Cruise Ship Passengers
NCL cruise ship passengers in Kahului are able to do Maui Fun Charters on the morning of their second day on Maui, but it requires a rental car with a drive of about an hour. For rental cars with cruise ship shuttle pick-up see our rental car page.
Lahaina cruise ship passengers are able to do this tour if your ship is staying overnight; it is then possible on the morning of your second day. No transportation is required as Start Me Up leaves from the same harbor where your Lahaina cruise ship tender arrives. A better fishing option may be in the port of Kona on the Big Island. See our Big Island fishing page.
There are two kinds of clients who go fishing. The first kind of client is after the thrill of landing the big one … the fish of a lifetime … the kind of people who spend thousands of dollars to have the fish stuffed and mounted above their fireplace. For this sort of client the best choice on Maui is to go with Start Me Up. Their boats are well maintained and equipped with state of the art fishing gear. Some days are productive, catching a number of mahi mahi in the 20-30 pound range. Other days the action is slow, but they’ll land a big 100 pound ahi tuna or even a world-class marlin. Occassionally they get skunked. This type of charter is for the high roller who wants a shot at the big one, and if they don’t get that big fish they swear they’ll be back another day to get even.
The second kind of client who goes fishing is looking to have a great time and their ultimate goal is to catch something they can take back to the condo and brag to the other tourists using the BBQ grill “Hey, I caught that fish this morning!” This type of client would rather be hands-on and reeling in tasty fish – sized just right for tonight’s dinner – than troll for hours and hours looking for that elusive big one. For this type of client Maui Fun Charters is the way to go. Bottom fishing is often extremely productive, and it is much MUCH less common for the charter to get completely “skunked”. It is an especially good choice for parties that include kids who might get bored on a fishing charter that is going to spend the whole time trolling.
The most common question we are asked is “What type of fish are in season during the week I’m in Hawaii?” Most of Hawaii’s game fish are here all year. It is very common to catch Ono, Mahi Mahi, Ahi, and Marlin all year round. Bottom fishing yields even more diversity; several types of trevally, a variety of snapper, grouper, baraccuda and more.
Please be aware that bananas are strictly forbidden on fishing boats. Everything about a banana is slippery … everybody’s heard the expression “One foot over the edge and the other on a banana peel.” In time bananas became known as a symbol of bad luck that would even affect your ability to catch fish.
The other thing you shouldn’t bring on board … glass bottles. All beverages should be in cans for safety of everyone on board.
Occasionally we have clients ask “What are the chances that I will catch fish?” Of course that’s impossible to answer with a certain percentage. In general you’ll catch MORE fish but smaller fish on a bottom fishing charter. For sportfishing charters, many factors come into play that make some days excellent and other days average … surface conditions, tides, schooling patterns. There’s also the human element. How lucky are you??? How’s your karma??? Have you been nice to people lately? It’s rare, but occasionally a boat gets skunked … there are no guarantees. Just remember … the sport is called “fishing” and not “catching.” But the crew of your boat will try their very hardest … they are professionals who know what they are doing. When you go to a restaurant in Hawaii and see a wide variety of fresh fish on the menu, just remember that SOMEONE caught those fish … might as well get out there and let it be YOU!