Is Surfing an Expensive Hobby? (It Depends..)

Surfing is one of the carefree hobbies linked with relaxation and enjoying nature.

However, if you seek to get into surfing as a hobby, you probably wonder whether it is expensive or not.

So, Is Surfing an Expensive Hobby?

Yes and no! Surfing is not an expensive hobby if you live near a beach that has perfect waves for the hobby. In this case, you will only need a surfing board, shorts, and a few lessons to get started, which costs approximately $600 to $800. On the other hand, surfing can be expensive if you don’t live near a perfect surfing beach. In this case, you will need to regularly travel to the beach or live near the beach, which means costly real estate and purchasing a quiver of boards.

What Is the Cost of a Surfboard?

Generally, a beginner surfboard might cost around $300 to $1000.

You don’t have to buy an expensive brand name or professional surfboard when starting the hobby.

Over time, you may find out that surfing is not for you, so don’t spend a lot of money when starting.

You can buy it as you go on to gain experience and skills.

Save your cash until you decide to take surfing more seriously and even become a professional.

Keep in mind that larger surfboards are better when starting out.

What Is the Cost of a Wetsuit?

Once you have your surfboard, the only other thing you really need is a good wetsuit.

Most wetsuits go for about $100 to $300 unless you are going way out of your way to getting an ultra-high-performance suit.

Ensure you buy a wetsuit that you can afford and within your budget. You might find out that you might not even require one.

Instead, you can wear various rash gear or board shorts.

This will save you some money from purchasing a wetsuit because it is economical.

But if you are planning to surf in cold water, you will want to keep warm as much as possible. A wetsuit will allow you to stay in the water for longer without freezing.

What Is the Cost of Surfing Lessons?

The average cost of a surfing lesson is anywhere between $25 to $100 based on where you are surfing and the popularity of the surf school.

Surf lessons in smaller, less popular areas go for between $10 to $20 for 1 to 2 hours.

In bigger and highly popular areas, you might pay up to $20 to $80 per hour.

There are surf shops that offer free surfing lessons as a part of their promotion to get you to purchase some of the equipment afterward.

A surfing lesson normally lasts 1 to 2 hours.

Based on the lesson you get, you may get a half-day or full-day instruction.

You might need to have your own surfboard and wetsuit during the lesson, but most surf schools offer the equipment you can use.

In some cases, the lesson’s cost includes renting a surfboard and wetsuit, so ensure you know what is entailed in the lesson cost and all your needs are met.

The Cost of Additional Surfing Equipment

Now that you have your surfboard and your wetsuit, you probably wonder if you might need other equipment.

Other equipment that you might need for surfing include surfboard wax, a leash, and a traction pad for maintained grip. Any other surfing equipment will be optional.

Fortunately, when it comes to the cost of this equipment, they are very affordable besides the surfboard and wetsuit. Board wax is ridiculously cheap, considering how useful it is.

Some surfers spend a lot of cash on their lifestyle.

When starting, it is recommendable to treat surfing as a hobby.

As you learn and enhance your skills, you can make it your lifestyle.

Surfing as a hobby can be cheap or expensive, depending on how devoted you are to it.

You may spend about $600-$700 on new surfing gear. Some surfers consider participating in surfing competitions to help fund the costly lifestyle.

How Much Is Renting a Surfboard?

If you consider renting a surfboard before you can buy your own, there are lots of options for you.

The cost of renting a surfboard varies significantly in various locations and seasons, but it mostly ranges to about $30 a day.

Generally, you can expect to pay about $10 to $20 for 1-2 hours, $20 to $30 for 4 hours to half a day, and $30 to $50 for an entire day.

In many cases, you are needed to pay the whole full cash payment at the pickup time for any surf equipment you wish to rent.

Overnight surfboard rentals are not common except if you are on a weekly rental or have a special arrangement with the dealer.

Most importantly, always return your rented surfboard on time. Therefore, ensure you plan the session wisely, including the time you need to return to the pickup and drop-off service or shop.

How Expensive Is Travelling For Your Surfing Hobby?

One factor that influences how expensive surfing is for you is traveling cost.

The most expensive part of surfing is traveling on a surf trip by flight.

Airlines charge a fee for surfboards as they need special handling.

The boards are relatively large, with an odd shape, making them more challenging to fit in the aircraft belly among the other standard baggage.

Surfboards are more fragile and cumbersome than other sporting equipment hence need special handling. This is why airplanes charge extra fees for surfboards.

Although it is worth it, airlines such as American Airlines charge about $150 per board.

Therefore, depending on the number of boards you travel with, the surfboard costs can be extremely expensive. Delta charges $200 per board for long-distance flights.

Some surfboards are longboards running for 9ft or more and won’t fly with many aircraft carriers.

However, common shortboards are around six feet long, within the normal size limit for sports equipment.

While the surfing board is wider, it has a relatively similar length as alpine skis, which most airlines fly for free.

What Is the Cost of Beach Parking?

Every beach has different rules for public parking.

Some of the beaches are operated by the city where they are located; some are a part of the County Park system, while others are part of the State Parks system.

When it comes to the parking cost, some beaches charge hourly, others have a flat day fee, and others charge with a stamped ticket. However, around $10 a day is a fair cost.

As a surfer, you should consider looking for flat rate parking because you are unsure how long it will take to get in there, catch quality waves, etc.

The cost can accumulate relatively fast if you go surfing regularly. Still, ten dollars a day is a good standard you should be looking for when you need to park at the beach.

Bottom Line

So that’s it! Whether surfing is expensive will depend on what is expensive to you.

However, the accompanying costs are relatively low compared to many other hobbies.

You will need to spend a few hundred dollars to get what you need to start surfing as a hobby, but once you get a wetsuit and aboard, all you will need to pay is the traveling cost to your nearest surfing beach.

Happy surfing!

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