7 Best Reels for Surf Fishing Reviews + Buyer’s Guide

7 Best Reels for Surf Fishing Reviews + Buyer’s Guide

Are you seeking the best reel for surf fishing? Our team researched more than 65 reel models available in 2020 and tested the best 7 side-by-side. We obtained 65 of the best reels for surf fishing available in 2020 and compared them by the degree of functioning, price, durability, and many other features.

The sky is bright, the waves are smashing, the gentle heat of the sand radiates upwards through your feet, and the fishes are at the mercy of your reel. Would you let a faulty or an inferior reel rob you of that fantastic moment? Of course not! That’s why we have put this together to give you the best fishing experience possible. Every experienced fisher would agree with us that, in addition to having the best surfing skills and applying the best aquatic strategies, the reel plays a pivotal role in the success of a fishing adventure.

Surf fishing is a fishing method whereby the fisherman stands at the shore. Reel for surf fishing is a cylindrical device coupled to a fishing rod used in winding or stowing lines. Reels come with casting aids that allow for distant casting and accuracy. So, it is the gold-tool for commercial or competitive surf fishing. We researched the best reels available, and here are the best seven you should consider for the best surf fishing experience.

Disclaimer: We considered functioning, price, and durability most of all. As always, we did not consider design since it’s a matter of taste and no research needed. For this review, we also considered the ease of use, because it is important for people with different skill levels. There is also no best value or all-around pick since the best reel for you depends on the type and features you need.

Pflueger President Spinning Fishing Reel- the best rating

Pflueger President Spinning Fishing Reel

Manufacturer: Pflueger is a stable name in the fishing industry since the 1980s, popular for the manufacturing of reels and combos. They produced the President Spinning Reel.

Providing topnotch performance at an outstanding value, the Pflueger President Spinning Fishing Reel provides the extreme durability and smooth pull that expert anglers need. This fishing reel guarantees smooth performance with nine stainless steel bearings and a quick anti-reverse bearing that delivers improved crank control. It is fitted with an aircraft-grade aluminum handle. The body and rotor are made of graphite.

Here is the deal: The President Spinning Reel is designed with highly durable materials that guarantee years of faultless use. The graphite structure gives extreme responsiveness without jeopardizing rigidity. Hence, creating a reel with high durability that doesn’t bend or break down under extreme pressure. Want to know the best part? The pulling power is incredible. All thanks to the reel’s multiple disc drag system, which functions with stainless steel and oiled felt washers to ensure a smooth, yet powerful drag. A braided aluminum spool, high-precision 10-bearing system, and a smooth grip round out this durable spinning fishing reel. · Here’s a tip: If you are looking for a modest price yet effective spinning reel, then search no further because the Pflueger President Spinning Reel is your best bet.

Check The Latest Price on Amazon!


The following are the unique features of this product: It comes with corrosion-resistant stainless-steel shaft and handle. The anti-reversal bearing can be switched on and off, plus the graphite body which makes it light weighted (7.2 oz), yet durable. Here’s the kicker: It uses a braid-ready and double-anodized aluminum spool with a sealed drag system. What’s more, the machine runs on 10 ball bearings with a bearing ratio of 5.2:1. Also, with Capacity of (Lbs/Yds): 2/200 4/100 6/80, it is smooth, light, and solid. The best part is, the size 20 reel has an ergonomic friendly handle.


Want to know the best part? The Pflueger President spinning fishing reel has the following positive attributes:

  • Excellent for fishing bass
  • High durability
  • Affordable price (budget-friendly)
  • Lightweight, yet powerful drag system
  • Rotor operation and casting are pretty smooth and easy


The high rated Pflueger President Spinning Reel has some negative attributes, which are listed below:

  • Many anglers reported shot lifespan, especially poor durability of gears and bearings.
  • Some anglers reported problem of lines twisting or catching
  • Poor line-retrieval rate pressure

Daiwa Bg Spinning Reel – toughest reel for surf fishing

Daiwa BG5000 BG Saltwater Spinning ReelManufacturer: Daiwa BG

It is no doubt that looking for a saltwater reel could be hell; more especially finding an efficient one. You might become frustrated if you don’t know what to look for at the present vast reel types and prices. In the course of our research, we noticed that the Daiwa Bg Spinning reel is one of the best available surfing reels you can find in the market.

Daiwa Bg Spinning reel was launched into the fishing industry in 2016 as a new version of the old Daiwa black gold that existed since the 1980s. It is a brilliant reel that is smooth and rugged with good drag to control everything from your petty inshore species to your huge off the boat or the beach species. It comes in 10 models and three gear ratios which ranges from 1500 to 1800. Wondering what the best part is? There are a good number of sizes that would be just the right fit for your fishing needs from tiny sea trout to a huge 60-70lb shark.

Check The Latest Price on Amazon!


A powerful machine built with Black Anodized Machined Aluminum encasement (“HardBodyz” Body & Side Cover). The Over-sized gear System produces the desired spin that matches your demands. These reels come in 3 gear ratios which are- 5.3:1, 5.6:1 & 5.7:1 to control a variety of fishing baits and styles. Also, it has an ATD Tournament drag system (Carbon ATD Drag System), which is a feature that prevents jerky moments, allowing for smooth operation. It works on 6 stainless steel Ball Bearings, 5.6:1 gear ratio and 8/240, 10/200, 12/170, line capacity, and a pretty lightweight of 9.3 oz which makes it capable of fighting large fish. It gets better! The Solid Screw-In Handle, braided line ready spool and Infinite Anti-Reverse System (4000 and Smaller), and Infinite Dual Anti-Reverse System (4500 and Larger) are adorable futures of this reel. Also, its Air Rotor design makes it 15% lighter.

  • It is durable is smooth to handle
  • It is accurate and precise
  • It ensures maximum drag pressure which makes it powerful
  • It is light weighted


This is crazy, the Daiwa Bg Spinning Reel, considered as one of the toughest reels, has some negative parts to its functionality too.

  • It cannot be used for catching mightily huge fishes.
  • Some users complained that it is not fanciful enough; appearing only in one or two colors.
  • It doesn’t have an automatic system
  • It can rust easily as reported by some anglers, which questions its durability.

The bottom line is: Daiwa Bg Spinning Reel is a powerful, smooth operating and effective reel for your great fishing experience. Giving this product a trial is a wise one as our research team has tested and isolated it as one among the magnificent seven surf fishing reels.

KastKing Sharky III Fishing Reel – strongest reel for surf fishing

KastKing Sharky III Fishing Reel

Manufacturer: kayaking

Be it funfair fishing for fun, to satiate your hunger, or perhaps for commercial fishing; a quality reel that won’t fail you should be your number one concern. KastKing has gained popularity in the fishing industry by providing top-notch fishing reels – their products are popular for competing effectively among the best fishing products on the market. Want to know the best part? Our team of researchers has tested several products and this very reel has been isolated among other 7 best surf fishing reels.

Most anglers find it more comfortable using Spinning reels, due to their easy functionality. And here’s the kicker: This fishing monster is pretty easy. All you need to do is turn the bail, place a finger on the line, cast, shut the bail, and just flip the handle to drag it back in. You got that!

Check The Latest Price on Amazon!


KastKing’s new shark fin air, intertwine line ready aluminum pool that allows you to avoid a backing line. Hence, you can spool up completely with braid line which gives more line capacity for surf fishing. The 10 double-protected higher quality stainless steel protects ball bearings. look: The Sharky III gives a buttery smooth operation, and easy fishing experience. Here’s the deal: Rod and reel combo ranging in size between 1000 and 5000 gives brute force for catching large game fish. The reel comes with 11 double-protected stainless-steel ball bearings (gear Ratio is 5.2:1), aluminum handle, 9.2 oz total weight, and 8/220lbs (10/175yds) line capacity which ensures smooth and powerful performance. Wondering the best part? It has a KastKing Intrusion Shield System which protects the reel from water and debris. Other features are graphite rotor, aluminum handle with high-density EVA grip, and anti-twist line roller. The bottom line is Its a quality, smooth, well balanced, powerful reel.


Now let us look at some of the positive attributes as gathered by our research team

  • Comes in varying sizes
  • It can be used to catch larger fish
  • It can tolerate both saltwater and freshwater fishing very well.
  • Graphite body makes the reel anti-corrosive
  • The price is modest

  • Some angler reported that line retrieval is not very smooth
  • There had been a report of poor retrieval rate
  • Some anglers complained that the product is not as durable as it should be
  • It lacks a spool tuning washer.
  • Some anglers claim to receive low-quality items.

The bottom line is: it could be really difficult finding the best fishing reel on the market. The affordable reel is efficiently competing with other first-class reels on the market. KastKing III is a good choice for surf fishing. It also has plenty more line capacity.

SHIMANO ULTEGRA CI4 XTC – best surf casting reel

Manufacturer: Shimona

ULTEGRA CI4+ XTC is one of the latest technologies in the fishing industry. It offers surf anglers with innovative long-casting spinning reels. The new line-up of Ultegra CI4+ reels has been launched into the market, having two models (5500 and 14000 size models). Our team has tested both models and had them listed in our collection of the best seven reels. For a successful surf in saltwater and the overwhelming big fish, the reels offer a combo of CI4+ system, X-Protect plus HAGANE Gear. The CI4+ component is lightweight and rigid, giving a non-stop fishing relief.

Here’s the deal: The X-Protect component which is a labyrinth design has a three-lipped rubber seal system. The very feature gives an excellent water-proof in addition to light rotatory feels of the gear and rotor. Want to know the best part? It is fitted with cold-forged aluminum gear that allows for smooth and energetic operation, giving anglers the power required to control a 50-pound plus striper. The CI4+ feature offers substantial weight conservation on the compact Ultegra body. The rod is fast and generates the speed required for casting from a distance. For better casting performance, the Ultegra uses very Slow Oscillation line lay and Instant Drag for easy, ultra-fast adjustment. Its forceful winding performance is attributed to the Cold-forged HAGANE bearings plus X-SHIP. Look, the stainless A-RB bearings and a Shi ma-no roller bearing provide extreme smoothness. We found out that most anglers are very thankful for the Japanese visionary named Shozaburo Shimano for the brilliant technology he introduced through this product.

Check The Latest Price on Amazon!


There are 5 Ball Bearings, 4.3:1 bearing ratio, the weight of 19.0 oz, and a line capacity of 12/600, 16/440, 20/330 (Lbs/Yds) which makes it a powerful surf fishing monster. Again, Shimano has two oscillations of about 19 wraps and 49 wraps per cycle for the standard and sluggish oscillations respectively, which gives it a better performance than almost anything ever seen.

  • It is durable
  • It has a smooth line flow, slow oscillation with instant drag
  • It has an efficient and powerful performance
  • It is precise and accurate

  • It is expensive
  • Some angler reported that it is not smooth enough
  • Some anglers said it is heavy and difficult to handle

Penn 1338219 Battle II 4000 Spinning Fishing Reel – best spinning reel for surf fishing

Penn Battle II Spinning Fishing Reel

If you’d love to go fishing, then get one of the most reliable saltwater surf fishing reels. Look, Penn Battle II Spinning Fishing Reel is a product of highly durable materials. The features are ideal for saltwater, and it’s engineered to fight fish for years without breaking down. Now, consider the complete metal body, side plate, plus the rotor to the 5 sealed stainless steel ball bearings; all designed to help you enjoy successful fishing.

Here is the kicker: The reel’s drag system which consists of HT-100 Versa-Drag carbon fiber exploits both sides of each drag washer to produce a maximum drag. What’s more, its instant anti-reverse bearing prevents pullback so your reel does not stop.

Check The Latest Price on Amazon!


The drag washers are fortified with a proprietary grease to slow it down for all-year-round performance. The reel can be used with Berkley or Spider-wire Super line. The superliner doesn’t slip under pressure since the spool is fitted with a rubber gasket. This is crazy: anglers can work with a braided line with no monofilament backing. Also, with nice line capacity rings, the spool displays at a glance the amount of line remaining. This fishing reel has a Gear Ratio of 6.2:1, weighing 16 oz. Having a line capacity of 8/200 10/165 12/120 (Lbs/Yds), this reel is one of the best reels for surf fishing.

What’s interesting is that this reel is fitted with an HT 100 carbon fiber drag system that provides forceful drag without eliminating smoothness. Hence, it is a good reel for conquering huge saltwater game fish. Other features are metal side plates, rotor, and aluminum bail wire which makes it so durable. It also runs on stainless steel ball bearings and automatic anti-reverse bearings making it even better.

  • Smooth and energetic drag
  • The bearings are sealed
  • It has a Rust-resistant body
  • It does not require mono backing
  • It is affordable

  • Heavy
  • It requires some time to get used to
  • It is partially sealed
  • Heavy greasy reels are stiff and difficult to fish with.

The bottom line is: The Penn’s fishing reels are energetic, efficient, and affordable. Choosing it would be a great experience as recommended by our review team.

Yoshikawa Baitfeeder Spinning Reel – best surf fishing reel for the money

Yoshikawa Baitfeeder Spinning Reel

Manufacturer: Yoshikawa

If you are looking for a powerful reel for surf fishing and yet a cheap one, you’ve got a good choice here, Yoshikawa baitfeeder is a spinning reel type that is so energetic. It features high strength, and it’s very precise. It works in such a way to consistently provide an accurate application of all force to the right place.

Here’s the deal: Fishing could be easier and comfortable with this powerful surf reel. It comes with Stainless steel principal shaft, key metal washers, assembly screws, and nuts. It also presents a new system of rust-proof performance in saltwater and bad weather conditions.

Check The Latest Price on Amazon!


The Baitfeeder Drag System gives a completely free-spool mode, just by flipping the small lever on the backside of the reel. This allows the line to run freely with the bail shut, and this protects the gears while struggling with big fish. Also, it offers wider and precise drag control. It has a Cool-gray finish; hence, it fits into most popular fishing rods. This reel can reel fish to your boat for many years with no hundreds of bucks cost. It’s perfect for surf fishing, boat fishing in saltwater, catfishing, rock fishing, and freshwater fishing in lakes, rivers, and related water bodies. This reel is also highly versatile and amazing for fishing. Side plates, rotor casings, and reel legs are composed of TITAN Graphite, giving great strength and brilliant anti-rust features. Besides, it also gives high performance. The Line Capacity (Lbs/Yds) is 16/220 20/170 24/140, 11 ball bearings, 5.5:1 gear ratio, and a weight of 18.6 oz. Also, it has a Maximum Drag of 28 LB; a bit bigger than 3000, but holding more lines and power for fighting large and small fishes.

  • It is smooth and powerful
  • It is solid and affordable
  • It is well constructed.
  • It can be used for saltwater and freshwater surf fishing and can catch fishes of varying sizes.
  • The drag pressure is pretty impressive

  • Its plastic, “chrome” tends to peel off.
  • Some anglers reported issues with the front drug.
  • Some users complained that the machine is not smooth enough
  • The bait feeder click is a little fain

The bottom line is:

  • Baitfeeder Lever is controlled by the Baitfeeder feature. When it is on, Rear Drag plays. Cranking handle, the lever flicks back (OFF) then the Front Drag comes on.
  • Front Drag functions like a rear drag on a normal reel.
  • Front Drag power is more than the rear Drag.

We highly recommend this reel for your surf fishing any day! Here is the kicker:

  • it is good for fighting big fish much more efficiently
  • very perfect for protecting your valuable rods, lines, and lures from damage
  • excellent in Catching a bigger fish with smaller reels

X-CAT Nacatin Spinning Fishing Reel – best surf fishing reel for beginners

X-CAT Nacatin Spinning Fishing Reel

Manufacturer: Nacatin

You might be wondering how best to get a quality reel for your surf fishing with just a token. Now, here is the kicker: our research team has put together this list of the seven best reels, and you’d like to know that X-CAT Nacatin spinning reel made it to the top list. The product is very effective in surf fishing and cheats too. That’s right, Cheat!

The spinning reel is protected with a metal principal shaft and runs with 10 ball bearings. It has good ball bearings plus one instant stop one-way anti-reverse bearing that offers it a super-smooth performance. And the lubrication is very much to secure great durability. Look, it comes with a hollow frame design and automatic balancing system merged with brilliant performance and lightweight for an extended fishing duration. The reel is amazing for beginners and experts.

Check The Latest Price on Amazon!


Its body and box run on the highest quality gear strength PA66 eco-friendly components and unique mirror painting. Want to know the best part? The Ultra-thin design is charming, lightweight, and comfortable to operate. The metal handle is foldable and can be interchanged from left to right, this with the casting line saves a lot of places. Hence, giving a portable, high-quality aluminum spool for easier casting and lesser twisting of lines. 7 Modes (1000-7000 Series) are available for ocean boat fishing, ocean rock fishing, river fishing, and other related fishing. The bottom line is: this product is a highly rated, effective, and affordable reel that will meet your fishing needs. Our team recommends it because we tested it. The capacity (mm/m) is 0.18/255 0.20/215 0.25/135, 12 Ball Bearings, the weight of 230g (8.1 oz), Gear Ratio of 5.5:1 and PA66 gear strength ensuring a smooth but powerful performance.

  • This product provides a worry-free fishing experience.
  • It offers high strength engineering materials, solid and durable.
  • The powerful foldable arm can be interchanged.
  • It offers Smooth and comfortable handling.
  • It is eco-friendly


The high rated Pflueger President Spinning Reel has some negative attributes, which are listed below:

  • Anglers complained that the product isn’t durable enough
  • Some experts have criticized the quality
  • The twisting of the line is an issue with this product
  • The spool design and casting system have been faulted by some anglers.

Buyer’s Guide

Choosing the reel to use for surf fishing is a bit difficult, this becomes crazier if you consider the enormous reviews and comments on different reels in the market. But our research team has developed this guide below to help you navigate the market for a more tangible result.


The name is very important as it explains the functional type of the reel and the manufacturer. The name could be spinning reel or overhead reel. While the former is perfect for surf fishing the later would be better for trolling.


It would be good if you’d determine how much you are ready to give in for the reel before making your choice. Wondering the best part? You’d not be able to purchase the reel even if you desire it but don’t have the cash.


These are the most important factors to consider in buying review products. We recommended that you check the following features carefully before purchasing reels.

Line capacity

The line capacity is very important. You’d like to know how deep you’d throw or how far you’d cast your bait and the size of fish you would be fighting before going for a reel. The 1000 size, 50-200, etc. should be your point of consideration for a good choice.

Drag capacity

Now, you know the pressure of drag would determine the fish size you can to fight with your reel. Anglers nowadays are hardly interested in the ball bearing count within a reel, the focus is on the maximum drag capacity. A good working drag is important and the best drag set-up for you would indicate your fishing strength and the structure of your reel. This is because a generally weak real may not be able to maintain a maximum drag without breaking down. So, the drag capacity should be your determining factor too.

Spool design

This is another factor you should consider. The spool design tells you how the casting would be. If you wish to use a braided line then, an aluminum spool might be preferred to a graphite spool. Though, everything would be fine if you are to use a monofilament nylon line.

The level of experience

Experience, they say, is everything when it comes to fishing. You have to consider your fishing skills and expertise before going for a particular reel. Just think about it.

How to choose reels for surf fishing?

Choosing the right fishing reel depends on the type of fishing rod the reel will be used with. Look, it is necessary you do your research on the types of rod you would be using with your reel for surf fishing. Take into consideration the price of the reel as price varies greatly with features and manufacturers. Let’s say you’ve gotten a rod already, then you have to look at the serial number above the grip. Here is the kicker, if the rod ranges from 4-8lb, then such a rod can catch 4kg fish at most. You’re to choose your reel accordingly. This is important because a balanced weight class rod and reel would make your experience epic. The bottom line is you should consider the manufacturer, rod type, fish size and balance outfit to choose your reel.


Surf Fishing is an interesting adventure that could go sour with a wrong reel. The killer reels are smooth and efficient with great drag and retrieval mechanisms. Our research team has tested about 65 reels on the market and with unbiased considerations, we have recommended seven as the best reels for surf fishing. Going for any of those is wise!

Frequently Asked Questions

q: What size reel for surf fishing?

Reel size, 5000 to 6000 (50-60), are optimal for surf fishing

q: What kind of reel for surf fishing?

Spinning reels are the best for surf fishing

q: Spinning vs Casting reel for surf fishing?

Choosing between spinning and casting reels may be a bit difficult, but the kicker here is; Spinning reel is ideal for bass fishing while casting reel is best for heavy-duty fishing. The spinning reels are designed for simple surfing; they are smooth, with a soft drag, and can be very useful for 8-10 pounds, while the casting reels are for heavy-duty and deep casting; they are more complex and exhibit rougher drag. Expert anglers will find casting reels more beneficial while armature would prefer the spinning reels. Casting reels have longer rods and take up bigger line drag capacity but Spinning reels is quite the opposite. Casting reels are difficult to learn while spinning reels are easy to handle.

q: What reel is best for surf fishing?

The best reel for surf fishing highly depends on the needs and budgets of the angler. Therefore, our research team has tested about 65 reels for surf fishing and has narrowed down a few, which are the best available reels on the market. Pflueger President, Daiwa Bg, KastKing Sharky III SHIMANO ULTEGRA CI4 XTC, Penn 1338219 Battle II 4000, Yoshikawa Baitfeeder, and X-CAT Nacatin (all are spinning fishing reels). Any of the seven is a good reel that will give you the best surf fishing experience.

7 Best Reels for Surf Fishing Reviews + Buyer’s Guide
We will be happy to hear your thoughts

Leave a reply