The 14 Best Beach Chairs of 2022, Tested and Reviewed

The winner is the Homevative Folding Backpack Beach Chair with 5 Positions

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Home Innovative Folding Backpack Beach Chair

The Spruce / Ivy Ford

Unless you enjoy bringing beach sand home in your swimsuit, a quality beach chair is essential for making the most of your seaside excursions. We researched and real-world tested some of the top beach chairs available online. Our testers hauled selected models to some of the most popular U.S. beaches, evaluating portability, comfort, and added features.

Our best overall pick, the Homevative Folding Backpack Beach Chair with 5 Positions, has backpack straps for hands-free portability, and its durable aluminum frame with multiple recline positions can hold up to 250 pounds. "I took this product with me on a beach day in Malibu," said our tester, who also invited her friends to try it out. "They all gave it a thumbs-up for comfort."

Based on our testing, here are the best beach chairs.

Our Top Picks

Best Overall: Homevative Folding Backpack Beach Chair

4.9
Homevative Folding Backpack Chair

Walmart

What We Like
  • Easy to carry

  • Lightweight

  • Plenty of storage

  • Multiple positions

What We Don't Like
  • A little pricey

Easily earning our top spot, this was a breeze to bring to the beach! The dual straps allowed our home tester to carry the aluminum-frame chair, which has four color options, like a backpack, enabling her to use her hands to tote other items. We also appreciated the abundant storage: a removable pillow you can adjust with Velcro straps, a rear-mesh insulated cooler pouch, a covered cup/phone holder right by your side, and a little plastic gadget holder. “I looped my hat's drawstring onto it when I wasn't using it so it wouldn't blow away,” reported our tester, who used a ton of them growing up by a beach in Florida. “Clutch!”

After setting up the chair, you’re treated to a relaxing afternoon. Its 19-inch seating width supports up to 250 pounds. (We found the fabric easy to clean with mild soap and water.) The chair’s legs glide in and out, and you can recline all the way back; a safety hinge snap-locks the chair when it’s fully open. If you want another position, you can opt to lie flat using the rear towel bar. And when it’s time to head home, just fold it up to its small footprint to take up little space in your vehicle’s trunk. 

“It's a little pricey,” our tester observed, “but well worth the investment for an easily transportable and maneuverable chair with some nice extras.” 

Price at time of publish: $70

Dimensions: 17 x 25 x 33 inches | Weight: 8 pounds | Weight Capacity: 240 pounds | Material: Aluminum and fabric | Colors: Blue, yellow and blue, green and blue, red, blue and white | Carrying Strap: Yes | Cup Holder: Yes

Best for Sporting Events: Oniva Picnic Time Portable Folding Sports Chair

4.6
Oniva Picnic Time Portable Folding Sports Chair

Amazon

What We Like
  • Lightweight

  • Fold-out table

  • Bountiful armrest storage

  • Lifetime warranty

What We Don't Like
  • Doesn’t recline

  • Can be tough to fold up

While the manufacturer positions this lightweight outdoor folding chair as something to sit in while cheering for your kids at their soccer games, our at-home tester agreed it would sit well on a beach outing as well. “It’s modestly comfortable for a beach chair,” she reported, but noted that it doesn’t recline, so the seating option is limited to a single upright position, “which doesn’t really scream beach-time relaxation or mid-afternoon cat-napping.” However, if your beach outing consists of playing mah-jongg or cards, this chair should suit you well.

With an aluminum frame, the chair, available in eight colors, is lightweight and portable, with an adjustable shoulder strap. But our tester found carrying the chair with two mesh handles more agreeable, as the chair hung very low on her shoulder, lightly bumping part of her hip and legs with each step. “Honestly, it’s just as easy to clutch the two short mesh handles with one hand and ditch the shoulder strap option,” she said.

She appreciated the 19-inch seat, made of durable polyester canvas, which supports up to 300 pounds, according to the manufacturer. But what really captured her enthusiasm was the chair’s extra features, namely a fold-out table. “The table is sturdy and awesome for books, food, or really anything you’d use a small table for,” she said. She also called attention to the hanging armrest caddy for holding an array of things such as a phone, book, and sunscreen; two insulated beverage pockets; and other pockets.

If your beach outing involves lounging or sunbathing, this chair may not be for you, given its lack of recline or coziness. On the other hand, our tester noted: “My husband, who plays cards, uh, anywhere, might like this for some beach poker, where you need to sit upright.”

Price at time of publish: $152

Dimensions: 19 x 24 x 33 inches | Weight: 9.5 pounds | Weight Capacity: 300 pounds | Material: Aluminum and polyester | Colors: Black, green, moka, navy, pink, purple, red, St. Topaz | Carrying Strap: Yes | Cup Holder: Yes

Best Comfortable: RIO Beach 4-Position Lace-Up Backpack Folding Beach Chair

4.8
Rio Folding Beach Chair

Amazon

What We Like
  • Lightweight

  • Four-position recline

  • Adjustable pillow

  • Backpack-style transport

What We Don't Like
  • Hard to open initially

The best beach chair is one that marries form, function, and comfort. The flexible suspension of the RIO Beach 4-Position Backpack Lace Up Folding Beach Chair is designed to conform to your body, offering the most comfortable support while lounging. "It was super comfortable to take a nap in!" our tester reported after an outing in Malibu, California. This chair also has a four-position recline and an adjustable pillow. "I love the pillow on the back of the chair!" enthused our tester, who found the seat itself quite comfortable even after sitting for a long time. 

At just 8 pounds, the lightweight and rustproof aluminum frame is far easier to carry than other beach chair designs. The padded, adjustable straps also help. “It was super easy to carry and lightweight," our tester reported. "The straps are comfortable and evenly distribute the weight of the chair." A large storage pouch on the back allows you to carry all your essentials; plus, a cup holder keeps your beverage of choice close by and free from sand. 

While this pick is a little difficult to open for the first time, its multi-faceted design makes it worth the splurge, especially since it can last for several beach seasons.

Price at time of publish: $64

Dimensions: 28.33 x 3.33 x 24.39 inches | Weight: 8 pounds | Weight Capacity: 240 pounds | Material: Aluminum and Fabric | Color: Multi-stripe | Carrying Strap: Yes | Cup Holder: Yes

Best Budget: Kijaro Coast Folding Beach Sling Chair with Cooler

4.7
 Kijaro Coast Folding Beach Sling Chair with Cooler

Amazon

What We Like
  • Sturdy seat

  • High off the ground

  • Many accessories

  • Built-in cooler

What We Don't Like
  • Detachable pillow

These types of beach chairs aren’t for everyone because their seats can sag too low for some folks. But we found the Kijaro Coast Folding Beach Sling Chair, with a seat made from what the manufacturer calls “diamond ripstop polyester fabric,” remarkably comfortable. “No complaints,” our tester reported. “It’s high enough off the ground that I'm sitting comfortably and low enough that I can recline nicely.” 

The Kijaro is equipped with just about everything you’d expect from a beach chair: two mesh cup holders, a water-resistant detachable accessory organizer, and a built-in cooler. Its detachable pillow didn’t appeal to our tester, however. “It makes a big difference in how easily I could nap,” he reported. When you’re ready to head home, the chair collapses neatly into its lightweight compact bag. The chair itself is equally lightweight at under 7 pounds.

This product isn’t an elaborate recliner, but it’s not minimalist either. If that works for your recreation needs, this chair is a great choice.

Price at time of publish: $75

Dimensions: 29 x 33 x 33.8 inches | Weight: 6.6 pounds | Weight Capacity: 300 pounds | Material: Metal and textile | Colors: Fiji Sunset Orange, Haleakala Sunrise Yellow, Hanami Pink, Ionian Turquoise, Maldives Blue | Carrying Strap: Yes | Cup Holder: Yes

 Kijaro Coast Folding Beach Sling Chair with Cooler tested

The Spruce/Max Goldberg

Best for Drinks: Tommy Bahama Backpack Beach Chair

4.8
Tommy Bahama Backpack Beach Chair

Amazon

What We Like
  • Insulated cooler pockets

  • Roomy additional storage

  • Comfortable carrying straps

  • Five reclining positions

What We Don't Like
  • Confusing locking/unlocking mechanism

Tommy Bahama has a reputation for being somewhat of a standard for beach chairs, and this one does not disappoint. What distinguishes this aluminum-and-fabric chair is its insulated zippered cooler pocket, one of two very roomy storage containers on the back. The other is large enough to carry sunscreen, hats, books, and most anything else you want to bring to the beach. “It almost makes it like an actual backpack if you use the pockets to store the things you would normally bring to the beach,” our tester enthused. “My Kindle even fit in one of the pockets!”

The backpack straps are lightly padded and fairly comfortable. “You definitely feel the bars of the chair in your back,” our tester noted, “but it's not that bothersome, and the chair is light enough that it doesn't feel cumbersome wearing it while walking across sand.” The handle on top of the chair helps with transporting it. 

The chair is equipped with a locking tab to keep it open—which we discovered by accident. “You have to open it until the plastic locks into place,” our tester acknowledged, “or else you might sit in the chair and just fall over—as I did!” To close the chair, you pop the locks apart first. We found it easier to adjust the seat back to its five reclining positions, including lying flat. We also appreciated the plastic arms. They may strike some as lower quality compared with wood, as on other Tommy Bahama models, but plastic shouldn’t discolor and show wear, as wood can. 

Price at time of publish: $89

Dimensions: 4 x 24 x 27 inches | Weight: 8 pounds | Weight Capacity: 300 pounds | Materials: Aluminum and fabric | Colors: Blue, Sailfish and Palms, Tropical Sunset, multi-color | Carrying Strap: Yes | Cup Holder: Yes

Tommy Bahama Backpack Beach Chair tested

The Spruce/Karen Chen

Best Portable: Pacific Breeze Lounger

4.7
Pacific Breeze Lounger

Amazon

What We Like
  • Comfortable on the sand

  • Lightest weight 

  • Backpack-style straps

  • Large zippered storage pocket

  • Comes as a two-pack

What We Don't Like
  • Folding/unfolding takes practice

OK, so this isn’t a chair; it’s a long mat that has a propped-up back, so you can relax on the sand without needing to lie prone, like a blanket. And you might believe that, like a blanket, there’s little between you and the sand. But we found the Pacific Breeze Lounger surprisingly comfortable. “The padding is great,” our tester enthused. And being so minimalist, it was the easiest of our tested products to tote around.

In particular, we found the backpack-style straps to be an extremely useful feature. “They weren't the most comfortable straps in the world,” our tester acknowledged, “but still a cool feature to carry it and free up both hands and not worry about a shoulder strap sliding off while huffing all your other beach stuff.” You can stow that other stuff in the product’s large zipper pocket.

Despite the frame made of steel, which is usually heavier than aluminum, as are most of our tested chairs, the Pacific Breeze Lounger seemed lighter to us because most of it is fabric. Indeed, its 6-pound weight easily made it our lightest model. Plus, it folds up to slightly over 2 feet tall and under 22 inches wide. We did note a bit of a learning curve in getting the straps off the chair to unfold it and then fold it back up. It was worth the cognitive investment, especially since the price gets you a two-pack of this innovative beach product.

Price at time of publish: $124 (two-pack)

Dimensions: 74.8 x 21 x 27.5 inches | Weight: 6 pounds | Weight Capacity: Not listed | Material: Alloy steel and fabric | Colors: Blue/green | Carrying Strap: Yes | Cup Holder: No

Pacific Breeze Lounger tested

The Spruce/Nathaniel Allen

Best Low-Profile: Life is Good Beach Chair

4.4
Life is Good Beach Chair

Amazon

What We Like
  • Above-the-sand seat

  • Wide arms

  • Two oversize cup holders

  • Five-position backrest

What We Don't Like
  • Somewhat unwieldy to carry

  • Unfolding takes practice

As with other beach chairs we recommend, the Life Is Good Beach Chair has adjustable back straps to make for easy carrying. “You do free up your hands for carrying food and other beach goods,” our tester confirmed about this sturdy chair, with its oversize seat and 300-pound weight capacity. “My fiance had her purse hanging from her shoulder and a bag of food in her right hand while carrying this.” On the other hand, we noted that this makes for a wide load; it was tricky to maneuver its 12 pounds between cars in the parking lot. We also found that walking with this chair on our back took up most of the boardwalk bike lane.

However, all that negativity vanished once our low-chair fan opened the chair and had a seat. “I feel like a lot of low-quality chairs are too low or will use fabric that stretches, and your butt just ends up touching the sand for a lumpy seating experience,” he said. “But the height on this chair was perfect—you still had a little gap between the bottom of the seat and the sand.” We also appreciate the head cushion, the wide back and arms with an oversize cup holder on each, and the five-position backrest. “I like the convenience of being able to easily adjust the backrest level from a seat to a bed and every angle in between,” our tester said. “You can easily extend the fold to nearly horizontal for a nice tanning experience.” A tiny red latch keeps the chair in the folded position.

The price is a little on the high side, it does take some practice to walk evenly with the chair on your back, and we had a little trouble finding the locking latch so we could fold out the chair. All that aside, the Life Is Good Beach Chair maintains a high profile among low-profile beach chairs. 

Price at time of publish: $120

Dimensions: 26.18 x 28.94 x 33.07 inches | Weight: 12 pounds | Weight Capacity: 300 pounds | Material: Aluminum and polyester | Colors: Blue Turtle, Daisy Yellow, Green Sun, Jake Blue, Orange Daisy, Rocket Green | Carrying Strap: Yes | Cup Holder: Yes 

Life is Good Beach Chair tested

The Spruce/Cameron Silva

Best for Kids: Baby Delight Go with Me Chair

4.7
Baby Delight Go With Me Chair

Courtesy of Amazon

What We Like
  • Multiple configurations

  • Sun canopy

  • Removable snack trap

  • Carry bag

What We Don't Like
  • Expensive

  • Shade folds with difficulty

When it comes to children’s beach chairs, you can’t beat this option. Though it may not have the visual appeal of the classic beach chair, it’s so much more functional—plus, it’s suitable for a wide range of other outdoor adventures, from camping to sporting events.

The chair grows with your child until they’re ready for an adult beach chair since it’s suitable for babies as young as 3 months and kids weighing up to 75 pounds. While your little one is still young, the five-point removable harness keeps them nice and secure. Then, as your child grows, the seat morphs to reveal two leg holes perfect for letting baby stand with support. Once your child is a bit bigger, convert the chair back into a regular seat—sans harness. 

Additional features include a removable snack tray for bites and meals on the go, a sun canopy for extra protection, and a carry bag to make transport a breeze. On the downside, we noted that the shade is very difficult to fold up, and the snack tray is difficult to get on and off. Nevertheless, our tester gave this chair a solid endorsement. "My son seemed to like it!" she said. "The tray helped to keep him seated for nearly a half hour while he ate his lunch at the beach." 

Price at time of publish: $80

Dimensions: 23 x 23 x 25 inches | Weight: 6 pounds | Weight Capacity: 75-pound child | Material: Polyester fabric | Color: Gray, pink, teal, Moss Bud | Carrying Strap: No | Cup Holder: Yes

Baby Delight Go With Me Chair

The Spruce/Cassie Aulie

Best Face-Down: Ostrich On Your Back Beach Chair

4.6
Ostrich On Your Back Beach Chair

Amazon

What We Like
  • Designed for lying face-down

  • Arm holes are a nice touch

  • Roomy and supportive

  • Plush, well-positioned headrest

What We Don't Like
  • Not for all body types

  • Unstable cup holder

There is no easy way to lie prone on a beach chair so you can get the sun on your back while reading a book. You’re bound to have to make a Hobson’s choice between peering through slats or leaning over far enough so the frame doesn’t impact your head. That’s why face-down chairs, like this curiously named Ostrich On Your Back Chair, are becoming more popular. Like a massage chair, you position your head within a hole in the fabric. Presto! 

“The hole for your face is an awesome idea and was mostly comfortable,” our tester reported. We also appreciated the distinctive arm slots: When you poke your arms through, you get easy access to whatever you’re reading. But our tester had reservations about the design, such as the face hole being too wide for someone with a narrower head, a taller person who might need their legs to be better propped above the sand, and the cup holder possibly being more stable. (Our tester’s drink spilled out when she lay face-down.) 

Lying belly toward the sun, however, we found the Ostrich extremely roomy and supportive, with just the right amount of give to make you feel cushioned. “The headrest was the perfect width for my neck,” our tester also reported, “and also felt plush while still holding my head up properly.” The backpack straps are also made for easy transport, even though the chair weighs just under 11 pounds.

In total, we found the Ostrich On Your Back Chair significantly more comfortable than other beach chairs we’ve tested. It's wide and tall, the headrest is perfect when you're on your back, and the arm slots are a great touch. It could be even better with some tweaks to the design. But if you don't want to carry a full-size recliner with a footrest to the beach, this is about as comfortable as you can get. 

Price at time of publish: $85

Dimensions: 34.06 x 3.94 x 27.56 inches | Weight: 10.5 pounds | Weight Capacity: 275 pounds | Material: Alloy steel, fabric | Colors: Blue, green, pink, red, striped, teal | Carrying Strap: Yes | Cup Holder: Yes

Best Splurge: Ostrich 3 N 1 Beach Chair/Lounger

Ostrich 3 N 1 Beach Chair

Courtesy of Amazon

What We Like
  • Multiple positions

  • Shoulder strap

  • Lightweight

What We Don't Like
  • Expensive

To maximize your beach day as a day of relaxation and TLC by the beach or a pool, consider this chair, which easily converts into a seat that more closely resembles a pool lounger. Our tester sat in the chair for over two hours at the beach and tried all its various reclining positions, including the massage-like head/face hole. The chair's side slits function as arm slots, so you can comfortably lie flat, even on your stomach. "There was no usual neck discomfort from craning it side to side while lying down," our tester reported.

We especially appreciated that although its many features make this chair tip the scales at over 10 pounds, it was surprisingly easy to carry around. “I walked a decent distance to, from, and across the beach and was able to easily carry a water bottle or phone in the other hand,” our tester reported. The Ostrich also has a footrest; a cup holder, which rotates under the wide armrest when not in use; simple and sturdy side pockets for a phone or sunscreen; and an adjustable back pillow, all on a fairly wide frame. Adjustable foot- or calf rests make for more comfy lounging, and an adjustable back pillow provides extra stability. "All enhance the experience and differentiate this chair," she said. 

The chair, which sits a comfortable 12 inches off the ground (not too high and not too low), features five adjustable sitting positions and three adjustable footrest positions—including one that combines to let you lie flat. 

Price at time of publish: $110

Dimensions: 60.76 x 28.93 x 12 inches | Weight: 9.5 pounds | Weight Capacity: 275 pounds | Material: Aluminum and Fabric | Color: Blue, pink, or blue stripe | Carrying Strap: Yes | Cup Holder: Yes

Ostrich 3 N 1 Beach Chair

The Spruce/Lizz Leonard

Best Design: KingCamp Low-Sling Beach Chair

4.6
KingCamp Low Sling Chair

Amazon

What We Like
  • Mesh style to avoid sweating

  • Economical

  • Padded armrests

  • Lightweight

​What We Don't Like
  • Doesn’t recline

This is a chair, not a recliner, and as a chair, it accomplishes its purpose in comfort. It comes in three different modes: an adjustable back or non-adjustable low and high backs. All are mesh style, which kept our tester from sweating and let her feel the breeze. The sidebars are curved to act as padded armrests. Also, the chair is low to the ground, “so I felt comfortable stretching out my legs,” she reported. However, she found herself wishing the chair would recline when the relaxation prodded nodding off. 

The manufacturer claims that the seat is wider than most, but we tested a number of chairs with seats wider than the Kingcamp’s 23 inches. We agree that its under-6-pound weight is pretty light to carry when you fold it up and collapse it, legs first, into its included carry-on bag. “It has a shoulder strap that made it easy to throw over my shoulder and carry along with other bags at the beach,” our tester reported. 

As a two-pack, this is also an economical purchase at just under $60 per chair.

Price at time of publish: $65

Dimensions: 24.8 inches x 23.2 inches x 25.2 inches | Weight: 6.6 pounds | Weight Capacity: 300 pounds | Material: Alloy steel and polyester | Colors: Blue, cyan, green, rose | Carrying Strap: Yes | Cup Holder: Yes

KingCamp Low Sling Chair tested

The Spruce/Megan Rogers

Best With Storage: Lightspeed Outdoors Reclining Beach Chair

4.6
Lightspeed Outdoors Reclining Beach Chair (various pockets, backpack)

Amazon

What We Like
  • Ample storage

  • Lightweight

  • Pillow adds comfort

  • Adjustable while seated

​What We Don't Like
  • Low weight capacity

  • Expensive

If you love the beach but hate getting things sandy, this chair is for you. With two armrest pockets—one for a drink and one for sunscreen, a phone, or any other secondary item—it easily and safely stores your belongings when you arrive. In addition, a large pocket beneath your seat makes it easy to transport a towel or magazine, minimizing the need for a big beach bag. 

If you walk to the beach from a fair distance, this chair is also a good choice. It’s light (7 pounds) and sturdy, and its padded straps make it comfortable to tote. There’s also a large underneath pocket for easy on-the-go storage, although it’s less useful for on-beach storage than it would be if located on the chair back. 

We had no problem with comfort, aided by the solid pillow. It reclines a fair amount in four pre-defined positions, which you change while seated by lifting the armrests. The angle was slightly better than many chairs we tested. But this product doesn’t lie flat, which could be an issue for some.

Attractive in three color options, the chair’s fabric material is made with post-consumer recycled water bottles, according to the manufacturer. Note that its recommended 225-pound weight capacity is lower than many other chairs on this list.

Price at time of publish: $120

Dimensions: 26.5 x 24.5 x 31.25 inches | Weight: 7 pounds | Weight Capacity: 225 pounds | Material: Aluminum and fabric | Colors: Deep Tropics, Eco-bright Stripes, Summer Sunset  | Carrying Strap: Yes | Cup Holder: Yes

Lightspeed Outdoors Reclining Beach Chair tested

The Spruce/David Lee

Best Air Lounger: Wekapo Inflatable Lounger Air Sofa

Wekapo Inflatable Lounger Air Sofa

Amazon

What We Like
  • Super comfy

  • Lightest product we tested

  • Packs super compactly

  • No pump needed

  • 16 color options

​What We Don't Like
  • Inflation process takes learning curve

  • Awkward to enter and exit

Ever wanted to take your bean bag chair to the beach? The Wekapo Inflatable Lounger Air Sofa allows you to fulfill that fantasy. It inflates to 7 feet long, with plenty of space to relax, along with a beverage and a book or e-reader. “Inflatable” also implies “deflatable,” and the Wekapo packs down to a small-ish package you can toss into its included carrying case. At only 2 pounds, it can weigh less than a hardback tome you bring to read. 

The manufacturer says this product doesn’t require a pump to fill it—you shake it in the air, as you would shake out sand from a blanket, close the sleeve to trap the air and do it all over again. We found doing this easier than the complex instruction suggests. “It’s very easy to fill up at the beach, as there's typically quite a bit of wind,” our tester noted. “But I could see this being a pain if, for whatever reason, there isn't a lot of wind if you're using it at a lake or in a park.” 

Like bean bag chairs, we found the Wekapo comfortable to lounge in and easy to change positions. But it does require you to clamber awkwardly to get in and out of—especially out. “Typically,” our tester reported, “I was just rolling over into the sand in order to get out of it. I could see this being very inconvenient/not possible for anyone with reduced mobility or someone heavier.” We also noted that despite the manufacturer’s claim to remain inflated for 5 to 6 hours, it leaked air. “Over the course of an hour of lying in it, I could feel my butt touching the sand, even though I had filled it full initially,” our tester reported. She also noted that the cup holder tended to fill with sand, so avoid placing your phone in it.

While the Wekapo takes some getting used to, it’s still a nice lounger, which you can buy in any of 16 colors, including solids and patterns. And we enjoyed being able to lie on the beach without constantly getting covered in sand. 

Price at time of publish: $41

Dimensions: 15.04 x 11.69 x 5.51 inches | Weight: 2 pounds | Weight Capacity: Not listed | Material: Polyester | Colors: 16 | Carrying Strap: Yes | Cup Holder: Yes

Wekapo Inflatable Lounger Air Sofa tested

The Spruce/Karen Chen

Best for Accessories: Mac Sports Beach Day Foldable Chaise Lounge Chair with Integrated Wagon Pull Cart

4.7
Mac Sports Wagon Chair

Amazon

What We Like
  • Easy to fold

  • Easy to maneuver

  • Four-position adjustable back

What We Don't Like
  • Expensive

  • Heavy

If you’re toting toys and other accessories to the beach, check out the MacSports Beach Day Foldable Lounge Chair with Integrated Wagon Pull. This easy-to-fold lounger-turned-wagon is a great way to carry all your beach essentials and a chair at once. "I was shocked at how easy it was to roll this cart around,” our tester said. “I loaded up the chair with all our beach supplies—a cooler, umbrella, and four other chairs—and it was light as a feather on the street (a bit more cumbersome on the sand). Overall, I was very impressed.”

The wheels’ wide tread makes it easy to pull across sand or gravel, while the powder-coated aluminum frame ensures that this convertible chair lasts through multiple seasons. 

We noted that this product has several steps to convert from chair to cart, but after figuring out the process, the product transitioned smoothly. When converted to a wagon, it can hold up to 100 pounds in the removable mesh basket, and the lounger has a 225-pound capacity. The wagon handle is adjustable and telescopic, so you can compress it when the lounger is in use. When you’re done for the season, easily compress and lock it for storage.

Because of its wheels and additional hardware, this chair weighs 21 pounds, making it heavier than other beach chairs. Its rolling capabilities should counteract the additional weight of the entire unit, making it a great portable beach chair option.

Price at time of publish: $118

Dimensions: 60.63 x 30.3 x 23.62 inches as lounger, 18.9 x 18.9 x 18.9 inches as cart | Weight: 20.9 pounds | Weight Capacity: As lounger, 225 pounds; as cart, 100 pounds | Material: Aluminum, steel, denier fabric | Color: Blue | Carrying Strap: Yes | Cup Holder: No

Mac Sports Wagon Chair tested

The Spruce/Cassie Aulie

Final Verdict

The best overall beach chair is the Homevative Folding Backpack Beach Chair with 5 Positions. We chose this lightweight, easy-to-carry beach chair for its portability, as well as its storage capacity for essential take-alongs, plus its multiple reclining positions. You also couldn’t go wrong with the RIO Beach 4-Position Lace-Up Backpack Folding Beach Chair, which we found to offer the most comfortable support while lounging.

Mac Sports Day Beach Folding Lounge Chair tested

The Spruce / Cassie Aulie

How We Tested the Beach Chairs

For this article, we tested 26 beach chairs from a number of manufacturers, including products with sunshades, backpack straps, and more accessories. We also selected various products intended for adults, children, and babies, and our selection ranged from the most basic models to fancier, ergonomic lounger chairs. Then, we recruited volunteers from California to the New York island to Florida to test them in real-world use at their favorite beaches. (Spoiler: Rounding up folks to do this was not difficult!) 

To test portability, especially in chairs with straps or backpacks, we asked testers to park a distance away from the beach, so lugging the chair would determine how difficult it was to transport. Then, we instructed testers to haul the chairs to their preferred beach locations based on the manufacturer’s advice, whether by backpack-type straps or other means.

Then came the hardest part: We asked our volunteers to unfold the chairs and spend a day at the beach, using the beach chairs in various positions, including sitting, reclining, or lying flat. If a product contained pouches or compartments for beach accessories and take-alongs, including mobile phones and beverages, we instructed testers to fill them to see how well they lived up to manufacturers’ assurances. Finally, our testers rated each chair for comfort and durability before checking the price and giving their impressions of their product’s overall value. 

Homevative Folding Beach Chair attached cooler

The Spruce / Ivy Ford

What to Look for in a Beach Chair

Price

Prices range pretty drastically. In most cases, the cheapest chairs are relatively flimsy and lack extras. That said, there’s no need to spend at the high end to get a quality beach chair. For example, our best budget option, the Kijaro Coast Folding Beach Sling Chair ($75 at the time of publication), is lightweight and comfortable while offering plenty of extras, including a storage pocket and cup holders. For just a little bit more, our best overall, the Homevative Folding Backpack Beach Chair, offers a removable headrest and five different reclining positions, including a full recline so you can truly relax and enjoy the view. Backpack-style with padded straps, it is also easy to carry.

Portability

Many beach chairs come with some sort of strap to make carrying easier (no more stuffing a bulky chair under your arm along with all of your other beach supplies!). That said, not all are created equal. The most basic straps are canvas shoulder straps, which hang down under the seat of the chair when in use. The more comfortable straps, though, are backpack-style straps that are padded and can be easily adjusted for proper fit, including the Rio Beach 4-Position Lace-Up Backpack Folding Beach Chair and the Lightweight Outdoors Reclining Beach Chair (and most of the options on this list).

Extra features

You may want to consider whether the beach chair you’re selecting has helpful added features that improve functionality. This includes a multi-position recline, a cup holder, a sun canopy, storage pockets, and even insulated coolers. For example, loaded with extra features, the Mac Sports Beach Day Foldable Chaise Lounge Chair even doubles as a beach wagon, so you can cart up to 100 pounds of everything you need for a day out. Our testers also loved the Oniva Picnic Time Portable Folding Sports Chair for its handy attached table for resting drinks and snacks while watching a game.

FAQ
  • How do you store beach chairs in the garage?

    Properly storing beach chairs depends on the kind of beach chairs you have, but wall racks and storage pegs are often great for keeping them tidy. You can fold and hang up chairs or cinch them and tuck them away in their storage bags or even extra-large plastic trash bags. You can stack plastic and wooden chairs and move them to the side; just be sure they’re clean and dry before storing them long-term. If you store chairs outdoors or in a shed, be sure to secure them with a protective tarp or cover.

  • How do you clean beach chairs?

    Find out what your beach chairs are made of to avoid ruining them with chemicals or cleaning tools that are too harsh. Canvas and fabric chairs have protocols different from wooden or plastic seats. For removing everything from salt residue to sunscreen stains, proper detergents and solutions made for beach chairs or outdoor furniture, along with brushes or cloths, are all ideal.

  • How do you get mold off beach chairs?

    Mold often is caused by exposure to excess moisture, and the quicker you treat it, the better. Start by brushing off the mold outside, then spot-treat the area with hot water and a cleaning detergent or formula that’s suitable for the fabric. For wooden chairs, use a vacuum to clean the surface and follow it with a scrub brush and white vinegar solution or bleach for stubborn stains.

Why Trust The Spruce?

This article was written by Ira Lacher, a Senior Editor at The Spruce, who learned to love the beach during his family's summers spent at New York City's Rockaway Beach and who has taken in the sand, sun, and sea, as well as lakes, on three continents. To write this article, Ira pored over real-world evaluations from our volunteers, who sand-tested their products on beaches from New York, to Florida, to California.

What Is Spruce Approved?

Here at The Spruce, we want to ensure we fully stand behind every product we recommend and that when we say something is the best, we mean it. You might have noticed The Spruce Approved badge next to the products on this list. Every product with this badge has been rigorously tested in person and carefully selected by our expert team of lab testers and editors. In most cases, we buy all these products ourselves, though occasionally, we get samples provided to us directly by companies. No matter how we procure products, they all go through the same tests and must meet the same strict criteria to make the best-of cut. We also pride ourselves on transparency and will always let you know if we received a product for free.

Updated by
Melissa Epifano
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Melissa is a news writer for The Spruce. She covers a wide range of topics including trends, decor ideas, and design tips.
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