Since the sun has decided to warm us up these past couple of days, I find myself looking forward to longer days filled with warmth and outdoor adventure. Last summer I experienced the joy of stand-up paddle boarding (SUP) for the first time, and after borrowing my friends inflatable board (iSUP), I was all too eager to purchase my own (especially after Elvis thoroughly enjoyed gliding across the lake with me!). I didn’t yet make the leap (maybe this year!) but when Jason Paul, who writes about inflatable boards for a living, reached out with this article idea, I was eager to share it with you in hopes I can get a few more people on board (pun intended).
Inflatable Paddle Boards — The Ultimate Piece of Gear for Adventure Travelers?
It’s no secret that most adventure travelers are gear junkies. “Collect memories not things” is our mantra, but let’s be honest — we’re all looking for new and exciting products that can help us get the most out of our worldwide travel adventures. From backpacks to battery packs, the exciting world of travel gear is constantly being refreshed with new and innovative equipment that can change the way we experience the planet.
In this article, we’re going to take a look at one piece of adventure travel gear that you might have never considered — inflatable SUPs. One doesn’t have to read too many inflatable paddle board reviews to realize how well-suited iSUPs are to an adventure traveler’s lifestyle, and we’re going to lay out the top 7 reasons why every serious explorer should have one in their gear arsenal.
So without further ado, let’s get right to it…
#1. Extreme Packability
When it comes to travel, packability is everything. Products that occupy less packing space are worth their weight in gold, and inflatable paddle boards are unmatched in this area. When fully inflated, an inflatable SUP is nearly as rigid as a hard board. Once deflated, it can be neatly rolled up like a sleeping bag and stashed into a backpack or suitcase.
#2. Easy to Transport
Unlike their rigid counterparts, inflatable SUPs don’t require trailers or cumbersome roof racks to transport. Deflated and rolled up, an inflatable paddle board can be tossed into the trunk of a rental car, backseat of a taxi, or even secured to the rear of a scooter.
#3. They Fly
Due to the fact that an iSUP can be deflated and stashed away in a backpack or suitcase, it can easily be checked with the rest of your luggage when flying. Also, since inflatables are under the weight limit for checked bags, you won’t have to worry about expensive overweight baggage fees.
#4. Bombproof Durability
Let’s face it — the very last thing anyone wants to experience on an adventure is gear failure. The best inflatables such as the brand new iROCKER CRUISER are practically indestructible, constructed out of military-grade materials and multiple layers of tough PVC. Rocks, trees, and careless airline baggage handlers are no match for the incredible toughness of a well-built iSUP.
#5. Get a Fresh Perspective
Standing atop the deck of a paddle board will give you a fresh perspective of your surroundings and allow you to capture photographs and video footage of your adventures in a unique and interesting new way. SUPs also open up a world of exploration possibilities, giving you unparalleled access to off-the-beaten-path spots that you’d never otherwise experience.
#6. Save Money
As adventure travelers, we’re notorious for coming up with ingenious travel hacks to save a buck. Instead of wasting money on kayak and SUP rentals during your travels, pack an inflatable paddle board and spend that extra cash on other exciting new experiences that you’d otherwise be unable to afford (like volcano boarding!)
#7. Easy to Maintain
Last but not least, an inflatable paddle board is extremely low-maintenance. Just give it a quick rinse after salt water exposure and don’t leave it in the direct sunlight for extended periods of time — that’s pretty much all there is to it. Also, in the unlikely event that your inflatable gets damaged during an adventure, DIY repairs are quick and easy to do.
Words and images provided by Jason Paul.
Have you ever tried paddle boarding?