Fishing Kayak VS Regular Kayak | What Are The Differences – 2022

There is a big debate in the kayaking world: fishing kayak vs regular kayak?

The answer to that question really depends on what you are looking for in your kayaking experience.

Generally, the fishing kayaks are faster than the regular kayak also in fishing kayaks you also get to see the storage apartments.

In this blog post, we will break down the key differences between fishing kayaks and regular kayaks so that you can make an informed decision about which type of kayak is right for you. Keep reading to learn more!

Main Differences Between A Fishing Kayak Vs Regular Kayak?

As the names would suggest, fishing kayaks are typically designed with features suitable for fishing activities.

While there are some differences between regular kayaks and fishing kayaks in terms of purpose, there are many types of both that have no special features at all. That being said, here are some of the key differences between fishing kayaks and regular kayaks:


In terms of movement, fishing kayaks are generally faster and more dynamic. They tend to have a narrower design which allows them to move through water more quickly. In addition, many fishing kayaks have skegs – flat fins at the bottom of the kayak that allow you to track well in straight lines and turns.

Regular kayaks typically do not have skegs. This makes them slightly less fast, but also more maneuverable. Many regular kayaks are wider at the center of their body which allows for improved stability.

Weight Capacity

Since fishing kayaks are designed with anglers in mind, they are often built to be able to hold a larger weight capacity than regular kayaks. In many cases, they can easily handle weights of up to 500 pounds.

Regular kayaks usually have a weight capacity of around 250 pounds.


Seating in fishing kayaks is often designed with anglers in mind. You will most likely find a high back seat and a footrest in most fishing kayaks so that you can easily paddle and steer comfortably. While there are some regular kayaks that also have this setup, the design is much less common in non-fishing kayaks.


Fishing kayaks often have a lot of storage space due to their increased weight capacity. The increased width at the center of these kayaks also allows for more potential storage.

Regular kayaks typically do not have much storage space. They often have a few small, bungee-type points for securing items while you are kayaking. However, there is no large storage like in fishing kayaks.

What Are Different Types of Fishing Kayak and Regular Kayak? 

There are many different types of fishing kayaks. These include

Sit-On-Top Kayak 

Sit-on-top kayaks typically have a wide body and large cockpit opening which allow for easy entry and exit. They do not feature a sealed cockpit-like traditional kayaks, which means that they require you to sit on top of the kayak and not inside it.


Lift-Assist Kayaks are perfect if you plan on fishing in deep water or in rough conditions that make it difficult to get back into your kayak. This unique design features a platform for standing that is attached to the bow (front) of the kayak with grips and safety lines. When you need to get back into your kayak, you can easily attach a tether line from the handle on the platform to one of your belt loops. This will allow you to pull yourself up as if you were climbing a ladder.

Tandem Kayak

Tandem kayaks are usually much wider and longer than regular kayaks. They feature ample space for two people, making them great if you plan on kayaking with a companion. They are also significantly more stable than single-person kayaks.

Regular kayaks come in a number of different types:

Recreational Kayak

Recreational kayaks are perfect for people who plan on the flat water kayaking. They come in a variety of designs and styles, but they typically have a long, narrow design which makes them very fast. In addition, many recreational kayaks feature a large cockpit opening that allows you to sit comfortably inside while paddling.

Touring Kayak

Touring kayaks are designed for long-distance paddling, generally over several days. They are very streamlined and narrow to reduce drag and allow you to glide efficiently through the water. Many touring kayaks also have additional storage space so that you can pack all of your gear for your trip.

Whitewater Kayak

Whitewater kayaks are designed for moving through bouncy rapids. They are very short in length, allowing them to maneuver quickly and easily through the water. These types of kayaks also feature a flattened bottom to increase stability when whitewater paddling.

Advantages Of Fishing Kayak

  1. Fishing kayaks are typically more stable than regular kayaks;
  2. Fishing kayaks allow you to stand up and fish easily, which is a great feature for anglers who want to avoid sitting too much while fishing
  3. Accessibility: Many fishing kayaks have large cockpits that make it extremely easy to get in and out of the kayak;
  4. Fishing kayaks typically have more storage space than regular kayaks to accommodate larger fishing gear.
  5. Fishing kayaks are often heavier, which gives them added stability on the water.

Note: Here is one of the best fishing kayaks that I recommend you to buy

Advantages Of Regular Kayak

  1. Regular kayaks are more maneuverable than fishing kayaks because they have a narrower, sleeker design
  2. You can find regular kayaks in a wider variety of colors and styles compared to fishing kayaks which come in one color, usually with a basic design
  3. In rough conditions, regular kayaks tend to be more stable than fishing kayaks because they are longer and narrower;
  4. Regular kayaks usually weigh less than fishing kayaks which makes them easier to transport and store.

Note: Here is the best regular kayak that I personally use and it will take you kayaking experience to the next level.


In the end, both types of kayaks have their pros and cons. The best kayak for you will come down to personal preference and what you plan on using the kayak for . If you love fishing, then a fishing kayak might be right for you! However, if you plan on paddling long distances over several days, then a regular kayak might be a better option.

We hope that this article helped you understand the pros and cons of fishing kayak vs regular kayaks! If you want to know more about which type of kayak is better for paddling or fishing, please comment below. We would love to answer your questions!


Do I need a special license to kayak?

You do not need a special license to kayak, but you will need a license if you intend on using a motorized boat.

What is the best kind of kayak for beginners?

The best type of kayaks for beginners are recreational kayaks because they offer excellent stability and comfort while kayaking.

Can you turn a regular kayak into a fishing kayak?

You can turn almost any kayak into a fishing kayak with the right accessories and add-ons. However, some kayaks are designed specifically for fishing and already come equipped with features like rod holders and built-in storage for the tackle. These kayaks usually have a more stable design, which is ideal for fishing. If you plan on using your kayak mainly for fishing, it might be worth investing in a fishing-specific kayak.

Are kayaks expensive?

Kayaks can vary greatly in price, from around $200 on the low end to over $1,000 for the high-end models. You can find kayaks that are specifically designed for fishing and paddling with kids as well.

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