When you’re planning a trip to the shore, you’ll want to invest in a packable beach chair for ultimate lounging by the seaside. A quality beach chair provides optimal comfort for a leisurely day enjoying the sun and sand, but can make traveling to and from the beach a hassle if it’s not packable and portable. To prevent unnecessary trouble, choose a chair designed for convenient use at the shore to ensure ease and portability on your upcoming adventure.
There are many options of beach chairs available on the market today, many of which offer the features you’ll need to keep comfortable at the shore. However, not all chairs are designed for ease in packing and portability. To help you navigate which is best for traveling, we’ve gathered this guide to the best packable chairs for the beach and how to choose which is right for you.
Here are 5 of the best portable beach chairs on the market:
Best Packable Beach Chair Reviewed
1. Rio Beach Folding Chair
The Rio Beach Chair comes in a bright, tropical design with a back height that’s ideal for ultimate lounging on the shore. It also includes the ability to recline into 4 different relaxing positions, and offers added protection with the Safe Adjust addition. Additionally, this beach chair includes a locking bracket to stop it from slanting or folding while it’s in use, and this also strengthens the seat frame for a stronger, sturdier, chair. Made from solid wood, the design of this beach gear is durable and ensures longevity for many beach trips to come.
In addition to a sturdy build and adjustable recline, this beach chair also offers protection for your valuables with a zippered pocket. It also features a convenient cup holder to store a drink for keeping you hydrated on the beach easily. At only 8 pounds, this seat is very easy to fold up and carry to and from the shore with ease.
The height of this chair is ideal for a variety of seating positions, including lounging stretched out with your feet in the ocean water. It’s also highly rated and reviewed for comfort, which is great for a long day, or vacation, spent relaxing on the shore. The lightweight and highly portable design also features convenient carrying handles for easy carrying to and from the beach.
2. Coleman Utopia Beach Chair
The Coleman Utopia Beach chair is a convenient and portable seating option that’s great for maximum comfort on the shore. It’s a compact chair that’s both lightweight and durable, making it ideal for marine environments. It also includes a convenient cup holder to keep your beverage within reach and out of the sand. Thanks to the fun and brightly colored design, this chair is easy to spot after a dip in the ocean or a game of frisbee on the beach.
Much like the Rio beach folding chair, this option sits low to the ground which makes it great for resting your feet in the water or sand. Although this beach chair doesn’t feature an adjustable recline, it has a comfortable and relaxed position that’s designed for lounging at the seaside. To keep valuables tucked away and safe, this chair also features a pocket on the backside for storage away from sand and water.
Weighing in at just over 6 pounds, this beach chair is lightweight and easy to carry to and from the beach. Although it’s light in weight, it’s a durable and supportive chair that can hold a maximum weight of up to 250 pounds. Additionally, this beach seating is highly rated and reviewed by many happy customers because of its convenience, portability and comfort for a leisurely day lounging on the shore.
3. Terralite Portable Beach Chair
The unique and unorthodox design to the Terralite portable beach chair is highly rated and reviewed by many happy customers. It’s a lightweight and highly portable chair that’s easy to carry to and from the shore, weighing in at only 2 pounds. The ultra compressed size of this beach chair and it’s sturdy and durable construction make it ideal for lounging in the sand and sun. Additionally, it can hold a maximum weight of up to 350 pounds.
As an added bonus, this beach chair features a machine washable fabric cover for easy washing and maintenance. It even includes a convenient storage bag for ultimate portability and ease in packing away. This chair not only offers a lightweight and durable design and construction, it’s also easy to set up with a simple fold and unfold design. The whole process takes only seconds, ensuring you have a hassle free and relaxing trip at the shore.
Although this beach chair has many positive design features, it is noted to sink into soft sand for heavy weight users. The rounded plastic feet are designed to prevent this sinking from happening, but with a high weight limit this can occur. These supportive feet are, however, changeable so you can purchase other feet for a better grip if you find this occurrence happening.
4. MOON LENCE Outdoor Ultralight Portable Chair
Taking an outdoor chair with you when you are hiking, camping at the beach, tailgating, or going to a concert is the best way to ensure that you always have a comfortable place to lounge. However, it isn’t always easy to find a chair that is both durable and lightweight, and that folds down into a portable and easy to carry piece of beach gear. This folding beach chair from MOON LENCE is a great option for anyone looking for a durable chair that will provide them a great place to sit, no matter where they want to go.
The ultra strong aluminum alloy frame of this packable chair is ideal for durability and longevity, ensuring it can join you for many beach trips to come. This strong frame helps to prevent damage to the chair legs during use, and will ensure that you get quality support throughout the day. The seat fabric on this beach chair is breathable and offers ample airflow on hot days, which adds to overall comfort while relaxing on the shore. Additionally, it’s high-quality mesh and 420D oxford fabric panels are designed for durability and easy maintenance.
Unlike some portable chairs products that can be difficult to transport once they are broken down, the MOON LENCE beach chair comes with a convenient carrying bag. This bag is large enough to comfortably fit the chair inside once broken down, but not so big that it adds unnecessary bulk while packing. Additionally, when broken down, this chair and carrying bag are small enough to fit into a beach bag or to be left in the trunk of a car for easy access on the go.
In addition to being durable and easy to transport, this chair has a unique ergonomic design that really sets it apart from other similar chairs on the market. Comfort is key when using a portable chair, and MOON LENCE has worked hard to ensure that their chair is as comfortable as it is durable, and easy to use. The seat design is unique in that it offers plenty of support during use, but is still comfortable enough to prevent back or neck pain when used for longer periods of time at the seaside.
5. Kijaro Coast Folding Beach Sling Chair with Cooler
At only 6 pounds, not only is this chair compact and lightweight enough to take on the go, but it is also incredibly durable. Thanks to the lightweight and solid frame, as well as the diamond ripstop polyester fabric, this chair is built to last and ensure your comfort for many relaxing days at the shore.
The ergonomic design of this durable beach chair provides ultimate comfort for lounging, which is ideal for long days in the sand and sun. It also comes with a detachable pillow, designed for easy resting and comfortable tanning. Additionally, the sling design of the seat is designed to conform to the shape of your body, and the arm rests provide plenty of support while lounging.
This beach chair also features 2 convenient mesh cup holders allowing users to keep a drink or their cell phone close at hand when relaxing by the ocean. It also includes a cooler on the arm of the chair, which is surprisingly easy to access and does a great job of keeping drinks and snacks cool. While it’s not large enough for storing food for the whole family, it can easily store items for the person using the chair.
The ballistic mesh fabric on the seat of this chair makes it incredibly breathable, and offers ample air flow on hot days. This feature ensures your comfort throughout a day at the shore. Additionally, the removable organizer pouch is both water resistant and highly portable to keep items safe and secure at all times. Because the pouch is removable, you can leave your chair marking your spot on the beach and bring your valuables conveniently with you for a walk down the shore.
Packable Beach Chairs Buyers Guide
Beach chairs have come a long way in their design, construction, functions and quality, which gives the consumer a large range of options. The process of choosing the top packable beach chair, to meet your individual needs, can easily become overwhelming and frustrating due to the large variety and choices.
To assist you in the process we have created this guide, focusing on the important features to consider in your search for a packable beach chair.
Quality and Durability
The design and construction of beach chairs can vary greatly. If you are looking for something that will be comfortable and last a long time the quality and durability should be a top priority. The following features should be factored in your decision:
- Steel frame chairs will provide you with the sturdiest options. The downside is they are heavier and are more likely to rust or corrode.
- Some steel chair options are made with rust resistant materials, usually a powder coating that protects the steel (if not scratched) from rusting.
- Aluminum frame chairs are much lighter than a steel frame.
- Most quality aluminum chairs are rust resistant and provide a sturdy and durable frame. There are some cheaper aluminum options, so do your research to make sure you’re getting a chair constructed with durable, rust proof materials.
- Some lower quality chairs are constructed with a plastic frame. Unless you are looking for something to use once or twice we would recommend avoiding this option.
- The seat and back fabric should be easy to clean, durable (rip resistant, quality stitching), breathable (comfortable, stays cool and drys quickly), and UV resistant (fading and deterioration).
Portability and Adjustability
Your search for a beach chair should include finding one that is easy to transport and provides various reclining positions.
Not only do you want your chair to be foldable but your chair should also be:
- Have comfortable, padded carrying straps
- Strap material, stitching and construction that is durable
- Easy to manage, freeing your hands to carry coolers, an umbrella or other items
A chair that has multiple reclining positions is also a desirable option. Some models offer a single position, others may have 2 or 3 and in some instances the chair may offer as many as 5 different position adjustments. Spending the day at the beach will offer times when you want to be sitting upright and others slightly reclined and even times when you want to be fully reclined, in a lying down position.
Most quality beach chairs have a weight capacity of around 250 to 300 pounds. For larger individuals there are beach chairs with higher weight capacities, some as much as 500 pounds.
You should always find the manufacturer's information regarding each chair's weight capacity. Exceeding the weight capacity for a chair is likely to cause it to fail and potentially injury the individual.
Additional Options and Features
Depending on the manufacturer, a variety of beach chairs come with some nice options you may want to consider:
- Hands Free Design: Chairs with straps, storage and that are foldable provide the ability to transport the chair strapped over your shoulder, allowing your hands to remain free. This is a great option that allows you to carry other items or hold the hand of a smaller child or just to more easily traverse the sandy beach.
- High Back: Make sure your chair has sufficient back and neck support for the individual(s) who will be using it.
- Padded Seat and Armrests: If you are looking for additional comfort features padding for your arms and seat are a nice option.
- Pillow: Some chairs come with a detachable pillow for additional support and comfort.
- Pockets: Ideal for storing items such as sunglasses, a phone, car keys, etc.
- Cooler: A few manufactures have added an insulated pocket or compartment to place drinks or other items to keep them cool.
- Cup holders: Placing your beverage in a holder rather than on the sandy beach will keep it cooler and keeps the sand from clinging to the container.
- Umbrella: Sunglasses only provide so much protection from the sun. An adjustable umbrella may be an option to consider.
- Foot rest: Some chairs are designed with a foot rest, allowing an individual to fully recline.
Taking the extra time and effort to do the research to ensure you have a high quality, durable, portable, and adjustable beach chair with a sufficient weight capacity is essential to ensure you have an enjoyable time at the beach. Adding a few options and features offered my manufacturers will only add to your enjoyment and satisfaction.
If you’re planning a trip to the shore, preparing ahead of time with the best beach gear ensures you’ll have the best time possible. Along with a beach canopy, sand-repellent towel, water shoes and more, choosing the best portable beach chair will provide you with maximum comfort by the seaside. To find the best seating or lounging option for you, use this guide to the 5 best options on the market and a ‘how to’ for choosing the right one for you.
Additionally, if you're looking for more traditional beach chairs, check out our top beach chair article here.
If this guide has helped get you one step closer to lounging on the shore, tell us about in the comment section below!
Megan Jones leads the editorial staff of Seaside Planet. They are a multidisciplinary team of outdoor adventurers, water sports lovers, and passionate beach goers. You can learn more about Meg and the rest of the editorial team here.