I have been using a Cabela's 2500 manual inflating, (rip cord) style of inflating life jacket for over 10 years. I went to one of these because I suffered a stroke, and have a bad right leg as a result of the stroke. I figure I cannot swim well enough without a vest, and I wanted one that felt comfortable enough to wear all the time while fishing or on the water while boating. I can fish for hours, casting, flipping, and pitching without any interference from the vest. If I had a high speed bass boat, I would probably go for an auto-inflating one; if you were flown from the boat, you might not be conscious when hitting the water. I figure that I would pay up to $500.00, (paid less than half of that price for one!) for such safety, as I think my life is worth that kind of value, and many times over. This isn't an area you skimp on spending money, at least as far as I am concerned! Stay safe and tight lines!