Regatta Brand Guide
If you’re experiencing the great outdoors on a budget, then Regatta is a British brand that makes nothing but affordable, good quality gear for all weathers.
Created in 1981 as an entry level clothing brand to walking, camping and other outdoor pursuits, the Regatta range is huge and includes all manner of bags, clothes, boots and jackets for the whole family. In fact, Regatta’s family focus has earned it a dedicated following as one of Britain’s best loved outdoor clothing brands with a reputation for great value outdoor wear.
For the casual walker, Regatta provides an affordable alternative to the premium brands for everyday wear as well as your urban and countryside adventures. Meanwhile experienced walkers will know which are the best products to pick from the Regatta range when it comes to comfort, performance and quality without having to fork out a fortune.
If there’s one garment that Regatta does particularly well, it’s a soft, warm fleece. Considering that most of us only require a simple fleece in addition to a waterproof jacket to stay warm on our walks in winter, Regatta fleeces really are ideal if you’re on a budget or can’t justify the costs of the more fashionable outdoor brands.
Having been blown away by the quality of the fabric, its hard wearing anti-pill finish and comfortable fit, we highly recommended the Thompson Micro Fleece in our guide to the top 5 fleeces as the perfect example of everything that Regatta clothing represents.
There are certainly more technical fleeces and fleece jackets available from Regatta, but then you’re getting into the realms of the more premium outdoor brands and could easily be lured away by the fashionable range of Berghaus fleece –and who could blame you?
When it comes to cold, wet or windy weather at any time of the year, you need a good jacket for walking. This is where Regatta sticks to the basics by doing it well and making it affordable. Their jackets tend to be well made and hard wearing and often feature their own Isotex and breathable fabrics that come with a 3 year guarantee while offering a waterproof performance of up to 20,000mm.
Regatta also make a surprisingly fashionable number of womens winter coats in their selection of waterproof, insulating and soft shell jackets. So like many outdoor brands, they are beginning to branch out with more fashion focussed offerings while maintaining all the comfort, quality and protection of their best outdoor apparel.
So if you’re looking for a low to mid price point waterproof jacket or breathable all weather soft shell jacket for walking and everyday use, you’ll find a great selection. However, like their fleeces, once you get to the top end of their price range, your eye will no doubt be drawn to the more fashionable brands like Berghaus and North Face who offer the same performance and price from their best selling Resolve and RG1 jackets.
Regatta Base layers
Typically made from soft, light fleece, Regatta base layers are every bit as good and affordable as their fleeces. And unlike other base layer brands, you often get a top and pants in a single matching set for under £25.
We wish more base layers were available like this, because it saves you the trouble of trying to find the right pants to go with the right top.
There really is nothing as warm and convenient as a lightweight fleece under your clothes when the weather becomes incredibly cold. So while these Regatta base layers may not be as technical and moisture wicking as the leading base layer brands, their hard wearing anti-pill finish makes them perfect for throwing in the washing machine after a long winter walk.
Just like their selection of coats and jackets, Regatta trousers are available for all weathers as well as everyday wear. Regatta is also one of the few brands that still offer smart, traditional cotton walking trousers and not for a great deal of money either.
Their overtrousers for example, are made from Regatta’s own Isotex 5000 waterproof fabric that not only comes with their 3 year waterproof guarantee, but is also soft to the touch and has a coated polyester inner liner to wick away moisture. The trousers typically have pockets and ankle zips too which you rarely get from waterproof or overtrousers that are this affordable.
So you could easily find some comfy walking trousers and a pair of protective overtrousers to pack into your rucksack for the same price as a pair of waterproof trousers from any other brand.
Regatta Boots, Shoe & Sandals
When it comes to footwear for the outdoors, Regatta offer a bit of a mixed bag with designs that are reminiscent of both Merrell and Hi-Tec. And when it comes to comfort, quality, protection and technical features, Regatta walking boots and outdoor shoes are similarly in the middle with a price tag to match.
The obvious benefit is a more affordable boot or shoe which offers most of the comfort and technical performance of the more expensive Merrell footwear, but with a harder wearing sole unit, as the Merrell outsole tends to wear down rather quickly. Depending on your budget, you may also find the mid level price point to be better for your wallet as well.
However, the best bargain to be had when it comes to Regatta footwear are their sandals, which are rather suspiciously similar to the best selling Teva sandals for a quarter of the price. Tempted? We certainly were. So while they may look incredibly similar, the sole unit is what makes all the difference. But fortunately, we only wanted an outdoor sandal for everyday walking and didn’t require all the water sports related benefits offered by the actual Teva products.
Overall, Regatta is a brilliant UK brand for affordable everyday wear and outdoor pursuits. If all you need is the essentials, they provide it better than most. Their affordable outdoor apparel is also ideal for families on walking or camping trips –especially for kids.
But while some makes of waterproof clothing can be really dirt cheap (and you can feel it in the horrible, clammy rubber material), Regatta apparel is always of good quality and you would never be embarrassed to wear it in public.
However, the greatest strength of Regatta clothing is also its greatest weakness. Once you get to the top of their ranges, you will inevitably start looking at the same price of clothing from bigger outdoor brands. This is because the bigger brands have priced some of their products at an entry level to encourage people to buy a taste of premium quality.
So if you had to choose between a Berghaus, North Face or a Regatta waterproof jacket at the same price point, we’re fairly confident that you would be more likely to choose a Berghaus or North Face jacket instead.
However, if your walking needs are simple, then Regatta is definitely a good choice for all your clothing. Especially if you want quality and the technical essentials, but without having to pay extra for the bigger outdoor brands.