BlogDecember 2016

10 Totally Practical Holiday Fishing Gift Ideas

10 Totally Practical Holiday Fishing Gift Ideas

By Debbie Hanson

Dec 06, 2016

Looking for great practical holiday fishing gift ideas? Check out this list of 10 fishing gifts that will always get used. 

Anglers can be pretty selective about the type of tackle and gear they use, so fishing gift ideas that are practical rather than specialized are often most appreciated. There will always be certain fishing-related items that anglers can never have enough of. From sun protection to fuel, check out this list of practical holiday fishing gift ideas for the special anglers on your list.

1. Sunscreen. It doesn't matter if your favorite anglers live in Alaska or in Florida; protection from ultraviolet rays is a must. Look for a non-spray sunscreen that provides protection from UVA/UVB rays and that contains zinc oxide. Spray sunscreens tend to make boat decks slippery, so avoid spray if possible and stick with lotion or cream.
2. Insect Repellant. Fish tend to bite more readily during the early morning and evening hours, but so do the bugs. Insect repellent makes a good stocking stuffer or practical gift idea for an angler because they will always put it to use. There are several insect repellant brands that now offer natural or herbal ingredients instead of harsh chemicals.

3. Fuel Gift Card. If the angler on your gift list owns a boat, a gas or fuel gift card is one of the most practical fishing gift ideas there is. You can often purchase fuel cards at gas stations, marinas, and grocery stores.

4. Fish Ruler. Buy an adhesive or portable fish ruler for your favorite angler, so that they always have an accurate measurement of each catch. Fish rulers make a great practical gift idea for beginning anglers. Beginners can learn to get into the habit of measuring each catch to ensure the fish is within the state fishing regulations.
5. Charter Trip. Know an angler that absolutely loves to fish in specific destination or target a certain species? Find a charter guide or fishing guide that specializes in that area or species, and then contact them to ask if they offer gift certificates.
6. National Park Pass. You can buy an "America the Beautiful" park pass for $80 that covers entrance fees at national parks and national wildlife refuges. To find out which national parks have good family fishing spots, you can check the list of Top Family Fishing & Boating Spots List for 2016.

7. Fish Identification Cards. There are many companies that sell fish identification books or laminated fish identification cards that can help new anglers learn more about the different species. The laminated cards are a perfect for stashing in a tackle box or backpack. 

8. Boat Handling Lesson. Know an angler or boater who is new to operating a boat? Find a USCG (United States Coast Guard) certified captain who can show them how to safely operate their new vessel. Many certified captains are happy to provide boat handling lessons to new boaters for a specified rate. A boat handling lesson is one of the best fishing gift ideas you can give a new boater because it will them learn the boating rules of the road with an experienced professional.
9. Personalized Fishing Shirt. Buy a moisture-wicking fishing shirt for your favorite angler, and take it to a local embroidery company to have it personalized. You can include the angler's name and the name of their boat.

10. Waterproof Camera. You know what they say, if you don't document your catch, it didn't happen. Help an angler document catches without having to stress about the water and weather. Since fisherfolk are always out in the elements and have to be concerned about dropping or splashing cameras, a waterproof camera can make a good gift. 
Now that you have 10 practical fishing gift ideas for your favorite anglers, you have no excuses. Go get your holiday shopping done so you can renew your fishing license and get out on the water!
Debbie Hanson
Debbie Hanson
Debbie Hanson is an award-winning outdoor writer, women’s sport fishing advocate, IGFA world record holder, and freshwater guide living in Southwest Florida. Hanson’s written work has appeared in publications such as Florida Game & Fish Magazine, BoatUS Magazine, and USA Today Hunt & Fish. To learn more about her work, visit or follow her on Instagram @shefishes2.