Heating an inflatable hot tub to the highest temperature setting (104F - law limited) can take up to 48 hours depending on the outside temperature and insulation quality. Is there anything you can do to make it heat up faster? Well, heating such a large amount of water takes a lot of energy, and how […]
Hot tub used to be the thing an average person just couldn't afford. They were expensive to get, difficult to maintain, and took a LOT of space. Luckily, we are in 2021 and things have changed - Inflatable hot tubs come to the rescue. And they deliver on everything that ordinary hot tub couldn't.
Inflatable hot tubs are extremely affordable, easy to set up (you just need an ordinary power socket nearby), and don't take much space. In fact, they can be stored away when you don't plan to use them. All of this while providing an awesome massage and soothing hot water.
But there's a catch, not all of them are equally good. There are awesome inflatable hot tubs - but also quite a few not worth the money. We've reviewed and handpicked the 10 best inflatable hot tubs available in the UK.
TOP 8 Best Inflatable Hot Tubs:
|1. Lay-Z-Spa Miami(Our TOP pick)||$$||Check Price|
|2. Intex PureSpa||$$$||Check Price|
|3. Lay-Z-Spa Vegas||$$||Check Price|
|4. Lay-Z-Spa Hawaii||$$$||Check Price|
|5. Lay-Z-Spa Palm Springs||$$$||Check Price|
|6. Lay-Z-Spa Saint Tropez (Floating LED light!)||$$||Check Price|
|7. Mspa Alpine||$||Check Price|
|8. Lay-Z-Spa Monaco||$$$$||Check Price|
These plug and play hot tubs are easy to maintain, but still, there are a few things you need to learn (chlorination, pH level, etc.). This hot tub handbook will guide you through everything you need to know:
Best inflatable hot tubs reviewed:
1. Lay-Z-Spa Miami
|Our Rating||4.8 / 5|
This is the best inflatable hot tub available in the UK on our TOP list. It is both affordable and really luxurious featuring 81 strong air jets.
Lay-Z-Spa is the UK’s bestselling inflatable hot tub brand.
Lay-Z-Spa Miami has a water capacity of 800 litres and is ideal for 2-4 adults. Just plug the heater into an ordinary electrical socket. The heating rate is 1.5 – 2°C per hour while using 2 kW of power.
The maximum temperature is 40°C. None of the inflatable hot tubs in the UK goes higher than this (a limit set by law).
Lay-Z-Spa Miami also has built-in grab handles for super easy transportation.
So the question remains, how do you control the temperature and the blower?
An industry standard is a digital control panel on top of the heater. This spa is no exception. The panel is easy to read and very easy to use.
How do you pack it and store it?
Just drain the hot tub, let it dry, deflate, put it in a carry bag, and put it in the basement. That’s the best thing about an inflatable hot tub, the way it is easily stored away. The whole process is easy and straightforward.
The massage in Miami hot tub is provided by 81 air jets for optimal relaxation.
2. Intex PureSpa
|Our Rating||4.7 / 5|
High-quality inflatable hot tub designed for four people (There’s also a 6 person version available.). Walls of the spa are very durable and made of triple-layer laminated PVC. There are 120 high-pressure bubble jets powered by 800-watt air blower for optimal relaxation.
The water heater provides 2220 Watts of power to heat the water up to 40 degrees Celsius, with a water flow rate of 1741 litres per hour.
Why buy the Intex PureSpa?
Intex PureSpa, a blowup hot tub with a very nice design, comes with a built-in hard water treatment to prevent limescale build-up – which often leads to clogging of the pump and filter cartridges.
If you wonder if Intex inflatable whirlpool has a cover included – it does. Actually, most of the manufacturers include a basic cover with the hot tub. It’s really important because the temperature losses when not using one are huge (And therefore your electricity bill).
But it’s not just for insulation – it also serves a safety function and prevents children from falling into the spa, as well as preventing dust and leaves from falling into your spa.
With a water capacity of 210 gallons, it has enough room to seat 4 people.
What about the massage? Well, Intex spa has 120 air jets for optimal relaxation.
Intex PureSpa inflatable hot tub also has built-in grab handles for super easy transportation. Carry bag is included as well.
So the question remains, how do you control the temperature and the blower?
An industry standard is a digital control panel on top of the heater. This one is no exception. The panel is easy to read and very easy to use.
3. Lay-Z-Spa Vegas
|Our Rating||4.5 / 5|
While not first on our list, a still very impressive inflatable hot tub is a Lay-Z-Spa Vegas. It doesn't really stand out from the line of Lay-Z-Spa hot tubs in terms of features and is usually one of the great budget choices. We loved the white-themed design and sturdy construction.
The spa heats up up to 40° celsius and the built-in airjets (87 of them) provide great massage. As all inflatable hot tubs, you plug it into an ordinary electrical socket.
When filled with water, it will weigh about 1100 kilograms.
While the manufacturer claims a capacity of up to 6 people, our experience is that 4 adults in the hot tub are enough to stay comfortable.
Check out this Lay-Z-Spa Vegas setup video!
How do you control the temperature?
The hot tub comes with an integrated digital control panel on top of the heater unit. There you can control temperature, turn on air bubbles or turn off the heating.
4. SaluSpa Hawaii (US review)
|Our Rating||4.5 / 5|
Another great blowup hot tub from Bestway. This rectangular spa is a little more expensive than others, but it has a reason – It is an inflatable hot tub with water jets – and it’s the only one in our list.
All other inflatable spas have air jets, which are very pleasant, but water jets have their own advantages.
What’s so special about SaluSpa Hawaii inflatable jacuzzi?
Hydrojets are common in conventional built-in spas but are not often seen in inflatable hot tubs. They provide the ultimate massaging experience by thrusting water through the adjustable nozzles at high speed.
One of their advantages is that running a water pump is much quieter than turning on air bubbles. Hydro-jets also don’t cool the water as much as air jets.
So how many water-jets does this hot tub have?
Eight adjustable water-jets + air jets. Great, isn’t it? But it’s not just that. It also has a built-in saltwater water treatment system and a hard water system.
It has a capacity is 4-6 people, but our experience says 4 adults is enough if you want to stay comfortable.
The water capacity is typical - 210 gallons. This is around 1700 pounds of weight for the water alone. Bear this in mind when thinking about where to place your hot tub.
While having HydroJets together with AirJets is great, it’s a pity that they cannot be run simultaneously.
5. Intex PureSpa 6-person (US review)
|Our Rating||4.4 / 5|
This intex blow up jacuzzi is a bigger brother to this one. With a claimed capacity of 6 people and a water capacity of 290 gallons, it is actually the biggest one in our list of best inflatable hot tubs.
What are the advantages of Intex 85in PureSpa?
Intex included an insulated cover to greatly minimize heat losses. Covering your blow-up hot tub after use can greatly lower your monthly bill! Furthermore, Intex PureSpa blow-up spa has a built-in hard water treatment system that softens the water, reducing the limescale build-up.
There are some cool ad-dons for this blow-up Jacuzzi available like inflatable headrest or special cup holder.
The typical inflatable spa has up to 120 air jets, this one has 140 of them! It’s easy comparing numbers, but we believe you won’t notice the difference between 120 and 140.
A floating chemical dispenser is included together with two filter cartridges. Thermal ground cloth for basic thermal insulation is in the box too.
There are grab handles on the sides of the spa to make transportation a breeze. Of course, the spa has to be empty. The 290 gallons of water will weight around 2400 pounds alone, without the weight of the inflatable hot tub or people inside! So take that into account when thinking about the right place for your blow-up spa.
6. SaluSpa Palm Springs (US review)
|Our Rating||4.2 / 5|
This is yet another great spa from Bestway. While it doesn’t have as many features as our best inflatable hot tub, it still has a lot to offer.
Palm Springs is one of the bigger ones
Unlike SaluSpa Paris, SaluSpa Palm Springs portable jacuzzi doesn’t have that cool LED lighting. If that’s an issue for you, check out SaluSpa Paris.
The manufacturer claims a capacity of up to 6 people – it is possible, but it’s a tight fit.
This one comes with a cushioned air pad floor for extra protection & insulation. If you want to further minimize heat losses and improve comfort, use additional mats/old carpets or anything suitable.
7. SaluSpa Miami
|Our Rating||4.1 / 5|
SaluSpa Miami is a common 4 person inflatable hot tub with no extra features like LED lights. It has 120 bubble jets, a common value for air-inflated spas of this diameter.
What does SaluSpa Miami offer?
Together with other soft inflatable hot tubs from Bestway, it uses their TriTech material –polyester core encased in two layers of laminated PVC. This gives this spa extra sturdiness and robustness.
This plug and play jacuzzi is delivered with an inflatable cover, which is a great way to lower thermal losses and make it safe by covering the water.
SaluSpa Miami comes in a black color, which might not be relaxing for everybody. If you rather like green, check out this inflatable hot tub.
8. Goplus 4 Person (US review)
|Our Rating||3.9 / 5|
This is one of the newcomers to the market. That’s why we choose to be cautious as its weaknesses are not discovered yet. So far, it seems like a solid inflatable hot tub. Its main feature definitely is the filter and air blower unit being built into the inflatable wall, reducing footprint!
What does the Goplus spa offer?
The manufacturer states a capacity for 4 people. Just like with every other hot tub with a claimed capacity of 4, it’s doable, but definitely not comfortable unless you are close friends (A lot of leg touching guaranteed).
Goplus has practical carrying handles for easier transportation (This is a standard feature in most inflatable hot tubs)
Possibly the most unique and the best feature is integrated heater and blower inside the wall of the spa.
This makes it take even less space than other hot tubs in this category.
The digital control panel is right in the wall of the spa, making it super easy to change the settings from the water, without the need to reach over the side of the hot tub to an external control panel.
Hard-water treatment system is included to prevent a buildup of limescale and make the water more pleasant to the skin.
Read the whole review here.
9. Intex PureSpa Hot Tub/Pool Set
|Our Rating||4.7 / 5|
This is nothing like you have ever seen before! We saved this one for the end because it’s not just a classic inflatable spa, it’s actually a hybrid of a hot tub and a pool! What is it good for?
What kind of hybrid is this?!
Well, children often enjoy playing and having fun in a pool, while parents would rather soak in hot water and relax. Making physical activity in hot water is not the best idea, especially for small children.
Now you can play games, like throwing a ball, together with your children. They will be playing in the pool, while you will enjoy a hot and relaxing spa.
The hot tub part, which is smaller, seats up to 4 people. The pool part is bigger, and would definitely seat another six people. But we don’t think it’s meant for sitting.
Hot&cold together is awesome! Check out these 5 things which hot tubs and saunas have in common!
This hybrid comes with built-in hard water treatment, to prevent clogging of the water pump and to make water more pleasant to the skin.
An insulated cover is a must, radically reducing heat losses, so intex included it in the package.
So this is how it looks like:
Inflatable Hot Tub: What to keep an eye on?
Let’s talk about a few points which make the most difference between inflatable hot tubs.
Inflatable spas range from around 300 $ up to 1,000 $. The higher price tag generally comes with more advanced features such as
- WaterJets (Like in this one)
- LED underwater mood lights (Like in this one)
- Saltwater treatment system
- Space for more people
Two different types of jets
This is the one most important feature of a hot tub, so read carefully. Let’s begin with the most used and most popular option, the AirJets.
Most of the inflatable hot tubs have air jets. They are cheaper to manufacture and provide affordable but amazing massage. How come they are so cheap? Well, they reuse the same blower that inflates your spa when setting it up for pushing the air through a hose into a ring on the floor with holes in it. While this doesn’t sound very sophisticated, the massage and tinkling feeling on your skin is actually very pleasant.
What we like about airjets:
Inflatable hot tubs with airjets are generally cheaper than those with water jets. Air jets are surprisingly very pleasant!
What we don’t like about airjets:
The blower can be loud. The heater often cannot be run simultaneously with air jets. They cool the water pretty quickly.
2. Water Jets / HydroJets
While water jets are a common occurrence in a conventional built-in jacuzzi, they are rarely found in an inflatable spa. Why is it so?
Well, it’s due to manufacturing costs. Water jets need a powerful water pump and high-quality and reliable water piping. Actually, there’s only one inflatable hot tub in our top list offering this awesome feature. It’s the SaluSpa Hawaii (Check it out).
These are the jets that expensive built-in hot tubs use. The massage of these jets is much more focused on one spot. The jet of water is applying direct pressure to your skin.
What we like about hydrojets:
The focused jet of water under high pressure makes a unique massage experience therefore water jets can give you a much stronger and more direct massage than air jets. The water pump is less noisy than it’s air counterpart. No heat losses due to cold air being pushed into the water. Together with hot water, they are awesome for relieving sore muscles – check out this study.
Hot tubs with hydrojets usually also have airjets, so you are not missing out on anything.
What we don’t like about hydrojets:
The price is usually a double of what an ordinary air-jet inflatable hot tub costs.
Size & Design
The smallest inflatable hot tub available is this two-person spa. The biggest hot tubs can accommodate up to six people – but be ready for some underwater leg touching if six grown-ups meet in there :-).
Volume-wise they range from around 150 gallons up to 300 gallons of water. The latter is more than 2,500 pounds of weight, so be careful about the place you plan to fill it with water in.
Most of the hot tubs have very sturdy walls. One can sit on them and they won’t bulge. They use a variety of materials, some better, some worse, for the best quality, check out our top picks in our top list.
Another important aspect is the heater unit. Most of the hot tubs have an external adjacent unit where all the important stuff is (heater, blower, a control panel on top). Some newer hot tubs have this unit built-in into the wall of the spa. This is beneficial for those of you with less space available.
As a rule of thumb - the cheaper the hot tub, the fewer features it has. It’s totally up to you if you wish to pay extra for some of these features. Even the basic low-cost inflatable hot tub can provide awesome relaxation. Ask thousands of happy owners ;-).
1. Hard water system
This feature prevents a buildup of limescale which is a major cause of blow-up hot tub pump breakdowns. Luckily, this feature is found on most of the inflatable hot tubs.
2. LED mood lights
This takes the nighttime soaking to a new level and it looks super cool. More and more hot tubs start to include this as a standard, for example, SaluSpa Paris (Go check it out).
3. Saltwater system
Saltwater system eliminates the need for adding chlorine or shocking your spa and thus saving a ton of time and struggle. What’s even better is that the spa won’t have that typical chlorine smell. You might know it from older pools. Modern pools are often using other ways of sanitation.
If you have problems breathing the air with the smell of chlorine, a saltwater treatment system is more suitable for you.
4. Super unique feature
Now, this is a feature that is one of a kind. This is an inflatable spa (check it out here) that’s joined with a pool for children!
One half is for your children with cool water (It’s dangerous to do excessive physical activity in hot water) and the other half is a hot tub for you to relax in.
While this takes a lot of space, just like an ordinary pool, it’s a perfect choice for a family with children. Children usually don’t enjoy staying calm and relaxing in a hot tub. So this product joins those two opposite worlds together.
What is the best non-inflatable portable hot tub to buy?
A non-inflatable portable hot tub is always more expensive than a similar blow-up spa, but it offers much more as well. Anatomically shaped seats with real water jets provide the same relaxation as a built-in jacuzzi for much less.
This is our TOP choice:
Smart for Life – 4 Person Portable Hot Tub
- 4 person hot tub
- locking hardcover
- 20 high powered jets
- 1 hp pump
Smart for Life - a free-standing portable hot tub. It's easy to set up, no construction needed, and accommodates up to 4 people. It has real water jets with quality stainless steel jets (20 of them) – exactly as often found in expensive built-in whirlpools. To sweeten the deal some more, steps are included in the package.
When it comes to spa care, it is really easy to maintain.
What is it made of?
It’s made of "RockSolid Shell" as the manufacturer calls it. Durable material for all-weather and all-season use.
Is it hard to install?
Absolutely not! You set it up and plug it into your conventional 110V socket, fill it with water and you are good to go!
Does it have a cover?
Yes, it comes with an insulated cover with safety locks. The cover is 3 inches thick to minimise heat loss (and your electricity bill)
What is the best inflatable hot tub for winter?
Soaking in a hot water in the middle of the winter is an awesome experience! (You really should try it out!)
While most of the inflatable spas will work in a mild winter, our best inflatable hot tub for winter is the Coleman Lay Z Spa.
While you shouldn’t use it under 40 degrees Fahrenheit according to Coleman (This may void your warranty), a lot of people have done so and without trouble. But you have to be careful.
The real risk is that in the case of an electricity blackout, the heater has to be started back manually. If the water in the heater freezes, the damage usually cannot be undone and the heater has to be replaced.
One example of a bad hot tub
Radiant Saunas Simplicity (Bad choice)
Our advice: Don’t buy this one!
We’ve added this one as an example of how an inflatable hot tub should NOT look and work.
Average looking for an average price. You can definitely find much better inflatable spas on our TOP list.
Anyway, what does it offer?
It has enough room to sit 4 people according to the manufacturer. As with all other “4 person hot tubs”, get ready for some intimate time with your buddies. This is fine if you are close friends, but not so comfortable if you are not. The exterior layer is a brownish synthetic leather. It is a matter of personal preference, but we don’t like it at all.
The digital control panel is located on the top of the water pump/heater unit. This unit is pretty small compared to the competition, so controlling the digital control panel from inside the water is trouble. You have to reach your hands over the side of the spa, and blindly push the buttons. Not a good design choice at all.
If you want to see a nicely designed control panel, check out this Goplus hot tub.
As with all blow-up spas, this one is easy to set up and use too. It will self-inflate using the air blower that later produces massaging bubbles. This is just normal, nothing special.
Starter chemicals for shocking and treating the hot tub are not included!
Final verdict: We would not choose this one.