Many people have a dream of quitting their desk job, buying a nice boat, and making a living off of taking people out for fun trips to various places. Obviously, this isn't a good idea if you live somewhere cold. The Caribbean is the best place to run a charter boat but you can't just jump right in and decide that is the life for you. It takes hard work, dedication, and the ability to compete. After all, how many chartering companies run in each touristy area? Tons of them.
Chartering takes a great deal of money up front. You will need to move to your desired location and that will be your new home. This scares away all but the most die hard people immediately. If you have kids and other responsibilities, this isn't much of an option at all. If you are single or married without kids and have a supportive spouse, however, you have a good chance at making a name for yourself.
Before starting a business like this, you need to make sure it's a good fit for you. You need to be outgoing, entertaining, and able to handle people of every temperament imaginable. If you promise great fishing and charge 100 bucks a head to travel to your “secret spot” and catch very little, you might have angry customers on your hands. You should be a top notch people-person and always have a backup plan or two.
Chartering is also a seasonal affair. During the tourist season, you might have quite a few charters each month or even more frequently if you have good word of mouth and advertising. During the off season you might have to live off your savings or get a day job.
If you decide you are interested in this aspect of the boat world, make sure you understand the commitment involved, the finances, and if you can, find a mentor. There are many successful chartering companies and individuals who might be able to help you out. You can even work for a company if you don't want to go it alone.
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