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Best Snorkeling Fins

Fins are one of the main components of a full snorkeling set. Just like the other components, there is a huge variety to choose from, and what you choose depends largely on your preferences and what type of snorkeling you will be doing.

When we say "type" of snorkeling, what we really mean is where, how often, and how challenging your snorkel adventures are. For example, those who are going on a vacation and plan on snorkeling once or twice may prioritize convenience and cost over high quality snorkeling fins that are more durable.

Additionally, many people may not know what to look for in a pair of snorkeling fins, what types of snorkeling fins are out there, and what the difference is between different types of snorkeling fins.

You can find our guide to purchasing snorkeling fins below, where we cover a wide range of snorkeling fin brands, styles, and sizes. 

Product Summary Our Rating Price

Dual composite fin blade for excellent snap and power. Soft foot pocket with adjustable strap. Compact length good for traveling. Very convenient fins of good quality. Main drawback is requires more energy to swim for prolonged periods of time due to compact size.

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Good selection of sizes for both men and women. Soft flexible foot pocket for comfort (no boots required). Will NOT fit wide feet and require more energy expenditure due to compact size, but otherwise are solid quality, convenient, and well-reviewed.
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Contemporary, dual-composite design with an enclosed heel and soft foot pocket. Long blades with dual composite fin rails for snap and thrust. Good selection of sizes and two-year limited warranty. Channels and TPR flex zones optimize water flow and power. These are slightly above-average fins that offer solid quality for the price.
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Contemporary, dual-composite design with an enclosed heel and soft foot pocket. Long blades with dual composite fin rails for snap and thrust. Good selection of sizes and two-year limited warranty. Channels and TPR flex zones optimize water flow and power. These are slightly above-average fins that offer solid quality for the price.
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Three-material molded design. Elastomer foot pocket for comfort. Blade extends from the top of the foot for more surface area. The main advantage to these fins is the comfort and speed at which you can swim, but the fin can start to see damage near the boot sooner than expected. Overall, they’re solid, well-reviewed fins at a good price, just don’t get wrapped up in all the fancy terminology.
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Three sizes and two blade lengths available. Adjustable strap to help accommodate different foot widths and lengths. No booties required, but you can wear thin fin socks or sand socks. Although the quality and performance is on par with your average snorkeling fins, they are great for large feet, which can be really hard to find.
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Stylish, lightweight, open heel design with adjustable strap. Soft rubber foot pocket for comfortable fit with either bare feet or socks. These are your base-level fins that don’t have any major disadvantages, but are also nothing special. Good for those who are on a tight budget and are trying to figure out what they prefer in a pair of snorkeling fins. Customer reviews are sparse.
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Provide more speed and power than larger open heel paddle fins with less effort. These are designed for warm water and are geared towards all the performance aspects: speed, power, and acceleration. Overall these are awesome fins that are high quality, comfortable, and perform extremely well. The main downsides are the size, which could be inconvenient for traveling (about twice as long as some compact fins) as well as the cost.
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Dual composite fin blade for excellent snap and power. Soft foot pocket with adjustable strap. Compact length good for traveling. Very convenient fins of good quality. Main drawback is requires more energy to swim for prolonged periods of time due to compact size.

Good selection of sizes for both men and women. Soft flexible foot pocket for comfort (no boots required). Will NOT fit wide feet and require more energy expenditure due to compact size, but otherwise are solid quality, convenient, and well-reviewed.
Contemporary, dual-composite design with an enclosed heel and soft foot pocket. Long blades with dual composite fin rails for snap and thrust. Good selection of sizes and two-year limited warranty. Channels and TPR flex zones optimize water flow and power. These are slightly above-average fins that offer solid quality for the price.
Contemporary, dual-composite design with an enclosed heel and soft foot pocket. Long blades with dual composite fin rails for snap and thrust. Good selection of sizes and two-year limited warranty. Channels and TPR flex zones optimize water flow and power. These are slightly above-average fins that offer solid quality for the price.
Three-material molded design. Elastomer foot pocket for comfort. Blade extends from the top of the foot for more surface area. The main advantage to these fins is the comfort and speed at which you can swim, but the fin can start to see damage near the boot sooner than expected. Overall, they’re solid, well-reviewed fins at a good price, just don’t get wrapped up in all the fancy terminology.
Three sizes and two blade lengths available. Adjustable strap to help accommodate different foot widths and lengths. No booties required, but you can wear thin fin socks or sand socks. Although the quality and performance is on par with your average snorkeling fins, they are great for large feet, which can be really hard to find.
Stylish, lightweight, open heel design with adjustable strap. Soft rubber foot pocket for comfortable fit with either bare feet or socks. These are your base-level fins that don’t have any major disadvantages, but are also nothing special. Good for those who are on a tight budget and are trying to figure out what they prefer in a pair of snorkeling fins. Customer reviews are sparse.
Provide more speed and power than larger open heel paddle fins with less effort. These are designed for warm water and are geared towards all the performance aspects: speed, power, and acceleration. Overall these are awesome fins that are high quality, comfortable, and perform extremely well. The main downsides are the size, which could be inconvenient for traveling (about twice as long as some compact fins) as well as the cost.

What type of snorkeling do you plan on doing?

Many people who are new to snorkeling, or at least still call themselves beginners, often find it difficult to know where to start when looking for a new pair of snorkeling fins. Here are a few questions to ask yourself before looking around:

  • How often will you use these snorkeling fins?
  • What is more important: Convenience when traveling or performance in the water?
  • What is your budget?
  • Have you worn snorkeling fins before? ** If not, consider buying a low-end pair in order to discover what your preferences are for features in snorkeling fins. 

Having at least a rough idea of what your answers are to these questions will save you lots of time and backtracking when you're looking for a pair of snorkeling fins. 

What's the difference between short and long snorkeling fins?

One of the most obvious differences between different snorkeling fins is the blade length. Short/compact snorkeling fins tend to be easier to store and travel with. In terms of performance, they feel "easier" because there is less resistance and you can change direction quickly in the water. Additionally, some people prefer shorter fins because there is less chance they will drag on the reef (this depends on the person and location). 

Long fins can sometimes feel like they require more energy, but you travel a further distance per kick, ultimately allowing you to travel faster through the water. Skin divers who dive to great depths on a single breath often use long fins. Lots of people don't find long fins too difficult to travel with, but it really depends on how much space you have

Some people even go snorkeling with no fins. Although you may be capable of doing this as well, it's always safest to use snorkeling fins. If you become tired sooner than you expect and are away from the shore, or get caught in a rip tide, you will be extremely thankful to have a pair of snorkeling fins. 

What's the difference between closed-heel and open-heel snorkeling fins?

You may have noticed that snorkeling fins can come with two main different types of heels or foot pockets. There are the full foot snorkeling fins that slide on like a shoe, and there are open heel snorkeling fins that use an adjustable strap around the back of your heel.

Full foot snorkeling fins are typically easier to put on and take off, but the variety in sizes is limited. Usually for a particular brand of snorkeling fin you will only see two different sizes. That being said, they don't need to conform to the exact shape of your foot, as long as they aren't crazy tight and aren't falling off your feet, you should be ok. 

Full foot fins are geared towards warmer waters, as it is too difficult to wear a pair of neoprene boots inside the snorkel fins. Most people snorkel in warmer waters anyway, so this shouldn't be a huge limitation, but it is something to keep in mind. Additionally, this type of foot pocket is usually lighter and less bulky, which makes carrying them around uring your travels a little bit easier.

The main disadvantages of full foot snorkeling fins are the limited sizes and the fact that they are meant for warm water only. If you get a really bad fit, it's likely that they may blister your feet as well. 

On the other hand (or foot), the open-heel snorkeling fins don't need to come in a huge array of sizes, as the strap that goes around the back of your heel is adjustable. Moreover, open-heel snorkeling fins can be worn in warm and cold waters alike. Additionally, lots of snorkelers find they offer more power. 

The main disadvantages to open-heel snorkeling fins is that they may require additional footwear depending on the snorkeling location, for example, neoprene boots for colder water. Additionally, the bulkier and more complicated strap system increases the cost and weight of the fins. 

Our recommendation would be to go for open-heel snorkeling fins. However, if you are on a strict budget or are confident you can find good fit with a full foot pocket, then we wouldn't rule out the full foot snorkeling fins. 

What's the difference between split fins and paddle fins?

The blade of your snorkeling fin can come in two different types: split blade or paddle blade. Paddle blades are the conventional style of snorkeling fin that has been around for a while, whereas split fins are relatively new technology that offer additional benefits depending on what you need.


Split blades, for example the Oceanic Vortex V6 snorkeling fins that are in the above table, have a long slit down the middle of the blade. This allows the water to pass through the blade on the upstroke, which leads to less resistance, which means it is easier for you. As you kick down and propel yourself forward, the split blade creates a vortex in the water, which again creates a more efficient kicking stroke. You will definitely notice how much easier it is to glide along in the water.

This is the primary benefit of split fins. The fact that traveling through the water requires much less effort means you can extend your time in the water, perhaps exploring more interesting areas in one session than you would normally. Additionally, the ease of movement lends itself to those who have physical disabilities or a history of previous injuries, especially in the ankles, knees, and hips.

While split fins are becoming more and more popular, they can also be way more expensive. Additionally, many product descriptions state that you experience an increase in power when using these, but some advanced snorkelers disagree with that statement. The movement may be more efficient, but is not necessarily more powerful in an absolute sense.

Another concern among advanced snorkelers and instructors is that if there is a decrease in power, they can't get out of trouble as quickly or go chasing after marine life (or students!) with the split fin. For example, turning on a dime and accelerating quickly is something they talk about being a concern with split fins, but this is only an issue if you have the strength and expertise to begin with.

Our recommendation is dependent on a few things. If you are on a strict budget and aren't very sure what you want in a pair of snorkeling fins, stick with the standard paddle blade and use that as a learning tool. Then you can progress from there. If you know you plan on doing lots of snorkeling, are rather committed, and want don't mind spending a bit of extra money on something that saves you energy, then go with the split fin. If you are an expert, then you need to decide what's more important: efficiency, or overall power and acceleration. 

Snorkeling Fins - Overall Recommendations

Overall, we like open-heel split snorkeling fins, but recognize this can be expensive and not very practical for a snorkeler who just wants to get in the water on their vacation. Therefore, it really depends on your preferences, budget, and snorkeling location.

If there is one thing that we can say is the MOST important, it's comfort. Whether you're snorkeling one time only or every day for the rest of your life, having a pair of uncomfortable snorkeling fins can really ruin your time in the water. Therefore, if you plan on buying a pair of snorkeling fins online, we suggest leaning towards those that offer more variety in sizes or open-heel fins that have adjustable straps, even if it means spending a little more money. 

Snorkeling Fins - Individual Reviews

Awarded by us as Best Value Snorkeling Fin, the US Divers Trek Travel Fin boasts solid quality and performance for a very reasonable price. They are well reviewed by a wide array of snorkelers, which helps instill confidence in the product.

Although they are short fins and therefore aren't top of the line in terms of power, the open-heel design helps resolve that issue. On that note, the open-heel also allows you to adjust the strap to a comfortable level. We mentioned previously that open-heel snorkeling fins can be more bulky and less convenient to travel with, but the short length and smart design actually counteracts that quite nicely.

These snorkeling fins are well known to be comfortable, especially for the price point, and are easy to do on and off. They are convenient for traveling and there is a wide range of sizes. The main cons are they tend to be less powerful and require more energy to swim.

Overall, these fins are great for most snorkelers. We recommend these snorkeling fins more for beginners, those who are unsure of what they want in a pair of snorkeling fins, or anyone who wants a pair of compact open-heel fins at a reasonable price.

These snorkeling fins are available in either compact or regular length, as well as in different foot sizes. Additionally, an adjustable foot strap helps fine-tune the fit. In fact, we consider this to be the main advantages. These are some of the best snorkeling fins for large feet, being well reviewed in that category by many customers.

Although it is recommended that you wear some sort of other footwear with these snorkeling fins, like neoprene boots, it's well worth it if it means having a great fit, and therefore comfortable snorkeling fins.

Moreover, they are good quality and tend to be quite durable. Like any other fins with adjustable straps, the straps may wear or start to come off if you are constantly hard on them or keep them very tight, but this is pretty much standard across the board.

The wide selection of sizes, blade lengths, and high quality design lead to a slightly increased cost. Keep this in mind, as it can be easy to miss especially since they look fairly similar to a lot of other snorkeling fins.

Overall, these snorkeling fins fall between the two mentioned above. Solid performance and durability at a slightly higher price, but above average in the category of fit and comfort. Definitely worth considering these if you are upgrading from a low-level snorkeling fin or don't mind the slightly higher price point. 

Awarded by us as Best Overall Snorkeling Fins, the Oceanic Vortex V6 snorkeling fins are simply awesome. The split fin design allows for improved efficiency when swimming through the water, and the length of the blade still helps offer respectable power. If you want to spend more time in the water, definitely check these out.

The foot pocket is a full foot design. This may turn some off, but if they fit well on your feet, then you're golden. Additionally, some prefer the foot pocket as they don't need extra footwear and they are easier to put on and off, but again, it all depends on your preferences.

These split fins are well reviewed by many different snorkelers, beginner and expert alike. They are well-proven, high quality snorkeling fins, but there is an associated increase in cost. If you have the room in your budget, it could be well worth the higher price point.

Overall, if you have the budget, would like a pair of good split snorkeling fins, and are ok with the full foot design, we highly recommend these snorkeling fins. If you are a beginner and don't know exactly what you want, we would recommend avoiding the temptation of these great snorkeling fins and looks for something a little more basic.