Inflatable kayaks are a brilliant alternative to traditional kayaks.
They are easy to transport, compact, and are almost always cheaper than their fiberglass or plastic counterparts.
There is no shortage of inflatable kayaks on the market, and picking one among so many options can be a daunting task.
From these options, those that stand out, especially for being budget-friendly, are Intex kayaks.
This Intex inflatable kayak review is a low-cost, two-person kayak perfect for a leisurely day on the water.
Intex Inflatable Kayak Review
Intex is a California-based brand that has been in business for more than 20 years.
Throughout the years, it has grown to sell its products in more than 100 countries.
Other than the inflatable raft, Intex manufactures several different kinds of inflatable products, too, such as pools, toys, air beds, and more.
A great thing about this brand is that it provides good customer support for all its products.
You can also purchase any replacement parts on their website.
For this review, we’ll be taking a close look at Intex’s Explorer K2.
Who Is the Intex Inflatable Kayak For?
Those who have never used an inflatable kayak before often tend to shy away from it.
Let us assure you that you will have a great time on the water with the Intex Explorer K2.
Below, we will list the reasons why this kayak might be a good pick for you.
- Those with Limited Storage Space
Unlike traditional hard-shell kayaks, you can deflate the Explorer K2 easily and store it in a bag.
You can then throw it in the back of your closet or the trunk of your car.
It is important for folks who live in smaller spaces, as storing a hard-shell kayak is practically impossible for them.
- Those Who Enjoy Frequent Trips
Anyone who has used a traditional kayak knows how difficult it is to get it on top of the car during trips.
Thankfully, this isn’t going to be a concern anymore with the Explorer K2.
It is incredibly light and compact that you can carry it by hand if you’re flying somewhere.
It is definitely a suitable product if you want to explore foreign waterways.
- Those Looking for a More Practical Kayak Than Hard-Shells
When you actually have to use it, you’ll find that it takes less time pulling it out and inflating it.
This is especially true if you compare the process with taking out a hard-shell kayak in the water.
- Those on a Budget
The Intex Explorer K2, and most other inflatable kayaks, are much cheaper than a hard-shell kayak.
As such, they are perfect for anyone on a tight budget and beginners who aren’t sure yet if they’d like this activity.
When you purchase the Intex Explorer K2, it will come to you neatly in a small cardboard box.
The box contains a zippered carry bag where you’ll find the kayak and some extras:
- Air pump
- Two single-piece seats with Velcro fitting
- The fin you’ll place at the bottom of the kayak
- A user manual
- The deflated kayak itself
We like how easy it is to unpack everything and how quickly we can set the whole thing up.
In fact, you’d be able to inflate the kayak in under 10 minutes.
Additionally, Intex offers a 90-day warranty on the Explorer K2.
Overview of the Features
The Intex Explorer K2 is an inflatable tandem kayak that looks a lot like a banana.
This kayak is the real deal. It comes at a great price point and is as efficient as a high-end inflatable kayak.
Made from rugged vinyl, you will find that it is highly durable and sturdy.
Unlike hard-shell kayaks, it is compact, lightweight, and takes just a few minutes to assemble fully.
There are plenty of features in this small package, so let’s shed some light on all of them.
- Long-Lasting Build
The Intex Explorer K2 features a vinyl exterior that makes it highly durable.
You will find that it is capable of paddling over debris and getting pushed off of rocks.
Basically, the kayak is an impressive heavy-duty and super-tough 30-gauge vinyl over a 1,200-denier nylon shell.
The problem is, the overall construction of the paddle seems to be too flimsy.
While it will work fine in extremely calm waters, we wouldn’t recommend using it anywhere other than that, especially in rougher waters.
You can always consider purchasing a separate pair of paddles since this kayak is so inexpensive.
- Safe and Practical Design
It is a known fact that inflatable kayaks have a bad rap for being unreliable and flimsy.
However, this won’t be something you will complain about with the Intex Explorer K2.
This is a well-designed kayak, and its structure involves two completely separate air compartments.
While this does not mean that the kayak is not sink-proof, you are definitely safer.
Even if the kayak does end up getting ripped or gets a hole in the vinyl, it will not burst suddenly.
This feature is essential, as it will give you time to head towards the shore before you are completely soaked.
An I-beam also runs down the center, which does a great job of keeping the kayak rigid and stable, even if two people are sitting in it.
- Ease of Use
Since the Intex Explorer K2 is easy to maneuver and paddle, it is ideal if you are looking to explore small lakes and calm rivers.
The kayak’s removable skeg further gives you the option for increased directional stability.
We must stress, though, that the kayak isn’t ideal in windy conditions or rough waters.
In these conditions, it becomes challenging to keep it in a straight line.
Even with the skeg support, winds can easily impact this inflatable kayak’s buoyant nature.
That said, the kayak is still quite hard to tip over and remains impressively stable.
If you do end up capsizing or decide to step out of the kayak to take a swim, you’ll find that it is effortless to get back on.
It is an ideal option for light paddlers or beginners who aren’t looking to make any serious maneuvers.
- Value for Money
In addition to Intex Explorer K2’s light and compact build, you will appreciate just how budget-friendly it is.
Considering how many features it has, the Explorer K2 remains significantly cheaper than hard-shell kayaks.
It also comes with an air pump and two paddles, making it a great option for those on a tight budget.
There is no doubt that a fiberglass kayak has significantly better quality than an inflatable kayak.
Yet, if you don’t have thousands to spend on one, you’ll be better off with an inflatable kayak.
- Comes with extras
- Very inexpensive
- Low and stable
- Easy to set up
- Ideal for beginners
- Does not tip over easily
- The paddles are of average quality
- Not ideal for rough waters or bad weathers
How to Make the Most Out of It
It is clear that the Intex Explorer K2 has a lot to offer.
The problem is, all of these features can be confusing to decipher for folks who have never used an inflatable kayak before.
To help you out, here is a video you can use as a reference.
It will help you master how to use the Explorer K2 by showing you everything you will get to enjoy if you do buy it.
The Intex Explorer K2 is everything you would want in an inflatable kayak, and it comes at an affordable price, too.
Yet, like most other kayaks, there are some downsides to it, too.
For that reason, we felt it would be best to provide you with some good alternatives.
The Sevylor Tahiti Hunt and Fish kayak comes in a similar price range as the one from Intex.
However, instead of just for leisure, it is designed to cater to those who want to hunt or fish from their kayak.
It can hold more weight in comparison and also features splash covers to keep you dry.
This Sevylor kayak also comes with a carry bag so that you can easily travel with it.
The Advanced Elements Convertible Inflatable Kayak is another excellent alternative to the Intex Explorer K2.
Quality-wise, it is a significantly better option than most inflatable kayaks on the market.
It has aluminum ribs that give it more structure and stability and also make it easier to maneuver.
You will also find that it comes with multiple layers of material, making punctures less likely.
Quickly, you will realize that it moves like a traditional hard-shell kayak and is easier to paddle straight as you ride it.
The biggest drawback is that it is significantly more expensive.
Is the Intex Inflatable Kayak Worth It?
We hope our detailed Intex Inflatable Kayak review has provided you with all the information you were looking for.
If you ask us, we think that the Explorer K2 is a decent lake-worthy kayak.
It comes with everything at a great price point and provides you with the perfect amount of fun and access.
Best of all, it is exceptionally lightweight.
After deflating it, you can simply roll it up and throw it in the trunk of your car.