It’s not just world-class game fishing that is attracting an increasing number of recreational anglers to Mexico.
Data recently released by the website FishingBooker shows that the ability to book fishing trips online is to a large extent responsible for the strong recent growth in the Mexican charter fishing industry.
Tourists keen to drop a line in waters off the coast of Mexico can now reserve their spot on a fishing charter from home to ensure that they don’t miss out on the chance to reel in a mighty Mexican marlin or a powerful tuna.
The majority of anglers who have taken advantage of the new booking platform are from the United States, the FishingBooker data reveals, but fishing enthusiasts from Canada and as far away as Europe, Japan and Australia have also used the technology.
The benefits of booking deepsea fishing trips online are not limited to anglers. The practice is also helping the local charter fishing industry.
Mexican captains previously found it difficult to reach potential customers that weren’t already in town.
However, the online marketing manager for Fishing Are Us in Puerto Vallarta said the capacity to book a fishing expedition on the internet is helping to change that.
“It has really helped us reach a different target group that is not already in Vallarta. We work with hotels and companies here, but they only reach people who are already here. Through these sites we get in touch with people from the U.S., Canada, and Europe and that’s great,” Fernando Verduzco said.
“Whoever wants to book through our own website can still do that, but people who want to book through a booking site can do that it if it gives them an extra sense of security,” he explained.
The top fishing destination in Mexico, according to online bookings, is by a considerable margin Cabo San Lucas at the southern tip of the Baja Peninsula.
However, Playa del Carmen and Cozumel on the country’s Caribbean coast and Puerto Vallarta on the Pacific side are also extremely popular.
In Cabo, fishing charter operators substantially increased the revenue they earned from online bookings last year.
In 2015, 19 captains made US $150,000 from online sales but last year that figure increased to US $400,000 for 34 captains who have a presence on online booking sites.
On the Riviera Maya, the surge in online bookings last year was even more impressive, increasing six-fold on 2015 revenue to reach US $240,000, an amount that was shared among 28 captains.
In Vallarta, revenue earned from fishing tours booked online increased from US $33,000 in 2015 to US $200,000 last year. The number of captains advertising their services online increased from nine to 41 in the same period.
Pedro Zapata from Aquadventures in Cozumel earned about 15% of all his income from online bookings last year.
“It connects the operators with the clients, they can find us in a very easy way,” he said.
The owner-operator of Picudo Sport Fishing in Cabo San Lucas is also a fan of the new technology, commenting that “I’d probably be out of business if it weren’t for those extra bookings.”
Casey Carter added that anglers like to book through booking sites because it’s simple and safe.
Mexico News Daily