Renting vs Buying Snorkel Gear

Snorkeling the sparkling, blue waters of your favorite destination, in the company of beautiful reefs, rainbow colored fish, and other underwater aquatics, can be an exciting and life-altering experience. In fact, it is one of the main reasons many travelers go on vacation.

While preparing for your snorkeling excursion, you may wonder if is better to rent your snorkel gear once you arrive or to simply buy it. To help with your decision, take a look at some of the benefits and cons of both.

The benefits of renting snorkeling equipment:

The main benefit of renting snorkeling gear is that you don’t have to lug big, heavy equipment along with you on your trip. For instance, fins are especially large and can take up quite a bit of space in your luggage.

Another benefit of renting snorkeling gear vs buying it is that it comes at a cheaper price, which is especially beneficial for first time snorkelers who may never snorkel again, or often.

In addition, if you plan to take up snorkeling as a hobby, renting your gear provides the option to try out various equipment without paying a hefty price or being stuck with the wrong gear.

The cons of renting snorkeling equipment:

Though rental gear is sanitized often, the idea of using face masks and snorkels after someone else is enough to deter some people from renting. Furthermore, depending on the location and time of year, snorkel rentals may be busy, which means it might be harder to find a mask or other equipment that properly fits your face.

The quality of rental gear can also be an issue, as some rental places do not typically keep up with the latest in snorkeling gear. In addition, rental gear can be pretty banged up or scratched from multiple uses.

Lastly, if there are no snorkel gear rentals near the area where you are staying or plan to snorkel, it could mean taking extra time to search for one.

The benefits of buying snorkeling equipment:

The main benefit of having your own snorkel gear is that it eliminates the hassle of searching for the right gear or rental shop once you reach your destination.

Furthermore, buying your own snorkel gear means having equipment that fits you properly. It also provides the option of searching different shops for a variety of equipment at a price that fits your budget. Many sporting good stores offer a variety of budget-friendly equipment, which is just perfect for families and non-hobbyist snorkelers.

Sanitation concerns will also be eliminated because you are the only user; therefore, you are in control of rather the equipment is properly sanitized or not.

Lastly, owning your own gear means you have the freedom and versatility to snorkel anywhere and anytime you’d like as opposed to having to rely on tour groups.

The cons of buying snorkeling equipment:

The biggest issue with buying snorkel gear is that it can be expensive, which can be a hassle if you’re only planning to snorkel once.

Additionally, carrying your gear with you on trips also means having less space in your luggage, which could be used to transport other items.

How to Get the Best of Both Worlds:

When it comes to obtaining snorkel equipment, experts suggest not limiting yourself to just one or the other. Instead, they suggest purchasing your own snorkel and mask from a local snorkel shop, since they are fairly light, and renting your fins once you arrive at your destination.

In addition, having your own mask and snorkel means having equipment that fits your face properly and eliminates the issue of sanitation, which will help give you a peace of mind while snorkeling.

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