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Old 12-13-2015, 07:33 PM   #1
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Default Looking to Start a charter

Looking to start a charter in the outer banks area. The questions I have is where I can find the cost of the license I need to go off shore. Also I have done all the numbers for the major cost(captain, boat, slip, gas, maintenance and insurance). On excel it looks like pretty positive for 210 days of fishing but I feel am missing some things. So any input what I am missing would be great. Now I expect to hear some negatives about this but I have read that charter business isn't a money business but all I want is to have a business to pay for my hobby and see people smile after a great day out on the water. If I make a little extra cash, awesome but seeing how I plan to hire a captain, I only want to cover all my expenses.
Thanks
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Old 12-14-2015, 07:36 AM   #2
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I hope you have thick skin my friend. Lot's of "opinions" coming your way!!!
Don't forget about depreciation and repower costs...

What boat do you have?
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Old 12-14-2015, 08:18 AM   #3
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How old are you? I kinda think it's a young man's game. At least younger than me.
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Old 12-14-2015, 09:46 AM   #4
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I am 26 and definitely have the drive since I been thinking about this for a few years now. I also work with waterman and truckers on a daily bases so I say I have a thick skin already but You can always run into that one person who can get to you. I don't have a boat yet but I been looking at 45-48ft custom Carolina's with a single Diesel engine. Single diesel since I believe two engines would be twice the headache. Re power is something I didn't consider but I can understand why I would want to have that in the back of my mind.
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Old 12-14-2015, 09:50 AM   #5
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Dont do it.


Wish I had several hundred grand to buy a 45-48' sportsfisher at 26 years old, outfit it with gear, purchase all the permits and licenses, pay for insurance and slip fees, and start a customer base from scratch! Keep doing whatever you have been doing which apparently is enough to pay for all this. I promise you your "status quo" is making you more money!
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Old 12-14-2015, 10:35 AM   #6
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The boats I been looking at are around $130k and sometimes lower. Outfitting will only depend on how fancy I want to get. Plan on buying the slip(since this a 10 year process) so I can cut my cost down. So of course there will a business loan to get started and starting a business always has it's handful risk. I rather take the risk saying I tried than to never tried at all. The permits are what I am most curious about since I see people keep talking about them but never post their cost.
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Old 12-14-2015, 11:15 AM   #7
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Tackle alone you're probably looking at $15-20k conservatively.
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Old 12-14-2015, 01:02 PM   #8
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Are you able to provide me a list of your ideal rod and reel set ups?
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Old 12-14-2015, 01:11 PM   #9
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Where in the outerbanks are you going to start a charter?
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Old 12-14-2015, 01:47 PM   #10
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I suppose my best advice I could give you... as a successful multi-boat charter business owner ... would be the following:

1. If you have to finance ANY part of the operation, any part at all, walk away.
2. Ask yourself this - If you go a month without any paycheck, what impact does that have on your life? - OR - If you go a month without a paycheck and need to spend $10,000 on something, what impact does that have on your life? If the answer is "negative" to either scenario, I would walk away.
3. Remember the charter business has the tags "poor business" or "losing situation" for a reason. It's very tough to run an operation thats consistantly turns profits, unless you do it correctly.
4. There is SO MUCH that goes into marketing and proper marketing, you haven't even begun to scratch the surface yet.
5. You will be happy, that is importnat to understand... however, happiness comes with a price in many charter circumsances... stress, being broke, etc. The joy and passion you have for fishing will become work and that honeslty does take the joy out of it.
6. The "cover my expenses" charter operation just flat out doesn't work, the costs associated with it do not justify the means. You're better off just fun fishing on a budget, like the entire world of boaters do!
It's a huge commitment you either give yourself to fully or don't

My charter operation is very successful, I'm happy with my team and we havent had to turn over any personnel so that's a good thing. I'm in the procerss of adding vessels that fall under my model business plan. I have learned a lot along the way, and am very selfish about my business due to it's importance to me and the people that depend on me to earn a living.

Now even with all the negative vibe I have just put out understand there are many factors here we will all may never know so take what you need from the advice here but build your plan, your future is up to you.
I'd be more than happy to discuss via phone with you some things I have learned, etc. etc.
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Old 12-14-2015, 01:47 PM   #11
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PM sent.... Mike sounds like he knows what he is talking about. There are ways (not all are successfull 100% of the time) to do the cover my expenses theory and I can help you with ideas on some of those.
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Old 12-14-2015, 02:19 PM   #12
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I have two very close friends that "Offset" some of their expenses by doing charters. They by no means make a profit but are able to spend more time on the water. Both say "they wish they never went the charter route and kept it all small instead". They get the few that are very good, repeat customers but most show up with coolers of beer and just get FUBAR all day and question why they bite isn't better.

If you love fishing don't become a charter captain. If you love being on the water, having your boat treated like a toilet and being broke then maybe it's for you. Not many people have the money to do charters and in your area it's very seasonal.
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Old 12-14-2015, 03:01 PM   #13
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As someone who's been kicking the idea of a charter business around these threads always interest me. They're almost always filled with people who say it's a waste of time and money and that essentially nobody should do it. But if all the charter captains doing it are so miserable and not making any money why the hell do they do it?
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Old 12-14-2015, 03:27 PM   #14
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You have to want that life. It ain't about the money you make. It's about the ocean and being out there and catching fish. That being said, my boy turned it into a business now he's broke and hates fishing cause it's such a chore for him. Just make sure you love it.
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Old 12-14-2015, 03:31 PM   #15
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Man I should be a spokesman for salt life haha
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Old 12-14-2015, 03:57 PM   #16
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BigtTunaDaddy View Post
Man I should be a spokesman for salt life haha
Now I think you're onto something there. You gotta pimp all sorts of gear and sell out to make lots of cash. Get a sponsorship from every fishing vendor you can
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Old 12-14-2015, 04:08 PM   #17
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210 days just staring out. Aim for a 100. Maybe you will get 75. How much experience do you have. I'm guessing you mean hatteras or south because your boat will be a bastard size. I think for what your looking for you should be a mate. You will make more money and get some experience.
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Old 12-14-2015, 04:43 PM   #18
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Angler Managemnt View Post
I suppose my best advice I could give you... as a successful multi-boat charter business owner ... would be the following:

1. If you have to finance ANY part of the operation, any part at all, walk away.
2. Ask yourself this - If you go a month without any paycheck, what impact does that have on your life? - OR - If you go a month without a paycheck and need to spend $10,000 on something, what impact does that have on your life? If the answer is "negative" to either scenario, I would walk away.
3. Remember the charter business has the tags "poor business" or "losing situation" for a reason. It's very tough to run an operation thats consistantly turns profits, unless you do it correctly.
4. There is SO MUCH that goes into marketing and proper marketing, you haven't even begun to scratch the surface yet.
5. You will be happy, that is importnat to understand... however, happiness comes with a price in many charter circumsances... stress, being broke, etc. The joy and passion you have for fishing will become work and that honeslty does take the joy out of it.
6. The "cover my expenses" charter operation just flat out doesn't work, the costs associated with it do not justify the means. You're better off just fun fishing on a budget, like the entire world of boaters do!
It's a huge commitment you either give yourself to fully or don't

My charter operation is very successful, I'm happy with my team and we havent had to turn over any personnel so that's a good thing. I'm in the procerss of adding vessels that fall under my model business plan. I have learned a lot along the way, and am very selfish about my business due to it's importance to me and the people that depend on me to earn a living.

Now even with all the negative vibe I have just put out understand there are many factors here we will all may never know so take what you need from the advice here but build your plan, your future is up to you.
I'd be more than happy to discuss via phone with you some things I have learned, etc. etc.

I agree mostly with this accept for the finance portion. Nothing wrong with financing as long as it is done smart. I financed part of my first charter boat and have a very successful, growing charter business with 3 full time boats today.

To the OP,
Do it - you are young. Every man dies but few ever truly live. Work your tail off and then some more. Think way outside the box and work harder every day. Believe in work...HARD work. Give it everything you got so that it CAN'T fail. Don't accept failure and perfect your craft.

You will find out quickly if all of the work is worth it for you.
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Old 12-14-2015, 04:57 PM   #19
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Ahhhhhh good old William Wallace.
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Old 12-14-2015, 05:11 PM   #20
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I would say your first few years on the OBX.... competing against all the legends, you may get 50 charters a year and most of them from folks just calling the marina when every established captain is booked.

It can be done. I have some friends who broke into the group but they all spent years mating these waters and then bought their own boat.
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