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What’s the Best Starter Fountain Pen?

There obviously isn’t a single answer for everyone, but we won’t waste your time, so we’ll start with what we think are the best options for those who aren’t sure if a fountain pen is for them, and for those who know they want a fountain pen, but aren’t sure which one to start out with.

Pilot VPen (V4) Disposable Fountain Pen by Pilot at Cult PensThe Absolute Beginner

Just get a Pilot VPen. It’s a disposable fountain pen, so there’s no commitment, nothing to learn, you just get a pen and start writing with it. If it turns out fountain pens aren’t for you, there’s little to nothing wasted.

LAMY safari Fountain Pen Black by LAMY at Cult PensThe Good Choice

If you know you want a fountain pen, and you want something that’s actually nice to use, and reliable, and should last you for many, many years, we’d go with the Lamy Safari. It’s one of the most popular fountain pens for good reason.

Other Nice Options

  • Platinum Preppy. Priced like a disposable, but refillable with cartridges. Not the toughest pen around, but they work very well, and even have some limited editions available each year - the cheapest way to collect limited edition Japanese fountain pens!
  • Kaweco Sport. Like the Safari, they’re very sturdy and long-lasting pens, even in their basic plastic form, with the bonus of being nicely pocketable.
  • Kaco Retro. Great value fountain pens, if you want something a bit different. They even come with two cartridges and a converter, so you can use bottled ink - and they’re supplied in a sturdy box so they make great gifts.
  • If you're ok with spending a little bit more (but not too much!), the Sailor Tuzu is an interesting choice. A quality Japanese fountain pen, from the favourite brand of many fountain pen fans. Like the Safari, it has a triangular grip, but the grip can be rotated to suit those who hold their pens a little differently.

Not seen anything that looks right for you yet? That’s ok, we have a collection of fountain pens for beginners, with a lot more to choose from!