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Trip cost splitting etiquette

Old 06-14-2020, 05:02 PM
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Default Trip cost splitting etiquette

Totally not a complaint.... But I am curious what others would do...

When I run my trips, I usually start with a boat full of fuel, I take care of ice, bait, and I supply plenty of bottled water. I also provide all trolling rods, and will provide rods and terminal tackle to anyone who needs them, but most of the experienced guys bring their own. At the end of the day, I take a look at the fuel burn and add the coat of bait and divide by the number in the group. Viola.

Today though, we made it half way to our destination and encountered a motor issue. Did my best to rectify it, but no bueno. We limped home on one motor and tossed some trolling gear off the back, but all we got was trash fish. Tried my best to make a day of it.

We got back, cleaned up, and I refused to take any money from anyone. The broken motor was all on me. Arguments ensued but I held my ground. They all left and I brought the boat over to the area where the dock hands lift the boats out. I was getting ready to leave and I have a little tray where I keep my keys, phone, etc. I picked up my phone and there was a folded up fiddy stuck in the side of the case.... I think I know who it was..... (thank you) Anyway, I gave it to the dock hands and was happy to do it because I probably don;t tip them as much as I should.

I;m not a wealthy guy, and it would have been nice to put that fiddy in the tank, but I just didn't feel right about wasting everyone's Sunday.

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06-14-2020, 06:05 PM
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Dude who left the cash probably understands the costs associated with boating/fishing and wanted to help a buddy out. Would be willing to bet he gets the first invite when you get your motor issues sorted out.
Old 06-14-2020, 05:04 PM
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I think you were too generous. Things break, as long as it was not due to some totally obvious missed maintenance on your part, then it's just fate. Nothing wrong with having friends kick in, even when the outcome goes sideways.
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Old 06-14-2020, 06:05 PM
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Dude who left the cash probably understands the costs associated with boating/fishing and wanted to help a buddy out. Would be willing to bet he gets the first invite when you get your motor issues sorted out.
Old 06-14-2020, 06:11 PM
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You have fishing partners that understand what it cost to run a boat........they know they are getting off cheap! Seems a great relationship where both parties appreciate the other.
Old 06-14-2020, 06:12 PM
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Best words of wisdom from an old friend: “never argue about someone giving you money!” “Always take the money and say thank you”, regardless of why you didn’t think you deserved it, wanted it, etc.

i have used this in my life and it’s the way to go. So many arguments develop because of this simple gesture. Take the money and everyone is happy!
Old 06-14-2020, 06:16 PM
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I guess a lot depends on the trip, some of my trips are only 10 minutes run at most, bait is free and we fish for a few hours for "food fish" so those trips are on me, same if I go on a friends boat, it's on him, however, if we are having a "big" day, trolling (Marlin and so on) it's a simple expenses spilt evenly (kind of) between the crew setup.
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Old 06-14-2020, 06:30 PM
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Originally Posted by tunavet View Post
Best words of wisdom from an old friend: “never argue about someone giving you money!” “Always take the money and say thank you”, ..
Islander's rule is to say no 3 times then accept the money gracefully. I had an incident where I was offered and said no twice so he turned to walk away. I said, he Brah, rule says you have to offer the third time then I'll accept...that's the RULE.
Old 06-14-2020, 06:42 PM
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I say no once then if they offer a second time I accept. if reversed, I won't take no for an answer and will find a way to force you to accept.
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Old 06-14-2020, 08:06 PM
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I had a trip we terminated due to poor weather after making a 45-mile run in nearly 2 hours. 4 of us. Two buddies were asleep in the bean bags. When we got to the grounds, one puked, the other fell 3 times trying to get up. We all agreed that the weather wasn’t improving as forecasted and let’s bag it. They offered their share. I said no a couple of times and explained I wasn’t worried about the cash. Next time I stepped on the boat (week or two later) there was a newly wrapped bamboo gaff there. Dude knew I liked them, so he made it for me. Awesome!
Old 06-14-2020, 08:14 PM
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If I invite someone out I typically pay for everything fishing related, and will provide lures as needed. But as you said, most bring their own. I typically get a meal out of it though.
Old 06-15-2020, 06:00 AM
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Thanks for the positive reinforcement. I guess it goes back to my chartering experience. If these were customers, I would not take any money. In fact, I would graciously hope they would allow me to reschedule their trip and give then $50 off. But there are friends, and good ones to have.
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Old 06-15-2020, 06:32 AM
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Originally Posted by tunavet View Post
Best words of wisdom from an old friend: “never argue about someone giving you money!” “Always take the money and say thank you”, regardless of why you didn’t think you deserved it, wanted it, etc.

i have used this in my life and it’s the way to go. So many arguments develop because of this simple gesture. Take the money and everyone is happy!
this is what I do. I never ask for it, but I don’t say no when it’s offered. I take the cash and put it straight in my pocket, whatever amount it is I don’t really care.
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Old 06-15-2020, 06:52 AM
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I don't take any money from friends but the fuel usually doesn't exceed $20 to $50. I figure I can afford that much and I would have gone alone if the friends didn't come along. If I had a larger boat and the cost was substantially more I would accept sharing the cost of bait and fuel.

What do you think of the cases where the financial circumstances of the parties involved are very different? Say the boat owner has substantial financial resources and his guests are just ordinary people.

How about the cases where the boat owner is a real fusspot and likes to detail the boat at the end of each trip taking at least and hour to clean up. If you want to do more than ten to fifteen minutes with a hose and a brush I'm not really interested.
Old 06-15-2020, 07:03 AM
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I need new friends. The guys that go out with me haven’t ever paid. Financially, I’m in a better position then they are and my view has always been I’m going out either way. I’m not running big expenses with what we’re doing and I like the company some days so it’s not an issue. I’m sure 20 years ago I told them to keep it a couple times when they offered and here we are.
Old 06-15-2020, 07:09 AM
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I can understand that if it had been a charter you wouldn't take the money since you didn't provide the service but among friends you should have let them contribute especially if they were asking to.

I'm on the other side of that. Since the ramps in South Dade were closed and now a madhouse on weekends which is the only days I can go out, I've been going on my friends boat. Usually we take his boat of we are going past the bay anyway and in shore trips we take a small fleet of flats boats and meet up. He never wants to accept money for trips no matter how much I offer. Since his family own a boat yard/salvage company and most everything on his boat comes from salvages and all work is done himself so his cost structure is a bit different than most but he still usually has costs for gas ect. I know if he buys gas he often brings it in jugs. So now I show up with all the ice and all the jugs I own filled with gas and just start putting it in his tank. I'm thinking of showing up with an oil/lower unit/impeller change kit also.
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Old 06-15-2020, 07:12 AM
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Your a good dude and so are your partners.
Old 06-15-2020, 07:25 AM
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Sounds like a fluke situation and that you have a solid group of fishing buddies. Not right or wrong answer, and I wouldn't make a big deal out of it one way or another.
Old 06-15-2020, 07:43 AM
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I have some regulars that come out with me and they constantly want to pay for fuel and bait. I tell them no but they would hide it in my truck anyway. So I told them that if they really want to pay their way then they can learn the knots I use and how to rig up lines the way I like, anticipate what to do on the boat when we get fish on, anchor, launch and load, tie up to the dock, clean fish, scrub the deck when we get back, etc. I would rather pay for everything and have 3-4 deckhands that do things the way I want them done than cash I would be spending if I was going by myself anyway. We will all end up having more fun and taking more fish home to our freezers. So they learned the knots, and my one buddy learned to drive the truck with trailer and backs us in the water for launch and load, he also can drive the boat if I want to fish or take care of something else, they always get the fenders out when we're about to dock and know which cleats to use etc, immediately grab the brush and hose when we get back home, unload the fish and start filleting. They want to keep learning and doing more and I don't mind at all. Money for gas is nice but having a good crew that makes the entire day go better is priceless. It makes everyone happier in the end I think also.
Old 06-15-2020, 08:17 AM
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Originally Posted by Brewcpa View Post
I figure I can afford that much and I would have gone alone if the friends didn't come along.
Yeah, this. I just don't understand how people who pay $300,000 cash for a boat can get angry about $50 worth of supplies. Like, if you're well-off enough to buy the boat and keep it running, aren't you wealthy enough to treat your friends when you invite them on the boat? Isn't it more fun with more people? At that point why not just sell tickets? Or just send people an invoice after the trip? It's the same thing, really.

If you have to end with a zero balance every time you interact with your friends, I'd say they aren't really friends. Who cares how the money turns out in the end? Is it that you really can't afford it? Clearly you can. So why the Ebenezer Scrooge act getting mad over every penny? It's clearly not the money, because you've got the money. Jealousy at getting "ripped off" by "freeloaders"? If your friends are despicable freeloaders then why are you socializing with them in the first place?
Old 06-15-2020, 08:34 AM
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If I take real friends on the boat I don't ask or expect much out of them financially. Maybe split the gas if we go on a vacation scalloping or the keys for a long weekend. If we go fishing buy some bait. These are people I have known for decades though.

If I had a group of regular "fishing buddies" you bet I would want them to pay their share. If the boat has a problem and the trip didn't turn out they should still pitch in and understand why. Same goes for cleaning up the boat and all of that after a trip. If anyone complains about it guess whose boat they aren't going back out on...

Last edited by acme54321; 06-15-2020 at 08:41 AM.
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