Edited by Carolyn Barratt, Lulucat9, Leona, KommaH and 3 others
Are you an avid fisherman who has extensive knowledge of the great fishing spots in your area or have dozens of fishing tips? Would you like to share that knowledge with others? Fishing guides spend a lot of time outdoors, accompany groups to fishing spots, and share those fishing tips. Though states have specific criteria for guides, there are a few simple steps you can follow to become a fishing guide.
1. Research specific guidelines. Each state has different qualifications for becoming a fishing guide. Pay close attention to the requirements for your state.
- Stick to hotels, resorts, or even dude ranches. Bait stores or retail outlets associated with fishing can also help refer clients.
- Teach young anglers about conservation and how to protect the environment.
- Maintain accurate records. You can use a simple spreadsheet or accounting software, many of which offer free versions. As a sole proprietor, you will be responsible for your own taxes. Keep all receipts from the operation of your business.
- Consider starting your career as a fishing guide as a part-time venture while you maintain your regular job. It takes time to find customers and build a business.
- As a fishing guide, you are hired to show customers a good time on the water. Don't focus too much on catching trophy fish, instead target fish that are easy to catch and will satisfy your customers. Most customers are from out of town and just looking for time to kill with their family while on vacation. Show your customers a good time while entertaining them on the water. Think of how well tour guides do.
- Be careful not to take out just anyone on your boat. Go with your gut feeling if you feel the customers are more trouble then they are worth. If you have a situation on the water, go back to the dock first and handle it there. Once on dry land you can offer customers a refund or another resolution.