If you are just getting into inline skating, then you need to know that not all skates are built the same. If you simply putz around your yard now and then, you can probably get along just fine with some big box-store skates. On the other hand, if you are getting into some hardcore skating, then you need a skate that can stay comfortable all day and still take abuse. That's where knowing what features to look for can make all the difference.
There are a couple of main styles of closure systems on the market. Buckles are impressive, and they look aggressive. Aesthetically, they make a statement, but they also provide good support when paired with a rigid shell. If you will be doing a lot of jumping and grinding, then buckles can give you the support you need. On the other hand, buckles usually come with built in notches, so you may have a hard time getting just the right fit. Laces are the other popular closure system. They give you the most flexibility when adjusting the fit on your skates. Especially if you like tight-fitting skates, laces are the way to go.
While liners may seem insignificant at first, if you are going to be out all day pounding the streets on your skates, then you want liners that aren't going to irritate you. Thus, you should not buy skates sight unseen. You should always take the time to test drive skates and pay attention to pressure points. Even if skates have a good reputation for their fit, you still want to make sure they work with your feet. When you pay for good quality skates, you want to make sure that blisters don't make you regret your choice.
If you don't like your feet getting hot, then you want to make sure that your skates come with vents. While vents should be considered a slight compromise on stability, it is insignificant unless you will be doing a lot of punishing riding. Thus, you gain a lot in the way of comfort, which should more than justify the slight loss in durability.
While there is a lot to be said for wheels and rocketing, you can learn that as you get to know your own riding style. As a newcomer to the sport, your biggest concern should be getting a durable skate that will stay comfortable as you put in the hours to improve your skills in your new sport.
For more information, contact Skates USA or a similar company.