There are many different types of kites out there. Extreme budget kites I will not carry as they frankly are not worth the cost. They dont fly well and they wont last long. Other kites that fly well and may be a better value I do carry. Lets explore some options for you to help you make an informed decision.
Lets explore Cross Kites brand. Cross kites were introduced a few years ago by Vliegerop. Vliegerop is a Dutch company that distributes the Peter Lynn brand of kites as well. Naturally, being the top Peter Lynn vendor in the US, I was intrigued to try the Cross kites.
When they were first introduced, I brought in a series of these kites and liked their performance, but I was disappointed in the graphics...or lack of graphics on the back side of the kite. While this makes it cheaper and to the flyer, it doesn't look any different, to everyone watching you, its a plain white canvass flying in the sky. Not too much fun for them. So I actually quit selling them.
More recently, they came out with new versions that had colors on both sides of the kite. Now that I carry them again, lets go over why this kite is better for the budget.
1) Some features are not there: Velcro stays to tie up your lines do not exist on the lower end Cross Kites. Also, dirt outs on the corners are not there. These are niceties, not necessarily must haves. I have never used a dirt out once. Even with beach flying (mostly grass)...I never had the need. However I always use the velcro stays.
2) Thicker material: More durable, probably. Heavier..yes, not as much performance when compared to a similar Peter Lynn kite.
3) Quality construction: Absolutely! I would not carry them if i did not think they were of value.
4) No ground stake: substitute a large screwdriver or order a ground stake with the kite
5) Cheaper back pack. yes, but it protects the kite...thats its job.
6) Cheaper line. Yes, but they are still quality. and if you choose the Sonic, it comes without lines anyway, you can order the higher quality Peter Lynn Lines at that time.
The Cross kites brand is a great way to get started for your first kite. Its a kite you can hand off to your buddies and family and not worry about them mangling it. If you dont know for sure about the kite part, start here. if you have tried kiting and like it....start with a Peter Lynn Hornet. You will be happier in the long run.
My recommendations: Cross Kites Boarder. First time and beach family fun. Two lines
Cross Kites Quattro: First time 4 line. More control, more power
Cross Kites Sonic: For experienced kiters wanting a great buggy kite or a fast kite
Peter Lynn Hornet: First time 4 line kite. All the quality, all the features.