Updated on April 18, 2022
When booking a fishing charter, it can be difficult to discern what you’re responsible for and what will be provided. Trips aside, fishing requires a ton of gear that can get expensive in a hurry. Luckily, most guides will provide you with the big ticket items. To help you decide what you need to bring without packing too much, here is what you need to know about the included gear on fishing trips.
Packing up and preparing for a fishing trip can be daunting if you’re new to the sport, but it doesn’t have to be. For most fishing trips, you will need to check the state regulations to see if you need a license. It’s also recommended to pack a cooler with food and drinks for the day, but that's about it. If you want to know what essentials to pack or what to wear on your next trip, these blogs explain everything. When it comes to gear, it can be tricky depending on if it’s provided by your guide or not.
If your trip says “gear included”, then your guide will provide everything required to have a successful fishing trip, including all rods, reels, tackle, and lures. As a bonus, some guides will even filet your fish for you at the end of the trip at no additional cost. The only thing you’re responsible for is packing sunscreen and enough food and drink to keep you going all day. Most trips are gear included, making it easy to show up and catch fish. For specialty trips, some of the gear will be provided, leaving you responsible for items that are generally more personal like waders or rubber boots.
Most of the trips we offer come with experienced captains that provide everything from the fishing rods and nets to bait and tackle. While the majority of trips leave you with very little to worry about in terms of gear, if you happen to have a new lure or rod and reel setup, feel free to bring it with you and give it a try. Many guides are more than happy to accommodate anglers that share their passion for fishing.
Preparing for a trip that doesn’t include gear can make things significantly more complicated. Before diving into essential fishing gear, it’s worth noting that these trips are usually more specialized, such as backcountry fly fishing or inshore wading, which require a lot of specific gear. These trips are also not as beginner-friendly as an all-inclusive drifting, trolling, or bottom fishing trip.
The gear required heavily depends on the type of fishing you’re doing, but at a minimum, you will need to have a fishing rod and reel along with a well-stocked tackle box. The rod and reel setup should be appropriate for the size of fish you’re targeting and the style of fishing you plan on doing—whether it's trolling or sight casting. A well-stocked tackle box should have fishing lures, soft plastic baits, spare hard tackle, and extra fishing line in case something big spools your reel.
The last few things that are handy to have are a pair of pliers, a net, and a cooler for your fish. There is no better tool for rigging fishing gear and unhooking fish than a pair of pliers. If you have questions about which ones to keep on hand check out The Top Five Types of Pliers for more information. Finally, a net and cooler make sure that all the hard work you put in hauling a fish up to the boat will be rewarded by successfully landing it. If you’re looking for your next trip or adventure, check out our fishing charters and start preparing for a memorable day on the water.