Boat Rental Tips to Make Your Fishing Trip Fun and Safe
Boat rental companies can be found all over the US and Canada and you can find them located near rivers, lakes, campgrounds, beaches and parks. Renting a boat is an excellent way to do recreational fishing with friends and family and it is an economical way to enjoy the benefits of a fishing boat if you don’t own one. Our children’s first introduction to fishing was with a rented boat on the lake and over the years it became one of their favorite vacation experiences.
Why rent a boat ? Fishing from a boat offers more flexibility, opportunities and fun for the adults and children alike. Renting a boat also allows you to take a test ride for a future purchase. Whether it is your first, second or third time renting a boat for fishing here are a few tips to follow.
Boat safety – Safety is always first when renting a boat, whether it’s for fishing or any other water activity. Ensure that the boat is equipped with safety features and accessories like a whistle, a bailer, fire extinguisher and, of course, life jackets for all members of the party, if you don’t have your own. Children should be told the importance of following safety regulations and rules. In most areas life jackets are mandatory for children under a certain age but adults should lead by example and wear life jackets in the interest of safety.
Businesses that rent boats are usually very good when it comes to providing information and orienting customers on safety features and requirements, but it is imperative that you ask the right questions to ensure a safe and enjoyable fishing experience.
Operating the boat – If it is your first time driving a boat there is no need to be intimidated. Take some time to practice using the boat before taking it out on a fishing trip. Rental companies are eager to accommodate you in this regard. Get to know the boat, its operation and pay close attention to instructions on use of your boat. Also, while no one is suggesting that you have to be a U.S. Navy Captain to handle a boat, some knowledge of basic nautical rules will be necessary. Today there are many sources for learning the rules of the waterway. It also doesn’t hurt to take along someone who has boating experience if you are a novice.
Fishing gear – In addition to your basic fishing gear it is important to take some spares with you just in case. If you lose a fishing rod for example, you don’t want to sit on the boat empty handed or head back to shore for more bait or line. If you will be keeping some of the fish you catch bring along a cooler for your catch. For those who do not own fishing tackle or feel what they do have is insufficient for the trip, many boat rental companies and marinas also offer fishing gear rental at a reasonable rate.
Food and drinks – Prepare a cooler ahead of time with food, drinks and snacks. Think of boating like a picnic on the water. You may be out for several hours and especially with children, food is an essential part of an enjoyable fishing trip.
Dress the part – Whether it is a hot summer day or a cool spring or fall day, you will enjoy boating much more if you are dressed appropriately. Never underestimate the weather by wearing too little or too much clothing. Always be prepared for changes in the weather even when it doesn’t seem likely. Sun screen, hat and polarized sunglasses are some of the essentials for a boating trip. Since you will be on the water, be sure to pack a change of clothes since getting wet is a guarantee.
Footwear – Let’s also talk about footwear for a moment. This one could have been highlighted under the boating safety as well because of its importance. Don’t bring your dancing shoes on the deck and don’t allow your guest to either. Anything that does not have a rubberized bottom is dangerous on a boat. Not only are they a safety hazard onboard but non-boat shoes, particularly ones with dark soles, can leave ugly streaks on a white deck. Flip-flops are also a bad idea as they can easily cause you to lose your footing. A good pair of boat shoes are a must for safe boating.
Boating combined with fishing is a wonderful activity for all and especially exciting for children. Renting a boat is easy and it is a great way to introduce your kids to fishing. Spending a day or several hours on the water with friends and family is the ultimate fun getaway. After exciting day fishing be sure to return your rental on time and in the condition you received it.