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How to Become a Fishing Guide?

Do You LOVE Fishing, want to do Something You Love, maybe Become a Fishing Guide!

How to Become a Fishing Guide - Bass Fishing Guide

A HARD look at becoming a fishing guide...

Can this work for you?
Let’s start out with a positive, like being one of our bass fishing guides.
As a professional BASS Online fishing guide/boat captain, you get to join a TEAM of like-minded anglers enjoying a career in a real business. Surrounded by an unbelievable daily working environment in the fishing industry. Helping others appreciate the value of fishing and participating in conversations regarding the outdoors on a daily bases.

So how does that sound so far? Great…right!

Read on…learn more about the life of a fishing guide.

become fishing guide

Huddles all fishing guides must overcome to be successful.

Do you need the security of a 9 to 5 job?

As you might imagine, showing customers where “the big one lives” may not be the ideal job for the security-minded person. Consequently may not be the reason you went to college and I am sure your degree wasn’t bass fishing related. This is why a lot of fishing guides are involved in a business outside of the fishing guide industry for additional income and security, usually in the form of retirement pensions or some kind of off-season employment.

Due to some of the above reasons, maybe you should reconsider doing this by yourself like many before you have tried. This is also why BASS Online is the leading and largest guide service to work for, we offer consistency, dependability, cell-phones, industry discounts, retirement and so much more.

Most seasoned fishing guides or industry leaders feel that you must fish your area body of water for years on a regular basis-before you’ll know the waters well enough to consistently produce fish for your clients. It takes time to learn the environment around you . . . to “read the water” . . . to know the various depths and hot spots. . . and to “search out” just where and when the lunker bass will show up. Well, nothing could be further from the truth.

The power of a TEAM

BASS Online cuts the learning curve for new guides, with years of experience, knowledge, and data. First of all, no other guide service in this industry has these stats. The sheer fact that we have more fishing guides on the water daily, in more locations than anyone else…allows us to produce more and bigger fish…we guarantee it. What does this mean to you wanting to become a fishing guide? We are able to shorten your learning curve with our TEAM approach and get you profitable quicker. “And since the rivers, lakes, and canals change constantly,” like a fine-tuned guide, “you will never stop learning or wanting to learn” because the team needs you!

Maybe fishing is the only activity that you feel you want to do, all the time and that doesn’t get you bored. We warn you, it could potentially be the hardest job that you ever had…guiding often requires 12 to 16-hour days.

“Another reason the BASS Online system will work for you, we cut the labor-intensive hours out of being a guide with our technology systems. Spend more time fishing and focused on the customers, go home relax with the family while others return home to phone calls, emails and countless other tasks.”

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The life of a Fishing Guide, can you find HAPPINESS in doing this?

What does it take?

Getting established as a fishing guide requires some cash outlay for most people. Although it’s possible to save on your expenses by purchasing used equipment, boat, etc., guiding isn’t exactly the kind of business that can be started on a frayed shoestring budget.

“You’ll need a new or used vehicle (truck or SUV) that seats three to four people. Preferably four-wheel-drive (but now necessary). Many to transport your customers from location to location when necessary. As well as about 15 rods and reels of various sizes and styles, an assortment of terminal gear, tackle boxes, line, hooks, etc… perhaps as much as $1,000 worth of fishing supplies, above and beyond the cost of your automobile and boat.

Your first thought could be to have the tendency to buy cheaper equipment, some do. Most of them are not guiding any longer, but I will advise you as the expert…avoid “buying stuff you wouldn’t use yourself” . . . and for good reasons: “Probably 85% of your customers will be inexperienced anglers, and such folks tend to wear-out equipment faster. So, good rods and reels last longer, besides it’s repairable and under warranty. Also with the boom in the bass fishing industry, anglers want to use the latest technology in equipment. The customer is much more informed these days, so don’t insult them with the cheap stuff.

“To help with these start-up costs, BASS Online has also set up partnerships with many of the industry companies for deep discounts on many of the great products you will need.” Everything from rain-suits, rods, and reels and an array of lures companies. So again, why buy the cheap stuff?

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Related Questions to ask yourself

Having a “”HOME BUSINESS””, have you ever owned a BUSINESS?
The Business of fishing is Green…can you afford to make your business green? You can’t afford not to in this industry?
Making a living in the fishing industry does nothing more than give you a greater responsibility for the environment around you…if you’re fisheries go away, so does your job.”

become fishing guide

Can you build a successful fishing guide service as a business?

First, you should ask yourself…Do I, know how to start a fishing guide service? Which should include start-up ideas and start-up costs? How to get and keep clients? Can I or do I know how to market myself? Where should you start?

If you can’t distinctly answer each one of those questions in detail, you may want to pause and get the answers first. Your failure to answer these questions, will lead to your failure later!

Florida Fishing

How to become economically independent?

Skilled anglers seldom have or even need the services of a fishing guide. Consequently, in your day to day operations, you will be servicing Marjory beginners, family, groups, and the elderly folks. All of whom will require patience, kindness, and a good deal of encouragement throughout the trip.
You will have older clients who would like to do most of their fishing from a chair, children who drop or even break rods and reels which happens with eager anglers. And even with experienced anglers in some form of the memorable moment, you will have a customer go into the water. Needless to say, patience and the ability to laugh in the face of adversity are important attributes for all GREAT fishing guides to have.”

The ability to adapt and work with all these customers under the best and worst conditions will surely help your goal of being economically independent as a fishing guide.

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Diversity is the key?

In the old days, you could write articles and do other industry activities to produce additional income. Because of technology and competition, these options are no longer available as most guides will do them for FREE. Life as a full-time guide doesn’t always produce enough income for year-round living expenses. Most guides will give up the additional $$$$ for the additional exposure by published stories and reports that give their guide service exposure. Why this surely doesn’t hurt your business, in most cases it provides a lot more benefit to the publisher. The time it takes to write the articles, generally does not provide the ROI that it would if you were working on other parts of your business.
Your decision to learn all aspects of fishing in your local area will have the largest impact. Like where and how to live-bait? What artificial lures to use? As well as becoming a fly fishing expert will help offset some of the downturn of the simple economics alone. For a while, most guides managed to be specialized in one area for one species, the industry no longer allows for such singular fishing abilities. Those guides are no longer with us!

Learn the most you can find a profitable supplement.” Again these are things that BASS Online does for you, the consistency of working all year round where available. The ability to learn different skill sets to help you master the “art of fishing in your area.”

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Related Industry Content…

“Since we began the guide service in 1992, several other aspiring hopefuls quietly entered the profession. You could even say it was a boom of such and just as quietly many have fallen out of the industry once again. There are still some tackle shops that offer guides as an additional service. But many guides, marinas, tackle shops, groups, and fishing organizations have now joined forces with Bass Online-knowing Florida’s largest and most successful guide service network is around to stay and it’s better to join them than compete with them.

The guiding industry itself has also grown over the past 10 years. During the peak fishing seasons (January/June), people looking for guides will hire any part-time boating assistant to take them on a fishing trip. While this is not a bad thing for Florida or the part-time guide. It is not always a good thing for the customer and/or industry. One bad experience from a part-time guide without training could keep dozens of customers from fishing with a trained fishing guide in the future. It’s called word of mouth, good or bad it works the same and now compounded by a thousand with social media can hurt business for all!

The same concept part-time vs full time guides, is also a war on the internet. In the last few years, there have been internet websites like,, and many others that promise huge results and hope to fishing guides everywhere, with little results. We all learn in life early on there is nothing for FREE. These sites become a revolving door for fishing guides hoping to make it in the industry, they USE the fishing guide industry for their content and profit. So, they have you write reports, they get the FREE content and in return, they promise you, customers. This NEVER happens consistently…why, they have no interest in your survival, you are just a number.

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How does BASS Online set itself apart from the rest of the guide service?

Is it what we offer that’s different? or What we do different?

We FIND the Customers and Anglers to keep you busy.
Anglers and/or customers looking for a guided fishing trip come to our websites and social media channels and answer questions about the type of fishing and the location they desire. The end result is a better and more knowledgeable customer which ends with a more delightful customer on your boat.

We Match Anglers To Fishing Guides.

Our unique system will match customers to you based on the type of fishing and location they desire. Do they have kids? Do you like Fly-fishing? All of these things are important to create a completely successful fishing trip. The average fishing guide is selling himself as a master of everything and his favorite lake as the best! That’s not fair or good for the customer.

Reservation System – Notify you of your trip.

Our reservation system is unlike anything in the industry, patent system.
There is quite a bit more to it, but can’t share everything..:)

You Decide if you want the trip and when you want to work.

Our detailed calendar system allows us to schedule you as needed or desired. Fishing tournaments- no problem, family vacation no problem our system handles it all so you can control your time verses it controlling you!

Why join our TEAM – Yes, it’s FREE!

If you are still reading this at this point you may have what it takes to become a full-time BASS Online fishing guide. While we are accepting fresh new fishing guides all the time, we also like and to add experienced fishing guides that are tired of struggling and want to be part of a TEAM. Have your own clients, no problem. Have your own website, no problem. We do have limited availability in some areas, but we are also always expanding to new areas. This you can find out more by clicking here and filling out the contact form.

Do you have training?

Yes, no fishing guide we have gets to take our customers on the water without first being trained on our system and fishing guide procedure. That’s both on and off the water.

We also have quarterly reviews and mandatory yearly meetings to evaluate the overall statewide business and local regions. Evaluate the industry and our guides to effectively continue to service the customer, environment and the industry in the best possible way.

What’s needed to get started?

We covered a lot of the bases in the early paragraphs, we try to evaluate each person differently. We are always expanding and looking for talent, is that you? The best option is to email the office with your desires and experience so we can see where you may fit the best.

So Why Not?

With nothing to lose or a better question is “Why not join?”. Even if you have a job, maybe this would be great additional part-time income? An additional career for after you retire? It does not cost anything to become a fishing guide in our service and you only pay us when or if you accept a fishing trip.

Please leave a comment or review below on the topic!


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I have been fishing with the Bass Online guides for over 5 years now. When I visit Florida, my friends and I travel to different lakes and the service is always the same. They have the best guides ever that are always keeping you comfortable and catching fish. I would never even think about using another guide service! Highly recommend them
- Walter Place

These Company Know How to Do it

how to
Researching Guides on Google, rand into this article and wanted to leave a comment for all future readers. I have fished with this outfit for years now and many different guides, they have a secret sauce that everyone else wants. Reading other pages on Google, I see a lot of articles talking about how to do it, these guys have mastered it.
- Jack Bark

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Below find a list of some of our guide websites where you can read more to help you become fishing guide…Lake Okeechobee Fishing, Florida Bass Fishing, Bass Fishing Florida, Florida Peacock Bass, Daytona Fishing, Bass Fishing Florida, Lake Toho Guides, Ocala Bass Fishing, Naples Bass Fishing, Bass Fishing Florida Everglades, Everglades Fishing, Slims Fish Camp, Jolly Roger Marina, Bass Fishing Central Florida, Central Florida Bass Guides, Bass Fishing Guide Orlando, Lake Okeechobee Guide, and about 300 others…

Learn more about why joining Bass Online to become a fishing guide is the only way to go!

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