In the last 20-30 years fishing products and gear have advanced in such an amazing way. This has led to greater and greater success on the water for many anglers. The other thing it advanced was the cost to spend a day on the water. It can be tough for anglers on a budget to get all the great new gear while saving money and getting a good deal. Here are our best ways to to save money while fishing.
If you’re bassing on a budget, or just want to be more cost-effective in your fishing expenses, try these things to make the most of your fishing dedicated dollars.
1. Re-Tie Often
Losing lures is an unfortunate (and expensive) reality of fishing. It’s going to happen, but being lazy will make it happen more frequently. Retying only takes a minute, and doing so will minimize the number of baits you lose due to wear and tear on your line. If you can reduce the number of break-offs by 10 percent in a season, you’ll effectively be saving 10% on your tackle costs.
2. Reuse Your Plastics
There are lots of ways to extend the life of your soft plastics. The number one step should be to pick up a bottle of Mend-it or superglue. Many plastics can be repaired with a few drops and used again without any drop in performance. Another way to save money is to repurpose used plastics. That craw or creature that is too torn up to Texas rig can be shortened and repurposed as a dynamite jig trailer.
3. Change Your Treble Hooks
You’d be surprised how many anglers will discard or replace old hard baits once their original hooks become broken, dulled, or rusty. A set of split ring pliers and a couple packs of treble hooks can be had for just a few bucks, and add new life to a number of different hard baits.
4. Reverse Your Braid
Another way to save money while fishing is to flip your braid at the end of the year. Throughout the course of a season, the first 20 to 40 yards of braid on your spool will absorb the vast majority of the wear and tear, leaving the remainder relatively new. Instead of re-spooling, just reverse your braid by tying the end of your line to another empty reel, and wind it off the original reel. By doing this, you’ll bury the worn braid at the bottom of the second reel and leave the fresh stuff on top.
5. Use Backing On Your Reels
Fishing line, particularly braid and fluorocarbon, is expensive. All too often though, anglers waste large quantities of it by allowing it to waste away at the bottom of their reel spools. Most reels hold far more line than you can actually cast, so maximize your line by laying down some cheap backing prior to your main line. For most presentations, all you’ll really need in a year is 60 or 70 yards, so by using backing you can spool three reels with one 200 yard filler spool.
6. Only Use Tungsten When You Need It
Tungsten weights are tops when it comes to feel and compact size, making them ideal for many presentations. They’re really expensive though, so budget conscious anglers should focus on only using tungsten on presentations where it makes a difference. Presentations like Carolina rigs and drop shots, and even Texas rigs with sinkers less than ¼ ounce in weight work just fine with lead, and you’ll really minimize the impact to your pocketbook.
7. Keep It Simple
Although very basic, the best way to save money while fishing is to only buy what you need. Instead of buying plastics in every color imaginable, instead focus on just the necessities like green pumpkin, watermelon, and black/blue. The same can be applied to hard baits, as you can do just fine with a couple simple patterns like shad, crawfish, and something bright like chartreuse/black back.
8. Sign Up for Mystery Tackle Box!
Signing up for a tackle subscription service like Mystery Tackle Box is one of the easiest ways to save money on fishing. You’ll receive around $25 worth of baits for $15, and save close to 40% on each lure! Mystery Tackle Box also makes a great fishing gift you can save money on!