Looking for a stylish and playable yet affordable ukulele? On a shoe-string budget?? A Mahalo ukulele may be the best option for you. This brand offers a really cheap introduction to picking up the uke. It offers a decent sound at a budget price, meaning you can cheaply find out if the uke (as an instrument) is for you or not.
Common Features Across the Brand
A Mahalo uke is a budget instrument. They are cheap, but this doesn’t mean that they don’t sound good. They are the best models in their price range. The manufacturers of this brand have targeted the customers on the basis of their unique designs and low price . They are very successful in this market.
These ukes are available in just about every size, shape, design and style you can think of. Moreover, you can get them in any color from the bright yellow to the red, purple, blue, pink, green etc.. Mahalo is a Hawaii word meaning “thank you”. These instruments are made in China and sold worldwide. They are manufactured and sold by Saga Musical Instruments and Team International Music Company.
Most of the Mahalo ukes are available at less than $40. See our review of the most popular mahalo, the U-30, here.
“Why Should I Buy One?”
The Mahalo ukuleles are ideal if you want a nice, colorful, stylish, playable and decent ukulele, but don’t want to spend much. The instruments are specifically ideal for any kids and complete beginners who want to learn how to play the uke. They are also good for youngsters and budding rock stars who need some unique styles (check out the ‘Flying V’ model) and colors in their musical instruments. The U-30 soprano ukulele is available in various styles such as sun burst stigma, pineapple shaped body, banjo chic and vintage appeal.
The Mahalo ukulele is geared towards the very casual player and kids – And it fills this niche very nicely, and cheaply!
These ukes are very cheap which makes them a low risk to try out. Try one second hand from Ebay or Craigslist – But they are very cheap when purchased new anyway. They have a decent sound quality for the price. The instruments are low weighted which makes them easy to carry. A small child can also carry and play it easily. One downside is the quality of the strings, which are not ideal. However the strings are easily upgraded and by doing this you can make a very cheap ukulele sound a lot better!!
Here is a video review of the most popular, U-30 soprano model.
Various Models and Sizes
The Mahalo ukuleles are available in various sizes. The soprano is available in a standard size of 21 inches. The concert-sized models are deeper and louder and they are available in 23 inches size. These ukuleles are also available in 26 inches, tenor size. Baritone models are extra large and loud,having a size of 30 inches. They are specifically good for those with big hands and fingers!
Benefits of Buying a Mahalo Ukulele
A review of the facts which make these a good budget choice for you and your kids:
- Low price
- Decent quality
- Easy to pick up and play
- Low weighted
- Fair sound quality with these products, especially if the strings are upgraded!
- Have guitar style tuners
- Have good looks and unique style
- Most come with a little gig bag
- Some electric varieties
- Available in many colors, sizes, shapes and designs
- Suitable for beginners and ideal for children
What Customers Think
“When I decided I wanted to try to play a ukulele I originally ordered one that didn’t have the guitar style tuning pegs. I returned it quickly and picked out the Mahalo as a replacement. I didn’t want to spend a lot of money on a whim that could turn out to be nothing more than a passing whim. Once I began to play around… I discovered that my whim was not of the passing type. I have been very happy with it and I think these economy ukuleles are a great way for a beginner to learn. So far I have not seen any need to move on to a price model as I am quite happy with this one. It is a great product for the price. Cheap fun.”
“Fantastic little instrument for the price. The sound quality is a bit better than I expected for $25. The strings will take a few days to break in (don’t expect them to hold their tune for more than a few minutes at first), but once they do the uke hardly ever needs tuning.”
Of course there is a wide choice for the uke shopper. Here are some in the same price range, or just above:
Makala – Cheaper brand made by Kala. Makala vs mahalo – They are similar in price, with Makala slightly more expensive and offering less variety and fun, but better sounds and quality. The MK-S, for example, is a better instrument than the U-30. More on Makala here.
Lanikai – More expensive but much better quality. Read more.
Kala – Exactly as the Lanikai above. These too brands are among our favorites. Click here for info.
Flea and Fluke – These are a lot more expensive, but if you want quality and quirkiness they are a decent choice.
Apart from a few shortcomings, I must say that Mahalo ukuleles are a worthwhile buy for a novice. They are ideal for kids who really like the colour variety! They are readily from retail outlets or through online shopping.
See latest deals and price list on amazon.