Simpson Marine Search Yachts
16th January 2024

The Do’s and Don’ts on a Fishing Charter: Etiquette and Tips

Chartering a yacht and heading out to the open ocean to do a spot of deep-sea fishing is an exhilarating, life-affirming experience that many clients ask us about. As part of our comprehensive Simpson Yacht Services, we gladly match them up with the perfect yacht and crew in their location of choice. In this article, we have gathered some tips and tricks all keen anglers should know regarding behavioral dos and don’ts when chartering a fishing vessel.



Yachting etiquette, particularly the fishing variety, is borne of a sense of respect for oneself, others on board, your slippery quarry, and the vessel. The easiest way to mark yourself as a complete beginner is to make some of the faux pas we will address shortly, and there’s no shame in being new to the activity. 

  • Experienced captains and crew will seldom judge you for a lack of knowledge and understanding of maritime customs; they will judge you for arrogance and rudeness. 



Politeness and courtesy cost nothing. You are indeed paying the crew to assist you on your fishing journey, but that does not mean you can behave rudely and speak to them however you wish. Common decency and good manners must always prevail if you are to gain the respect of your crew. 

  • Remember that the happier the crew are, the harder they will work to ensure you have the best time possible.



Even the most experienced captain and crew cannot control the weather or unforeseen circumstances. The more flexible you can be with your availability, the better your chance of setting sail on a day when conditions are optimum rather than hoping for the best. 

  • Your captain may be forced to alter the location to avoid unpleasant conditions, so think carefully and try to be amenable to change. 



It helps the experience to go smoothly and successfully if everyone is on the same page from the word go. Talk to your skipper about your group’s experience level and the kind of fishing you would ideally like to do. If large carnivores are not a realistic target, be prepared to accept more realistic prey.

  • Having this information upfront allows the captain to plot the best route, locate prime fishing spots, and stick to more tranquil waters if members of your party are not comfortable with rougher water.



While experienced captains and crew can do everything possible to ensure you catch lots of big fish, nothing is guaranteed. It’s called fishing for a reason, and the time spent soaking up the atmosphere and the sun is part and parcel of the experience. Of course, every angler wants to catch something, but those with prior experience know it will not always happen. 

  • If fishing were too easy, it would take all of the fun out of the challenge, so keep your cool and respect the fish for besting you rather than attacking the crew for not finding the right spot.



Those with less experience on open water are likely to experience some level of discomfort when things get choppy, and it pays to ask your group to acquire preventative medicine beforehand if they can. No remedies can counteract the onset of full-blown seasickness, but a variety of devices and medications go some way towards preventing the worst of it. 

  • Remind your group that vomit should always go over the side of the yacht, not into the toilets or sinks. Head downwind when seasickness strikes, and avoid subjecting the entire yacht to the smell. 



Wear clothing in layers that you can add or remove when required. Remember that there is a strong likelihood of getting drenched with water if weather conditions are a bit tasty, so if you have a waterproof outer layer, that works well. Blazing sunshine can be debilitating and dangerous, so wear a hat, preferably one with adequate neck coverage, and don’t forget your sunglasses. Your footwear is more important than clothing; choosing comfortable, non-slip shoes or sneakers is crucial to staying safe and steady on board. 

  • This is not the time or the place for high-heeled or fashion shoes.



Whether you opt for ‘extreme’ fishing or a languid cruise on calm waters with more focus on beverages than fish, remember that the experience as a whole is to be cherished, not just the time when your rod is in the water. Take in the views. Chat with your captain and crew. Be on the lookout for aquatic mammals and other wildlife. Feel the ocean spray on your face and sear these incredible moments into your memory. 

  • The real world is waiting to return all too soon, so make the most of every moment you have on board your splendid fishing yacht charter, and don’t sweat the small things. 



The middle of the ocean is no place for horsing around, playing pranks, or generally misbehaving. Qualified in first aid, though they may be, fishing yacht crews are not trained to handle serious injuries, and you may be several hours from shore and the nearest hospital. Many ocean-dwelling creatures have sharp fins and teeth, and fishing knives and heavy-duty lines can cut you before you even realise it. 

  • Stay alert and safe at all times for the accident-free enjoyment of everyone on board.



Overly demanding, unreasonable clients are every captain’s worst nightmare, and if you fall into that category, you are setting yourself up for disappointment and a less-than-favourable experience. Show humility, be polite, and do your best to accommodate any necessary schedule or location changes. Don’t spoil the chance by mistreating others or getting hung up on details that don’t matter in the grand scheme.  



At Simpson Yacht Charter, we are proud to facilitate access to an incredible, extensive range of yachts with unmatched, experienced crews. Please contact us at your earliest convenience, and we will gladly discuss your dream fishing excursion and assist you in making it happen.

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