Call us anytime: 844-243-5707

Mahia Mahia Fishing in Fort Lauderdale

Written by Capt. Steve on Monday, 09 July 2012. Posted in Fishing Advice

Mahia Mahia Fishing in Fort Lauderdale

Mahia Mahia fishing in Fort Lauderdale (aka Mahi Mahi, Dolphinfish) is a tropical and subtropical fish species that's a South Florida favorite. It's name comes from the Hawaiian words meaning very strong. We catch Mahia Mahia in a variety of different ways, but primarily by trolling. When fishing for Mahia Mahia in Fort Lauderdale we typically use frozen ballyhoo or live baits, but mahia mahia can also be caught using bright colored lures.

Mahia Mahia is a delicious, mild fish that's often served grilled. Our favorite is blackened mahia mahia, which has a salty, spicy kick.

Typically, Mahia Mahia in Fort Lauderdale range from 15 to 30 pounds, but can grow to more than 40 pounds. They are one of the most beautifully colored fish in Fort Lauderdale, and truly in the entire ocean. They feature brilliant shades of yellow, blue, and green, with dazzling specks throughout.

Mahia Mahia fishing charters in Fort Lauderdale are one of our most popular requests, so please contact us if you are interested.

Is deep sea fishing dangerous?

Written by Capt. Noah on Monday, 09 July 2012. Posted in Fishing Advice

Fishing Charter Tips and Gratuity Guide

Deep Sea Fishing is not particularly dangerous, particularly as compared to other action and watersports. The boats and captains are forced to comply with strict United States Coast Guard regulations, that dictate required safety equipment, for boats and training programs, physical testing, and drug testing for captains.

The most common risks of deep sea fishing are actually sunburn and dehydration, both are easily preventable with a bottle of sunscreen and a bottle of water.

Less common risks include, scrapes, scratches, and bruises, allergic reactions, and unlikely but possible: falling overboard.

Children are required to wear life jackets and it is recommended that adults who are not strong swimmers wear life jackets as well. If you are bringing children aboard, contact the captain ahead of time to make sure he has appropriate life jackets for the size of your child.

How much to tip deep sea fishing

Written by Capt. Noah on Saturday, 07 July 2012. Posted in Fishing Advice

Fishing Charter Tips and Gratuity Guide


Tips and gratuities on fishing boats have gone from being optional to expected. Many crew members work mostly or entirely for tips and most will work as hard as they can to impress you. Like any gratuity, however, if you receive bad service it is well within your right to withhold some or all of the crews tips.

The customary gratuity is 15-20% of the price of a charter. In other words, $100 for every $500 you spend. If the crew has gone considerably far out of their way for you, you may tip more, just like in a restaurant.

Some people like to associate a gratuity with how much fish they catch. Certainly, if you’re catching a lot of fish that Captain and mate are working extra hard to get the fish in, bait new lines, and filet it back on the dock. Having said that, if you do not catch a lot of fish, it doesn’t mean that the crew wasn’t good or didn’t work hard to make your trip enjoyable. Sadly, there are days where the fish just aren’t biting and that’s why they call this sport fishing and not catching, it's not always the crews fault.

If you don’t catch a lot of fish and are considering an appropriate gratuity, consider how far out of their way did the crew go to try and find the fish or entertain you in other ways. Did the captain move the boat around in search of fish? Did the mate try different techniques, perhaps with different equipment or bait? If the answer is yes, than the crew likely did everything they could, and may have even worked harder than on an ordinary day. In this case it would be appropriate to give them a generous tip.

If, on the other hand, you didn’t catch fish, the crew was sour, or didn’t do anything to try and find the fish, than you probably have a good case for withholding a gratuity.

How much does deep sea fishing cost?

Written by Capt. Noah on Friday, 06 July 2012. Posted in Fishing Advice

695 dolphin

Compared to many other tourist and recreation activities, deep sea fishing is a fairly affordable activity. Prices for private deep sea fishing charters in Florida vary depending on location, time of year, boat availability and other factors.

At their cheapest, prices for a 4 hour fishing trip on a typical charter fishing boat in Florida start at around $500 and go up to around $800, depending on boat and location. On top of this, it is customary to tip the crew 15% - 20% for good service. Also, on some charters the captain will recommend the use of live bait, the cost of which will be passed through to the customer.

All this might sound a bit pricey, but consider that on most private charters you can bring up to six people along for the trip, so divided amongst a group, the trip is very affordable. The fun and excitement of deep sea fishing is worth every penny and unlike most tourist activities, fishing can pay dividends in the form of delicious fresh fish you can cook up at home or have a local restaurant prepare for big savings and even bigger satisfaction.

How Deep is Deep Sea Fishing

Written by Capt. Noah on Thursday, 05 July 2012. Posted in Fishing Advice


As the name implies, Deep Sea Fishing is in the “deep sea” but the word deep is vague and subjective and there’s no definitive answer. Think about it, the “deep” end of most pools is 6 to 8 feet! James Cameron went thousands of feet below the surface, and that’s deep to him.

Jokes aside, Florida deep sea fishing generally implies that you are fishing at any depth in the Atlantic Ocean or Gulf of Mexico. This could be a reef at 30 feet, a wreck at 200 feet, or on a drop off into a thousand feet or more. By contrast, in shore fishing is usually on lakes, bays, and rivers, which tend to be, but are not always, shallower than the depths in the Ocean or Gulf.

The depth at which you fish will depend largely on what fish are being targeted, inside information the captain has to where the fish are biting, or just trial and error. Most deep sea fishing in Florida is in less than 500 feet of water.

Where is the best deep sea fishing in the world?

Written by Capt. Noah on Wednesday, 04 July 2012. Posted in Tourist Info


There’s probably no question more loaded than “where is the best deep sea fishing in the world?” The answer is entirely subjective and really depends on what you’re fishing for, what kind of experience you want, how much pain you’re willing to endure, and how much money you’re willing to spend. I’ve heard the Southern Ocean has great fishing (just ask the Japanese), but there’s not too many people who are willing to endure the Antarctic temperatures, not to mention those pesky icebergs (did someone say Titanic).

So let’s do this, I’m going to give you my opinion on the top five reasonably priced, reasonable temperate destinations that to my knowledge have know icebergs.

Number 5: South Florida

Cheap and accessible with something for everyone, South Florida is a perfect fishing destination. The waters off the coast are rich with fish thanks to the warm waters brought year round by the Gulf Stream current. The fishing charter market here is highly competitive, which keeps prices low and there are plenty of awesome seafood restaurants that will cook up anything you catch for a small fee.

Number 4: Bimini, Bahamas

There’s nothing really to speak of in Bimini besides the water. This small group of islands in the Bahamas is located just 50 miles from Florida, but has about the bluest water I’ve ever seen. Bimini has a long history of fishing and was a frequent stomping ground for Ernest Hemingway whose books were inspired by many of his Bimini-area fishing adventures. It’s a half hour flight from Fort Lauderdale, and about a three hour boat ride.

Number 3: Outer Banks, NC

The Outer Banks of North Carolina, or OBX as locals call them, provide epic fishing grounds. They have a nasty reputation for unpredictable weather, but that doesn't really affect short fishing charters. The banks benefit from fish large and small brought by the Gulf Stream from the Gulf of Mexico, Caribbean and Southern Florida. They are relatively easily accessible and the natural beauty of the entire area is pristine.

Number 2: Florida Keys

The Florida Keys are surely among the best fishing destinations in the world. For starters, you’ll feel like you’re fishing even before you head out on the water. Everything in the keys is about fishing. The billboards, the restaurants, the gift shops. Fish are everywhere. Oh yea, and they’re home to one of the largest barrier reef systems in the world, plus they are situated literally in the Gulf Stream current.

Number 1: Costa Rica

It seems like no one had even heard of Costa Rica until like 20 years ago. Since then, the small country as reinvented itself as the Eco Tourism capital of the world. Fish the rich waters off the pacific coast for giant marlin, sailfish, sharks and more. Costa Rica has some of the world’s best high end fishing lodges so you can head down and fish in style. It’s less than a 3 hour flight from most of the southern United States. And when you’re not fishing, you could be ziplining through the jungle, traveling down a river on a crocodile safari, or surfing some of the best breaks in North America.

What is deep sea fishing

Written by Capt. Noah on Wednesday, 04 July 2012. Posted in Miscellaneous


Deep Sea Fishing generally refers to fishing on an ocean or other large body of water. The term has become synonymous with sport fishing and most commonly refers to fishing charters. It is somewhat unusual to say, “I went deep sea fishing” when referring to one’s own boat. On the other hand, if you ask someone “where’s a good place to go deep sea fishing?” chances are they’ll know you mean “where should I charter a fishing boat?”

There is no definition as to the depth that deep sea fishing takes place at. You could be deep sea fishing in 40 feet of water or in 4,000 feet of water.

Deep sea fishing usually takes place on private charter fishing boats that are chartered (rented) for a period of time. Deep sea fishing charters typically include the boat, a captain, and often a mate as well. The boat has all the necessary equipment, including rods, reels, bait, and other technical items, required for fishing.

Short trips usually include the price of fuel, but longer trips as well as trips on high end fishing yachts typically add the cost of fuel on at the end.

How to prepare for deep sea fishing

Written by Capt. Noah on Wednesday, 04 July 2012. Posted in Fishing Advice


My friend who is a marine shared a saying they have in the military that I love to quote. It's called the 7 Ps and it goes like this:

Proper Prior Planning Prevents Piss Poor Performance

Deep sea fishing is a fun and enjoyable activity and generally doesn’t require much special preparation, but there are some good things you can do before hand and bring on the trip with you so that you are best prepared.

For starters, make sure you get plenty of rest and drink plenty of water the day before the trip. Fishing can be a physical activity and the Florida heat, even in the winter months can contribute to dehydration and exhaustion.

If you are prone to seasickness, hydration and rest is even more important, and it’s a good idea to pick up some Bonine or similar anti-motion sickness pill and take it the night before the trip. You should also consider getting a prescription for a seasick patch, which usually is applied the day before.

On the trip, bring plenty of water (some boats supply it, but most don’t) and other food, drinks, and snacks. In addition, sunscreen is essential no matter where or when you’ll be fishing. The most common mistake my passengers make is assuming that if it’s cloudy they won’t get sunburned. Big mistake!

For clothing, you should bring a few layers, including a waterproof jacket in case there is rain or splash. It’s a good idea to call the Captain the day before the trip to find out what weather is expected so you have the appropriate clothes.

Most crew members work for tips, so plan the gratuity ahead of time and bring cash. 15% - 20% of the price of the charter is the customary gratuity for good service. Exceptional service can be rewarded with a higher tip and subpar service can be discounted.

Like with any small business, Captains of fishing charters preferred to be paid in cash to avoid costly credit card fees. In certain areas, such as Destin, it is common for the boats to charge a credit card processing fee of around 5%. Check on this ahead of time and you could save yourself $25 – $50 on most tips, by paying in cash. Even with the best rewards cards, your rebate and miles are not worth that much!

Are Fishing Charters Safe?

Written by Capt. Noah on Wednesday, 04 July 2012. Posted in Fishing Advice

Are Fishing Charters Safe?

Fishing charters in Florida and the United States are generally a very safe activity thanks in large due to strict United States Coast Guard (USCG) regulations that govern fishing charter boats. One important thing to ask any fishing charter operator is whether their boats meet Coast Guard regulations and whether their captains are USCG licensed. If the answer to either of these questions is no then the operation is almost certainly operating illegally and you should look elsewhere for a trip. Sadly, there are quite a few unscrupulous, non compliant charter operators so it’s good to get a recommendation from a friend or a service such as ours.

Most fishing charter boats are considered “uninspected vessels”. This is simply a classification based primarily on size and doesn’t mean they are unsafe. In fact, the Coast Guard and other law enforcement agencies regularly board and perform surprise inspections of these vessels, so the word “uninspected” is quite misleading. There are extensive safety regulations in place for uninspected vessels, particularly with regard to fire extinguishers, life jackets, flotation devices, and other safety requirement that is required aboard the vessel.

Some larger fishing boats do have inspected classification. The best way to tell is whether the boat is able to take more than six passengers, as all fishing boats that take more than six passengers must be inspected. Again, if you’re considering going with more than six people, it is important to ask the operator if their vessel is “USCG inspected”.

With regard to captains licenses, the most common license for a fishing charter operator is called an OUPV (Operator of Uninspected Passenger Vessels) often referred to as a “six pack”. Some captains have higher level licenses called a “Master” that allows the captain to operate larger vessels as well as inspected vessels. Training and testing is very similar for both the OUPV and the Master, so you can feel at ease that a captain with either license is extremely experienced and capable.

With regard to risks, any on-water activity has risks. The risk of falling overboard, while unlikely, is the most significant and those who are not strong swimmers (and even those who are) should consider wearing a life jacket while on board any boat. Life jackets are imperative for children and are required by law for children under 12 in most states, including Florida. Your Captain should have an extensive stock of life jackets on board, but if you’re bringing smaller children, you should speak with the captain ahead of time to make sure he has a life jacket on board that will be appropriate for the age and weight of the child.

Fishing line and fishing hooks are sharp and handing line with your bare hands presents the risk of being cut. If you are not experienced handling fishing line, leave that up to the captain or the mate. If you do handle the line yourself, bring a pair of gloves to prevent the line from cutting you.

So now that I’ve scared you with falling overboard and getting cut by line and hooks, let me share with you the two most common “injuries” on a fishing charter that are also the most overlooked and also the easiest to prevent: dehydration and sun burn.

Fishing is a physical activity and in Florida the heat and humidity cause you to perspire quicker than you may be used to. Make sure you drink plenty of water before, during, or after your trip. If you are drinking soda and alcohol, be sure to mix in water as well, as both of these are diuretics and will cause you to dehydrate more quickly.

Even on cloudy days, the ultraviolet rays from the Florida sun can cause sunburn. Regardless of weather conditions and time of year, apply sunscreen liberally multiple times throughout the trip. Since there’s a good chance you’ll be sweating, be sure to use a waterproof sunscreen that will stay on even when you perspire.

So there you have it, the low down on fishing charter safety. If you have any questions, drop us an e-Mail and we’ll be happy to help you out.

Fort Lauderdale Tuna Fishing

on Tuesday, 26 June 2012.

Tuna Fishing in Fort Lauderdale

fort lauderdale tuna fishingRight now we are catching a ton of blackfin tuna in Fort Lauderdale.  The key to our success has been scheduling our trips in the early morning and late afternoon because blackfin tuna like low light conditions.  The tuna can't get enough of our live pilchards on our kites and free lines.  We try to put as many baits as possible in the water when we are tuna fishing because tuna are always moving and we want to maximize our chances of one taking our bait.  We are catching smaller to medium size blackfins right off shore in Fort Lauderdale, but the bigger ones are usually found on the edge at a depth of about 140 feet.  Chumming the water can also help draw and keep schools of dolphin within a close proximity to the fishing boat.  We like to keep a bottle of soy sauce right on the boat because there is nothing better then fresh tuna sashimi.  If you decide to to cook it.  We recommend adding sesame seeds to the steaks then searing both sides keeping the interior cold and red.  

Best Deep Sea Fishing Miami

Written by Capt. Noah on Wednesday, 20 June 2012. Posted in Fishing Reports, Tourist Info, Fishing Advice


If you're looking for the best deep sea fishing Miami has to offer you can get caught up searching for the closest boats to your hotel on Google and  trying to sort through the (mostly phoney) reviews. Or, you can try our fishing concierge service out. We know all the best boats and can match you with a boat that is the best fit for you. Looking for a great day on the water with kids - we've got a perfect boat and captain for that. Looking to impress clients - we've got one there too.

You will pay no fees for our Miami fishing charter concierge service and better yet, you will book at local, boat direct prices. In fact, we guarantee that you will always get the best price on any boat in our Miami fishing boat fleet when you book through us.

One thing to keep in mind when you are looking for Miami deep sea fishing is that even if you find a boat close to your hotel, that boat may not be conveniently located to Haulover Inlet or Government Cut, the two ocean inlets in the Miami area. That means that even if you save a little time getting to the boat, it's going to take quite a bit longer to get out to sea. Especially on our half day charters that extra half hour in and out, could easily add up to 25% or more of your time. Since even fast boats go slower than cars, we highly recommend you plan your Miami fishing trip with a boat located near the inlet. Needless to say, all the boats in our fleet are located very close to the inlets. In fact, our primary Miami fishing is located directly at the inlet. Can't get much better than that!

Beyond location, you should consider the type of experience you want. Some people are looking for a no frills hardcore fishing experience, others would like something comfortable but economical, and especially in Miami, some people just want a luxury fishing charter on a top of the line fishing yacht. It can be hard to discern which is which on a website, which is why whether your Miami fishing charter through us, or with someone else, it's always a good idea to explain exactly what you're looking for so you're not disappointed.

Good luck with your Miami deep sea fishing experience. If you're interested in getting a free quote from us, fill out the form on the right side of this page, or click get a quote at the top of the page. We'll do everything we can to plan your dream fishing trip, exceed your expectations and save you money.

Captain Loses His Cool on a Fishing Charter

Written by Capt. Noah on Friday, 15 June 2012. Posted in Fishing Photos & Videos


This video is unbelievable. A fishing charter captain loses it on a tourist who makes a mistake with the drag on the real.

Before you watch this video you need to know three things:

  1. This takes place in Europe ... it's not on one of our boats or even one of our competitor's
  2. They say the F word so don't blast it at work
  3. This is why it's good to get boat recommendations from VIP Fishing Charters!

Yacht Explosion Hoax

Written by Capt. Noah on Tuesday, 12 June 2012. Posted in Miscellaneous

Yesterday, the United States Coast Guard received a distress call from an unknown caller claiming that a yacht called "Blind Date" with 21 people on board had exploded off the coast of New Jersey. The calller reported that everyone had escaped from the boat and were in life rafts.

The Coast Guard immediately dispatched air and sea rescue units and the NYPD sent two of their helicopters, but found no signs of life rafts or distress of any kind.

As a result the USCG is now saying they believe the call was a hoax and is offering a $3,000 reward for information leading to the arrest of the phony caller.

Besides the obvious cost to taxpayers of dispatching a massive search and rescue operation, incidents like this unecessarily endanger the lives of the men and women who we rely on to rescue us and are truly despicable. Our judicial system seems to think so too. If convicted, the phony caller could receive 10 years of prison time and a $250,000 fine. 10 years sounds reasonable, but I wouldn't be shocked if an operation like this cost more than $250,000 to put on.



Does larger bait catch larger fish?

Written by Capt. Noah on Saturday, 09 June 2012. Posted in Fishing Advice

In the traditional fishing view, using larger bait means you'll catch larger fish. It's pretty simple, right? A smaller fish won't go after a larger bait and therefore using a larger bait means larger fish will go after it.

But when you start trying to distinguish between large and larger fish, it's not so simple. The larger bait catches larger fish myth is true up to a point. When I fish, I spend a lot of time trolling with pre-rigged, frozen ballyhoo. I've caught sailfish on ballyhoo, but I've also caught small dolphin. I've heard stories of friends catching grouper on nothing but small jigs, and I can't tell you the number of times I've been skunked fishing for the same bad boys with live bait or expensive lures.

So yes, using larger bait will help to target larger fish, but the axiom that larger bait means you'll catch larger fish, is shortsighted in that plenty of large fish will go after smaller bait.

VIP Fishing Charters arranges awesome fishing trips throughout Florida. Check out our Palm Beach Fishing Charters if you're looking to catch some big fish.

What's the best time to catch sharks?

Written by Capt. Noah on Saturday, 09 June 2012. Posted in Fishing Advice

Shark fishing near Miami, FL

I can't tell you the number of times I've been asked, what's the best time of day to catch a shark. In fact, we get a lot of calls from many anglers who want to go shark fishing at night. It's true, sharks do feed at night, but they also feed in the morning, in the middle of the day, in the afternoon... catch my drift?

My opinion, and one shared by many of our captains, is that sharks feed all the time. They are expert hunters and they are always on the move. If something triggers one of their senses, particularly their sense of smell, these monsters are going to feed.

Many large predators operate this way. And it's based out of necessity. Something that large needs a lot of energy to operate and it's aim is to use as little energy as possible in the process. If a shark senses an easy meal, it's going to eat.

Another factor to consider is your own satisfaction. Would you rather catch a shark in the day time when you have a chance of seeing it swim around stalking the bait, or at night when it's just part of the black darkness around you? I'll take daytime.

VIP Fishing Charters operates shark fishing charters in Miami and throughout Florida.

<<  4 5 6 7 8 [910 11 12 13  >>