(I may earn a small commission on the products mentioned in this post.)
Visualize it with me. You’re sitting at the beach. The temperature is a perfect 88 degrees and not a cloud in the sky.
There’s a light breeze but not strong enough to blow your towel or umbrella away. To top it off you’ve got a margarita in hand while you watch the children or grandchildren make sandcastles.
Sounds pretty good right? Now visualize the same scenario with a busted or uncomfortable chair (ok, I know you’re here to read about the best beach chairs, no need for a sales pitch!).
Recently I went for my morning jog and saw families enjoying their day at the beach. I saw toned beach bodies and others who’s complexion resembled ghosts.
I ran past one man sitting in a unique looking chair. It was a simple collapsible chair but also had a cover over the top to shield the sun.
I took a mental note, returned home, searched for it on google, and there it was. It’s a great concept for a beach chair.
It gave me the inspiration to write this article. I’ll review that chair and other quality yet affordable options. I hope you find it worthwhile.
Key Characteristics of the Best Beach Chair
- Material and metal
No. 1 Lightweight
This ranks at the top of my list as far as importance. A lightweight beach chair is essential because we know you’ll be carrying many things from the car such as an ice chest, towels, sunscreen, and snacks, not to mention a few children.
Lightweight chairs are made from plastic or aluminum and the best lightweight beach chairs have straps or break down to carry.
Related: Best Beach Umbrella
No. 2 Collapsible
For decades beach chairs have had the option to break down and collapse. Some fold in half, others are more complex, and some chairs come with a bag that helps carry the chair to and from the car.
Make sure you find a beach chair that will be easy to move to and from the garage and a chair that fits nicely in your car.
Most of the chairs in this review breakdown quite small. Not enough to pack in luggage but small enough to fit in the back seat of your car.
No. 3 Material and Metal or Plastic Frame
As mentioned above the components of the beach chair will make it heavy, light, and will likely influence how comfortable it is
Most of the chairs on our list use a metal aluminum frame or powdered steel with synthetic nylon or polyester for the seat and back.
It’s extremely important the aluminum is covered by material because your chair can get real hot being in the sun all day. The best beach chairs can carry up to 300 lbs. so whether you’re tall, short, large or petite, our recommendations will meet your needs.
No. 4 Stability
Stability is a key factor for your beach chair. You won’t want something that has sharp corners that disappear into the sand. Nor will you want a chair that can’t be adjusted easily.
The width of the chair, the armrest height, as well as the height of the back is also key for picking the best beach chair. Thankfully sand is a forgiving media and you will be able to adjust your chair as needed.
No. 5 Chair Options (recline, adjustable, cup holder, umbrella etc.)
Lastly, this is just a bonus. Good beach chairs (not all) might have cup holders, umbrellas, pouches or adjustable backs. These aren’t essential but definitely welcome.
Likewise, the pockets are always nice to have. Some options may come at a cost since the options might make the chair heavier or bulkier. Consider the extras when making your purchase.
The 9 Best Beach Chairs for Your Next Coastal Holiday
The following reviews are broken down into 3 categories. Depending on you and your family’s needs, you might skip to the section most relevant to you. To aid your decision, we’ve shared our recommended picks.
Section 1: Budget Reviews for Best Beach Chair Under $50
Our Pick – Coleman Utopia Breeze Beach Sling Chair
Section 2: Deluxe Reviews for Best Beach Chair Under $60
Our Pick – Tommy Bahama Backpack Cooler Chair with Storage Pouch and Towel Bar
Section 3: Useful Accessories for Your Beach Chair
Our Pick – Sport-Brella/Versa-Brella – Any Position Umbrella with Universal Clamp
Section 1: Beach Chair Budget Picks (under $50)
No. 1 Coleman Utopia Breeze Beach Chair
If you’re American you know the Coleman Company. They’e been around since 1900 and was founded in Oklahoma then relocated to Wichita Kansas.
I remember using Coleman propane cans on backpacking trips in my youth and coolers for my beer as an adult. My experiences with Coleman products have always been good and I bet it’s the same for you. The Coleman beach chair lives up to the company’s expectations.
- Low design
- Lightweight 5.3 lbs
- Weight limit 250 lbs
- Cup holder
- Carry bag
- Powder coated steel frame
- 1 year limited warranty
The Coleman beach chair is the customer choice and comes well-recommended my customers. The chair has a nice design, striped beach colors, rides low to the ground, and has a slight recline to it.
Similar to other chairs on our list this Coleman beach chair has padded armrests, and a cup holder.
It weighs 5.3 lbs and folds easily into a travel bag. The weight limit is 250 lbs. This is my pick for best budget beach chair!
No. 2 KingCamp Low Sling Beach Chair
KingCamp focuses on camping and lounging equipment such as tents, backpacks, and lightweight folding chairs. It might surprise you that this is a China-based company founded in 2001 in Beijing.
They make decent products with a nice selection of styles. This chair is a good example of their products. It’s a functional yet affordable chair that we like as a beach chair.
You’ll notice from the picture it “sits low” and has a nice reclined frame. The seat height is 7.9 inches from the ground and the width is 20.8 inches across.
The frame steel and weights 6.6 lbs which is strong enough to easily support up to 300 lbs of a man or woman.
- Low seating with slight natural recline
- Lightweight and easily stored (6.6 lbs.)
- Supports a weight up to 300 lbs.
- Nice design and color scheme
- Competitive price point
- Extras: bag, padded arm rests, and cup holder
- No warranty that I could find
I like a few things about this chair. First, the appearance looks well designed and comfortable. Even though the color scheme only has one option (teal and grey) I like it, especially for the beach. It folds up and can be put inside a bag (included).
The stored dimensions are 30.7 x 7.9 x 5.1 inches and won’t take up much room in the car or garage. It comes at a competitive price point with a few extras including a bag, foam padded arm rests, and a cup holder!
No. 3 Lightspeed Outdoors 2-Pack Lounger Beach Chair
Lightspeed is an up-and-coming beach product manufacturer based out of San Diego, California. They make fun products that are also stylish.
According to the company, “The love of the outdoors drives us to develop and innovative a line of outdoor equipment that includes everything from camping tents to beach shelter and air beds, to picnic blankets. We want to make the outdoors easy to enjoy.”
- Padded back
- Lightweight (3.96 lbs.)
- Folds easily with carrying strap
- 1-year warranty!
- Adjustable back, however, if laying down bars may be uncomfortable
- Stylish, original design
These chairs are a bit different than what you probably expected, however, we like their unique, alternative approach to a beach chair.
It’s comfortable and lightweight, weighing only 3.96 lbs and measures 56.3″ x 21″ when spread out (only 21″ x 20″ when packed). The chairs fold up into a square shape and can easily fit in the back of a vehicle
The frame is a powder coated steel and the fabric can be sprayed off or cleaned easily with water. The mostly positive reviews state that it’s a versatile chair that can be used at the park, at concerts, or on the road with your camper. I really like the fact it’s a U.S. company and has a 1-year warranty.
No. 4 Rio Brands Aloha Sand Chair
If you’re looking for the most basic of beach chairs – with no extras and a cheap price – the Rio beach chair might be a good option. It’s a standard simple chair that folds in half and has 2 pieces of polyester fabric for your back and rear.
- Simple structure
- Nice pattern/design
- Strong, polyester fabric
- Aluminum frame
- Lightweight/foldable (5.6 lbs)
The Rio beach chair is a lightweight aluminum and is offered in a few different patters (solid and stripes). It weighs 5.6 lbs and has a carrying capacity of 190 lbs (in other words, no big guys!).
It definitely has a beach feel to it. I like it enough to mention it as an option but must admit it’s not the best chair on our list.
If you pay a few dollars more you can buy the Coleman chair (below) that will likely last forever.
Related: Beach Items You Need
No. 5 Caravan Sports Infinity Zero Gravity Chair
The Caravan Sport chair gives you yet another option for the beach. Caravan is based out of California and makes a range of outdoor products from camping to the beach.
- 45 x 26 x 36 inches
- Reclines, 0 gravity feel and adjustable
- Leg support
- Multiple color options
- 19 lbs (heavy for carrying)
- Folds down to 6.3 inches wide
- Durable powder coated steel
- Outdoor grade fabric (textaline with double bungee)
At first glance, you might be like me and think this chair is slightly large for the beach. It’s also a little heavier than you might want at 19 lbs.
However, many people these days have health problems with their lower back and require good lumbar support even while at the beach.
If you require more support, this chair might be an option for you. In my opinion, it would be better to use on the balcony or backyard than using for the beach, but we are including it none-the-less.
Section 2: Deluxe Picks for Best Beach Chair (under $60)
No. 1 Tommy Bahama Backpack Cooler Chair
The Tommy Bahama beach chair is one of the summer’s most popular options. The chair itself is comfortable and lightweight, while the name recognition is top of its class.
If you know Tommy Bahama, you know they offer luxury products, and although the brand is expensive, their beach chair is competitively priced compared to others on our list.
The appearance and design is solid, it folds into a backpack that can be strapped around your shoulder and has nifty storage pouches to secure your valuables.
The Tommy Bahama beach chair comes in one color, marine blue and has a neck pad, protective/comfortable arm rests and reclines to 5 different positions (including flat). It even has a cup holder.
- Made from 600D polyester
- Measures 27 x 3.5 x 24 inches and weighs 7 lbs
- Rustproof aluminum that folds into backpack
- 5 reline selections
- Pockets for storing beverages, electronics
- Cup holder for multiple drinks
- Fits in a car easily but not in a suitcase
- Weight capacity 300 lbs
- 5 year manufacturer warranty
This chair rides low to the ground (about 6 inches) and based on the reviews there are no issues with the chair. Most reviewers share that they’ve used it for multiple seasons and it holds up well.
According to the Tommy Bahama website, aluminum furnishings are warranted against all defects for 5 years from the date of purchase! I really like these chair and trust the company.
If you’re looking for multiple chairs, look below at the “2 chair” Tommy Bahama beach chair. It’s a slightly better price for 2.
No. 2 Tommy Bahama Backpack Cooler Chairs (2)
I wanted to mention another option for the Tommy Bahama beach chairs.
They are also offered in sets of 2, and with this option, you’re going to save a few bucks (not a lot I know). You’ll also get a slightly different style with dark blue chairs.
You’re still getting the same great chair with all the same options, however, the fabric color is different. Once again, you’re also getting that 5-year warranty for defects. Hard to beat!
No. 3 Quik Shade Adjustable Canopy Folding Chair
This is the chair I saw that inspired my review. I’m torn about whether I should call it “deluxe” since it’s a cheaper priced chair on our list, however, the special aspect of the Quik Shade beach chair is the unique canopy that goes over it.
It’s typical of folding beach and camp chairs in that it has a durable steel frame which supports weights up to 225 lbs. The fabric is 600D polyester that is water and stain resistant.
The cool part of the chair is the patented sunshade that can be raised, lowered and tilted to protect from sun in any direction.
The dimensions are 30 x 34 x 49 inches when opened, and 36 inches tall when folded. The seat is 18 inches from the ground – this means it’s one of our higher seats (better for people who have trouble standing up).
- Steel frame and 600D polyester
- Supports weight up to 225 lbs and weights 5 lbs.
- 30 x 34 x 49 inches opened
- Adjustable sunshade (not removable)
- Sits higher off the ground – 18 inches
- Attractive blue fabric
Lastly, I also want to mention the reviews. Around 700 reviews and the Quik Shade beach chair has great reviews. Customers are definitely pleased with the chair and the price, however, a few comments suggest that if used frequently the chair might not hold up over time.
My recommendation: although I really like the Quik Shade beach chair price and concept I’d rather spend a few more dollars with the Tommy Bahama or Coleman beach chair and also purchase the umbrella shown in our accessory section.
No. 4 Rio Brands Lace Up Aluminum Backpack Chair
This is a quality chair by Rio Brands and definitely deserves to be on our list. If you take a quick glance at the chair, you can see they took a page from the Tommy Bahama beach chair (or the other way around – it looks fairly similar).
- Aluminum frame for people under 240 lbs
- Weighs 7 lbs and can be carried like a backpack
- Adjustable to 4 positions
- Polyester fabric
- Pockets and cup holder
- Armrests and neck pad
It’s made with a rust-resistant aluminum frame that adjusts to 4 positions. The Rio beach chair comes in 2 shades of blue, a comfy headrest, armrests, one cup holder, storage space in the back, and can be carried as a backpack.
If you put all your small beach equipment (sunglasses, keys, lotion etc.) in the storage pouch, you won’t need to carry much during your beach walk. The lace-up chair provides some stretch and comfort for the user and can hold up to 240 lbs. This is a solid choice for a summer beach chair.
Section 3: Beach Chair Accessory
BeachLocks: Large Beach Chair Bag Lock
While in university I often went to the beach by myself to run or read a book. Whenever I was alone I always kept a close watch on my towel and observed people passing by. I never had anything stolen but I’ve heard plenty of stories about beach boys stealing personal belongings…even car keys!
The idea for a beach lock is a good one. I suppose you could use any lock combination but this one is made specifically for the beach and includes a zippered bag to hide your belongings.
The braided steel cable is over 5 feet long so you can secure multiple bags and even your cooler to keep your beers safe. This protection will deter most thieves as they’d prefer an easier victim.
If you’ve ever taken an umbrella to a beach you’ll understand why I love this product. Most umbrellas must be pushed into the sand.
This is extremely difficult because sand doesn’t hold the umbrella firm and its difficult to push deep enough to make it secure. I’ve had a few run-away umbrellas due to the wind.
This product solves the problem and has been a great accessory to over 3,000 customers on Amazon. The average review is 4/5 stars. It’s nice looking, strong and durable. The best part about the umbrella is it connects to a pole from your chair, cooler, or bleachers if at an event.
It only weighs 8 lbs. and breaks down easily, however, when open it covers an area of 44 x 44 inches. I haven’t tried it yet but it might be a good beach gift for my family!
So there you have it. In this article, we discussed some of the important criteria you should consider before buying your beach chair.
Most of the criteria are common sense but understanding the various components of a chair can help to distinguish quality from cheaply made chairs. Don’t forget to keep an eye on the chair’s warranty.
We also reviewed a number of chairs in different categories; budget and deluxe and compared them. Lastly, I found a few accessories that might go well with a beach chair purchase – You can never go wrong with security and sun protection. I hope this article helps your next beach experience!