5 Best Fishing Rods under $200 (Reviews Updated 2021)

You don’t necessarily need to burn a hole in your pockets to purchase up-to-standard fishing gear. With some guidance and with just under $200, you can get a fishing rod that will give you the functionality of more pricey models without breaking the bank. The ideal budget fishing rod under $200 should be highly durable, lightweight, versatile, and should be easy to set up.

Best Fishing Rods under $200

In this guide, we have corralled some pretty impressive high-caliber fishing rods that will leave you delighted and satisfied without wrecking your checking account.

1. St Croix Triumph Travel Spinning Rods

St Croix Triumph Travel Spinning Rods

The Triumph Travel Spinning Rods give unrivaled performance, value, and comfort without sacrificing affordability. For freshwater anglers who are after quality, this 4-piece spinning rod is your answer.

  • Mid-modulus SCII graphite fiber construction.
  • Sensitive and sturdy.
  • DPS reel seats with frosted silver hoods and aluminum oxide guides.
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2. Daiwa Ballistic X Telescopic Fishing Rod

Daiwa Ballistic X Telescopic Fishing Rod

The Ballistic X telescopic fishing rod from DAIWA employs high-volume carbon fiber (X45 technology) construction, giving it strength, casting accuracy, and sharp sensitivity towards the bait action and ground contact. They feel strong and balanced, and the EVA foam cork ensures a firm grip throughout your session.

  • 8ft. casting length.
  • EVA foam handle and Fuji DPS reel seats.
  • X45 HVF carbon fibre construction.
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3. Abu Garcia IKE Signature Power Casting Fishing Rod

Abu Garcia Ike Signature Power Casting Fishing Rod

The Power Casting fishing rod from Abu Garcia is a result of research and advancement with Elite Series Pro, Mike Laconelli to bring the right rod for any fishing circumstance. The blanks are constructed with 36-T high-modulus graphite and stainless steel guides for compactness, balance, and better sensitivity.

  • It uses Stainless steel guides coupled with zirconium inserts.
  • Lightweight design with 36-ton graphite blanks.
  • Fuji reel seats.
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4. Okuma Citrix Travel Rod

Okuma Citrix Travel Rod

Another product worth mentioning is the Okuma Citrix Travel Rod, designed to be easily mobile, yet highly functional. This custom 4-piece is of an IM8 graphite blank construction, with improved balance and weight distribution compared to older models. The split EVA corks also offer better grip and manageability.

  • ALPS stainless steel guide frames with zirconium line inserts.
  • Pac Bay reel seats.
  • Impressive performance for its price range.
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5. SHIMANO Trevala Casting Rod

Shimano Trevala Casting Rod

The SHIMANO Trevala Casting Rod is an award-winning fishing tackle that is extremely powerful and designed to be used in conjunction with equally powerful, high-speed reels. For all the power of boasts, it still manages to retain minimal mass for an extra heavy power casting rod. These rods are near-indestructible, lightweight, and light-action, with a smooth, diamond-polished finish for better protection against cragginess, eroding, and heat loss.

  • Designed with a high carbon posterior end fused with a TC4 tip.
  • Fuji aluminum oxide guides with a diamond polish finish.
  • Quick recovery rate and response.
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Rods Under $200 Buying Guide

Fishing is a great sport or recreational activity and while many people may be interested, between all the gear, things can get quite pricey. When shopping for a fishing rod on a budget of $200 or less, ensuring you get the best for your money becomes very important.

Our buying guide reviews the best fishing rods priced under $200 to give you the most affordable options to choose from without sacrificing functionality. We then take it a step further and outline the key factors you want to consider before making a purchase.

Type

The first thing you want to decide is the type of fishing rod you want to go for. Fishing rods are generally classified into three main categories – baitcasting rods, spinning rods, and conventional rods.

Spinning rods are the most popular types of fishing rods and are widely used by newbie, mid-level, and experienced anglers. They are ideal for small to medium-sized fish and are the most affordable on the market.

Baitcasting rods are better suited to catching bigger fish and are more popular among experienced anglers. They offer the advantage of more accurate casts, can handle larger baits, and offer higher reeling torque. They are, however, more prone to backlashing and have a steeper learning curve.

Conventional rods sport a similar design to baitcasting rods but are, however, more suited to saltwater fishing and offer the advantage of large line capacity and superior reeling torque.

Materials

When scouting for a fishing rod on a budget, one of the most important factors to consider is the materials it is made from. It should be lightweight, highly corrosion-resistant, and tough enough to handle the strain. In general, fishing rods are made from materials like fiberglass, carbon fiber, and graphite, or feature a blend of these materials.

Fiberglass rods combine high flexibility with low weight and are the most affordable. Graphite rods are lighter and tougher than fiberglass rods and are very durable. They are more expensive than fiberglass rods, but are more brittle – take less deformation to snap. Carbon fiber rods are the toughest fishing rods you will find today. While they share the same carbon DNA as graphite rods, they are very strong, are the lightest, and the most expensive.

Portability

Depending on where you will be fishing, the portability of your fishing rod will likely be another very important factor to consider. As an extension of its materials, it should be very lightweight so it is convenient to carry around. For improved portability, you also want to look for a telescopic rod that comes in multiple-piece configurations that are easily retracted for compactness and extendable when it is needed.

Action and Power

Another important criteria you would want to consider are the rod’s power and action. The power measures how much strain the rod can handle before deflecting and will depend on the size of the fish you are targeting. The action measures the level of the reaction of your rod’s top to movement in the line. Fishing rod power is rated as ultralight, light, medium, and heavy. Ultralight and light rods are used with small lures and to target smaller fish. Medium power rods are the most versatile, while heavy power rods are suited to large fish.

Fishing rod actions are rated as slow and fast action rods. Fast action rods are the most sensitive and deflect close to the tip while slow action rods defect closer to the handle of the rod under load.