for beginners

Body Glove has updated its classic Performer 11 and is selling it as a Costco exclusive at one of the most accessible prices we've seen for an inflatable SUP. So far, we've loved a lot about this board. First, the board comes with two pumps—a traditional hand-pump one and an electric one that can be set to a specific PSI and automatically shut off when the board reaches that PSI. We tried it both ways, using a car battery.

Performance-wise, we were impressed. It's not the most stable board, but it had no problem rolling through wind-chopped water and waves alike. Thanks to its pointed and rockered nose, you could cut through the water quickly with this board. Everything you need to get on the water is in this package—something we love. Besides the basics of a pump, paddle, leash, and board, the Performer comes with a repair kit, waterproof phone pouch (which holds up very well), and a backpack to throw it all in.

A max capacity of 320 pounds means you could comfortably fit an adult with a dog or a small child. Bonus: Body Glove will plant a tree for every board sold.

Size: 132 x 34 x 5.4 inches | Material: PVC | Warranty: 1-year manufacturer's | Weight: 24 pounds

Body Glove Performer 11 Inflatable SUP
TripSavvy / Nathan Allen.

Best Value: Tower Paddle Boards Adventurer 2

4.5
Tower Paddle Boards
What We Like
  • Easy to manuever

  • Good for beginners

  • Durable

What We Don't Like
  • Slower through the water due to its size

  • Doesn't include leash

First popularized on Shark Tank and invested in by Mark Cuban, Tower makes affordable boards great for beginner and intermediate paddlers. The Adventurer 2 strikes a nice balance of stability and performance, and at 10 feet and 4 inches, it's an ideal size for smaller riders when larger boards might bog them down.

The Adventurer 2, built for flat water, has built-in rubberized fins for resistance to bumps and dings both on the water and in transit. It's very durable—our product tester noted how "stiff and rugged it felt compared to other inflatables," so it will work well for beginners. The board is also sold with essential equipment, including the paddle, pump, and center fin, though you can buy just the board if you already have those items.

While most people buy inflatables for convenience and cost savings—not performance—the Adventurer 2 delivered surprisingly well in glide, stiffness, and turning. Recommended for 15 pounds per square inch (PSI), the rugged build can hold up to 25 PSI of air. We found it was plenty firm at about 12.

The stiffness matters because a board that sags or flexes won't glide, and you'll lose paddling energy transfer on each stroke. Unlike some cheaper inflatables, the Adventurer 2 is remarkably stiff. While it can't match that of a rigid epoxy or fiberglass SUP, the difference is minor for all but the most demanding riders.

Bottom line: For an inflatable, it's hard to beat the quality and performance at the price of the Tower Paddle Boards Adventurer 2 iSUP. The only reason to spend more is if you demand the performance of a rigid SUP and don't need the conveniences of an inflatable.

Size: 124 x 32 x 6 inches | Material: PVC | Warranty: 2-year manufacturer's | Weight: 26 pounds

Tower Paddle Boards Adventurer 2 iSUP

TripSavvy / Justin Park

Most Stable: Bote HD Aero 11'6" Inflatable SUP

Bote HD Aero Inflatable SUP
Bote HD Aero Inflatable SUP.
What We Like
  • Quick pump-up to inflate compared to others we tested

  • Maneuverable and fast on the water

  • Good for beginners

What We Don't Like
  • Case isn't very durable

  • Heavier than others tested

Bote calls the HD Aero their "do everything" board, and we'd have to agree. We found the HD Aero incredibly stable and could definitely be a solid board for yoga or fishing. The upshot? This board is a ton of fun and suitable for beginners. For its size, we found it surprisingly maneuverable and fast. It handled the wind and chop very well. And with a rider capacity of 315 pounds, this board can easily handle an adult with a child or dog.

Bote also has quite a few neat features that make this board stand out compared to other non-Bote boards on this list. The board comes "Rac" compatible, which is Bote's way of adding a "Tackle Rac" or "Bucket Rac" to turn normal SUPs into fishing-focuses SUPs. It also has a sheath to hold your paddle while on the board, attachment points to store a cooler (sold separately), or a seat. A magnet attachment point also connects with Bote's drinkware and other accessories.

There were two points of slight annoyance with this board. At about 48 pounds, when packed all together, it was one of the heaviest boards we tested. And while we appreciated the case's sternum and waist straps to help share the weight across the body, both zipper pulls for the bag's main compartment broke the first time we tried to zip the board back into its case. The zippers are still functional—they're just a bit tougher to pull closed now.

That said, if you're looking for a super solid board—and are willing to spend over $1,000—we love the performance of the HD Aero.

Size: 138 x 34 x 6 inches | Material: PVC | Warranty: 2-year limited | Weight: 30 pounds

Bote HD Aero 11'6" inflatable SUP
TripSavvy / Nathan Allen.

Best for Beginners: High Society Wolf Inflatable SUP Package

4.7
High Society Wolf Inflatable SUP Package
What We Like
  • Super stable

  • Lightweight and packable in an included carrying case

What We Don't Like
  • Nothing yet

High Society's Wolf Package is crafted for diverse water and conditions. And we'd have to agree the Colorado-based brand achieved just that. The package comes with everything needed to quickly get on the water—a pump, paddle, leash, and backpack to carry it all. We loved how light this board is, making it easy and quick to get on the water.

The more we test this board, the more we really like everything about it. In addition to how light this board is and its performance on the water, we love how easy it is to fold up and put back into its case (an attribute of an inflatable SUP we didn't realize we found important till testing). If the point of an inflatable SUP is to create easier access to the water, we think High Society's Wolf Package nails it.

The board itself isn't the widest on our list, but it felt like one of the most stable. We had no problem taking it through some serious chop and ocean waves. We also had minimal problems taking a paddleboarding newbie from kneeling to standing and paddling within half an hour. By minimal problems, we mean the greenhorn only fell in a few times. The Wolf is a great learning board and, thanks to its size, can be ideal for children, teens, and adults, alike.

Size: 128 x 32 x 6 inches | Material: PVC | Warranty: 3-year limited | Weight: 19 pounds

High Society Wolf Inflatable SUP Package
TripSavvy / Nathan Allen.

Best Kayak Hybrid: Bestway Hydro-Force White Cap Inflatable SUP

4.4
Bestway HydroForce White Cap Inflatable SUP

Courtesy of Walmart

What We Like
  • Good for beginners

  • Includes kayaking attachments

What We Don't Like
  • Not suitable for larger riders

  • Turning is difficult

We found the included sit-down kayaking option of the Bestway Hydro-Force White Cap a little goofy and a great way to get wet. Still, it’s optional (and a good option for anyone looking to sit instead of stand or kneel), and the rest of the board is reasonably standard. The rounded nose means slower planning than more performance-oriented boards, but if you’re new to the sport, you won’t notice. The listed capacity is 209 pounds, and at 10 feet long, this board is better suited for average-sized riders or smaller.

The White Cap is almost as stable as they come, thanks to a fairly wide (32 inches) deck area, making it an excellent option for most beginners. That said, stability comes at a cost. The flat bottom, rounded edges, and lack of any rocker (upward curve at either the nose or tail that’s often found on high-performance boards) make this board useless in anything besides flat water. Waves and turning feel like a chore despite the relatively short 10-foot length. 

The 4-inch thickness of the board worked well for our lighter testers, but our heavier rider (me) at 190 pounds pushed the board lower than was ideal in icy Colorado spring waters. We recommend this board for riders who don’t come anywhere close to the 209 max weight limit, though if riders are too small, they might struggle to maneuver any board of this size.

While it doesn’t glide smoothly, especially under heavier riders, it works well enough to get a good workout and spend quality time on the water. Just don’t plan on trying to cover long distances on it.

Size: 120 x 32 x 4 inches | Material: TriTech | Warranty: 6-month limited | Weight: 34 pounds

Bestway HydroForce White Cap Inflatable Stand-Up Paddleboard and Kayak

 TripSavvy / Justin Park

Best Tandem: BlueFin Cruise Carbon 15' SUP

4.2
Bluefin Cruise Carbon SUP

 Courtesy of Bluefin

What We Like
  • Versatile

  • Comes with a robust kit

  • Can hold multiple people

What We Don't Like
  • Heavy

  • Pricey

Paddleboarding is usually a solo adventure, but you can realistically fit multiple people on a board as long as you're under the recommended weight limit. The high-pressure boards from BlueFin offer big-time rigidity and float by inflating up to 28 psi, which is well above the average 15 psi for entry-level boards. It's also 32 inches wide by 15 feet long, so there's plenty of real estate to fit a paddler and a passenger.

There are also fore and aft bungee tie-down zones and a generous traction pad covering most of the board. It even comes with two sets of paddles and kayak seats. This board weighs 44 pounds, but weight isn't likely a top concern if you're buying a paddleboard in this class. The Cruise Carbon is rated to carry 529 pounds, so you can realistically float with an adult and two kids if you're up for the paddle.

At 15 feet, the Bluefin Cruise Carbon is not an agile board. And it can feel sluggish, especially if you're paddling solo. Paddling with a dog or non-paddling child can exacerbate this as you might not be able to stand in the optimal position for paddling. Plus, there's the extra dead weight. Still, this board is for touring and cruising, and it moves well for the size and feels rigid enough.

Adding a second paddling person can change the dynamic and makes this board cruise. However, like two people paddling a canoe or kayak, it takes time to get a rhythm. Once you do, the double output can be refreshingly practical compared to solo paddling. It's important to note that there are limits to the board's tandem capacities. The stated weight limit is 353 pounds, so two large adults might be pushing it. It appeared near the weight limit and sank a bit with two lighter testers and an adult dog on the board together. 

For a larger tandem inflatable, it's hard to beat the stiffness and performance of the Cruise Carbon for the price. Just be sure you're okay with the compromises you'll make in transporting and performance versus smaller boards.

Size: 179.5 x 36 x 6 inches | Material: PVC | Warranty: 5-year manufacturer's | Weight: 44 pounds

Bluefin Cruise Carbon 15’ Paddleboard

Justin Park / TripSavvy

Best for Touring: NRS Escape Inflatable SUP

4.5
NRS Escape Inflatable Stand Up Paddle Board - 14'

Courtesy of REI

What We Like
  • Powerful

  • Good for long distances

  • Lots of tie-downs

What We Don't Like
  • Not as sturdy

  • Not suitable for beginners

More experienced paddleboarders will appreciate the performance of this touring-oriented inflatable SUP from renowned river raft brand NRS. The difference in shape from most paddleboards is evident, with a thin 29-inch waist, sharply pointed nose, and 14-foot length. The board also inflates higher than most, up to 20 psi, for an extra-rigid pressure that allows more significant power transfer from each stroke. While this paddleboard doesn't feature a broad platform, the length alone delivers lots of surface area, making the Escape suitable for long-distance and overnight tours on the water. The NRS pedigree also provides a high-quality valve for pumping and quality pump and fin options.

Friends and I tested the NRS Escape 11'6" Touring Paddleboard on primarily flatwater high in the Rockies and assessed its performance over several weeks. The NRS Escape 11'6" Touring Paddleboard stands out for its high capacity for pressure, up to 20 psi, which matters because a stiffer board minimizes flex and transfers power from stroke to propulsion better. One downside is that it takes a bit more pumping to inflate fully. Pumping to about 17 psi (I didn't feel the need to go to 20 most days, which is the listed maximum) took me about 7 minutes with some short breaks.

Besides the pump, the board comes with a repair kit and a smartly designed carrying backpack. The pack is oversized, so it's not difficult to fit everything inside. It also has well-padded shoulder straps and a chest strap between them, which helps make it realistic to carry this board in some distance, despite the 26 pounds it weighs.

One notable item that the Escape does not come with is a paddle, which may not be a big deal for many paddlers who may already have paddles or would prefer to buy the paddle of their choice. Either way, it's an extra cost you'll need to add to your shopping total. Despite these drawbacks, the valve used is one of the best in the industry, and the entire board's durability is backed by a three-year warranty and the reputation of the NRS brand.

Size: 138 x 32 x 6 inches | Material: PVC | Warranty: 3-year limited | Weight: 34 pounds

Best for Fishing: Bote Rackham Aero 12'4" Inflatable SUP

Bote Rackham 12'4" Inflatable SUP
Bote Rackham 12'4" Inflatable SUP.
What We Like
  • Super stable and large platform

  • Would also be good for yoga

  • Lots of extra cool features

What We Don't Like
  • Tougher to maneuver and control

Bote's Rackham Aero 12'4" board is like the pontoon boat of inflatable SUPs. It felt so massive and stable that we started calling it the Party Barge. And it does feel like you could have a party on this SUP. Compatible with Bote's APEX Pedal Drive and Rudder System, this SUP can officially turn into a pedal-powered kayak. Because it's Bote, this SUP comes with a load of add-ons and attachment points that will make it even easier to convert it into an ultimate fishing-focused machine.

We also envision this being the board for people looking to make sure they're extra stable while progressing their SUP yoga practice. It's the largest SUP we tested that wasn't a tandem, which came with benefits and a couple of drawbacks (more on that in a bit). But, overall, if you're looking for a SUP primarily for fishing purposes, we can't imagine a better option.

The only issues we had from this board were just sacrifices made for having a board of this size. It was tough to maneuver in the water—especially when dealing with wind—mainly because of its size and 7-inch lift (compared to 6 inches for all other boards tested). It just caught a bit more wind. And with a packed weight of 79 pounds, we don't envision this as a board that will help accessibility to water much. It's tough to lug around, and while the case does have wheels, which is super helpful, we can't imagine taking it onto public transit or flying with it like we could High Society's Wolf Package. Still, with a 400-pound weight capacity, there's plenty of room for you, your fishing tackle, some food in a cooler, and perhaps a dog as well.

Size: 148 x 38 x 7 inches | Material: PVC | Warranty: 2-year limited | Weight: 45 pounds

Bote's Rackham Aero 12'4" inflatable SUP
TripSavvy / Nathan Allen.

Final Verdict

For a board that strikes the perfect balance between stability and performance, go with the Adventurer 2 from Tower Paddle Boards (view at Amazon). It comes with essential equipment and features durable fins that resist bumps in the water and transit. If you’re new to paddleboarding, it’s hard to beat the price on the beginner-friendly Bestway HydroForce (view at Walmart) to get you used to paddling.

Paddleboard
TripSavvy/Justin Park.

How We Tested

All inflatable SUPs included in this roundup were tested on high alpine lakes in Colorado, Ventura County harbors, and the Pacific. We tested in multiple conditions, including choppy waters, wind, waves, and calm waters. Each board was tested numerous times in different situations and by multiple testers. We considered everything about the inflatable SUPs in this roundup, from how it felt carried in a backpack to how easy it was to inflate and deflate and re-pack to how it performed in the water.

Best inflatable SUPs
TripSavvy / Nathan Allen.

What to Look for in an Inflatable Stand-Up Paddle Board

Size

When renting a paddleboard, the dimensions can tell you a lot about how it’ll perform and what its strengths and weaknesses are. If you’re a larger than the average person, you want a board at least 6 inches thick because you need that volume to stay afloat. Boards that are 4 inches thick such as the can sink too close to the water line under heavier loads, which leads to poor planning on the water. 

Shape

Boards wider in the waist are generally more stable and, when paired with a broad, rounded nose and tail, tend to be a friendlier beginner board. Dart-shaped longer boards are better for touring and covering longer distances. Rocker, or a curving upwards of the board away from the water, is better for rougher waters than flats.

Accessories

Not all boards come with the necessary equipment. Despite being inflatable, many don't even come with a pump. Read product descriptions to see what's included if you don't already have the essential equipment. We recommend looking for items like a leash, paddle, pump, carrying bag, fin, or removable seat.

Fin Setup

Many boards, especially those intended for use on flat water, feature a single, removable and adjustable fin that minimizes drag. Most multi-fin setups, such as the three-fin “thruster” setup, are used on intermediate and advanced paddleboards and improve tracking or control in surfing or rougher waters. Longer fins are better for tracking (keeping you on course), while shorter fins permit more agile maneuvering. 

Carrying Case

Not all inflatable SUPs come with a case, but it’s a nice-to-have item that keeps your board, paddle, pump, and any extras together in one place. Additionally, if you intend to hike or cover any significant distance, look for a carrying pack in a backpack style, ideally with both chest and waist straps to help keep the load secure on your back. The best carrying packs have cinch straps to compress the bag around its contents to prevent shifting contents that will wear on your back over the long haul.

Paddleboard pump
TripSavvy/Justin Park.
Frequently Asked Questions
  • How do you store an inflatable paddle board?

    When storing a deflated paddleboard, it’s important to rinse and fully dry it before deflating and rolling it up. The important thing is to keep it somewhere dry, out of sunlight, and free from extreme temperatures.

    It's also possible to leave the board inflated for convenience if it doesn't need to be transported or used frequently. If used seasonally, it’s OK to deflate for those times of the year when it's not used often, but it’s technically better to not leave it tightly rolled up as that may cause hard creases that can create weak points over time.

  • How long does it take to inflate a paddle board?

    When pumped steadily, it should only take about five to ten minutes to inflate by hand with the included pumps, though if the board needs to be deflated and inflated the board frequently, it's good to consider buying an electric pump to speed up the process. 

  • Is a leash necessary?

    A leash is essential if used in ocean surf to prevent the rider from being separated from their board, but a leash isn’t crucial for most flat water situations. Some boards come with a leash; others do not. Those who may want a leash sure ensure the board they're buying comes with one or purchase one separately.

  • What is a double-action pump?

    A double-action pump pushes air into the board when pushing down and pulling the handle up on a hand pump. A single-action pump pushes air in on press down. It increases the effort required to pull up, meaning faster pumping on balance. Most double-action pumps have a switch that allows them to be used as a single-action pump, which is easier for pumping the last few PSI into your board.

  • Can dogs ride on an inflatable SUPs?

    The larger platforms of a SUP have plenty of room to bring a furry friend, but a fair question is if dogs’ claws are a danger to an air-filled SUP. Most inflatables are built with multiple layers of thick and often reinforced PVC to withstand bumps and run-ins with rocks and sticks, so claws shouldn't be a serious threat. 

Best inflatable standup paddleboards
TripSavvy / Nathan Allen.

Why Trust Tripsavvy

Justin Park lives in Summit County, Colorado, and spends his short summers paddleboarding the high alpine lakes around his home. He owns both the Atoll and the Tower Adventurer 2 boards and has been known to catch trout from them occasionally.

Nathan Allen is TripSavvy's outdoor gear editor. He spends dozens of days each year paddleboarding and finds it to be a relaxing and welcomed alternative to his normal high-output outdoor activities. His current go-to inflatable SUP is High Society's Wolf.

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