What would you recommend to anglers fishing in Key West, Florida for the first time?

Answers by verified FishingBooker anglers who went fishing in Key West

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Kevin White
VERIFIED  
Went fishing with Boa Vida Charters – Jazmine on April 5, 2024
Unless you are an experienced saltwater angler, your entire experience is going to be determined by the knowledge, abilities and dedication of your captain and mate. We had three different charters with 3 different outfits. I literally knew nothing about fishing in Key West going in, but we got lucky and all three were excellent. Nothing but good things to say about all of them. I’ll have to say, though, Captain Maryann and 1st Mate Sean with Boa Vida were standouts among standouts! They tailored the fishing perfectly for my 9 year-old son and I both. We caught a really nice mix of rapid action, light tackle tablefare species, as well as some heavy gear species, including a massive Goliath Grouper, that my young son was able to land with their careful instruction and assistance. Thanks again, Boa Vida!

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John Loedding
VERIFIED  
Went fishing with Wild Bill Sport Fishing on April 15, 2024
Bring water, and snacks. Book at least 6 hours. You never know when fish will bite. There are long periods in between catches where not much is happening. You could get lucky, and catch something right out of the gate. But why leave it to chance? After all, you can never trust a fish. Increased time on the water, means increased chances of getting a good catch. Make sure you eat a good breakfast to decrease likelihood of sea sickness. Stay hydrated, and don’t fight the boat too much. Other than that, just sit back and let the guys do all the work. Be ready to hop on the chair when they tell you, and start reeling them in.

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Patrick Fisher
VERIFIED  
Went fishing with Corsair 2 Sportfishing Key West on March 31, 2024
These were great for anglers with little to moderate experience with Gulf fishing, and they’d be good for people with more experience. We caught a wide variety of fish and had fun. The 2 captains were a cool twist as both were very knowledgeable and very helpful. I would highly recommend these guys.

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Joshua Webb
VERIFIED  
Went fishing with Boa Vida Charters – Jazmine on March 13, 2024
Fishing for some of the other species that we would have liked to catch like Mahi, Sailfish, and Marlin would probably be better in other months. If you are looking to fish for specific species and have the flexibility to schedule your trip and any month, I would recommend just talking with Captain Maryann. She sincerely wants her clients to have great experience, is very easy to talk to and seems very kind and honest!

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Joe Mauro
VERIFIED  
Went fishing with Easy Does It on March 5, 2024
Book a full day trip. Give the captain ample time to take you to mutuple spots and show you various fishing techniques for the various species available in this area. You won't be disappointed. Lastly be sure to have one of the local restaurants cook part of your catch. There is nothing better than freshly caught fish and these restaurants do a wonderful job preparing it.

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Katherine Downing
VERIFIED  
Went fishing with Good Times Key West – 19' on February 21, 2024
We were in Key West for the last week in February. We had super sunny days all under 80 degrees and about 30-40 percent humidity. We had light jackets and went barefoot on the boat. The captain provided all equipment and was busy baiting our lines and going back and forth to the live-well constantly. Best experience ever.

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Richard Cope
VERIFIED  
Went fishing with Cora Beth Fishing on March 1, 2024
This is great trip - especially for first timers. Saw a lot of experienced fishermen back for another great trip. Captain and crew are very helpful to make sure even non-fisherman caught fish and had a good time.

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William Reid
VERIFIED  
Went fishing with Too Lethal Charters on February 17, 2024
Have fun whilst enjoying the splendid scenery! Captain Scott was very professional and an experienced captain. Once we got to our spot he put us on some beautiful fish. We even got to have some fun catching the apex predators of the limitless gulf. 4 hours felt like 30 minutes the amount of fun we had! Thank you Captain Scott for making it a great experience for a first time fisher!

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Karyn DiFronzo
VERIFIED  
Went fishing with Cora Beth Fishing on February 1, 2024
Go with Captain Cory & Crew on the Cora Beth. They will explain everything there is to know about boat safety & reef fishing. They will also help everyone on the boat with setting up lines and making sure everyone is catching fish!

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JOHN LENTZ
VERIFIED  
Went fishing with Cora Beth Fishing on January 30, 2024
You can expect to fish in about 20 to 30 ft of water. Some fish are not legal in January such as the grouper. There are also size limitations to certain fish. Be sure to bring layers of clothes because it can get cold when the boat is moving and warmer when you are fishing. Bad weather can keep a boat from going out for up to a week or more so if you are booking far in advance know that you might not be able to go out. We watched the weather and booked two days before.

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Andrew Laidlaw
VERIFIED  
Went fishing with Capt. Conch Charters – Capt. Conch on January 2, 2024
Offshore fishing is great, but if you are in early January, Grouper season is already closed and you’re almost limited to catching mackerel. Don’t be afraid to consider inshore for trout, reds, snook, and tarpon. Especially if you have a small group.

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John Leblang
VERIFIED  
Went fishing with Cora Beth Fishing on January 1, 2024
This the best charter I have ever experienced. The Captian and Crew treat you like family. Captian Cory and Marshall can't do enough for you. You catch a fish and they are stealthy like a nija and taking your fish ? off your hook before you know it. Captian Cory, if your not catching fish fast enough for him, he will take you where you do. I can't say enough about this trip. It is one hell of a way for a family to start out the New Year. Thank you Captian Cory, Marshall and Ctew. What an amazing experience.

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Scott Makemson
VERIFIED  
Went fishing with Jolly Roger II on December 21, 2023
I strongly encourage you to book a charter with Captain John Mercurio. He and first mat, AJ, do a phenomenal job. You can go reef fishing, and if the conditions permit, go further out for some larger species.

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Whitney Pakalka
VERIFIED  
Went fishing with Easy Does It on December 7, 2023
A cold front came in and made it windy and a bit choppy for 2/3 days but our captain still put us on a lot of fish and we had a great time. Just remember that the 70’s may sound warm, but it’ll feel chilly on the boat; pack your clothes accordingly.

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Harrill Wiggins
VERIFIED  
Went fishing with Reel Easy Charters on December 7, 2023
Great experience for shallow water light tackle fishing. Quality and quantity of fish. Was a little cold and windy for this time of year but not unbearable. Definitely recommend this trip for your first visit to Key West.

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Scott Thomson
VERIFIED  
Went fishing with Fishizzle Sportfishing Charters on November 20, 2023
Go with experienced Capt like Fishizzle. Watch the weather and schedule your trip early during your visit in event conditions cause cancelling. Have better shot of a makeup day possibly. 3/4 day will be more productive. I prefer going AM as conditions tend to get worse with heat of the Sun. This is apparently not as hard and fast rule as I thought in KW.

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Drew Rimback
VERIFIED  
Went fishing with Easy Does It on October 14, 2023
Since we fished in October, tarpon were more challenging to catch, so we fished for them last and landed three or 4 in the final 30+ minutes. On our trip we caught more than pictured, some being shorter. Didn’t catch, but one Jack Crevalle, but caught a bunch of Mangrove snapper. The best part was at the end when we took several fillets to the marina restaurant and the cooked it for dinner. We were able to eat some our catch right away. I wish I vould have brought the rest back, but decided not to since traveling.

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Jerome Risso
VERIFIED  
Went fishing with Boa Vida Charters – Jazmine on May 18, 2023
I highly recommend fishing the Keys once in your life as I have been fishing it many times throughout my life. There so many opportunities to catch species of fish, along with the weather being great the majority of the year.

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Gina Frye
VERIFIED  
Went fishing with High Stakes Charters on May 6, 2023
Definitely pay attention to the wind speed and direction the wind is coming from. Be open minded and just enjoy the ride. The ocean is a beautiful and terrifying place, so what you can to take it in.

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John St. Pierre
Cicero, IL
VERIFIED  
Went fishing with Cowboy Charters – Cowboy Since 1965 on February 19, 2019
Take Dramamine one hour prior to departure if winds are high and/or predicted waves are 4' plus. Take some of your catch to one of the wonderful restaurants and let them prepare a feast for you. You will not regret it! Fish with a knowledgeable charter, such as Cowboy Charters. Tip the mate generously, as he works very hard to keep the lines running, bring the fish in and clean and fillet your catch for you.

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Erik Timbo
Chicago, IL
VERIFIED  
Went fishing with Easy Does It on April 8, 2023
Do a little research, everything is about social media nowadays. I've fished different spots in the states, and have not hesitated to use Fishing Booker, especially if I wasn't familiar with the area. They have yet to disappoint! Go catch some fish!

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Ted Richard
Norwich, CT
VERIFIED  
Went fishing with Reef Runner Charters Key West on April 14, 2023
There's great party boat fishing in Key West, as well as a large amounts of charters for big bucks, I fish on the Gulfstream VI most days I'm here but I also treat myself to a big buck charter occasionally, and I'm so glad I was referred to Reef Runner and their crew.

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Kevin Soulliere
Belle River, ON
VERIFIED  
Went fishing with Capt. Conch Charters – Capt. Conch on April 7, 2023
Look up local fishing reports on fishing booker and other sources to figure out what you want to target based on what is happening at the time. Get a plan together in advance to see whats biting and always remember its called fishing not catching its not always going to be a slam dunk but having a knowledgeable Captain will make or break the day.

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Phillip Watts
Beaverton, OR
VERIFIED  
Went fishing with Flying Fish Charters - 17' on March 21, 2023
Pay very close attention to weather, any storms in prior months because they affect the bait and consequently, the targeted fish. The state of Florida would have you believe your fishing in a aquarium if you read some of their literature we spotted only couple of fish per day that might been catchable.

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Michael Knott
Yatesville, GA
VERIFIED  
Went fishing with Cora Beth Fishing on April 22, 2022
It was an awesome trip but weather was not nice. Bad weather but we still caught great eating fish. Awesome Captain and Mate. Just bad weather when we went. No fault of crew. They even went out of their way to make sure we caught fish. AWESOME

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Lorie Butts
United States
VERIFIED  
Went fishing with Corsair 2 Sportfishing Key West on October 11, 2021
The best thing to do is find out how the fishing has been. We probably didn’t go at the best time, but with it being our first, it worked out well. We know more now and will prepare better the next time.

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Scott Calkins
Rockford, IL
VERIFIED  
Went fishing with Key West Backwater Fishing on February 5, 2021
Watch the weather. We had just gotten through a cold front, and, not unexpectedly, it took a little hunting to get on the fish. An experienced Captain is a must. Sean O'Keefe at Key West Backwater Fishing knows where to find the fish and how to catch them.

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Judy Ochsner
Savannah, GA
VERIFIED  
Went fishing with Good Times Key West on July 6, 2020
Be ready to catch some fish. By hiring a guide, you have everything you need at your fingertips.... Bait, tackle, water and a nice boat to get you onto the water. Morning fishing is probably the best, as the afternoons can be extra steamy and fish may be sluggish.

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Thomas Heath
Fort Lauderdale, FL
VERIFIED  
Went fishing with Reel Easy Charters on August 21, 2019
Make sure you get the captain that is advertised. Make sure the equipment does not break. Make sure you get the beverages advertised. If new at this make sure the captain understands what you want.

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Gregory Samuels
Alabaster, Alabama
VERIFIED  
Went fishing with Cowboy Charters – Cowboy Since 1965 on June 26, 2019
Triple check your booking with the charter and if possible, speak to someone over the phone or in person. I even showed up to the dock and found out when to arrive the next day to be sure. Disaster still occurred.