Editor’s note: Capt. Joe Kent is on vacation and will return to his column Sunday, June 16. This Reel Report originally ran June 23, 2018.

We are in prime time for vacationers to visit the Galveston area and enjoy some of the great saltwater fishing both inshore and offshore that exist during the summer.

Many visitors ask about hiring a fishing guide or chartering a boat to take them out. I can offer several suggestions that will make it easier to find the right fit for your plans and most importantly enjoy the experience and bring home some fish.

One of the first items to address is your experience level and those joining you. Casting skills are one of the more important issues and will determine what level of a guided trip you should focus on.

Your physical endurance level is also important. Are you able to easily handle wade fishing or making it through a hot day on the water? Will young kids be part of your group? Are you wanting to focus on a particular species of fish such as speckled trout, reds, flounder or just getting into action and taking pot luck on what fish you might catch.

Before any of those questions are addressed, the first issue is whether you want to go offshore or inshore (bay and jetty) fishing. For offshore, the charter boat’s captain will likely go over many points that need to be considered.

For inshore, try to determine whether you want to fish the bays or jetties. Choose a bait camp or marina that is near the area you want to fish and ask for recommendations of guides that operate out of there. The camp or marina operator should be able to give you recommendations based on what you are looking for.

When visiting with guides, ask about their cancellation policies. Some offer refunds while others will just reschedule. If you are from far away, the rescheduling might not work.

Capt. Joe Kent is a columnist for The Daily News. Report your catch to reel.report@galvnews.com or call 409-683-5273.

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