How to Save Money When Going on a Fishing Trip

Planning ahead can be key when trying to save money on your next fishing trip! Fishing is a great way to spend some time outdoors and relax. There are ways to save money.

This may seem like a no-brainer, but you’d be surprised how many people don’t do this. When you take the time to plan your trip, you’ll be able to estimate what you need and how much it will cost. Additionally, you’ll be able to find discounts on gear and hotels.

Save on fuel

  • If you’re driving to your fishing destination, consider carpooling with friends or family. This will help you save on gas and may even be more fun!
  • Run your boat at medium RPMs to save fuel.
  • Ask your guests to chip in on fuel, launch ramp fees, ice, and chum. Tell them in advance. Most are happy to do it!

Other ideas:

  • Consider catching your own live bait versus buying. You will need an appropriate cast net and ask around where the live bait may be. You can buy live shrimp or if you need a little flavor, buy fresh shrimp with heads and shells on at your local grocery store. Know that what they have in their fresh seafood counter may be previously frozen. If you don’t see fresh shrimp so then buy the frozen ones. Keep them on ice and if you don’t catch any fish, you can cook them for dinner.
  • Do some research: Before heading out on your trip, research the area to find the best spots for fishing and avoid wasting time in areas that are not productive. Check the tides for the best time to fish. When tides are stagnant/not moving, mostly for inshore fishing, it’s a good time to take a break for lunch versus spending your gas when fish are not biting. Fish bite in current and moving tides. Check out moon phases as sometimes on a full moon it’s hard to get a bite, depending on where you are.

Pack your own food and drinks

Bringing your own food and drinks can be a great way to save money. Not only will you save on restaurant bills, but you’ll also have more control over what you eat and drink.

Bring the right gear

Make sure you pack everything you need for a successful trip. This includes a rod, reel, bait, tackle, and more. If you don’t have the right gear, you may end up spending more money than necessary.

Find discounts on gear

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  • You can often find great deals on rods, reels, and tackle at your local sporting goods store.
  • Another option is to check online retailers like Amazon for discounts.
  • Check out fishing organizations that have auctions and bid online or onsite. If they have a raffle, perhaps you can win a fishing rod or other tackle for the price of a ticket.
  • Sometimes, you can even find used gear that is still in good condition.

Catching more fish

  • There are a few things you can do to increase your chances of catching fish: use the right bait, fish in areas with high activity, and be patient.

Requirements to sell your catch

“To sell your catch in Florida, you must have a valid Saltwater Products License (SPL). You may also need endorsements to the SPL for certain species and use of certain gear types. Federal commercial fishing permits may be necessary as well. Additional state and federal requirements must be met if you harvest certain species.”

Source: Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission

For other states, please check your local website regarding commercial fisheries FAQs.

Have a backup plan

No matter how well you plan, there’s always a chance that something could go wrong on your fishing trip. That’s why it’s always a good idea to have a backup plan in place. For example, if you’re planning on camping overnight, be sure to pack extra supplies in case you run into bad weather or other unexpected delays. It’s also a good idea to let someone know where you’ll be and when you expect to return, in case of an emergency. By taking these simple precautions, you can help to ensure that your fishing trip goes off without a hitch – no matter what Mother Nature has in store.

Who knows- maybe with all the money you saved, you can treat yourself to a nicer rod or something else on your list! Whatever you choose to do, just remember these tips next time you’re trying to save up for a fishing trip.

How about you, do you have your own tips and tricks on how to save money when going on a fishing trip? We’d love to read your thoughts so share them in the comments below!


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