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Waning to become saltwater fishing guide

i am only 18 years old but i have made up my mind to become a saltwater fishing guide when i get out of college in 4 to 5 years.
i would be guiding out of Pointe A La Hache Louisiana.

just have a few questions for you fellow guides:

how hard is it to get your guiding license?

what do you have to do to get it?

whats a good size boat for 4 person charters?

what is the most common rate per person?

how many shrimp yall carry per person on the boat?

how many trips in a month do yall do?

how long do yall fish for on each trip?

all comments are appreciated

Captain's License
The first thing you'll need is a Captain's License, which requires time aboard a boat. There is a lot of confusion on the time that is actually required for getting your Captain's License.. Here are the facts:

You are required to have a minimum of 360 days experience on board a boat since you were 15 years old. 90 of those days need to be in the last three years. As little as 4 hours on a boat can be considered one day. And in one 24 hour period you can claim just one day of sea service time. If you own the boat yourself you sign off your own time. If your time was spent on friends or families boats they can sign the time off for you. Your time does not need to be signed off by a licensed Captain and in fact you do not even need to be operating the boat yourself for this time to count.

This is basically an honor system which the Coast Guard will accept your best guess... You are not required to submit log books. If you choose to use one of our courses Mariners School will provide you with a Sea Service form and guidance on how to properly fill it out. This is basically a form that looks like a calendar... In each month there are 5 slots... Each of these slots represent a month of your choice... You simply make a best guess as to how many days you were out on a boat for a particular month... Once the total of days is greater than 360 you have now met the Coast Guard's time requirement for getting your Captain's License.
I am the same age and want to do the same thing when I finish college in a couple years and fish some of the same areas.

I have learned a lot about this in the past couple years and learned some of the main things are to get to know different people in the business because they are your most valuable resource for this kind of stuff. Also I take every chance I get to fish with different people, learn new things from different people, and just spend as mush time as possible on the water trying to master every little thing I know about fishing. Its a lot of hard work but I have been doing my research for the past couple years now and learned so many different things from all kinds of people, books, other sites such as this one and I continue to learn new things every day. You'd be surprised at how much you learn sometimes.

Ive been working hard and getting better everyday but ill never stop working at it and learning.

Ty Hibbs
that doesnt sound to hard

i already have them hours covered
ive been operationg my paws boat since i was 15, doing everything from backing trailor into the water to putting the boat back on the traier at the end of the day

do u need to have a guide license or just a captains license or both?
hopefully we can be giving each other information in a couple of years when we are guides ourselves.

ive learned everthing from my paw and dad and noone knows that area then me myself

been fishing there since i was born. some of the best fishing in louisiana.
Captain's license and a business license to pay the taxes.
business license?
what do you mean by business license?
Yea definitely man.
I grew up fishing that area also. Started fishing hopedale a couple years ago just cuz I wanted to learn different areas. I always go back every year though. Its where I learned to fish and I have always loved the point. Im still not getting used to all the boat traffic in hopedale. Seeing two or three boats is a busy day at the point haha.
i hardly ever see a boat where i fish at in the point
Yea me too unless its a busy day. What kind of boat have you been running out there? You may have been one of the few boats i used to see every now and then ha.
I guess i would have to agree with GI on this. If you want to be a guide, why the hell would you incur debt in a college program. I think if you can finish 4 years of college, the least of your worries is passing a captains course. If you are set on a being a guide why not volunteer your services for a year to see if you really want to be a guide. Remember, once you start guiding, its now a business and most of the fun and leisure you now equate with the profession as a 18 year old is out the window.
Ive been runnin a 17 foot scout with a 90 yamaha 2 stroke

And the reason im going to college is because im goin play college baseball
Ted Williams
Baseball and fishing was Ted Williams' life. You should wear #9 on your jersey.
Dang son. Baseball? You'll get all the ladies and you'll get to fish. I took a wrong turn somewhere!
Sounds like a nice boat. I'm usually out there in a 16 foot Cape Horn or a 15 foot flat boat. Well have to meet up one day.

Baseball pretty much took over my life when I was in highschool and was worse as I got to college but I finally learned how to balance fishing, baseball and my school work and now I get to do two things I love pretty much everyday. I work really hard though.
to become a capt
when you become a guide fishin is now a job thats why people pay you no more for the fun of it YOU MUST PRODUCE just like any other job its not just a boat and a few fishing poles ask any of the real guides
ignore the troll
ignore the negativity but he made a good point about being a deckhand on offshore charter boats to learn the buisness side of dealing with customers because the fishing is just the easy part, the hard part is in customer relations and people skills when you have irritated and sometime irrational customers to deal with. things like learning the proper way to deal with all the situations you encounter are lessons you need to learn long before youu go out on your own, you only get one chance to form your reputation as a guide and it needs to be a possative one.

the saying is true, bad reports hang around your neck longer and spread around a lot more then good reports.

out of 12 happy customers who hire you as a guide, altogether they as a group might only tell 3 people how good you are but one unhappy customer will definately go out of his way to tell everyone he ever talks to so that could mean 20-25 people or more get told about how YOU arent the guide they should hire.
Becoming a captain
To get your guide license:

1. Take a course (online or at a college that offers it). Most have a 6-pack license (look it up online for more info). The class requires you to pass a test.
2. Once you have pass your class you file paperwork with the Coast Guard. Your school should help you out with what you need. The Coast Guard requires you to get a TWIC card.
3. Once Coast Guard has approved you, go to WLF and get Captain's license ($250/year)
4. Buy a boat (most captains have a 24 ft bay boats with a 250hp) However, some will guide out of a 22ft.
5. Buy boat insurance
6. If you have a 24ft. boat I would recommend having a maximum of 4 people and then yourself to make a total of 5 people on the boat.
7. Rates - look at other captains rates and be competetive. I have found if you are too cheap people wonder why.
8. I carry 2 poles per person
9. I don't normally fish with live bait in Dularge unless it is summertime but when I do I buy 50 shrimp/croakers per person.
10. Amount of trips - plan on being slow unless you can help an established captain out and run trips for him. I think the majority of captains start out having a full time job and guiding on days off until they have a large enough client base to go full time. I have found 'word of mouth' is the best type of advertisement.
11. How long do you fish for - 8 hours unless its a tough day and then you might fish for a couple more hours to try and pull something out of your backside. LOL

I can't see any of your questions so hopefully I answered most of them.

Good luck!!!

Capt. Travis Miller
Well said capt
I agree 100% with all u said. Because I will be guiding soon doesn't mean it will be my only job. Gotta have a second one. Guiding doesn't last all year.
Captains license
Thanks Capt. Travis for giving positive information to these guys, will see you next June hopefully,A/C MAN
Next June
Looking forward to it A.C.You guys are always a lot of fun.
not worth 6 pk
I just finished school last month and was told soon they will be doing away with OUPV (6 pk) licenses. If you're going to go try to get the 100 ton. For me it was $200 more and 2 days more in school. Well worth it IMHO.
Tyhibbs ill ne out there saturday

Thabks to all for the POSITIVE comments i really appreciate it
I hope to see you on the water one day guiding. If its what you want to do and set your mind and heart into it it can be done.
Good luck and safe fishing.
Re: Waning to become saltwater fishing guide
i have a ? im looking to charter..... i was just told that if i own the boat then i dont need a captains license, but if the bank owns the boat then i do need a license. does that sound right