Answers to Frequently Asked Questions (FAQS) About Fishing in Los Cabos, Baja, Mexico

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WHAT YOU SHOULD KNOW BEFORE YOU GO FISHING IN LOS CABOS

We get loads of emails asking us questions about fishing in Cabo, so many that we kept a running list until we had a good idea of what people wanted or needed to know before they hop on a plane to visit. Most things you need to know are covered here, but if you can't find your answers here, feel free to drop us an email and we'll get back to you with the answers.

WHEN'S THE BEST TIME TO FISH IN CABO?

Pretty much all year long is a good time. Sure, specific seasons offer the best chance for certain species, but all in all, there really isn't a bad time of year save for Winter in the East Cape as it get's very windy with fishable days often far and few in between. For more info on the fishing seasons, take a look at our fishing Cabo fishing reports, forecasts and seasonal chart.

DO I NEED A FISHING LICENSE IN BAJA?

Yes, except for a couple of exceptions. If you're going out on a charter or aboard a private boat you and everyone on the boat will need a fishing license whether they will be fishing or not. The only exception to that rule is for children under the age of 14. The other exception to the fishing license rule applies to surf fishing – no license is required to fish anywhere from shore.

WHERE DO I GET MEXICAN FISHING LICENSES?

If you're working with a charter company, most will assist you in getting your fishing licenses. Applications for Mexican sportfishing licenses can be obtained at the Mexico Department of Fisheries office in San Diego. The office is open Monday through Friday, 8:00 am to 2:00 pm to answer any questions. The phone number is (619) 233-6956. You can also use an online Mexican fishing license application system. Last, some tackle shops in the US can get you licenses as well. Check with your local tackle shop to see if they do.

WHAT ARE MEXICO'SFISHING REGULATIONS?

The best answer we can give is to check with Conapesca, Mexico's version of Fish and Game. The regulations are fairly lean but they can and have changed from time to time so we don't want to give you information that may be outdated. For the latest sport fishing regulations in Mexico, visit Conapesca's English language website.

WHAT IF I GET SEASICK?

If you're susceptible to motion sickness, bring some Dramamine or similar meds with you and take them the night before and again in the morning before you get on the boat. Taking it once you're on the water usually won't help much. If you forget to bring your meds with you, any pharmacy in town has what you need.

WHAT IF MY CHARTER GETS CANCELLED?

Any reputable charter service will refund your money if the port is closed for weather related reasons or if the boat you reserved is out of service. Don't expect to get a refund if you're seasick or if you drank too much the night before. As a rule, if the reason you can't make the charter is your fault, it's your problem. Still, take the time to get in touch with your charter provider. Many have big hearts and smart business minds and may make exceptions to that rule from time to time. The key is to be nice, be polite and show them some respect. Like they say, you catch more flies with honey than with... well, you know.


SHOULD I BRING MY OWN FISHING GEAR?

You can, but it's really not necessary. Most charter boats have sufficient gear on board including rods, reels, terminal tackle and lures. But, if you're a diehard angler that just has to have their own stuff with them, read our article about bringing your own gear for our recommendations on what to bring along that will cover most fishing you'll find yourself doing in Los Cabos.

WHAT SHOULD I BRING WITH ME?

The basics. Sunblock, preferably waterproof, a good hat, long sleeve shirt or jacket for cold mornings and to protect you from the sun and some form of legal ID. Why? Well you have a fishing license with your name on it, you may have to prove that it's really you! You should also make arrangements with your charter provider for food and drinks. You can bring your own, but for convenience sake it's easier to have them handle it so all you need to do is have fun and fish. For more info on charter preparedness, read our article about chartering safely and securely in Los Cabos.

SHOULD I TIP THE CREW AND HOW MUCH?

If you're a decent human being you better. While a life of taking folks fishing sounds like fun, it's hard work with long hours. The crews often spend hours working on their boats and gear each and everyday even on days they had charters. Plus they don't make much. As a rule, 15% is standard but just like when you get a great meal and service at a restaurant, going beyond that percentage is the right thing to do. And, just because the fishing might not have been great, as long as your crew worked hard to put you on fish you should still tip.

CAN I TAKE MY FISH HOME?

Absolutely. But there's some things you need to know to keep your expenses down and your catch in good condition. First, only hard-sided coolers can be used to transport fish. The fish must be frozen to ensure no spoilage during the trip home, especially if unexpected delays or flight cancellations occur. No ice can be packed in with the fish. It's best to limit your total weight, cooler and fish combined, to less than 50 pounds or you're in for some pretty stiff overweight fees or worse yet, oversized luggage fees.

HOW DO I PREPARE MY FISH FOR TRANSPORT?

For processing your fish for the flight home, we recommend Gricelda's Smokehouse in Cabo and the East Cape Smokehouse for folks fishing that area. Either one can filet, vacuum pack and freeze your catch plus both offer smoking services as well. You'll pick up your catch the day of your departure. Pack it in your cooler and head to the airport. Once you've cleared the check-in process, the agents will let you seal up your cooler with duct tape to prevent leakage and keep your catch safely enclosed and cold for the trip home. Make sure you bring your own tape as the airport may not have any available. If your cooler isn't full, pack some of your dirty clothes on top of your fish for extra insulation.