It’s no secret that inflatable hot tubs have become increasingly popular over the last 5-7 years. In fact, they are the largest growing segment in the industry but what are the pros and cons of owning an inflatable versus a traditional, portable hot tub? Many industry professionals don’t even consider inflatables as a “real” hot tub. They are kind of the laughing stock of the industry but they are profitable and a growth trend that cannot be ignored for retailers and manufacturers wanting to cash in on all the rage.
The three biggest reasons inflatable hot tubs appeal to consumers is price, portability, and convenience. Let’s touch on these three things for a moment.
Price: Most inflatable hot tubs retail between $300-$1000 with the majority of the them going for around $500. Compare that with your cheapest traditional hot tub at $3000-4000 and you’ve got a convincing argument especially for those who simply cannot afford a traditional hot tub.
Portability: Portability is paramount in EVERY way when it comes to an inflatable hot tub. Although traditional spas are considered portable, they weigh between 300 – 1000 lbs and they are large, rigid, and awkward to move. Inflatables are between 50 – 125 lbs and can be deflated and placed into a box for easy transport or shipping. Inflatables can also be placed in areas such as second story decks, rooftops, balconies, condos, apartments, campsites, RV parks, vacations homes, basements, and many other difficult to reach locations that may otherwise require a crane or professional delivery crew were it a traditional hot tub. For some buyers, the portability factor can be the primary motivation for purchasing an inflatable even if they can afford a traditional hot tub.
Convenience: Aside for portability, convenience is another benefit of inflatables. They can be deflated, packed up, and put away in a garage or storage for seasonal usage. They also operate on a 110v electrical connection which means they are plug and play on any 110v/15amp outlet. Although traditional hot tubs are available in 110v versions, most of the traditional hot tubs sold are 220v/50amp models that offers more luxurious features and better therapeutic performance.
Here’s a list of the more popular inflatable hot tub brands and best selling models. Currently, there are three distinct shapes available with round inflatables hot tubs being the most prevalant. There are square inflatable hot tubs and oval inflatable hot tubs too.
- Intex Inflatable Hot Tubs
- Pure Spa 77
- PureSpa 85
- PureSpa Octagonal Inflatable Hot Tub
- Coleman Inflatable Hot Tubs
- Bestway Inflatable Hot Tubs
- SaluSpa Miami
- SaluSpa Hawaii
- SaluSpa Paris
- SaluSpa Palm Springs
- SaluSpa Siena
- GoPlus Inflatable Hot Tubs
- Costway Inflatable Hot Tubs
- M-Spa Inflatable Hot Tubs
- Soho Premium
- Lite Silver Cloud
- Luxury Exotic Crocodile Skin Pattern
- Elite Baikal
- Realtree Inflatable Hot Tubs
- SaluSpa Max-5
- Aleko Inflatable Hot Tubs
- Comfort Line Inflatable Hot Tubs
- Gymax Inflatable Hot Tubs
If you are considering going down the path of an inflatable hot tub then we would highly recommend going with one of the more premium versions that have hydrotherapy jets (water jets) and not just bubble jets (air jets). The hydrotherapy water jets are going to provide much better therapeutic benefits and massage. Bubble jets or air jets provide almost no therapeutic benefits and cool down the spa by pulling in cold air, making the hot tub less energy efficient.
As a hot tub enthusiast website, HTI will always promote quality, performance, comfort, and health benefits which is why we will always favor a traditional, portable hot tub as we believe they deliver the best overall hot tubbing experience. However, we do believe their is a place in the market for inflatables as they serve a purpose for many consumers that may otherwise be precluded from purchasing a more traditional hot tub.