(I may earn a small commission on the products mentioned in this post.)
There are plenty of inflatable stand up paddle boards to choose from, but you keep asking yourself “where can I find an ISUP under $500?” I understand, paddle boards are a big investment and it’s wise to look around before buying.
It’s great to hear you’re getting started. The sport of paddle boarding has gained in popularity over the years. It takes a few attempts to get the hang of, however, once you get your feet under you, you’ll be slicing through the water.
I began paddle boarding 10 years ago and learned what to look for when making a purchase. I’ll share those tips in this article and we’ll review a few of the basics to get you started.
First, What Will You Be Using Your ISUP For?
This is an important question to ask before deciding on a paddle board. How you use your board will matter.
- Will you use your ISUP board for cruising?
- Will you use your ISUP for exercise?
- Do you plan on racing with your ISUP? (racing is popular)
- Will you be riding waves?
- Will you be an ocean, lake, or bay?
- Will you be riding with other passengers? (friends or a dog)
If you’re just getting started, chances are you’ll be cruising on you ISUP on the weekend, getting a tan, and relaxing. In fact, this is what most people are doing on their ISUPs.
You’re Looking For An Inflatable: What About A Rigid Paddle Board?
If you arrived on this page you’re looking for an inflatable paddle board.
Some people make the mistake of thinking an inflatable paddle board is inferior to a rigid paddle board. This isn’t true because some of the best paddle boards are inflatable.
And don’t confuse the term “inflatable” with your standard blow up toys for the pool. ISUPs become firm when blown up and they are sturdy.
Most people cruising on the water will be using ISUPs, not rigid (these are mainly used for competition, surfing, and by lifeguards).
Pros of ISUPs
- Transport (no need for a roof rack)
- Firm – don’t let the term “inflatable” fool you
- Come in various sizes
- Usually includes extras (bag, pump, fins, attachments)
- Storage (can be packed away in the garage or closet)
4 Best ISUP Boards Under $500
The following 4 boards are under 500 dollars but don’t be confused by their price – these are well-known brands with a good reputation.
They will work well, and most have good warranties too. For people who are new to paddle boarding, these will get you started without breaking the bank!
#1 Serene Life – ISUP
Serene Life offers a simple ISUP at a great price, well below 500 bucks. This is a no-frills board that works great. And it comes with the extras you’d expect from an ISUP.
- 10-foot board and 6 inches thick (30 inches wide)
- 1-year warranty
- Repair Kit
- Storage bag
- Hand pump
Believe it or not, these extras are usually standard with ISUP boards. If they didn’t provide them you’d expect additional out-of-pocket expenses – their package will get you started without additional equipment (most people invest in an electric pump later on though) (check Serene Life ISUP on Amazon).
The deck of the board has a non-slip grip perfect for beginners (adults and kids). The bottom 3 fins are important for board control.
Customers of this board are almost all positive and the ISUP board has over 800 positive reviews (don’t take it from me!). There are comments on the great price and quality, as well as ease of use for kids and men over 6 foot tall.
It’s a good versatile ISUP option!
#2 RoC ISUP
The RoC ISUP is a slick looking board and has the best aesthetic look on our list.
The deck of the board has their iconic “rock” pictured and it looks great.
You’ll get plenty of extras with this board but you’ll be sacrificing color options (only 1 color option: white/black). It’s also the longest board on our list!
The package is impressive and includes a bag, pump, dry bag, oar, fins, and leash. No other ISUP boards on our list have the dry bag (it’s a nice add-on) (check RoC ISUP price at Amazon).
- 5 feet and 6 inches thick
- 350 lb weight capacity
- Includes pump, bag, dry bag, oar, leash
- 1 color scheme
- 1-year warranty
I appreciate the larger size of this board and the 1-year warranty. The look of the board leans more toward males (looks like a masculine board but I could be wrong).
The price is well under the 500 dollar limit and the reviews are very positive (almost 200 people give it a 4 out of 5).
This would be a great gift for all ages, but because it’s one of the larger boards on our list it is particularly good for big guys!
#3 Ten Toes – ISUP
Ten Toes is another reliable ISUP company, sold under the Westridge Outdoors umbrella of products (in Los Angeles). It’s perfect for people getting started, or for weekend warriors that need an affordable and quality board.
One of the great things about Ten Toes is the selection under 500 dollars. There are a range of colors for men and women (red, teal, blue, green, pink, and more)
Ten Toes doesn’t have as many extras as the Serene board, but it still has the essentials: a board, pump, oar, and bag (check Ten Toes ISUP price on Amazon).
- 10-foot ISUP
- 275 lbs max weight
The weight limit for the board is 275 lbs and it’s made of military grade PVC. Like Serene Life, Ten Toes is a 10-foot board, 30-inches wide, and 6 inches thick.
When it’s rolled up it takes up 11 x 36 inches (easily fits in the back of a car or in a closet).
It features nylon fins, and aluminum paddle, and you can’t beat the 1-year warranty. Not bad for an entry-level board right? You can count on it lasting a few years!
#4 Pathfinder With Kit – ISUP
Pathfinder is the most affordable ISUP on this list, and well below the 500 dollar mark. Although I think the #1 and #2 options are better, I understand that some people will need this rock-bottom price.
The actual board is great, but it only has 2 color options and comes with the bare necessities. I think this would be a great board for a kid who is learning how to paddle board (more advanced riders can use it too) (check Pathfinder ISUP price and reviews on Amazon).
- 9 feet 9 inches long and 5 inches thick
- 240 lbs weight limit
- Bungee and non-slip top deck
- 1 fin
- Included pump, bag, and oar
It’s a smaller board, measuring 9 feet 9 inches and isn’t as thick as the other boards (5 inches). The Pathfinder ISUP is made of the same durable PVC material with a multilayer stitch.
It also has bungees on the deck and a non-slip grip. There are plenty of accessories to install on a board (check out my list of best SUP accessories).
Most reviewers are pleased with the product, but some feedback states “you get what you pay for”. Understand that this is a great entry level board and won’t last forever.
In my opinion, it makes a great gift for kids or a beginner who will only use it occasionally.
Electric Pump – Because You’ll Get Tired Of Manual Pumping
I wanted to include this electric pump because if you’re like me you’ll become tired of pumping your ISUP. Pumping also occurs when deflating your board so you’ll be pumping 2x.
What’s great about this electric pump is that it plugs into your car (DC) and it efficiently inflates and deflates your board quickly. Keep it in the trunk and use it before getting into the water. I think you’ll appreciate it as much as I do.
Finding the best ISUP under 500 dollars is a lot easier than you’d think. There are plenty of options but it’s important to know what to look for and what accessories should be expected.
Just because it’s inflatable doesn’t mean it’s low quality. Some of the best paddle boards are inflatable (but they cost much more).
All of the ISUP options on this list included a pump, oar, bag, and fins. A few also offered a leash and dry bag.
Remember, an ISUP under 500 dollars will be an entry level board, perfect for kids and adults. However, it can be used by experts too!
Chances are you’ll get tired of manually pumping your ISUP. Consider getting a mini pump that used your car’s DC outlet (works good for the beach and the lake).
Thanks for reading another Beach Life article. Let us know which ISUP under 500 you like best!