Even carrying a life raft is elective. For us the decision was about spending time in case of emergency
to make the primary vessel okay again, because of unreliability of life rafts in those days, sparseness of rescue
services, and a presentation by a seller of life rafts who demonstrated their failure modes. We carry a big dinghy
, easily inflated, and no life raft.
There are people who will tell you that that is madness. Perhaps it is, but perhaps it is merely idiosyncratic. Just saying.
If you are brave enough to face getting into a liferaft
, then do NOT buy one that is too big. Liferaft
design is based partly on the ballast your body provides, and one that is oversized is far more likely to capsize
, throwing you in the water
, and you'll have to try and get back iin. Everything in it should be securely tied down. If I were going to have one, I'd have to do a lot of research
. Articles where they have been tested in swimming pools, so that the authors have had to try and get in them, and can compare and contrast them may be helpful.
Can't help you on the expense issue. How would you feel stepping into a bottom of the line item? Sure is a lot of money
for a possibly one use item!
I hope you end up pleased with your choices.