The schools are almost closing and Christmas is fast approaching. Sadly, you haven’t settled on where to spend this holiday with your kids. Having heard the wonderful adventures their friends had in overseas destinations the previous Christmas, your kids have been pestering you throughout the year, demanding a trip abroad. This has become a daily melody, to the point that it’s annoying. You don’t want to disappoint your kids, yet your financial constraints won’t allow you to append an extra dime on such ‘luxuries’.
You’re backed into a corner, but eventually you break the sad news to your kids. As expected, the reception is far from warm. The children know what that means. Yet another year, locked indoors because of the bleak weather, chatting with members of the extended family while watching the Home Alone movie series. Not even Christmas gifts and a well-lit, meticulously-decorated artificial Christmas tree
would appease the melancholy mood of your munchkins.
Given the reaction of your kids, you seek for an alternative, one that would at least change the routine festive season celebrations. Due to limited resources, your options are limited, forcing you to make-do with what you have. Then it hits you that a visit to a ski resort for a snow tubing session might regain you some traction with the kids. It’s an affordable option as you don’t have to travel outside the country, since winter is usually at its peak within December.
After settling on this idea, you pitch it to your family. And alas, everyone becomes jovial—they are finally going to try out something new. Phew! You sigh in relief. Next, you start acquiring the basic necessities, including your snowboarding helmet
, snow tubes, and ski boots
, among other snowing gear.
Identifying the appropriate snow tube is challenging, especially for people without prior experience in the sector. We, however, got your back covered, as our experts assessed the various options present in the market, identifying the crème de la crème, just for you. Once you scour through our guide, choosing the right snow tube for yourself will be as easy as one, two, and three.
How much do I have to fork out for a snow tube? This is the question that wanders in the minds of prospective buyers. Well, there’s no constant price, as it’s influenced by several factors, just like other items. First, larger snow tubes attract higher prices than the smaller models. The material also comes into the fray, with rubber designs being more costly than synthetic designs, as they’re more robust.
You can get your hands on snow tubes for a base price of $20, though that may go up to $100 for some brands. Generally, the costly brands are more durable, hence we strongly recommend them. If you opt for a cheap snow tube brand, you may end up spending a lot more on replacements—a situation that can be averted by going premium in the initial purchase.
Snow tubes are usually striking in color, but this shouldn’t cloud your judgment as there are other important things to look out for, such as features. These specifics should assist you in identifying the most suitable snow tube for you:
- Type - What purpose can the tube serve? Is it solely for snow tubing or is it versatile?
- Material - What is the tube made of? It can be rubber, polyester, nylon, or polythene.
- Capacity - This is the maximum number of people that the tube can carry simultaneously.
- Size – This directly impacts the carrying capacity.
- Color - The tubes can be multi-colored or have a single painting scheme.
Once the specifications are deemed suitable, you move on to the following step, which is evaluating its performance.
Construction and Design
As the name suggests, tubes are inflatable materials. Their operation depends on the air pumped in, hence they have to be maintained at all times throughout their usage. For this reason, the material used in their construction has to be sturdy enough to withstand the friction exerted by the snow as well as the pressure applied by the load (passenger). Also, it has to be rigid enough to survive the rigors of extremely low temperatures. In this regard, rubber tubes tend to perform better than their synthetic (polythene, polyester, and nylon) competitors.
The size of the tube is an equally vital aspect of its design. It determines the room available in the snow tube, hence affecting the number of individuals accommodated at a time. Moreover, the size relates to the weight of the tube, thus influencing its portability.
Performance and Ease of Use
Snow tubes are designed to be adventurous, so they have to be slick and swift. To cater for these needs, manufacturers integrate vinyl bottoms. This ensures that the tube glides smoothly over the snow, making your trip down the slope exciting.
While tubing is a fun experience, it can be dangerous. Luckily, modern snow tubes employ counter mechanisms to enhance the user’s safety. They come with handles to ensure passengers are firmly secured while tubing. The materials are equally hardened, to minimize the chances of breaking.
We looked at brands known for their use of high-grade materials and smart designs. That way, you can find a snow tube that lasts as long as you need it to. Still, we compared the prices of several tubes so you can find an option for your budget. We chose to focus on donut-style sled tubes that can double as a water tube just as easily, and most can be used by both adults and children. We hope you’ll soon find your ideal snow tube in our reviews below.
Consider how frequently and intensely you'll use your new snow tube, since the more expensive options on our list are made to stand against harsh impacts and conditions. Whether you're looking for something more casual or more intense, these brands have a range of options for you to choose from.