What if the greatest moment of your life as a fisherman was totally ruined?
Many people turn to fishing charters as a way to improve their techniques and catch more fish. However, getting a bad fishing charter can ruin your experience and maybe even make you worse at catching fish.
So, how do you choose the charter that is best for you and your needs? Keep reading to discover the answer!
You Get What You Pay For
Let’s face it: charter fishing can be expensive. And it’s understandable that you’d want to save money, especially when the amount may be several hundred dollars.
However, the old advice is right: you get what you pay for. And if you’re paying for a really cheap service, you may end up with correspondingly cheap quality!
A good captain is worth his (or her) price and higher prices come when captains have proven their quality. If you want to have the best charter experience, don’t cut corners and book the cheapest possible charter.
Doing The Homework
People often get intimidated because they have never booked a charter boat before. Because of the unfamiliarity, they worry about not knowing what step to take next.
However, you should treat this like any other expensive purchase. Before you plunk down any money, you need to do your homework!
For example, you’ll want to know what their insurance covers and if they carry their own life jackets and other safety gear. You’ll also want to check their licensure and make sure at least one person is trained in CPR and first aid.
Finally, you’ll want to verify that the boat has at least a twin engine. When it only has one engine, then an engine failure can leave you stranded on the high seas!
One rookie mistake that people make is treating charter fishing like a luxury cruise. And because of this mentality, many people end up traveling hundreds of miles to board a charter boat.
It’s one thing to do that if there is nothing closer to you. But generally speaking, you’ll want to book a charter that is closer to you than one that is further away.
A closer charter helps you save money because you burn less gas getting there. And it helps save time because you can easily get started early in the morning.
Ultimately, booking a closer charter lets you get more out of the experience while paying less. And that’s our kind of math!
A Short Interview
There are many options for learning about different charters. And most of them involve doing some quick online research.
However, we’re big fans of picking up the phone. This lets you pose very specific questions and get an idea of the charter’s character and honesty as they answer you.
With a simple phone call, you can verify things like deposit amounts and departure times. And you can also verify the fine print on things like their cancellation policies.
Don’t forget to pose any questions that you couldn’t find answers to on your own. You’ll want to have as much information as possible before putting your lives in the hands of a stranger.
Getting Social With It
When it comes to products and services, word-of-mouth remains one of the best ways to get the truth. Companies will offer slick promises and advertisements: customers will offer blunt honesty.
This is why we recommend checking the company out on social media. You can start by searching for the charter’s name and seeing what people are saying about it.
If the charter has their own social media account, you can also see how they interact with people online. If they take good care of online questions and concerns, then they’ll take care of you out on the water.
Here’s an interesting dilemma. What do you do if it comes down to two different charters and both of them look really solid?
Simple: you go with the one that has the better captain. And in this case, “better” means that you have a good feeling about them.
A good captain does more than keep you alive on the water. The captain should have intense knowledge of fish and, ideally, really good social skills.
Sound shallow? Not really: you’re going to be stuck with this person in a contained environment for a really long time. Might as well get a captain that you really like!
“Catch” Their Policy
Chances are that you have a preferred way to fish. Do you like to catch and release, or are you more of a “catch and kill” person?
Just as you have your fishing preferences, the charter will have their own. And you want to make sure the two of you are in agreement.
For example, many people get a thrill at bringing home a huge fish and feeding it to their family. But certain charters are catch and release only, which might leave such a person feeling disappointed.
It all comes back to what we’ve been saying all along: do your homework before you make a payment!
Preferred Way to Fish
The “catch or kill” policy isn’t the only thing you should be checking on. You’ll also want to see what kinds of fishing this particular charter specializes in.
Some people love to fish inshore, and others get a thrill from deep sea fishing. Some only fish at night while others swear that reef fishing is the way to go.
Obviously, there’s no “wrong” way to fish. But you’ll want to make sure that this particular fishing charter can accommodate your particular needs for the trip.
Best Fishing Charter: The Bottom Line
Now you know how to find a great fishing charter. But do you know what the best one in the area is?
Here at Wave Dancer, we offer a variety of charter fishing experiences for the Galveston area. To see how we can make your next fishing trip absolutely unforgettable, all you have to do is contact us today!