Seriously- a longboard is the way to go, unless your like 12yrs old or something...
OVERALL- you will learn quicker and have MUCH more fun on a longboard then a shortboard. Most ppl get a shortboard and get frustrated quickly and give up... you will probably take most of the summer just learning and ride your first wave correctly sometime in august... while on a longboard youll learn in a month.
just so you know.. this can be a hot subject... some ppl say shortboard, but they learned to surf when they where young or have never rode a longboard. If your over 18 get a longboard.
For that cheap, it would be nice to have a shortboard and you will look cool, but like everyone else said- your wave count will be less and your frustration level will be higher.
Get out of the deal and get a longboard- or at least a board over 7ft that has a lot thickness- or volume as we say. and stay away from high performance boards- with sharp edges and stuff. get something with more of a rounded outline. I started with a single fin longboard and loved it!
Please refer to the many other threads on this as well. Ya ****ed up bad and now you're gonna hate surfing
Not the biggest mistake one can make, who knows maybe you're a freak and will shred from day one... with that said if you can back out of the deal, do it, if not, clean it up and sell it for a small profit and get yourself a more appropriate first board. Longboards, larger fishes, mini simmons, or even a 6'5" or larger single fin will provide more glide and stability than a common shortboard.
I recommend a fun shape or egg...something in the 6'10-7'10 range. No bigger than 8'
Longboards are nice if you have a long mellow breaking wave like Waikiki...any tourist can learn there.
But for short steep EC beach break I think it's easier to learn on a shorter board.
See many beginneers pearling longboards, paddling in circles with the nose in the air, or trying to lean/turn and just falling off the side because they are not positioned right. (to properly turn a longboard you need to be back on the tail which no beginner is going to know how to do)
A medium length fun shape/egg will fit into the wave easier, easier to turn/go down the line, but still paddle ok and catch waves. Also easier to pick up and manuever in and out of the water.
My first wave was on a shortboard at like 8 or something but I learned on a longboard. I'm teaching a dude on a 7ft board and it's hard for him. Your trying to run before you can crawl. Where is this guys lokal break,I'm mad really mad,now and want to slash his tires. Wow wow wow john Wayne slow down. Btw I used a 10$ boogie yesterday and did a lip roll it was intense.