How Much Does It Cost to Surf?

So you went to the beach for a vacation this summer, and because you felt a little adventurous, you went ahead and signed up for a few surfing lessons. At the end of the packaged lessons, you think this could be a new hobby for you. Well, that's nice, but before you dive right in, you better get to know if this new hobby of yours will be expensive or not. 

Surfing Equipment You’ll Need

Surfing, like any sport there is, should be done with proper equipment. Although one may argue that in the beginnings of the sport itself, the Polynesians and the natives of Hawaii, who have passed down this surfing culture, did not use other equipment apart from their improvised surfboards at least.

Well, it could be said that that was before, and times are different now, where it's considered extremely dangerous to be ill-equipped. Here is a short list of equipment and their use that are suggested especially for beginners of this sport. 


Naturally, no one would not be able to surf the waves on his/her bare feet, that's why it is the most important equipment any surfer would need. 

Surfboard Leash

A surfboard leash is kind of a strong mesh of rope that prevents surfers from losing their surfboards, especially when they hop off their waves. It is suggested by professional and seasoned surfers to at least grab a surfboard leash that is almost the same length as your surfboard.

This helps give more freedom in movement, but it can also be dangerous in the sense that it can get tangled with the corals or with other underwater structures in cases of freak-nature accidents. 

Surf Wax

Okay, we don't want any profanity here, but to be fair and keep everyone informed, a surf wax is sometimes called s*x wax because of a well-known surf wax brand. The wax helps protect the surfboard from absorbing water in the long run, as the prototypes of the surfboard are made of wood. 


There was a time, somewhere in the past, when the fins on a surfboard were already made and attached to the board itself. That is not the case now. Most surfboards don't have fins of their own, and surfers, both new and seasoned, need to buy their fins separately now.

This is because the design of the modern fins now are patented designs and everyone who wants to enjoy them needs to pay a little extra for them.

Traction pad

This might be relatively odd, and some might even frown upon the idea of using such a thing, but a traction pad is a genius contraption fastened on the surfboard to ensure that the surfer puts his/her feet in the right place and position on the surfboard.

It comes in handy for beginners, those who give surfing lessons to tourists, and those who are simply not given the gift of balancing and self-awareness on the board. 


Some items that are optional and may be seasonal are the wetsuits, wetsuit booties, and the board bag. The wetsuits are always good when the weather is fairly cold, and the water is as well.

The wetsuit booties are chosen by those who feel that they need more traction on their boards to hold on better to it.

Lastly, the board bags are often seen as unnecessary by other surfers but if you think about it, most of the damage that a surfboard attains is not on the actual surfing on the water but on the loading, unloading, and storing of the surfboards where it gets banged on other surfaces, so yeah it might be something you might want to add in the future. 

How much does some surfing equipment cost? 

Any sports hobby will make you reach for your wallets and splurge on some much-needed equipment and favored accessories.  Here are some price ranges for the surfing equipment that you are eyeing right now.

A surfboard can fetch you around $700-$1200 depending on where and what shop you go to. As we said, the fins of a surfboard are a separate item already, which can cost about $90-$170.

Other items such as the leg leash or leg grope can go for $40-$90; a wetsuit alone can cost somewhere between $150-$600, but if you add other accessories like wetsuit booty, these go for $50-$150, a wetsuit hood costs $40-$90 approximately and to finish your wetsuit look, a pair of wetsuit gloves can be around $40-$90.

Other accessories like the surfboard wax are a little less pricey at $5 per single box. A surfboard bag can be around $90-$250, and if you're into it, you can also add a traction pad for better measure for just $50-$90. 

Okay, so if we say you try to add all those up, you will probably spend around $1300-$3000 just for a complete get-up.

Other Costs When It Comes to Surfing

Of course, apart from the much-needed equipment and accessories, other costs should be considered. One would be the cost of traveling from your home to the beach.

If you live in an area that has no easy access to the beach, you will cough up some money for gas for around $50 and even train, bus, or plane tickets with $50-$100 depending on where you are coming from, especially if you fancy going to tropical countries like Hawaii. 

You can cut some of these costs if you are passionate about surfing. You might consider living near the beach. If you have friends who also surf, you can also decide to go for the option of carpooling. This saves your money for gas, helps the environment with one less car on the road, and gives you company going to your surfing spot. A much-needed requirement, especially when surfing localism is rampant in the areas you're going to. 


The bottom line is that any sport, or any hobby for that matter, can cost a pretty buck. But if you're passionate about your chosen sport and other hobbies you will always find a way to spend wisely and enjoy the sport more because spending more money on more expensive types of equipment does not guarantee more enjoyable experiences in the sport itself.

James Davis

Written by James Davis

I'm a true California local, and I've spent my life riding the waves along our stunning coastline. Surfing has always been my greatest love, and in my writing, I try to capture its genuine essence. My words aim to transport you into the heart of the surf culture, where the ocean and surfers come together in perfect harmony.

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