Make the most of your fishing trip

5 Ways to Make the Most of Your Fishing Trip When Renting a Boat

Written by Boatsetter Team
April 27, 2023

Last Updated on September 1, 2023 by Boatsetter Team

Your fishing trip should be fun, relaxing, and exciting! The right preparation will give you the best chance at catching plenty of fish and enjoying your day, so you’ll want to think through relevant factors ahead of time like where, weather conditions, type of fishing, and target fish species. Luckily you’ve got Boatsetter Fishing to help with this. Here are 5 ways to make the most of your fishing trip when renting a boat: 

  1. Research 
  2. Pack 
  3. Time 
  4. Use technology to up your game 
  5. Try something new 

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1. Research

To catch fish, you need to find out what species are biting, and what they’re biting on. Check fishing reports to see what species are currently active, and the types of bait, tackle or flies that are working. 

Many fishing reports are written by fishing guides and other frequent anglers, so you can benefit from the up-to-date knowledge of others. Here’s a great example of weekly fishing reports from contributors in Texas: 

Another helpful resource is an app like Fishbrain. There is the free version which allows you to see basic information about fishing waters, limited access to the best times to fish, and a local fishing regulations. 

If you upgrade with Fishbrain Pro, you’ll get to see tagged catch locations, bait and lure recommendations, Navionics (electronic navigation charts), and private waypoints. 

Pro Tip: Boatsetter Owners can receive a free trial of Fishbrain Pro plus a coupon for their first purchase from Fishbrain Shop! Just email us with a link to your boat listing to claim the offer and we’ll hook you up (no pun intended). 

Last, never forget how vast of a resource YouTube can be. There’s an endless number of videos, covering the most technical of fishing topics to more broad overviews, like our Reef Fishing 101 explainer for example.


 2. Pack

pack for your fishing trip

Once you know what you’re fishing for, buy the tackle you need ahead of time and organize your tackle box. Better to be overprepared with supplies than be out on the water missing something like replacement hooks.

Besides tackle, pack plenty of water or drinks for hydration and snacks or meals that are easy to eat on the water. The fish should be the only ones hungry, not you and your fishing buddies!

Some boat rentals on Boatsetter have an Add-ons list with trip essentials such as fishing gear! You can add-on fishing gear to a boat rental booking for a small additional price. Look for Add-ons at checkout. 

If you’re traveling and don’t have rods and tackle with you, or you’re fishing a new technique that you don’t have all the equipment for, this can save you time and money as well as get you set up with what a local would use to fish their home waters. 

Pro Tip: Other handy Add-on items include coolers, ice, and snacks, in case you want to minimize your packing list and things to remember!


3. Time

boatsetter app

Timing is everything. As part of your research (see #1), you should find out the times of day when the fish species you’ll be targeting are most active for the date you’ll be fishing. Then, plan backwards and make sure you have enough time to get the boat in the water and drive to desired fishing spots before those prime feeding windows. That’ll help you pick the right start time when booking your boat rental.

Other things to consider:

  • Maximizing the amount of time you’ll be on the water as well as fishing. If you’d like to hit multiple fishing spots, map out an efficient route so you’re not doing too much backtracking and burning fuel as well as time. Lines in the water catch more fish! 
  • If you’re planning a fun fishing outing with kids, think about how long you want to be on the water. A shorter trip, like 3 or 4 hours may be the right amount of time, otherwise, diversify activities for a full day boat trip, including activities like tubing, snorkeling (on select Add-ons lists), or a shore picnic in addition to fishing.
  • If you need to use a ramp, plan ahead to avoid peak times at high-traffic ramps. You may also want to look specifically for boat options at a dock or marina slip.
  • Try a Multi-day booking! That’s right, you can hunker down with a boat rental for a few days so you don’t have to be beholden to one day’s worth of luck and opportunity.


4. Use technology in your favor

use a fish finder

Fish finders can be your best friend on the water. Learn how to read a fish finder to see where fish likely are, by direction as well as depth. Then, you’ll know where to anchor up, where to cast or drop your line, and what depth to target.

Back to research again, you can pre-populate a route and potential fishing spots into the GPS you’re using on a fishing boat. Pro Tip: One advantage of renting a boat from local owners who fish is that many of them will happily recommend spots that they already have marked as waypoints in their GPS.

A third favorite gadget for fishing is a trolling motor. If you’re unfamiliar, we’ve written a guide to using a trolling motor. These motors will be clutch in shallow water and when you need to sneak up on fish.

5. Try something new

Try something new

Though we’ve emphasized the importance of going in with a good plan, remember that fishing is meant to be fun! 

Anglers also have more success by being adaptive. If you go in with flexibility and plenty of options you’re willing to try, you can switch things up on the fly whether it’s with the goal of catching more fish or just keeping things exciting. 

On any fishing day, you never know what you’re gonna get, but you can always bring a smile and a positive attitude. Even on days when you may not catch fish, you may be able to walk away knowing you improved at a new technique or you got a better read on a body of water or species of fish.

Longtime and junior anglers can’t get enough of Boatsetter’s Fishing Guides & Resources, check it out for basics, pro tips, and everything in between. 


About Boatsetter Fishing 

Boatsetter offers over 50,000 boats to rent or chart– for anglers, that means you can rent everything from bass boats or pontoons to fish freshwater to center consoles or skiffs to fish saltwater from inshore to offshore. Your next personal best or bucket list catch is here!

Do you own a fishing boat? List it on the #1 boat rental platform 


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