Best Budget Snowboard Boots of 2023-24

Snowboard boots aren’t as exciting, big, and flashy as your other snowboarding gear, but they are the most important. Boots should be your priority when buying gear for snowboarding. Snowboard boots are so important that you should put some time into researching the technical know-how of how they work. You can choose to be ignorant or indifferent, if I am being polite, save yourself time and the headache that goes into the research. But chances are that your ignorance will come back to bite you on the hills.

So here is the list of budget snowboarding boots that provide good value for money.

1. DC Phase

DC Phase
Flex: Medium
Lacing: Traditional
Ride Style: Freestyle
Ability Level: Beginner-Intermediate

DC Phase snowboarding boots are primarily aimed at beginners and veterans looking to see if they’ve got (or still got) what it takes. The idea is to have a decent pair of boots without putting too much money into them since you are just trying them out. These boots have a medium flex which is ideal for beginners. A medium flex means that the boots are forgiving on the feet of beginners. A soft forward flex makes it easier to lean forward during hard turns.

The Phase features Response Liner I which has multi-layer EVA memory foam along with a thermal regulation fleece lining. They provide a decent amount of comfort. The Foundation Unilite™ Outsoles are DC’s lightest outsoles made of 100% Unilite™ providing a good amount of shock absorption. The Phase features a traditional lacing system that allows you to tighten the boot just the way you want. You may have to tighten them now and then. It is a dependable boot for beginners or riders trying to improve their skills.

However, downsides are expected with a budget option. Lately, DC’s liners have been a disappointment even though their shells have always been great. But the liners are removable for easy drying after a day in the snow.

What I like: Solid flex for a budget boot, snug fit, laces adjust easily

What I don’t: Runs small, colors are different from the pictures shown

See the DC Phase

2. Vans Aura OG

Vans Aura OG
Flex: Medium
Lacing: Boa
Ride Style: Freestyle
Ability Level: Beginner-Intermediate

Vans Aura OG boots are designed for beginners to advanced freestyle riders. People who are a little bit advanced are really going to love these boots. You can also ride them on groomers or in the park as well. The boots have a little bit of softer feel and flex and they are comfortable right out of the box. The lacing system on Aura OG is Vans Boa Coiler. This system is better than the classic boa because it automatically retracts cable slack for quick and efficient closure. Vans has been making boots for 25 years and it is the longest-running snowboard boot brand that’s been using boa.

The shell of the boots is a synthetic style material and the upper is abrasion resistant. There’s a nice little loop to pull the boots on and there’s a little flex notch in the inset and then there’s a heat retention layer. This layer is not just underneath your footbed but also engulfing and encapsulating the toe box. This layer keeps the heat in and the cold out. The outsole, which is called V1 Waffle Lug, is pretty cool. It looks like a vulcanized escape outsole, which is actually pretty dope but it is rubber. It grips really well and gives you a lot of great board feel. On the inside, there’s a V1 UltraCush Liner, which is simple and gives comfortable and essential support in a streamlined design.

What I like: Easy to put on and take out, can be used every day, feels comfortable

What I don’t: The steel wire of the boa digs into your ankle while riding.

See the Vans Aura OG

3. thirtytwo Shifty BOA

thirtytwo Shifty BOA
Flex: Soft
Lacing: Boa
Ride Style: Freestyle
Ability Level: Beginner-Intermediate

thirtytwo Shifty BOA is the most popular pair of boots by thirtytwo and for good reasons. It is suited for all-mountain riding making it a versatile option. This one pair of boots is all you need for different snowboarding conditions. Another plus point with these boots is that they are comfortable out of the box while other boots take around 10 days to break in. Although these boots do have a break-in period, they are still comfortable to wear from the first day. The boots become even more comfortable after use.

The boots have a medium flex which contributes to their versatility and makes them forgiving for the feet. Shifty BOA provides decent shock absorption and works even better with padded bindings so you can go on for longer times without getting fatigued.

As the name suggests, the lacing system is BOA with an upper and a lower dial. The two dials ensure that your boots remain tight. However, the two dials share the ankle which you might not like if you want more separation. After some adjustments, the BOA system makes sure that your heel is locked in place.

But thirtytwo boots aren’t the most reliable. There is a joke that thirtytwo refers to the number of days the boots last. But these boots are fairly durable. They are the only boots in thirtytwo lineups with rubber soles, which last longer than Single Mold EVA soles.

What I like: Out-of-the-box comfort, good value for money

What I don’t: Little support for bell-to-bell ride days, softer boots wear out quickly

See the thirtytwo Shifty BOA

4. System APX

System APX
Flex: Medium
Lacing: Traditional
Ride Style: All-mountain
Ability Level: Beginner-Intermediate

If you are looking to invest money rather than spend them on a pair of cheap snowboarding boots, then System APX is a pair to consider. The features it provides for the price are unmatched. It’s a lot of boot for decent money. The APX is known for its comfort and performance. With the new and improved design, it has been reinforced in almost every area. The boot now features double stitching for increased durability. The new design also gets a denser rubber sole for better shock absorption.

The new design of the APX also features an improved Thermofit Heat Moldable Liner which provides a better-customized fit. The liner eliminates pressure points by adapting to every curve of your foot and providing the comfort they are known for. The APX is among the lightest boots due to its small form factor.

The lacing system on the APX is the traditional loop lacing system with reinforced laces. Laces allow you to tighten the different sections of the boot with a different tension. It keeps your foot secure while still feeling comfortable. The special metal hooks prevent unintentional loosening for the entire day.

The stand-out feature of the APX along with many others is its durability of APX. This is a durable boot that will last for a long time. Even the manufacturer warranty period is 3 years. And the boot also has waterproof layering to keep the foot well-insulated.

What I like: Good comfort for an affordable boot, great performance in beginner to intermediate terrain, durable

What I don’t: Lacks adjustment in lacing

See the System APX

5. DC Judge

DC Judge
Flex: Medium
Lacing: Boa
Ride Style: Freestyle
Ability Level: Beginner-Intermediate

DC Judge is an intermediate to advanced freestyle riding boot designed for those who want great performance with easy in and out. The boots feature a double boa system with an H4 coiler dial. This means there are two dials to get a more custom fit in your forefoot and ankle. The dials are simple to use, and you can quickly achieve a precise, evenly distributed fit. The shell of the boot features an Aerotech Ventilation System, which integrates with the liner. It helps breathe your feet during hot days. There’s not a lot of articulation but it does allow the boot to flex smoothly over the top.

Underneath your foot, there’s a Vibram rubber sole. It doesn’t have a lot of really big tread to it but that Vibram pattern does grip better than most rubber outsoles. On the inside, there’s a little cuff that wraps around the liner and it has mesh to it. It is not very thick and doesn’t add a lot of additional support to the boot but it is just there to keep the liner locked into the lower heel section. There are some support panels along the sides of the liner but it’s really not that stiff liner. The liner also has heat molding capability, which is nice. You can wear these things and after three or four rides, it’s going to mold to your foot shape.

What I like: Easy to get in and out, heat molding capability, comfortable to ride

What I don’t: Not very budget-friendly.

See the DC Judge

6. Vans Hi Standard OG

Vans Hi Standard OG
Flex: Medium
Lacing: Traditional
Ride Style: Freestyle
Ability Level: Intermediate-Advanced

Vans Hi Standard OG has a timeless classic design with a lot of modern features. It is among the best-selling snowboard boots. Vans collaborated with team rider Kennedi Deck to produce this model. A pro-rider boot produced with the input of an actual pro rider should be a treat. The deck also inspired Vans to produce their first non-binary boots. So, whether you are a woman or a man, just put them on. The boot isn’t labeled.

Hi Standard OG is a versatile boot that can be used in different environments from parks to snow and urban environment. Under the classic old-school design, there are a lot of modern features to keep your feet comfortable throughout the day.

The boot features V1 UltraCush™ Liner that has a heat-moldable dual-density core that provides interior cushioning. The liner completely conforms to the shape of your feet eliminating pressure points. The resulting comfort is excellent. The V1 PopCrush Footbed has a 3D anatomical design to reduce fatigue along with excellent impact absorption. The lacing system is traditional and a limited edition also features art by Peter-Jhon de Villers from ShallowTree Colorway.

What I like: Adjustable lacing, comfortable, warm, and looks great

What I don’t: A bit of heel lift, runs small

See the Vans Hi Standard OG

7. Salomon Faction BOA

Salomon Faction BOA
Flex: Soft
Lacing: Boa
Ride Style: All-mountain
Ability Level: Beginner-Intermediate

The Salomon Faction BOA is a very well-made beginner boot. It is soft and user-friendly. It comes in two styles, Faction BOA and Faction SpeedLace. Faction BOA is the more expensive version you would expect. The Faction has a soft flex which makes it comfortable. The boot has a 3-dimensional flex from the insole to the top of the liner. Inside is a heat-customizable gold liner which is extremely comfortable.

The liner has heat moldable foam placed in sensitive areas like the shin, ankle, and heels. The foam molds in these areas eliminate pressure points. You can ride hard all day in the snow without feeling fatigued. The outsoles are lightweight and they are low-profile. The outsoles add dampening which further adds to the comfort of the boots. It prevents your feet from aching.

As the name suggests, the Faction features an easy and quick BOA lacing system. But a single BOA dial tightens the whole boot and doesn’t provide any room for customization. And it’s not even as good as it is on the rest of the boots in the Salomon lineup.

What I like: Excellent comfort, effective lacing system, warm enough

What I don’t: Poor fit, sizing is a bit off

See the Salomon Faction BOA

8. Burton Moto Lace

Burton Moto Lace
Flex: Soft
Lacing: Traditional
Ride Style: All-mountain
Ability Level: Beginner-Intermediate

Moto Lace has been in the Burton lineup for years. It is one of the excellent budget options you can get and it provides the highest quality for a low price. It now features a new improved design with slight improvements over the previous ones. The Moto Boots are best for beginners. They have a soft flex which is suited for beginners. The Moto features the Imprint™ 1+ liner which provides increased comfort. The liner also provides improved wrapping around the heels and ankles. The boot has a 1:1 Soft Flex PowerUp Tongue which means that every half and full-size liner gets a matching half and full-size shell, tongue, and outsole. The resulting fit is precise and not some mismatched mess that you have to put up with.

The Moto features Burton’s Speed Zone™ quick pull lacing system which allows for fast and hassle-free lacing so you can get going faster. The laces are also integrated with the liner to hold your feet firmly in place. The laces themselves are made by England Rope Races having a lifetime warranty. The Moto also provides excellent insulation to keep the feet warm during your ride in the snow. It has snowproof internal gussets to keep the snow out of the boots. These gussets seal the lower zones of the boots for warmth. The underfoot is also made of a sleeping bag with heat-effective foil to keep the feet warm. The DynoLite outsoles provide great cushioning. They are lightweight and provide an almost natural feel of the board while you are riding.

What I like: Forgiving soft flex yet sturdy and comfortable

What I don’t: Runs small so get a half size or next size bigger

See the Burton Moto Lace

Best Budget Snowboard Boots: Comparison Table

DC PhaseMediumTraditionalFreestyleBeginner-Intermediate
Vans Aura OGMediumBoaFreestyleBeginner-Intermediate
thirtytwo Shifty BOASoftBoaFreestyleBeginner-Intermediate
System APXMediumTraditionalAll-mountainBeginner-Intermediate
DC JudgeMediumBoaFreestyleBeginner-Intermediate
Vans Hi Standard OGMediumTraditionalFreestyleIntermediate-Advanced
Salomon Faction BOASoftBoaAll-mountainBeginner-Intermediate
Burton Moto LaceSoftTraditionalAll-mountainBeginner-Intermediate

How to Choose Boots for Snowboarding?

How to Choose Boots for Snowboarding?

Snowboard boots are the most important part of your snowboarding gear. Understanding the boot’s fitting and performance is essential. When buying snowboarding gear, boots should be your priority, so much so that you should extend your budget for the boots rather than the snowboard.

A lot of people make mistakes when choosing their boots for snowboarding only to ruin their day. But this guide can help you make the right choice. Here are a few critical snowboard boot considerations.


Of course, first thing’s first, and that is the fit of the boot. The right fitting of the boot should be your primary concern. All the other gimmicks are secondary because if the boot doesn’t fit right, nothing else matters. A boot that doesn’t fit right can make your feet sore and may even give you blisters. But they are still uncomfortable at the very least. There are a few things that you should keep in mind while trying out the fitting of the boots.

The boots should have a snug fit at the toes and the heels. A heel lift is bad for performance. When you lean forward, your board should rise, not your heels. Boots have a break-in period and feel a little uncomfortable in the beginning, but then the liners soften up over time. Size your boots in the evening or afternoon when your feet are naturally a bit swollen. Furthermore, one size in one brand can be different from the same size of another brand. That’s why boots from one brand may suit you better than the other brand.

Boot Liners

A boot liner is a major contributor to how comfortable the boots are going to feel. It is like an inner boot within the boot and it provides cushioning stability and insulation. It is usually made up of lightweight moldable materials like Ethylene Vinyl Acetate (EVA).

There are three major types of boot liners available:

  • Non-moldable liners are stock liners that provide generic padding and stability. Few boots have these liners these days. They take a longer time to conform to the shape of the foot. Boots with these liners have a longer break-in period.
  • Thermoformable liners conform to the foot’s shape using the natural heat from the foot. They provide a custom fit. They have a very little break-in period and usually break in after a day or so of snowboarding.
  • Heat moldable liners are placed in a special heated oven. They are then left to cool around the feet to achieve the best custom fit. You can mold these liners at home, but it is recommended that you get them done by a shop technician. That way, you would have less chance of ruining your boots.

A boot liner plays a key role in overall fit and comfort so choose the one that best suits your need.


The flex of your boots needs to match your riding style. It makes a difference in the performance of your boots. There are typically three categories that manufacturers use to define the flex of their boots:

  • Soft flex is the most comfortable. Boots with soft flex are made of materials that are easy on the feet and provide the most amount of mobility.
  • Medium flex provides a balance between mobility and support.
  • Stiff flex provides maximum support for edge power and control at high speeds.

Brands include flex ratings of their boots. But flex is subjective, so, an in-store purchase would always be an advantage over online shipping.

Riding Style

There are three kinds of riding styles:

  • All-mountain refers to gear that is suited for all types of terrain. The majority of the boots you will find are all-mountain with different flex levels. Novices choose soft boots because of their comfort. Experienced riders choose stiff boots because they require support for fast riding.
  • Freeride refers to untracked backcountry terrain. It is also referred to as “big mountain” riding. Speed and precision are preferred during freeriding and so riders choose boots with a stiff flex.
  • Freestyle is fun-focused. It is done in parks where you have high ramps and other obstacles around you so that you can perform different tricks and stunts. It requires maneuverability and quick responses. Mobility simply means that you would need boots with soft flex. Boots with a hard flex make it harder to maneuver and should be avoided in freestyle.

Boots are specific to riding style. You would have to do your due diligence to find out what kind of boot suits your riding style the best. The wrong boot for the wrong riding style would affect your performance and also make you feel uncomfortable.

Lacing System

Boots come with different types of lacing systems each with its advantages and disadvantages. There are three main types of lacing systems available.

  • Traditional lacing system is based on the tried and tested system for fastening shoes. It has been used for centuries and is still around even in the age of technology. What else does a successful system sound like? Traditional laces provide the highest degree of customization where you can separately tighten the upper and the lower parts of your boots. They are easy to replace if broken and are a cheap option. However, the downside is that they loosen after some time. You would have to tighten them up now and then.
  • Quick pull laces are faster than traditional laces. Boots with zonal lacing are better because they allow the forefoot and the ankle to be tightened independently of each other. Those without zonal lacing are at a disadvantage. Once you pull the laces will tighten the whole boot, which might be uncomfortable. There are many different types of quick pull lacing systems which all vary from company to company. They appear complex which is why some people might be intimidated by them if they see them at first. But they are very easy to use. They also have the same problem of loosening as traditional laces.
  • BOA system is a modern system of tightening boots that involves a cable attached to one or more dial adjusters. A boot can have a single, double, or even triple dial system. More dials allow for independent tightening of upper and lower regions. A single dial tightens the whole boot equally. The dials allow for micro-adjustability so you can fine-tune the tension on your boots. They don’t loosen up during use as well. However, they are expensive as you would expect. Also, they are not easy to replace.

Which one to choose can be a preference thing. Usually, lower-end boots come with traditional lacing while high-end boots come with a Boa system.