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What to Bring on a Fishing Trip

Packing for a vacation always takes more time than we think, regardless of how we try to spin and delay it in our heads.

It doesn’t matter if you’re going to the beach, desert, city or mountains, filling that carry-on or duffle up to the brim is exhausting, not to mention nerve wrecking.

But some of us never learn.

If you’re anything like us and you pack the night of (or before) your fishing charter trip, then you likely need some pointers on what to bring!

What to Wear on a Fishing Charter

First things first, you have to know what to wear.

It’s vital to bring plenty of layers for the open water wherever your fishing trip is taking place and whatever season it is.

Especially in a place like Northern Michigan, it can get chilly when you’re offshore at the crack of dawn and there isn’t much sun to rely on.

On the other hand, you don’t have much shade when you’re out on the open water so you’re going to take a few layers off once the sun starts cooking. Try not to overdo it with the layers, but we recommend a few.

Here are some good clothing items to consider:

  • Light-Colored Clothing: No matter what you wear, try to stay away from dark colors because they absorb the sunlight and heat.

  • Lightweight T-Shirt: The t-shirt can be long- or short-sleeved but it’s important because it will keep your arms and shoulders protected from the sun.

  • Shorts: Shorts are ideal if it is warm enough, otherwise, comfortable joggers or pants work too.

  • Windbreaker: A light, waterproof jacket like a windbreaker is great for the mornings. It will keep you warm and dry!

  • Comfortable Shoes: Any shoes/sandals with rubber soles are great so you’re not slipping and falling.

  • Gloves: Gloves are useful during the colder seasons – fall and early spring.

What to Bring on a Charter Fishing Trip

Here are the other items we recommend bringing apart from clothing:

Weather Protection

Regardless of if you’re fishing in tropical waters or not, the ocean’s reflective glare can be uncomfortable and unsafe if you’re not protected with a few items:

  • Sunscreen: Any sunscreen 30 and above is recommended, just make sure that it protects you from both UVA and UVB rays.

  • Hat: Hats are an ideal way to get some shade and protect you from the sun.

  • Sunglasses: Polarized sunglasses are preferred but any sunglasses are better than none!

Medical Supplies

If you’re from the States and on a fishing charter with Fish Moxie, we should have no problems understanding each other.

However, if you’re fishing in a place where there’s a language barrier, you might want to bring a few, extra medical necessities:

  • Seasickness Meds: If you’re sensitive to the water and its motion, bring a seasickness medication that works for you. Take it a few hours before your charter and you should be good to go. It’s also a good idea to avoid caffeine and alcohol the night before your fishing charter, whether or not you’re prone to seasickness.

  • First Aid Kit: While all fishing charters should have a first aid kit on their boat, bringing a small back-up is always a good idea.

  • Bug Spray: Mosquitos (and any other bug out there) love the warm, humid air! Bring some heavy-duty bug spray to avoid getting bit.

  • Hand Sanitizer & Wipes: Fishing isn’t glamorous and you’re likely going to get fish residue on your hands throughout the day. We highly recommend bringing wet wipes and sanitizer to clean your hands before touching any belongings/foods.

  • Prescription Meds: Please let your captain know if you suffer from any conditions that could flare up during your trip such as seizures, diabetes or high-blood pressure. Bring any prescription medications with you on the charter to avoid any issues or discomfort.


Bring the proper bags and storage containers to ensure that your belongings will stay safe and dry:

  • Backpack: A backpack is ideal for a fishing charter because it’s easy to carry and fits most of your belongings.

  • Cooler: Bringing a collapsible or mini cooler is useful for your beverages and foods.

  • Water Bottle: A large water bottle is smart so you can stay hydrated during the day. One that closes is ideal to keep it from spilling on the boat.

  • Plastic Bags: Throw in a few Ziploc bags to keep your electronics, documents and other prized possessions dry.

Miscellaneous Essentials

Here’s a few items that you don’t need but you might want to bring anyways:

  • Towel: A large towel or two is useful to have, especially when you’re dealing with slimy fish.

  • Swimsuit: Wear or pack a swimsuit so you can take a dip at the end of the charter.

  • Camera: Bring a camera or use your phone so you can snap a few pics of your catches. Make sure you have a waterproof storage unit for any electronics!

  • Other Fishing Gear: Bring whatever fishing gear/equipment that you’d like, to enhance your next fishing charter!

If you’ve never been on a fishing charter, consider bringing a few necessities from our list.

You don’t have to bring each and every item that we listed, but we highly urge you to follow most of our recommendations to ensure an enjoyable fishing charter every time!

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