John Benevento works in the parking management field. Currently, a Boat captain looking to start a boat charter company part time. I do some side jobs on my boat “BOW DOWN.” I will name the charter company Bow Down Charters. We fish out of Manasquan NJ, Shark River NJ, And Palm Beach Florida. Fishing for Mahi Mahi, Tuna, Marlin, Wahoo, Sailfish and other pelagic species.
What is your favorite hobby?
Offshore Fishing. There’s nothing like taking a few friends or a charter group 10 miles or more offshore and fishing for trophies in blue water.
How did you get started with it?
I got my first boat when I was 22 and my first time out in Palm Beach inlet. I realized this fishing thing could be more than a hobby. I was catching Mahai, Marlin, and Tuna, and while I loved the sport more than ever, I realized that what I loved had to be my career.
Tell us what you love about it.
When I get out there in the deep water, there’s no cell service. You’re disconnected from the real world and it’s all about being out there with nature and the ocean.
What types of things/equipment have you spent money on for your hobby?
Let’s see, tackle, reels and rods, boat maintenance, transportation, dockage.
What are some of your favorite places to shop for your hobby?
That’s easy. Without a doubt, West Marine is my all-time favorite to shop for offshore fishing gear.
How much money have you invested into it and how much should a beginner invest to get started?
Start by taking a couple of charters out first to make sure you like it, since it is a very expensive hobby.
A half-day public charter costs around $150.00 counting the charter ticket, rod and tackle rental, and one day Fishing License.
After that, start small and build up to going on charters all the time.
Are there any good books for beginners interested in your hobby?
Florida Sportsman magazine is a must have read. Some great books for beginners are Saltwater Gamefishing: Offshore and Onshore by Peter Goadby, Offshore Pursuit: A Complete Guide to Blue-water Sport Fishing by John Unkart, and Saltwater Fishing Made Easy by Martin Pollizotto.
Are there any videos you can recommend for beginners? Please include any links.
YouTube. There are so many videos of so many offshore fishing trips.
How has your hobby changed your life?
I grew up in a town called Wellington, FL, in West Palm Beach. There’s something for everyone to enjoy – from landing a 200-pound pelagic tuna fish on the rough sea to pulling in equally spirited smallmouth bass in calm waters.
It gives me a lot of peace and tranquility, and it gives me a smile on my face.
What advice do you have for others just starting out?
Don’t overthink it. Relax and let it happen.
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