Fishing Orange Beach

How Charter Fishing Bookers and Brokers Affect The Outcome Of Your Trip

Until a few years ago, nobody ever thought about how charter fishing bookers and brokers are affecting the quality of your fishing trip.  Until the internet took the place of the the local phone book, getting the best fishing charter mostly depended on you getting a charter referral from a friend or going to some marina's charter fishing office to book your trip.  That has all changed with the internet and it's search engines.  Consumers are paying ridiculous fees, hidden commissions and deposits and are getting less.

Our goal is to explain how charter brokers, fishing bookers, charter offices are taking all of the necessary profits away from fishing guides, thus leaving consumers wanting more from their fishing experiences and trips.   The problem with brokers in the fishing business is, there is not enough profit in charter fishing to pay a 15% to 30% commission to someone for simply brokering the transaction.

How Commissions and Hidden Deposits Effect The Quality Of Your Charter Fishing Trip

Unsuspecting anglers get taken advantage of every day by brokers and charters that are paying commissions to brokers.  This is because, when a charter boat has to pay a commission to a broker, that captain or fishing guide has to make up for the lost revenue somewhere.   You may be thinking that "It's not so," but it is the way it works in charter fishing.

We see examples every day of boats that pay commissions are forced to cut back on necessary items that affect the quality of your fishing trip.  For example, charter boats that pay commissions, have to pull back on the throttles in order to save fuel, they stay closer to shore where fishing pressure is great and fishing is poor,  they cut corners on boat maintenance, they have poorly maintained tackle and neglect safety.

What you need to know is, when a captain or charter boat pays a middleman or fishing booker or broker, you the consumer are going to get less of a fishing charter.  

What You Need To Look For and How To Spot A Middle Man or A Fishing Charter Broker

The first question you need to ask someone on the phone is, "If I book with you, are you charging me a commission (hidden as a deposit) or is the boat paying you a commission to broker this transaction?"   This is how you identify the Middleman!  If they won't answer your question or him haw around, you can assume that are paying a commission.

If you are booking through one of those big super fishing booking websites, you know you are paying a commission when they say, "pay a deposit."   This is a hidden commission.


The Middleman Inadvertantly Causes An Increase In Fishing Pressure

Because charter fishermen feel like they have to give their customers BIG FISH every trip, they feel the pressure to start hi-grading their catch or continue catching fish until their customer catches a big one.   Because the middleman takes a big portion of a charter boats revenue, it forces them to stay closer to shore in order to save money and not burn fuel, so they can make a profit.  The end result is, over fishing occurs in the areas closer to shore and creates a depletion zone shaped like a windshield wiper blade swath offshore or away from each port.  Each year this depletion zone gets larger or farther offshore.  In order to catch big fish close to shore, these charters have to use live bait, lower pound test line or even flourocarbon (invisible) fishing line to trick the few remaining big ones in these areas, into biting.  

When you book direct and not through a middle man, that charter has the revenue to get you out far enough where you can catch quality.

In our opinion, there are too many people (both charter and private boat owners) hi-grading or keep fishing until a big fish is caught in these areas in order to maintain a larger pound average per fish.    Hi-grading and catching and throwing back smaller but legal fish is a serious problem and will continue to get worse unless we stop the practice.

Knowing that the fishery has been declining close to shore, charter boats that have to pay a middle man don't have the revenue on board to get you beyond the depleted zone, where the quality are still abundant.  

So if you decide to pay a middle man and want quality, that is simply not going to happen for you.  It is financially impossible for the charter to get you where you need to go.   If you want quality, you need to invest in a fishing charter by booking direct with them, so they will have the revenue to get you to where the fishing is better.

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