This is an archived article and the information in the article may be outdated. Please look at the time stamp on the story to see when it was last updated.

Which footwear for crabbing is best?

Crabbing is an easy and incredibly rewarding way to fish. You can haul in plenty of crabs with just a little bait, rope and an optional trap. And you can do it from the comfort of your favorite dock, beach or boat. However, you have to have the right kind of attire for crabbing. One of the most important considerations for crabbers and fishing enthusiasts is safe, appropriate footwear.

MAYZERO Water Shoes have a flexible build and rubber soles, protecting your feet while helping you maintain a steady grip on smooth, wet surfaces.

What to know before you buy footwear for crabbing

How you do your crabbing

Crabs reside in a wide range of aquatic environments. From the depths of the sea to tidepools, lakes and lagoons, the type of crabbing you do depends on your location and what species of crab you’re after. Because of this, the kind of footwear that’s best for you will vary.

Those who go crabbing on the water will likely do just fine wearing a pair of boat shoes or sneakers that have a good grip. Crabbers who prefer stony beaches should invest in water shoes, which can get wet and still provide traction on slick rocks. And if you’re crabbing from a dock or pier, you can wear whatever shoes you find most comfortable, as it is unlikely that you will get wet while you’re on the hunt.

Your weather and climate

From sunny Florida to icy Alaska, you can go crabbing just about anywhere. Carefully consider what kind of weather conditions you’ll experience and select footwear that will keep you comfortable. Light, breathable shoes are best for typically hot or humid regions, whereas colder climates will demand insulation. If the weather in your area varies depending on the season, you’ll likely need at least two pairs of shoes to ensure you’re ready for whatever nature sends your way.

Comfort and size considerations

If your footwear doesn’t fit properly, you’re likely to get blisters, cramps or chafing. Be sure to find shoes that are the right size and have enough padded support to allow you to stand and walk without discomfort. 

Crabbing entails a lot of activity, including throwing your bait into the water and reeling in your catch. Get crabbing shoes that allow you to move safely and easily.

What to look for in quality footwear for crabbing


Even if you go crabbing in cold conditions, try to find lightweight footwear. Heavy boots can make you clumsy, and dealing with cumbersome footwear while working near water can be hazardous.


If you’re crabbing in inclement weather, consider waterproof footwear. High rubber boots come in different designs, and some even let you walk in waist-high water without getting wet. However, this type of footwear may not be ideal for crabbing from a boat or dock, since you’ll need more mobility. 


If you’re trapping crabs from a boat or on the beach, you’ll want footwear that dries quickly. Water shoes are great for beach lovers, as their thin construction and materials allow them to dry in no time. If you’re crabbing from a boat, you’ll also find water shoes to be light and convenient.

Grip and traction

From algae-covered rocks to slick docks, there are plenty of slipping dangers when it comes to crabbing. Select footwear with a good grip so your feet don’t slip as much on smooth, wet surfaces. Soft and flexible shoes also give you flexibility, which helps when you need to navigate around irregularly shaped stones and uneven sea floors.

How much you can expect to spend on footwear for crabbing

Depending on the shoe type and brand that you select, footwear for crabbing ranges between $30-$100. Most mid-range options go for around $40.

Footwear for crabbing FAQ

Is crabbing dangerous?

A. All activities that take place on the water have inherent hazards that you won’t find on dry land. Falling, drowning and hypothermia are all possible depending on where you’re crabbing. Protect yourself by wearing appropriate footwear and a life jacket at all times, and try to bring a friend with you.

Can I crab barefoot?

A. It depends on where you you’re crabbing. Sandy beaches are typically safe enough to crab barefoot. However, it’s best to wear some type of crabbing footwear to avoid slipping and the occasional pinch from a cranky crab.

What’s the best footwear for crabbing to buy?

Top footwear for crabbing

MAYZERO Water Shoes

MAYZERO Water Shoes

What you need to know: These water shoes are light and flexible with a grippy sole, making them perfect for fishing of any kind.

What you’ll love: They dry quickly and feature a soft rubber bottom to provide traction and protect against sharp rocks or shells. Available in almost 40 different designs, these water shoes fit anyone’s style.

What you should consider: These shoes aren’t appropriate for cold weather.

Where to buy: Sold by Amazon

Top footwear for crabbing for the money

SEEKWAY Water Shoes

SEEKWAY Water Shoes

What you need to know: These affordable water shoes give you an easy grip on rocks and gravel.

What you’ll love: Thin, supple and quick to dry, these shoes protect your feet from slippery stones and hot boardwalk surfaces alike. They’re also very easy to take on and off.

What you should consider: These shoes aren’t built for longevity and have limited color options.

Where to buy: Sold by Amazon

Worth checking out

HUK Men’s Rogue Wave Shoe

HUK Men’s Rogue Wave Shoe

What you need to know: These boots are completely waterproof and provide good traction.

What you’ll love: For those who demand total water protection, these boots allow for shallow wading and dry feet. Their rubber construction grips both wet and dry surfaces.

What you should consider: Some users noticed these boots start to lose their color, especially when exposed to the harsh sun for long periods.

Where to buy: Sold by Amazon


Sign up here to receive the BestReviews weekly newsletter for useful advice on new products and noteworthy deals.

Derek Walborn writes for BestReviews. BestReviews has helped millions of consumers simplify their purchasing decisions, saving them time and money.

Copyright 2022 BestReviews, a Nexstar company. All rights reserved.