Frequently Asked Questions
I've never done this before, how should I get started?
Ask us any questions you like. We are always willing to help you with choosing the right charter. To get a feel for the latest fishing conditions, ask to speak with the Captain. He will give you valuable information about what's biting and the weather conditions at sea. You can also find this information on our Fish Identification and Weather Forecast sub pages
Does the boat have a bathroom on it?
Yes, there is a private bathroom in the cabin of our boat.
Do I need a fishing license to fish on a charter boat?
No, the boat is completely equipped with all the proper licensing for you to fish.
What should I bring with me on the boat?
You don't need much! Consider bringing food, drinks, your camera, a hat, a pair of sunglasses (polarized if possible so you can see down into the water better), and sun block. Small personal coolers are welcomed aboard. Also, consider bringing a small cooler to keep in your vehicle until the end of the trip. We will clean and bag your fish, but you will need a place to put your fish fillets to take them home.
Is there anything I can’t bring on the boat?
We ask that you don’t bring glass containers on the boat. Bottled beverages sometimes fall and glass is potentially dangerous. If you bring beer and sodas, please bring cans or plastics.
What about alcohol on the boat?
You are welcome to bring some cold beers out with you or some wine coolers. No hard liquor is allowed on the Sea Spirit. We want you to have fun and if you want to have a few beers, that’s fine. But please remember it’s a fishing trip, not a drinking trip. Captain’s orders over rule ALL policies of the company when at sea.
What can I expect to catch out there?
Fishing varies from day to day and season to season. For the latest news on what’s biting and what you can hope to catch, check out Sea Spirit's Fishing Calendar.
Is the boat safe for me and my entire family?
Yes, the Captain is federally licensed by the United States Coast Guard to take passengers out 100 miles from shore. Also, our boat has many redundant safety features. For communications we are equipped with a VHF radio, a cell phone, and a independent satellite phone. The Captain will brief your group at the beginning of the trip about where to find life jackets, throwables, fire extinguishers, and the most important safety feature a boat can have, the EPIRB. This unit will instantly send a distress signal via satellites to the Coast Guard if the boat sinks or the crew sets it off due to eminent danger. Don't worry we've never had to execute an emergency plan beyond a drill! Our safety record stands at 100%. You can enjoy our trips knowing that we are safe and secure at sea, that's the professional difference.
What are the age limits on the boat?
Our sportfishing boats have no age restrictions. Our drift fishing boats have a minimum age of 4 years old.
What if it's bad weather?
It is our discretion to go or not to go. The winds are considered bad for the Sea Spirit when there is a small craft advisory. This means that the winds are over 25 knots and gusty. Probably not the nicest day on the water. As for rain and such, it will be a mutual decision based on current radar forecast data. Rule of thumb, we generally do not go out on bad days.
What is the best number of people to take fishing with me?
We don't make a recommendation on this, it's up to you. We can easily accommodate 65 anglers, however you may prefer to fish with a smaller group. We don't care if you want to fish with a full boat or by yourself, the boat is yours for the trip.
What are the chances of a successful charter?
Extremely high, our boat has yet to come home empty handed. The Captain has extensive knowledge of the Florida coast. He wants to make your trip the best fishing excursion you have ever experienced. Depending on the conditions of the sea, atmosphere, and fish, we will discuss with you the options that would be the most productive. There are many different types of fishing and we can do more than one in a single trip.
Do you do trolling or bottom fishing?
When you charter the boat you decide. We normally recommend what type of fishing is most productive. During the spring and fall we recommend both but during the winter we recommend only bottom fishing. During the summer there is a possibility to troll for pelagic fish but we mainly bottom fish. However, the decision is yours.
We want to catch a big fish and/or lots of fish. What do you recommend?
First, ask the Captain if it is possible to catch the species/size/quantity you desire. He will make the best recommendation to obtain your goal. Keep in mind that the farther offshore you go, the bigger the fish are. This means that you may have to charter the boat for a full day or longer to catch huge fish.
How much travel time, non-fishing time, is there?
The travel time depends on your trip. For the four hour trip the travel time is only 30 minutes or so to the fishing grounds. For the 8, 10, and 12 hour trips the travel time is in the range of 1 to 3 hours respectively to the fishing grounds. Even with 6 hours to fish, the 10 hour charter catch is typically around 200lbs. of keeper fish.
What kind of bait do you use?
We use Sardines, Mackerel, Squid, Round Scad, Pinfish, Grunts, and Blue Runners to name a few live and dead bait. The bait that we use depends on the type of fishing you choose and the time of year. We use Sardines the most often both live and dead.
Do you catch and release?
Game fish which are not very tasteful like Shark are released. Also, there are many limitations on the length of fish to be kept and therefore they are also released. If you would like to have all the fish caught on your trip released, please request this. Similarly, if you only want to keep enough fish for a single or few meals let us know. The Captain will be glad to fulfill your request.
What if I catch something really big?
If you catch a big game fish, we have a great local taxidermist that does great work. If you’d like to get something that you catch mounted, ask your mate about it and he will help you to get it mounted.
What happens to the fish I catch?
Edible fish are stored on ice in a cooler till the end of the trip. The crew will gladly fillet and skin your catch for a small fee. The fillets are then placed in gallon sized bags for easy handling. If you do not plan to take fish home, we will release all the fish you catch. We strongly recommend that you take some of your catch to a local restaurant and have them prepare it for you. It is a one time opportunity to eat such a fresh catch that "YOU" caught. Your crew can make recommendations on where to take your fish.
What are the best fish to eat?
The best fish for your dinner will be Grouper, Snapper, King Mackerel, Spanish Mackerel, Cobia, and Amberjack. Any of these fish make for an unforgettable dinner.
How do I know if the boat is available for the date I want?
If you call to reserve several days or more in advance, we almost always can make arrangements for our boat or a similar affiliate boat. The sooner you make your booking the better we can make sure that you get the date you want. We will make every effort possible to respond to all emails within 24 hours. Phone reservations are available from 6 AM to 10 PM EST every day.
How far ahead should I make a reservation?
We recommend that you make your reservation as far in advance as possible so that you are sure to get a boat. During our busy season, there are many times we have no space available 2-3 days in advance. To make your reservation with Sea Spirit call 1-386-763-4388
What is your private charter cancellation policy?
You can cancel any trip 72 hours in advance and pay no fee. All trips cancelled between 72 and 24 hours in advance are charged a 50% administrative processing fee. If you fail to show up for a fishing charter, your deposit will not be returned. If the Captain cancels the trip, you will receive a complete refund.
How can I check the status of my reservation?
Simply give us a call at 1-386-763-4388.
Where is the dock or marina?
The Sea Spirit is located at the Inlet Harbor Restaurant, Marina & Gift Shop / 133 Inlet Harbor Road - Ponce Inlet, Florida. Directions can be found on our web site in the Directions sub page.
What time should I get to the dock for my trip?
Try to get to the boat about ½ hour before the boat is scheduled to leave. This gives you time to get food and drinks from the store next to our marina and check in with our office to let us know that you’re here.
How much should I expect to spend?
The price of your trip depends on the length of the trip. All of our posted fishing rates reflect the all inclusive price of your trip. However, the rate does not include a tip for your crew or food and drinks for your party.
How much gratuity do I give the crew?
If you see that the crew is working hard and you are treated well, 15%-20% is standard.
Why do fishing charters cost so much?
Maintaining and operating a safe, properly rigged quality fishing boat is expensive. There are many costs that one never sees on a fishing charter. For example: fuel, charter insurance, dock fees, crew costs, boat maintenance, and many other factors are involved much like any other line of business. The actual charter is what we think of as the final product of all our efforts. This is why we take pride in our guests having such great trips. You get what you pay for in charter boats, we strive to keep our costs down to give you the best value in the area. Overall, the excitement of chartering and actually catching many fish is well worth the expense.
You Can Also Contact Sea Spirit Fishing Charters Via Our E-Mail Address
Click To Email: Sea Spirit Customer Service