Affordable Touring

At first glance, the 11 ‘6 Flight from Surfstar appears to clone the many inflatable SUP boards out there. It’s made for doing more touring than shorter boards, which is becoming more popular, but it does a few things differently. We’ve seen it at a pretty ridiculous discount on Amazon too.

Like the 10 ‘6 Flight, which surprised us and ended up on our top list of budget boards, the Surfstar Flight 11’6 does perform a little better than comparable boards. Stability and tracking on the water is impressive enough to thrust this inflatable toward the top of another category.

Our Overall Review

We have thoroughly tested - and read reviews from other experts and users. In summary, this is what we think:

4.7

Things we like:

  • check-mark
    Very light and transport-friendly
  • check-mark
    Easy to pack out and pack into the backpack
  • check-mark
    Tracking is better than most comparable boards
  • check-mark
    Good value vis-a-vis price and performance
  • check-mark
    Good entry-level board for expeditions or touring
  • check-mark
    Capacity means it can easily be used as a tandem ride for just fun on the water

Things we don't like:

  • check-markSingle chamber pump

Where to buy:

Surfstar Flight 11 6 Product Image

Surfstar Flight 11’6

Specs & Features

  • Best Suited For: Beginners, Entry-level touring
  • Dimensions: 11’6 x 33’’ x 6’’
  • Weight: 18.8 lbs
  • Capacity: 300 lbs
  • Paddle: Aluminum shaft, Nylon Blade
  • Pump: Single Chamber
See the complete list of the best Paddle Boards here!

 Overview

For more enthusiastic beginners, the Surfstar Flight 11 ‘6 makes a great entry-level paddle board for touring. For more experienced paddlers, this model is also interesting because it’s so light and portable.

On stability, there’s no question that a double chamber board like the Cruise Carbon 12 from Bluefin has more stability and rigidity in general. It’s also entirely in another price class. Still, the more the Flight 11’6 reminds a little of more premium boards like the Meno 12’6 from Gili both in terms of tracking and touring fun.

To be clear, the Meno outperforms on most metrics. On some simple back-step turns, the Flight 11’6 is less stable–consistent with its more budget board profile. But paddlers with a bit of experience or looking to gain some won’t find this too problematic–they might even like the challenge.

This board comes with a front cargo section for gear, 4 grab handles and the standard EVA foam pad with the expected level of grip and coverage. The pump is underwhelming, but totally functional.

In short, as the review will outline in more detail, the Flight 11’6 is an impressive board for SUP paddlers interested in doing a little more on a paddle board than just floating and paddling in circles.

It’s easily one of the best entry-level touring boards that also has an amazing all rounder quality that a lot of people will appreciate.

Surfstar Flight 11 6 Flat Lay On Dock

Accessories

Like the Flight 10 ‘6, Surfstar’s Flight 11’6 has an adjustable aluminum paddle, manual single chamber pump, coiled ankle leash, detachable fin, and a small waterproof bag that can all be stored in an understrap backpack along with the board.

Paddle: The included aluminum paddle is lightweight, although not as rigid or durable as for example, the Kialoa Uhane 91 Fiberglass— it does the job if you are looking to tour casual waterways with your paddleboard recreationally. Weight won’t be much of a concern if you know you aren’t going to be visiting the docks or pier often, but if you’re planning to go to some incredible lengths and sights with this board, we suggest upgrading to a more durable, and lightweight paddle to help with conserving your energy.

Leash: The coiled ankle leash is a 7mm thick urethane cord and is equipped with marine-grade swivels on both ends to prevent tangles.

Pump: This kit comes with a single chamber pump, so given the dimensions of this board, you’ll find yourself having to tirelessly inflate your board before you can begin exploring. While we’d expect a single chamber pump to come included with a shorter board, a double chamber would’ve been a great move on Surfstar’s part. We recommend upgrading to a dual chamber, or electric pump.

Repair Kit: They include a typical repair kit containing 2-3 PVC sheets and a valve wrench.

Backpack: We like that the backpack holds up to 127 L of objects, and has an understrap as well as a hipbelt adding to the kit’s ease of portability. We’re just a bit confused as to why they tout the airmesh feature— if you were to walk with the entire kit (and possibly more) on your back, it may result in some chafing, especially if you plan to go shirtless.

Surfstar Flight 11 6 Accessories

Stability

Offering 33 inches in width, paddlers will find that the Flight 11 ‘6 provides a steady, stable ride, ideal for relaxed excursions out with friends or family.

As mentioned above, this board’s tracking on the water is impressive, which means taking a step back for turns is nice to be able to do. For doing this, the Flight 11’6 isn’t as stable as Bote’s Aero Ultra or the aforementioned favorites Cruise Carbon 12 & Gili Meno 12’6.

It’s a nice compromise, consider the Flight is lighter and more portable than those more expensive, more stable SUP boards.

Surfstar Flight 11 6 Side View Nicolai

Maneuverability

In the context of touring boards in this budget range, we would consider this board to be a good contender when it comes to maneuverability. All touring boards are generally slower to turn, but due to this board’s weight at 18.8 lbs, it will be a shade easier to turn and find your way around other paddlers, docks, and piers.

Surfstar Flight 11 6 Maneuverability

Portability

Convenience is perhaps the Flight 11’6’s biggest win, being ever so slightly lighter than some budget paddle boards such as the Nautical 11’6, which weighs 22 lbs. It also sports 4 grab handles to easily take this board out on the water after you inflate it. If you are looking to buy an extra paddle board for your kids or plan to store it in your car for impromptu paddle adventures, we gather the Flight 11’ 6 is a good route to paddle down into.

The backpack presents nothing special enough to write home about, but it works well enough. Especially given the light load of just over 23 pounds when fully packed with the included accessories.

Surfstar Flight 11 6 Torben Lifting Paddleboard
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Surfstar Flight 11 6 Backpack Case Worn By Bradley
2/2

Value

For those who have yet to dip their toes into the world of iSUPs and enthusiastic beginners alike, we honestly think this is a great opportunity to finally wade into paddle board touring at the price point this board is floating at.

The quality of the board will ensure it lasts and the money saved might inspire you to invest in a better paddle to upgrade the touring experience.

Surfstar Flight 11 6 Flat Lay On Dock

Conclusion

If you are looking to paddle along coastlines, through lakes, and in between river canals, the Flight 11 ‘6 is an excellent choice and is recommended for beginners who are working their way up to an intermediate level. Experienced paddlers who want a spare board for friends, or want the convenience an inflatable offers, will also enjoy this board’s portability.

Given this board’s maximum weight capacity of 300 lbs, heavier riders will feel comfortable on this board, and it’s ideal for quick tandem trips with pets, friends, or family. There is only one cargo section on the front of this board, however.

Launching this board will be also easy with 4 grab handles, and the D-ring on the underside of the nose will allow you to tow or tie your board.

Some accessories you might want to consider upgrading are the kit’s paddle and pump. They’ll do the job, but it’s just not as convenient as an electric pump, or as lightweight as a fiberglass paddle.

Although the Flight 11 ‘6 is stable and spacious enough for aspiring anglers and fearless yogis, you might want to consider an all-around board such as the Flight 10’ 6 or Advance Star 10 ‘6. Both the Flight 10 ‘6 and Advance Star 10’ 6 offer two bungee cargo areas, and more importantly, an extra 20 lbs in terms of maximum weight capacity. The Advance Star 10’6 also has a nifty action mount that you can attach to your GoPro, or a fishing rod holder.

If you are looking for an affordable touring board to steadily take you over calm waters and intend to use this board to develop your skills, the SurfStar Flight 11 ‘6 is a great starting point.

Related Reviews

Our Overall Review

We have thoroughly tested - and read reviews from other experts and users. In summary, this is what we think:

4.7

Things we like:

  • check-mark
    Very light and transport-friendly
  • check-mark
    Easy to pack out and pack into the backpack
  • check-mark
    Tracking is better than most comparable boards
  • check-mark
    Good value vis-a-vis price and performance
  • check-mark
    Good entry-level board for expeditions or touring
  • check-mark
    Capacity means it can easily be used as a tandem ride for just fun on the water

Things we don't like:

  • check-markSingle chamber pump

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FAQ

Frequently asked questions about Surfstar Flight 11’6

What is a good inflatable touring paddleboard?

Inflatable SUPs for touring can be quite expensive. For beginners, there are some budget options that are surprisingly satisfying. Even for more experienced paddlers. Look to spend between $350 to $800 for a touring paddleboard. This guide to the best touring boards provide some really good models for beginners and intermediates.

How much are inflatable paddle boards?

Hard SUPs cost more than inflatable paddle boards. Inflatable SUPs can be quite cheap, around $250, or quite expensive at more than $1000. Price doesn’t always represent the quality of a SUP.

The Bluefin CC12 premium board is a $700-package that includes a kayak attachment. A Surfstar Advance All Round 10’6 is a budget board with a great paddle that costs $300. The former is great for touring and the latter is a highly portable and fun entry-level.

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