Tuesday, June 3, 2008

Charter Captains Feeling the Squeeze

Charter Captains are feeling the effects of rising costs and a slowing economy. From the Virginia Pilot

In the first two months of the year, the number of for-hire trips by North Carolina's 700 charter, guide and head boats dropped 30 percent, from 4,300 trips to 3,000, compared with last year, according to the state Division of Marine Fisheries.

The article identifies rising diesel prices as a major contributer to rising costs.

Even though only a portion of the $200 to $400 in additional fuel costs per trip is being passed along to charter boat customers, fewer anglers are signing on, and boat owners are suffering.
Not surprisingly, there seem to be wealth effects associated with the rising costs, as more wealthy anglers continue to fish but less wealthy angler substitute other activities.

"The cost of fuel is an annoyance but not altering our lifestyle significantly," said Carey, a physician. "We're fortunate we can afford it."
Upper-income anglers are able to foot higher bills, but not the blue-collar guy, said Whitaker. "They don't have to go fishing," he said. "They have to eat and get to work, not fish."

Hat Tip Ahab's Journal

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