Fishing is an old tradition that is enjoyed across the world as a sport and as a hobby. Many folks who grew up fishing can tell of the delightful joy and struggle of pulling out a big catch from the water. The best fishing reels can simplify your job and boost your confidence regardless of your skill level. However, with too many options available in the market, you might find it hard to settle on the right product.

Your goal when picking up a fishing reel should be to get features that are more desirable at an affordable price. However, many people find it hard to get a grip on what is most important in a reel. This review should help you to pick out the best fishing reels within your budget.



Product FAQ

We went all out to cover the missing links when it comes to finding the best fishing reels. Much of the available information offers little help to beginners and places too much focus on rods and anglers. Here are a few frequently asked questions to give you started understanding fishing reels.
 

What Is a Fishing Reel? 

What Does a Fishing Reel Do? 

How Does a Fishing Reel Work?

Where Can You Buy One?

How Do I Choose the Best Fishing Reels?

How We Reviewed

With so many things to look at when choosing the best fishing reels, we settled on essential features such as the price and quality of the construction. We also zoomed in on availability, durability, and warranty. You will find different types of reels in this review as we try to break down the pros and cons of each. It covers everything from freshwater to saltwater fishing and even fishing on ice.


Overall Price Range of This Product (and Similar Products)

Some of the best fishing reels on our list go for as low as $ while others can fetch up to $$. It is easy to figure the price variations if you consider the build quality and some of the extra goodies that come with the fishing reel. For instance, plastic is considered a cheaper alternative to better quality materials like magnesium. Rust-resistant bodies tend to be more desirable and thus more expensive.


What We Reviewed

Penn Spinfisher V SSV3500 Spinning Reel
  • Watertight spinning reel performs reliably in saltwater and sand environments
  • Durable construction with full metal body, side plate, and rotor and heavy-duty aluminum bail wire
  • Sealed HT-100 Slammer drag system provides robust, silky-smooth drag, while friction trip ramp prevents premature bail...

Features 

If you are always fishing in salty waters, you might want to get one of these two pieces. The Spinfisher VI is almost the same as the Spinfisher V, except for a few nooks and crannies. Thanks to an IPX5 design rating, the fishing reels are almost rustproof. The available sizes can cover all kinds of fishing, from a trout to a shark.

PROS

  • Rust-proof design
  • Strong gear system
  • Strong and durable
  • Multiple sizes available

CONS

  • Only available in one color
  • The reel is not entirely waterproof

Price

A 4500 fishing reel will cost you around $$ for the Spinfisher V and around $$ for the Spinfisher VI OIN Amazon.


Warranty 

You will get a 1-year warranty on this product.

Piscifun Sword Fly Fishing Reel with CNC-machined Aluminum Alloy Body...
  • THREE-YEAR WARRANTY - Your reel has been set at the factory for left-hand retrieve. To convert your reel to right-hand...
  • SILKY SMOOTH DRAG - Multi-disc cork and stainless steel drag system with one-way clutch bearing for smooth immediate...
  • SOLID and LIGHT WEIGHT - Precision CNC-machined 6061-T6 aluminum alloy for high-impact durability; Larger CNC hollow...

Features 

Fly reels are probably not the best fishing reels, but the Piscifun is worthy of the tag. It features a drag system made from stainless steel, while an aluminum contraption makes it lighter to handle. The reel's layer has been coated with a protective oxide to keep it from rusting. 

PROS

  • Multiple color options
  • Rust resistant
  • Easy to grip and use
  • Lightweight

CONS

  • Needs a slightly heavier line for better handling
  • Drag needs adjustment for right-hand retrieve

Price

The prices range from around $ for the 3/4 wt. to around $$ for the largest size.


Warranty 

The fishing reels come with a 3-year limited warranty.

Penn 1338218 Battle II Spinning Reel, 3000
  • Durable, high range spinning reel ideal for conquering big saltwater game fish
  • Full metal body, sideplate, and rotor and heavy duty aluminum bail wire offer exceptional durability
  • HT 100 carbon fiber drag system provides powerful drag without sacrificing smoothness

Features 

The Penn Battle II is another saltwater veteran falling in the same ranks as the Spinfisher. Its mechanism features stainless steel ball bearings tucked inside a complete metal body. You will also benefit from an anti-reverse bearing system and a high-quality drag system. It is fairly priced compared to some of the competitors in its class.

PROS

  • Powerful drag system
  • Anti-reverse function
  • Durable construction
  • Economical pricing

CONS

  • Not fully waterproof
  • A bit heavy

Price

You can pay around $ for a size 4000 and $$ for a size 8000 on Amazon.


Warranty 

The fishing reel comes with a 1-year limited warranty.

Sale
Okuma Ceymar Lightweight Spinning Reel- C-30
  • Gear Ratio: 5.0:1, Precision Elliptical Gearing system
  • 7BB + 1RB bearing system, Quick-Set anti-reverse roller bearing
  • Multi-disc, oiled felt drag system, Ambidextrous

Features 

The Okuma Ceymar is probably one of the best fishing reels that you can get for under $. The price does not mean you sacrifice quality, as the reel comes with a tough bearing system and an attractive design. It weighs about 2 lbs. and includes an anti-reverse feature. It is just as strong as any other standard fishing reel in the market.

PROS

  • Reasonably priced
  • Smooth and easy to use
  • Lightweight
  • Works for both the left-handed and right-handed  

CONS

  • The handle is a bit weak
  • Not entirely waterproof

Price

The smallest Okuma Ceymar will cost around $ on Amazon.


Warranty 

You will get a 1-year warranty on the product.

Features 

No products found.

It takes a bit of experience to master the workings of a baitcasting reel. The KastKing line is one of the best fishing reels for sports-minded fishers. We are surprised at how they could fit so much quality into such a low price considering the competition-level features such as an adjustable braking system. It is mainly suited for freshwater fishing though it can as well work in salty water.

PROS

  • Accurate controls
  • Excellent drag power
  • Inexpensive

CONS

  • ideal for saltwater fishing
  • Complex gear system needs a lot of maintenance

Price

You can get the fishing reel for around $ on Amazon.


Warranty 

There is a 1-year limited warranty on the product.

Shimano Curado 200 IHG right hand baitcast fishing reel, CU200IHG
  • High gear baitcast spinning fishing reel, Gear ratio: 7.2:1, Retrieve: right
  • Mono line capacity (lbs/yds): 8/180,10/155,14/110
  • PowerPro line capacity (lbs/yds): 30/190,50/120,65/80

Features 

The 200IHG Curado from Shimano is an outstanding workhorse for dedicated hobbyists and sports fishing. You can use it to catch a freshwater trout or go for the big game in the sea. However, it needs regular maintenance to beat corrosion especially if you always fish in salty waters. The maximum drag force on this low profile fishing reel is about 12 lbs.

PROS

  • Great braking system
  • Excellent drag power
  • Amazingly light

CONS

  • A bit complicated for beginners
  • Not entirely rust resistant
  • Not easily available

Price

This model should cost around $$ on Amazon.


Warranty 

Has a 1-year warranty manufacturing warranty.

Sale
Eagle Claw In Line Ice Reel
  • Nylon body and spool
  • Smooth Teflon drag
  • Spool tension adjustment

Features 

The Eagle Claw beat some of the best fishing reels used on icy grounds to make our list. It is reasonably priced and features some high-class functions fitted into a durable construction. It has a nylon body, an aluminum spool, and a drag system made from Teflon. Fishing on ice requires minimal drag and a smooth spool, making this the right gear for your adventures.

PROS

  • Easy to use
  • Suitable for big game fishing
  • Great value pricing

CONS

  • Fishing line tangles easily on the spool
  • Nylon body is not the best quality

Price

The fishing reel costs around $$ on Amazon.


Warranty 

A 1-year limited warranty is included with every purchase.

Zebco authentic Spincast Fishing Reel
  • Zebco authentic Spincast Fishing Reel.
  • In clam pack.
  • 3.6:1 gear ratio

Features 

Zebco 33 has always been one of the best fishing reels for beginners. It has a user-friendly design, such as a push-button for launching the line. The best part about everything is that you can get a reel going for less than $. This model is not suited for saltwater fishing.

PROS

  • User-friendly
  • Easy to switch from left to right hand use
  • Lightweight
  • Extremely affordable

CONS

  • Too basic for professionals
  • Restricted to freshwater fishing

Price

Prices start from around $ on Amazon.


Warranty 

Zebco offers a 1-year limited warranty on the fishing reel.

Mitchell Fishing 300 - 180yd/12lbs Reel
  • Durable yet lightweight spinning fishing reel with superior line management properties
  • Innovative Bail Halo design greatly increases the strength of the rotor
  • 8 bearing reels with instant anti-reverse for smooth, uninterrupted operation

Features 

At just under $, the Mitchell 300 is one of the most reasonably priced saltwater fishing reels in the market. It features a light, carbon fiber body and an aluminum spool. The drag features a carbon fiber multiple disk system to deliver consistency in light and heavy fishing. The reels have been designed using 8 bearings and include and anti-reverse function.

PROS

  • Delivers smooth reels
  • Incredibly light
  • Handles both the light and heavy tackles

CONS

  • Not suitable with longer rods
  • A little smaller

Price

You can get this for around $ on Amazon.


Warranty 

You will get a warranty covering the manufacturing defects for a 1-year period.

Pflueger Patriarch Spinning Reel
  • 10 Bearing System - Corrosion Resistant Stainless Steel Ball Bearings
  • Xcr Ball Bearings - Pflueger's Highest Performance, Shielded, And Friction Reducing Bearings
  • Magnesium Body And Rotor - Feather Light Design

Features 

If the price is not an issue and you would rather splurge on quality gear, look no further than the Pflueger Patriarch. It comes with 10 bearings made from stainless steel to keep it smooth and rust-resistant. A magnesium body helps to cut down the weight without sacrificing the quality and performance.  The premium price is going to be a steal if you match it with other models in its class.

PROS

  • Corrosion resistant
  • Quality and durable construction
  • Impressively lightweight

CONS

  • High-end pricing
  • Maximum drag pressure a bit wanting

Price

The prices range from around $$ to $$ on Amazon.


Warranty 

Has a 1-year warranty tied to manufacturing defects.


The Verdict


If you are still new to fishing, you may want to try the Zebco 33 Authentic Spincast Reel. It is extremely cheap and user-friendly. You can stick with the Shimano 200IHG for a baitcast and the Piscifun for a fly-fishing reel.

The Spinfisher V and VI are our best fishing reels from the list. We gave them 5 out of 5 stars for quality, durability, and functional beauty. They come at a great value considering that number of features you are getting for the price. It helps that you can use them on both freshwater and saltwater.

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