You can easily spend hundreds of dollars on a good rain jacket. Which is quite a lot of money, but then staying dry when you’re outdoors, especially when it’s cold out, is important. Still, it’s more than possible to find a cheap rain jacket that wont empty out your wallet, but will still keep you dry for hours on end through a rain storm. What you need is to know what you’re looking for when you go shopping for a rain jacket, so that you don’t get something that is just cheap.
Cheap Rain JacketWhat to look for when you want a cheap rain jacket.
- Material – Something like Gore Tex 3L Pro is not going to be cheap, but there are other, equally good fabrics, like eVent, that will keep you dry, breath well and leave plenty of money in your wallet. The trick is to find a fabric that wont cost a whole lot, but will do a good job of keeping you dry.
- Extras – Rain jackets often come with all kinds of extras that add to the price tag. Something like a helmet compatible hood, for instance, is nice to have if you do a lot of rock climbing, for example, but otherwise it’s a feature that you don’t need, and that you shouldn’t pay for if you can help it.
Best Cheap Rain JacketSome of the best cheap rain jackets for both men and women.
- Marmot Minimalist Jacket (Women's) - If you have your heart set on a Gore Tex jacket but don't want to spend a lot, then the Minimalist from Marmot is an ideal compromise. It uses Gore Tex's 2.5 layer fabric, called Paclite, which will keep you dry but will also ventilate well. But beyond that it stays true to the Minimalist name. It has the basics, like pit zips, zippered hand pockets, 1 chest pocket and a drawcord on the hood and hem, but beyond that there's nothing fancy here. Just a basic Gore Tex rain jacket with a good price, at least compared to other Gore Tex jackets.
- Patagonia Torrentshell Jacket (Women's) - The Torrentshell is likely more what most people have in mind when they think of cheap rain jackets. It's made with Patagonia's own waterproof material, called H2N0, which helps to keep the price down low. It's also another jacket that has just the basics, like pit zips and hand pockets, but not much else. It's the cheapest rain jacket on this list, and an ideal choice if all you want is something basic to keep you dry.
- GoLite Pertex 2.5 Storm Jacket (Women's) - One more 2.5 layer jacket, this time from GoLite. GoLite is a company dedicated to making lightweight gear, as the name suggests, and this is actually their lightest waterproof rain jacket, so an ideal option really for staying dry without carrying around a bulky or heavy rain jacket. It includes pit zips, a drawcord on the hood plus a drawcord on the hem, but again what stands out about this cheap rain jacket is the low weight.