Personal Loans

Kayak Financing for Adventurers on a Budget

Feel the sun and wind on your face as you glide on a boat through still waters. Or, experience the thrill of navigating choppy waters using only a boat, paddle and the skills you’ve acquired. If you’ve ever daydreamed of these scenarios, then you might just want a kayak.

Unfortunately, the price of equipment may hold some would-be adventurers back from exploring the open water. But there are options if you don’t have the funds to pay for a kayak upfront. Take advantage of this guide to kayak financing to see which option is best for you.

Determine which kind of kayak you need, and budget from there

Not all kayaks are built for the same purpose. A retiree who wants to leisurely float around Lake Okeechobee in Florida will need a different kayak than a thrill-seeker who wants to snake through the Grand Canyon on the Colorado River. The cost of a kayak ranges widely depending upon how you intend to use it.

While there are plenty of specialized kayaks, here are a few popular choices:

  • Recreational kayak: For leisurely trips, like a calm lake or slow river
  • Fishing kayak: For fishing trips, this may come with built-in rod holders and storage features
  • Touring kayak: For rougher waters, like roaring rivers or the open ocean
  • Inflatable kayak: For those who value affordability and transportability, but don’t plan on kayaking rough waters

Ask yourself a few questions before you buy: Do you want a sit-in kayak or a sit-on-top kayak? Where do you plan on using this kayak? How often do you plan on using it? All of these should factor into your budget, as well, as certain kayaks come with a higher price tag than others.

Lightweight touring kayaks will cost more, because of the materials used. An inflatable kayak will cost less upfront, but it may be less durable than a hard-shell kayak. Align your budget with your desires, and go from there. When you’re ready to make a purchase, there are a few kayak financing options at your disposal.

4 kayak financing options

  1. Utilize store credit cards or special financing
  2. Put it on a rewards credit card
  3. Open a personal loan
  4. Shop around for a sale to pay in cash

1. Utilize store credit cards or special financing

You might be surprised by the wide range of retailers that sell kayaks, from Amazon to Sears. Plus, many of these stores offer promotional financing on large purchases. You’ll want to factor these when comparing your options.

For example, you’d save more money buying a kayak for $900 on Amazon if you qualify for deferred-interest kayak financing than if you got the same kayak for $850 at Cabela’s and had to pay 9.99% APR, assuming you pay off your balance in full before interest charges kick in. However, that 9.99% APR may make sense if you need more time to repay your debt and can’t secure a lower rate.

Below are a few stores offering promotional financing on kayak purchases.

Sporting good stores with special financing
Store Financing details
Amazon With the Synchrony Bank Amazon Prime Store Card, you may qualify for:

  • No interest if your balance is repaid within 6, 12 or 24 months (Minimum payment requirement applies)
  • 0% APR on equal payments made over 6, 12 or 24 months
Cabela’s Use your Cabela CLUB credit card from Capital One at Cabela’s or Bass Pro Shop and you’ll qualify for a 9.99% APR on your purchase.
Dick’s Sporting Goods With the ScoreRewards credit card® offered through Synchrony Bank, you may qualify for:

  • 12 months of special financing on in-store purchases of $399 or more
Home Depot With the Citibank Home Depot credit card you may qualify for:

  • 6 Months Every Day Financing on Purchases of $299 or More
  • Get up to 24 months of special financing during special promotions
Sears Get 12 months of special financing on fitness equipment purchases of $299 or more when you use the Citibank Sears or Shop Your Way credit card®
Target Target shoppers can finance purchases over $100 through Affirm. However, the APR ranges from 10%-30%, depending on creditworthiness
Walmart Like Target, Walmart offers Affirm kayak financing. APR ranges from 10%-30% on purchases $144-$2,000, depending on creditworthiness
All financing options are dependent upon credit approval. With deferred interest offers, you’ll pay interest charges from your purchase date if you fail to repay the balance before the promotional period ends.

2. Put it on a rewards credit card

Don’t go charging a kayak to your credit card if there’s a chance you’ll accrue interest charges on your purchase. But you might consider kayak financing via credit card if:

  • You have or plan to get a credit card with an introductory 0% APR period, and you can pay off the purchase within that time frame
  • You can charge the kayak to your credit card and pay it off within the time your statement is due, while gaining credit card rewards

If you choose this financing option, avoid letting your purchase accrue interest. The average APR for all new credit card offers is 20.60%, according to data from CompareCards, which is owned by LendingTree. So if you charge a kayak to your credit card and let the balance carry over, you’ll end up paying much more than the kayak’s worth over time.

3. Open a personal loan

With quite a few deferred-interest financing options at your disposal, you probably won’t want to open a personal loan to pay for your kayak. Plus, not many kayaks will cost enough money to merit opening a personal loan for that purchase alone.

In rare cases, it may be worthwhile to open a personal loan for kayak financing. Read on to learn more about how personal loans work.

Personal loan FAQ
How does a personal loan work? A personal loan is a type of loan that’s unsecured, which means you won’t have to put up collateral to obtain it. Because of this, lenders rely more heavily on your credit score, and interest rates tend to be higher.
What’s the typical APR? For personal loans taken in Q1 2019, the average APR was 33.38%. Borrowers with credit scores of 720 or higher saw APRs averaging 7.27%, but subprime borrowers saw average rates around 85.92%.
How much money can you borrow? $1,000 to $50,000 or more. So unless you’re buying a professional-grade kayak, a personal loan may be obsolete.
What fees are associated with personal loans? You may be responsible for origination fees, which are 1%-8% of the loan, and prepayment penalties, which are incurred if you pay off the loan before its maturity date.
Do personal loans require a credit check? Yes, but most lenders allow you to check potential terms with a soft credit check. When you formally apply, a hard credit check is required.

4. Shop around for a sale to pay in cash

The great thing about kayaks is that you can start small and work your way up to a professional kayak if you enjoy the hobby. And if you’re a beginner, it’s best to start with a simple kayak, anyway. Save money on a kayak by employing these tips:

  • Buy an inflatable kayak
  • Buy a kayak secondhand to save
  • Shop sales, and use a coupon

If you want to budget for a kayak, determine how long it will take you to save up the money needed. For example, let’s say you want to buy a kayak that costs $1,200, and you want to have it in six months’ time. You’d have to put away $200 per month to be able to buy it outright. Or if you could afford to set aside a bit more per month, you could save up the full amount in four months by putting away $300 per month.

When you pay in cash, you don’t risk paying interest on an asset that doesn’t hold value. The bottom line: paying interest on a hobby is rarely a good idea.

Specials are current as of date of publishing.

 

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