Recreational Fishing Last Year, By The Numbers

According to a recent study by the Recreational Boating & Fishing Foundation, participation in recreational fishing as at an all-time high.

RBBF discovered 50.1 million people are fishing for fun, the highest number in 12 years, with first-timers, youth, female anglers, and minorities at an all-time high as well.

They also found 70% of boats are used for fishing, and half of all fishing is done by boat.

“The outdoors belongs to all of us – not just those who fit a certain image,” said Stephanie Vatalaro, senior vice president of marketing and communications for RBFF. “Fishing is about enjoying nature, making memories and bonding with the people you love. It’s an experience that everyone should get a chance to have, which is why our work is grounded in the belief that the water is open to everyone.”

Saltwater fishing alone engages 13.2 million people in the United States, with total participants raising 3% in the past 3 years.

In the past year, saltwater fishing participants in the U.S. went on 172.3 million outings, which equates to an annual average of 13.1 days, significantly less than how many days most of our Gamefisherman owners spend on the water.

About 9% of saltwater participants, or 1.2 million people, were new to the category in 2019.

At 44%, a higher percentage of saltwater participants describe themselves as “avid” anglers than the overall fishing population (at 35.2%).

Further, 49% of those surveyed say they were satisfied with the amount of fishing they did in 2019, which is higher than the overall fishing population (at 45%).

From an economic standpoint, the contribution from saltwater fishing to the United States’ Gross Domestic Product (GDP) is $18.3 billion. That’s more than double the revenue of all Major League Baseball teams combined to use but one example.

75% of participants went fishing with two to five companions, with men being more likely than women to fish alone. Over 80% of participants were successful in catching at least one first on their most recent trip, and a slightly higher percentage of people participated in catch and release as opposed to keeping and eating their catch.

Fishing trips were fairly spontaneous, with 48% being unplanned and 82% being planned within a week of the trip. Over 50% of adult females said that their last fishing trip was unplanned, making them the most spontaneous out of the populations measured. Prior to the trip, the majority of anglers used the internet as a means of finding information on fishing destinations, fish species, equipment and more.

With increases in saltwater fishing interest on the rise among entire families, we’re happy to be able to provide one of the best fishing platforms in the industry.