Ways to save money when buying a kayak include buying a used kayak, opting for a smaller or shorter kayak, and looking for sales. The end of the kayaking season and the off-season are common times for sales.
Used kayaks are significantly cheaper than new kayaks, sometimes costing half the manufacturer's suggested retail price or less. When purchasing a used kayak, the buyer should inspect the boat thoroughly to make sure it's in good condition. During the inspection, he should look for holes or damage and ensure that all the kayak's moving parts work properly.
Kayak prices tend to increase with their size, so choosing a smaller kayak often saves money. The buyer should still purchase a kayak that's large enough, otherwise he may be uncomfortable using it.
The material also influences the kayak's price. Plastic kayaks tend to be the cheapest, ranging from several hundred dollars to over $1,000. Fiberglass kayaks are more expensive, typically ranging from about $1,500 to $3,000. Carbon fiber boats usually cost more than fiberglass.
The buyer should use the kayak before purchasing it to ensure that he likes it. He also shouldn't sacrifice quality to save money, as cheap kayaks often aren't as safe and may be more difficult to paddle.