There’s no experience quite like a fishing charter. Not too far from land yet deep enough to encounter many diverse species of fish that rarely visit the shore, a fishing trip is the perfect mix of relaxation and excitement — especially when it’s an organized fishing charter.
What is a fishing charter? Simply put, it’s an excursion service offered by boat owners and professional fishers which brings guests out onto a body of water for a set period in hopes of catching fish. These charters are often rented at set rates per time limit or can be customized to meet the needs of the group.
What to Expect on a Fishing Charter
Are you excited to take to the water and reel in hours of relaxation? If you’ve never been on a guided fishing trip, or if you’re joining a fishing excursion in waters that you haven’t yet dropped a line in, you may be wondering what to expect on your fishing charter. First, you should always try to establish clear and consistent communication with your captain or crew before the trip. Communicate your expectations, ask any questions and understand all policies for the trip, including what’s included.
One element of a fishing charter that many first-timers are unfamiliar with is that the entire trip is not spent fishing. To ensure that you get the best experience possible, you’ll need to be patient. The captain and crew will boat out to specific spots where they believe you’ll have the best chance to catch fish. You may need to drop a few lines in the water and wait for the fish to bite. In some cases, the captain will boat to additional areas to maximize your opportunities.
When you hook a fish, you won’t be left to fend for yourself. The captain and crew will be standing by to help you with whatever you need, even if that means they provide the extra strength needed to reel in the big one. In some situations, you may need to cut the line and let the fish go. If this happens, your crew will help you get your rod ready for the next attempt.
Although the charter has a focus on fishing, the experience is what you make of it. We encourage anyone who joins a fishing charter to enjoy the sea breeze and warm sun. The beauty and majesty of the ocean create a sense of serenity that will make you long to get back out into the water as soon as possible.
What to Bring and Wear on a Fishing Charter
Before your excursion date, you should always inquire about which items your fishing charter will include with your base rate. For example, many fishing charters include all of the fishing rods, reels, tackle supplies, specific bait, and a chest of ice for storing caught fish. Many charters also include a fishing license to cover everyone on the boat. Some charters may even have a stock of fresh drinking water or snacks for you to enjoy during the trip.
What should you bring on your fishing trip? You should always carry any necessary or essential items that you would take with you on any other guided tour. This includes items like your wallet and medications. If possible, bring a small water-resistant bag for these items or ask the captain if there is a safe place on board where you can store them. Most charters advise also bringing towels to dry off and vacuum-seal bags if you want to take your fish fillets home with you.
What should you wear on a fishing charter? Always bring and wear sunscreen, sunglasses, a hat, and comfortable clothing. We suggest wearing light-colored clothing that reflects the sun, wicks moisture off of your body, and provides you with unrestricted mobility. Boat shoes are also quite helpful. Even on cooler days, the sun can be exhausting which is why we advise bringing fresh water and snacks to keep your strength up.
Will I Always Catch a Fish on a Charter?
The most common question individuals have when considering a fishing charter is: “Will I always catch a fish on a fishing charter?”. This really depends on the business and location you choose for your fishing charter.
With most fishing charter businesses, there is no guarantee that you will catch a fish. In fact, the best anglers in the world sometimes have days where they arrive back on land empty-handed. Fishing does require skill, knowledge and a little bit of luck, but it’s important to remember that ultimately no one has control over nature.
With any fishing charter, your captain will try their hardest to get you to an area where the fish are biting. Those who operate fishing charters do so in part because of their love for fishing — and because they’re quite good at it, too! Their intimate knowledge of their local waters, including behavioral trends of many fish species, helps increase the odds that they’ll have some success every time they are out on the water with a group.
Fortunately, on our fishing charters, you will almost always catch a fish. In fact, a first-timer will likely catch several. On average, we catch 60 or more snook, red fish, or spotted sea trout on our fishing charters.
Should I Tip the Captain?
Whether you’re a local or a visitor, it’s important that you learn about the tipping etiquette involved when renting a fishing charter before your excursion begins. Just as you would tip another service professional such as a tour guide, waitress or personal driver, you should provide your captain and crew with a gratuity based upon the level of their service.
Why should you consider tipping the captain and the crew? Keep in mind that the rates you will pay for the fishing charter itself cover much more than you may realize. Boat fuel, for instance, can be costly. Running a tight ship also means frequent maintenance and labor to ensure it’s always sea-ready and safe for those who may not be accustomed to boating. Add in miscellaneous items that may be included in your charter, such as equipment and bait, and you’ll realize running a charter operation isn’t cheap.
Most importantly, you should also realize that your captain has spent years or even decades on the water learning as much as possible about the creatures beneath. A great captain and crew will do more than take you out to sea — they’ll take you to the areas where you’ll have the best opportunity to catch as many fish as possible. Their knowledge and expertise, combined with their level of service, will make your fishing charter unforgettable. Though it is discretionary, a crew tip of 20% is customary.
Learn More About Fishing Charters With Vero Tackle & Watersports
Fishing charters are wonderful experiences for avid anglers and new fishers alike. The ideal afternoon activity during vacation or any weekend when the sun is shining, you’ll get hooked on the fun after your first trip out. If you’re looking for a fantastic fishing experience in Vero Beach, Florida, let Vero Tackle & Watersports show a good time.
Our fishing charters will take you out in the Indian River Lagoon for any length of time. For answers to all of your questions, or if you’re interested in trying a fishing charter in Vero Beach, Florida, give us a call today!