Written by 8:13 pm Kayaking, Kayaking Boats

My 10 Best Tandem Kayaks (Comparison & Buying Guide)

Reading Time: 7 minutes(Last Updated On: July 1, 2021)

QUICK ANSWER: MY BEST TANDEM KAYAKS

MY BEST TANDEM KAYAKS COMPARISON:

Image Product Details   Price
WILDERNESS SYSTEMS TARPON 135T

Best for long trips in flat-water conditions
Length: 13.6 ft
Type:  Sit-On-Top
Kayak weight: 88 lbs
Maximum Capacity: 600 lbs
Features: Tons of storage space, Two watertight hatches, Back and front bungee, Carry handles both back and front, Equipped with adjustable footpegs for more comfort, Fully breathable, Adjustable seats and built-in leg cup holders.
Impeccably comfortable
Tons of luxury features
Handles for easy carrying
Lots of storage space
A little bit heavier than most alternatives
Check Price
on REI.com
SEA EAGLE SE370

Best inflatable tandem for both beginners and experienced paddler as well
Length: 12.6 ft
Type: Inflatable Sit on top
Kayak weight: 26lbs
Maximum Capacity: 650 lbs
Features: Inflatable, High frequency welded body, 5 to 10 minutes to complete inflation, 3-person boat, Thicker hull materials, Top-rated one-way valve
Amazingly stable
Durable
Reliable
Packs down really small
Easy to handle
Lightweight
A small hole can render this boat useless
Check Price
on SeaEagle.com
ADVANCED ELEMENTS ADVANCEDFRAME

Best for transitioning between single and tandem
Length: 15-ft
Type: Inflatable Sit-In
Kayak weight: 52 lbs
Maximum capacity: 550 lbs
Features: Several air chambers, Multi-layered constructions, Adjustable seats for transitioning from single to tandem, Numerous tie-down for great storage
Great storage space
Can be used as single or tandem
Sturdy
Not great for speed
Check Price
on REI.com
OCEAN KAYAK MALIBU 2XL

Perfect for a family with a small child
Length: 13ft 5in
Type: Rigid Sit on Top
Kayak weight: 61 lb
Maximum capacity: 475 lb
Features: Two deck bungee, Paddle holders, Carrying handle on the side, Two Seat Backs
Limited lifetime warranty
Multiple storage options
Abrasion-resistant
Durable
Not enough padding
Check Price
on SummitSports.com
OLD TOWN DIRIGO 155

Great for leisurely touring and camping excursions
Length: 15′ 3″
Type: Sit-Inside
Kayak weight: 72 lbs
Maximum Capacity: 356 lb 
Features: Removable child seat, Contoured Seats, Paddle holders, Hatch with bulkhead, Cupholders
Comfortably cruising
Very comfortable
Excellent quality
The center of mass makes you feel stable going in and out
Plenty of dry storage
Seat straps are not strong enough to hold the position
Maybe pricey for some
Check Price
on REI.com
POINT 65 N TEQUILA

Great kayak if you have limited storage space and limited car space
Length: 13′ 8″
Type: Modular Kayak
Kayak weight: 77 lbs
Maximum Capacity: 530 lbs
Features: Ultra-durable and UV-resistant plastic, padded AIR seats, Drainage in storage, foot wells & seat, bottle holders
Less storage room
Easy transport
Relaxing laying back
Pretty darn solid
A user noticed that he still gets water through the seams when said ”the only water I have had get in the kayak is from my paddle”.
Check Price
on OutdoorPlay.com

MY BEST TANDEM KAYAKS REVIEWS:

WILDERNESS SYSTEMS TARPON 135T

  • Length: 13.6 ft
  • Type:  Sit-On-Top
  • Kayak weight: 88 lbs
  • Maximum Capacity: 600 lbs
  • Features: Tons of storage space, Two watertight hatches, Back and front bungee, Carry handles both back and front, Equipped with adjustable footpegs for more comfort, Fully breathable, Adjustable seats and built-in leg cup holders.
  • Advantages:  Impeccably comfortable, tons of luxury features, handles for easy carrying, lots of storage space
  • Inconvenient: A little bit heavier than most alternatives

SEA EAGLE SE370

  • Length: 12.6 ft
  • Type: Inflatable Sit on top
  • Kayak weight: 26lbs
  • Maximum Capacity: 650 lbs
  • Features: Inflatable, High frequency welded body, 5 to 10 minutes to complete inflation, 3-person boat, Thicker hull materials, Top-rated one-way valve
  • Advantages: Amazingly stable, durable, reliable, packs down really small, easy to handle, lightweight
  • Inconvenient: A small hole can render this boat useless

ADVANCED ELEMENTS ADVANCEDFRAME

  • Length: 15-ft
  • Type: Inflatable Sit-In
  • Kayak weight: 52 lbs
  • Maximum capacity: 550 lbs
  • Features: Several air chambers, Multi-layered constructions, Adjustable seats for transitioning from single to tandem, Numerous tie-down for great storage
  • Advantages: Great storage space, can be used as single or tandem, sturdy
  • Inconvenient: Not great for speed

OCEAN KAYAK MALIBU 2XL

  • Length: 13ft 5in
  • Type: Rigid Sit on Top
  • Kayak weight: 61 lb
  • Maximum capacity: 475 lb
  • Features: Two deck bungee, Paddle holders, Carrying handle on the side, Two Seat Backs
  • Advantages: Limited lifetime warranty, Multiple storage options, Abrasion-resistant, Durable
  • Inconvenient: Not enough padding

OLD TOWN DIRIGO 155

  • Length: 15′ 3″
  • Type: Sit-Inside
  • Kayak weight: 72 lbs
  • Maximum Capacity: 356 lb 
  • Features: Removable child seat, Contoured Seats, Paddle holders, Hatch with bulkhead, Cupholders
  • Advantages: Comfortably cruising, very comfortable, excellent quality, the center of mass makes you feel stable going in and out, Plenty of dry storage,
  • Inconvenient: Seat straps are not strong enough to hold the position, Maybe pricey for some

POINT 65 N TEQUILA

  • Length: 13′ 8″
  • Type: Modular Kayak
  • Kayak weight: 77 lbs
  • Maximum Capacity: 530 lbs
  • Features: Ultra-durable and UV-resistant plastic, padded AIR seats, Drainage in storage, foot wells & seat, bottle holders
  • Advantages: Less storage room, Easy transport, Relaxing laying back, Pretty darn solid
  • Inconvenient: A user noticed that he still gets water through the seams when said ”the only water I have had get in the kayak is from my paddle”.

HOW TO CHOOSE YOUR TANDEM KAYAK :

As when you are shopping for any other types of kayak, there is a lot that go into buying the best Tandem kayak. The market is packed with several of these and if you don’t know what to look out for, you can easily be spoilt for choice. Here is what to consider.

SIT-IN OR SIT ON TOP KAYAKS?

Well, there is no right answer to this. We can’t say one is better than the other. However, there are a few things that could allow you make a determination.

  • Weather and water conditions: If you know you will be using your tandem kayak in cold weather/waters, a sit in kayak with make a lot of sense. Since most of your body will be covered, you will be kept warm all through the ride.
  • Beginners: When getting started out, obviously, you will be worried about tipping over. For this reason you need a sit in kayak. With such a boat, you will be seated right at the lower end and will have the much needed lower center of gravity, giving you more stability.
  • Warm weather/ waters: For this, you really don’t have to worry about cold; sit on top kayak would give you some warmth.

MATERIAL

The kind of material that has been used plays a crucial role when it comes to making a choice. It is one thing that determines how durable and lightweight that particular boat is going to be. We have three main types of materials.

  • Polyethylene: It is the cheapest of all the three. However, it comes with one major issue; it doesn’t come with UV protection. So be sure it will fade and wear off within a very short period of time.
  • Composite: This can be either fiberglass, Kevlar or fiberglass. They are usually expensive and you will find boat made from this material sit right at the top of the price range. However, they come with a few benefits. First it all about great performance and also lightness.
  • ABS Plastic: Compared to Polyethylene, this one comes with superior durability and UV resistance. This one is also easy to repair.

WEIGHT CAPACITY

This is another thing you need to consider when shopping for the best tandem boat. Most of these boats come with a weight capacity ranging from 35 to 80 lbs and you might want to factor in a number of things before you settle on any of them. Normally, you need to consider your weight and that of your partner and the amount of gear you are planning on transporting. All of these should not be more than the manufacturer’s weight capacity specification of that boat.

WEIGHT

The weight of your boat is also important and must be considered, as well. With these boats coming with weight ranging from 30lbs to even 90 lbs, you might actually want to take consider a few things before buying one. Normally, portability comes first before any other thing.  You might want to settle on the lightest of all, but without necessarily compromising on its performance. In the end, you should be able to carry the boat on your own to the water without asking for any help.

NUMBER OF PEOPLE

One of the key reasons you are buying a tandem boat is because you need something that can accommodate more than one person. So when buying these types of boats you might want to consider the number of people that particular boat can take in. If you are 2 or even three, you need a boat that can accommodate all of you. 

GEAR STORAGE

The length of the trip, normally, determines the amount of storage you need. For example, if you know you will be out there kayaking for hours or even days, you will need a boat that can carry a lot of essentials. For this very reason, a boat with a lot of storage will make a lot of sense. On the other hand, if you are looking for something to take on those short afternoon trips, you will just be fine with less storage space.

Last modified: July 1, 2021

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