I could not even venture a guess for how many umbrellas I’ve purchased in my life. It’s not so much that I lose them, it’s that they turn out to be junk.
The frame collapses, the ribs get tweaked causing them to bend the wrong way or the ligaments snap apart—all of which encourages it to turn itself inside out leaving to wrestle it back into cooperation and end up soaking wet. Don’t you hate when that happens?
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My experience, together with lots of research and testing have brought me to the conclusion that regardless the promises made by manufacturers, no umbrella is 100% windproof. That’s because “wind” can range from a slight breeze to hurricane strength, the latter of which would cause any umbrella to fail.
What we should expect in an umbrella is for it to be waterproof, sturdy, and above all, reliable under moderately windy situations. It must be of a decent size. And if something goes wrong—even those hurricane-strength winds—we want reliable customer service that will make things right.
My picks for Best Inexpensive™ umbrellas below meet all of my expectations—including being large enough to keep both my husband and me dry when, in a pinch, we’re forced to share an umbrella.
BEST INEXPENSIVE TRAVEL UMBRELLA
Bodyguard Foldable Travel Umbrella is my pick for Best Inexpensive™ travel umbrella. I love it because it is lightweight, opens to 46-inches, but also folds up to fit easily into my carry-on bag. It is sturdy and feels solid when open, performing well even in fairly strong wind. This umbrella is super waterproof; even in a major downpour, it does not leak through the canopy getting me wet. Comes with a replace-or-refund lifetime guarantee! Choice of two colors. About $20.
BEST INEXPENSIVE LARGE UMBRELLA
EEZ-Y Folding Golf Umbrella is huge with a full 50-inches of coverage open; folds down to 23-inches. That’s easily large enough for two people to share. The double canopy holds up to strong wind really well because it is vented. Even with its hefty size, this umbrella is very easy to use. Just press a button to open. Comes in a variety of colors. Lifetime guarantee here, too. About $25.
BEST INVERTED UMBRELLA
G4Free Double Layer Inverted Umbrella uses the unique design of an inside-out umbrella to prevent water from dripping. That means dry floors and cars. Because it closes in reverse, all that water stays inside the umbrella. And the way it opens and closes makes entering and exiting a car less of a hassle. You don’t have to close it before entering the car. Opened, it looks and acts like a regular closing umbrella. Makes for a great gift! Available in six colors. About $22.