A fishing charter is a great way to have a fishing experience you may not otherwise be able to have because you either do not own a boat or you are in an foreign location and do not have your own equipment on hand. For a small to sometimes large fee you will be taken out on the water with a guide or boat captain you hope is knowledgeable of fishing hot spots.

When traveling to exotic locations or regions you aren’t familiar with it is a great idea to hire a fishing guide or charter to have a better chance for a positive experience. That said, Fishing Guides can either make or break your fishing vacation experience. It takes time and effort to find a great guide and ensure you aren’t just throwing money away on a guide that doesn’t have much success. Here are a few pointers in finding the perfect Fishing Guide.

Do your Homework

Once you have picked out your location, scout for the available guides within the area. Looking for a fishing guide may be quite a tedious task, especially at popular fishing destinations, but you must do your homework in order to separate the good from the bad. The obvious first steps is to check local review sites like Yelp and Google local business results. Reviews from others that have already hired guides can be invaluable.

You should also check out websites of the fishing guides, and another good suggestion is to talk to local bait and tackle shops as they may know of one they can recommend. Something that takes a bit more time but can pay dividends it to hit the popular fishing forums around the web. I have had tremendous success using fishing forums to crowd source recommendations because it is usually filled with dedicated fisherman and there are often local boards that may help you pinpoint guides at specific locations more quickly.

Don’t let fancy fliers and brochures fool you into hiring, as most excellent guides will have little time to do promotion with all of them out to sea. Take the time to talk to them to confirm a thing or two about what they know of the craft.

Questions You Ask

After you have selected a few guides you feel are competent based on your research you can narrow them down further buy asking a few questions. If any of the answers you find are less than satisfactory feel free to eliminate them from the shortlist of fishing charters you have made.

  • How much deposit is required and what such rates cover. When does the balance have to be paid.
  • Know what they will supply and what you should cover.
  • Inquire about catch status and what is done with fish that is caught.
  • Ask the expected departure and arrival time, and if there is a planned itinerary
  • Confirm the size of the boat and who else will be present.
  • Inquire about the length of time the guide has been fishing in the area, and what type of Fishing he specializes in.
  • Raise questions on their cancellation policies.
  • Verify if they are properly insured, licensed, and registered.
  • Check if the guide is proficient in IGFA rules should you are able to catch a world record fish.

Asking all these questions will also help you steer clear of any surprises the day of your fishing trip. You should also let your guide know what you are expecting from their service. If you are booking a Fishing trip to catch certain types of fish, you may want to inform your guide so they may advise you on which area and what season you may want to fish to improve your chance of success.

This will allow your guide to know what their customer expects in order to provide a positive experience. Most charters and guides will do everything in their power to provide excellent service and experiences.

Choosing a Fishing Charter or Guide Service

Once you’ve filtered and narrowed down your options, it’s time to come to a decision and choose the suitable Fishing Guide that can offer the experience you desire. With everything covered, you can be confident that your guide is the best partner on board when you are about to bait that hook.