Who sells peacock bass trips? - Sadly, these days it seems like just about everyone with a website and a fishing pole tries to! Why is it "sadly"? Because a large proportion of them have no direct connection to, or control over, the peacock bass trips they try to sell, nor how they are run. In fact, although there are many kinds of entities selling peacock bass trips, a surprising number of them are nothing more than a well-positioned, glossy website. No staff, no office, no resources - just a knack for being visible. They'll sell you a trip and then auction you off to someone who proposes to deliver it. Not all "trip sellers" are created equal. Some are good, some are not. Whom should you select? Let's take a look at the options and the real facts.
First, the trip operators - they are your best option. They own their equipment; yachts, camps, boats, etc. They hire, train and manage their staff. They schedule and implement their trips. They control, and are responsible for their operations and logistics. They must be properly organized, fully insured companies, as is Acute Angling. Buy a trip from us and you are secure in knowing that you have contracted with the responsible entity. We own, operate, outfit and organize our trips. There are no layers of fluff (excuses) between you and your trip. We deliver what was promised - or we make it good. We've been doing so for over 20 years.
Then there are the outfitters — A somewhat loosely defined term for an organizer. Most of them charter time (even a single week) on yachts or camps owned (and operated) by others. Although a few good outfitters exist, most are not very dependable. What's the problem? In order to deliver what's promised, an outfitter must control the operation you’re fishing with. If not, there's that nebulous cloud of excuses between what you were promised and what was delivered. Outfitters may be forced to cancel - sometimes weeks or even days before a trip because they’ve been betrayed by the owner/operators - a better deal came up - too few people in the group - the boat broke! If your outfitter has no control over his operator, you have no control over your trip.
And the good ones come at a price—a higher one. They're generally quite expensive because there are two separate entities that need to make a profit, leaving you with an extra layer of cost. Check prices before you select a trip. Acute Angling simply uses its own wholly-owned operations - one entity, one set of books, one layer of pricing, no fluff - and no excuses.
Fishing Travel Agents — They usually sell a broad array of fishing trips world-wide, but outfitted, owned and operated by others. Again, we must admit there are some good ones who provide an important service. Anglers may have a personal relationship with an agent who understands precisely what his client is looking for and can connect him to it; valuable to a client he knows well and sometimes worth the extra price of the commission they command. Unfortunately, many agents are simply in it for a buck. Many don't know much about the operations or outfitters they try to sell and some don't know much about peacock bass fishing! They're like the used car salesman whose lot you stepped onto first. They're going to sell you what they have, no matter what it is you really need. Acute Angling sells its own wholly-owned and operated trips - one entity, one layer of pricing, no layer of fluff - no excuses.
Finally, there are the loose-ends - These include entities with nothing but a website and a sales-pitch, who'll take your money and then sell your trip to whatever agent, outfitter or operator is willing to give them a cut. There are sub-agents who'll sell a few trips in order to get a freebie from a legitimate agent, outfitter or operator. There are tackle shops, tackle sellers and tackle manufacturers that give promotional space or lip service to a trip seller in order to get a quick cut in return for steering a client in their direction or a quid pro quo for their product. These are all a bit like Forrest Gump's "box of chocolate". You never know what you're going to get! Don't do this to yourself!
Here are a few of the questions you should ask;
- What type of entity are you - operator, outfitter, agent, fly-by-night?
- Do you own the operation and control all aspects of the trip you want to sell me?
- Are you a legitimate incorporated entity with insurance and resources to protect me and the investment I've made in my trip?
- Do you provide a turn-key package - making sure that everything I need to make my trip complete is arranged for me and that all services I might need are available?
- Can you give me real life references that I can contact?
How do I arrange a trip - First and foremost, select and book with an operator who has a reputation for knowledge, honesty and performance. Of course, we highly recommend ourselves. Booking with an outfitter or agent (one or two tiers removed from an operator) can be successful or risky, depending on the operator represented and the knowledge, experience and honesty of the agent. Why is this so important? Because not all peacock bass trips are created equal and not all agents are honest about creating expectations!
Consider all of the information you’ve already digested. Many agents and even some novice outfitters are not knowledgeable at that level. It can be easier than you think to book a trip in water that doesn’t hold the right species, or that is not at optimal levels. It’s just as easy to inadvertently book on an operation that runs a weekly fixed route, ignoring conditions and regardless of where the fish are. And it’s amazingly easy to pay thousands more for the privilege of fishing on over-sized, fancy boats that are way too big to go where the fish are. If you are planning the fishing trip of a lifetime, it’s important to plan it with an operation that knows how to deliver fish and that puts productivity and quality before gross profit or marketing gimmicks. If you’re in doubt; get references; ask experts; or use the knowledge you’ve gained here to question the candidates. If you realize you know more than they do, move on.