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Why are they so dang expensive?

This does not make sence to me at any level. The talk is always that we want to grow the sport and get more teams involved, but the entry price to fish the AM side is gross.(In most cases)

Holland 2013

Professional $450

1B Professional + Big Fish $470

2A Amateur $250

2B Amateur + Big Fish $270

W Women's Tournament $50

I assume this does not include 333?

Saugatuck 2013

Pro Division: The basic entry fee is $450. If paid by Aug 1st $500 after.

Amateur Division: The basic entry fee is $225. If paid by Aug 1st $275 after.

The Big One Big Fish: additional fee of $50. Open to all boats participating in the tournament.

2nd Chance: additional entry fee of $100 for Pro Division or $50 for Amateur Division

I again assume this does not include 333.

GH offshore

Friday, May 31st - Ladies & Kids Tourney, $150 Pro Division Am Division

Saturday, June 1st & Sunday June 2nd

PRO Division, $450 if paid by May 17, After $525

AM Division, $200 if paid by May 17, After $275

The question is... why???

It almost seems like its a rich boys club who wants to play together because they are afraid they could loose to a weekend warrior.

The way they weed the weekend warriors out is by jacking the price up so high that it's to expensive to play.

Would it not make sence to lower the price draw in more boats??

Can you enter just the 333 in these events?

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i tend to agree with you not only is the cost high to enter but then you have to factor in the gas, tackle, etc. yes you have those expenses on a normal trip but they seem to multiply for a tournament. i have saw guys run across the lake and spend what they won on gas just for so called bragging rights. i dont fish tournaments any more due mainly to the fact i work all weekends. the tournament trail magazine should be out soon and it will tell wich events can be entered 333 only.

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Thats one of the reasons we havent been doing tourneys. By the time team members take off work, drive to where the tourney is at, slip the boat so it is easier in the morning, it costs a fortune. If it is out of the area camping fees. Will i fish any i might if they are close to home. but every year we look at the output of cash and i can think of a lot of ways to spend that much money.

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I think you can fish the 333 in Holland without doing the main event, I myself have not done any of the big tourney. I have done the Friday women's event, those are fun if you can put together a crew of girls.

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I'm going to try one this spring for the first time. Yes it's already thinning the wallet with all the preparation and new gear for this season. But I am certainly not in it for the prize money, I'm just hoping to improve my skills, learn some new tactics and meet some new friends along the way.

I fish from a small boat and don't have alot of $$ to spend on all the latest and greatest fish catching equipment. And I would tend to agree with Dave also about the costs for am's and lower divisions.

That being said, If I were to win my division, the higher entry fees make for a better payday and might get me to the next tourney, who knows...

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I have alot of respect for you and what you say, but you are wrong on this one.

All of us would be staying in our own league, its called the Amature Leauge!!

The question I posed is why is it so expensive?

" It eliminates the amateurs and newbies. Play where you feel comfortable."

I feel plenty comfortable fishing vs alot of these guys, however I do not feel comfortable spending a house payment to do it.

The only thing it eliminates is the AVERAGE JOE, who has a normal job, a couple kids, and a house payment. (or priorities).

These events should have a TRUE amature devsion, also known as an open division in which the cost is respectable. 100-125 fits that bill. $250-300.

Could you imagine if the cost was 100 dollars? 100 boats 10k first place payout. Sign me up!!

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Some tournaments have an "Under 24'" division, which is less expensive and intended to grow the sport. Of course payouts are lower too. Personally I don't think there should be a boat size limit on that.

I don't have any specific knowledge of this but I'm sure it has to do with providing a reasonable amount for payouts. Most tournaments don't get much (if any) sponsor money, so prize money comes from entry fees. Most of the major tournaments pay out the top 1/4 or 1/3 on the AM side, so between that and the bigger prizes for 1st-3rd (or so), the entry fee has to be higher. Personally, I'd much rather have the entry fees where they are and have decent payouts to make it worth our time and to help cover the other expenses if we do place well.

Our first tournament was in '08 and we've averaged 3 tournaments per year since (all Tournament Trail events). I upgraded boats last year but prior to that, my boat was 26' and I trailered it to up to 120 miles or so to the furthest tournaments. The cost for entry fees, truck gas, boat gas, slip, and tackle runs between $500-$1,200 depending on the tournament (doesn't include rooms or food). A major portion of that goes to boat gas, which usually covers 2 days prefishing and the tournament. Sure if I ran a smaller boat it'd use less gas, but I'm guessing that those numbers are close to average. So, lowering entry fees wouldn't make a huge difference for overall costs. However, lowering payouts would likely make a big difference in the number of participants. No way we're fishing a tournament if we can't cover our expenses even if we win.

Sure it gets costly, but you could fish for free or even make some money, and if you don't, you and your crew get to fish for 3-4 days for a pretty reasonable amount.

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I feel like I fall into what dave is talking about.

I've thought about entering am or even pro in some tourny's, but I just dont have the money. It costs me $100 easy just to fish at all let alone a 2 day tourny, plus any prefishing.

This is why I like the smaller leagues. I have the competition of a tourny without spending $1,000.

It just seems with the 50-60 boats fishing the amature division the costs would be a bit lower, but I guess it depends on the finances.

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Don't spend a house payment on it, find a crew of at least 3 and split the costs. I wouldn't do this if we weren't sharing costs.

Evan sharing costs is still a lot and trying to find people to fish let alone enter a tourney and pay even more to fish is hard enough some times.

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That price seems to be the going rate at most of the larger events. I share my expenses with crew members so its usually not to unmanageable, but I also don't slip my boat or have a gas hog. Holland seems to put on a pretty good event for the money, with a barbecue all 3 days and payouts to a large number of places, but that can vary by tournament. I don't have a ton of money to throw around either, but I enjoy the atmosphere at the tournaments enough to make it a priority. I also enjoy the smaller one day events, but higher stakes of the large tournaments do seem to ratchet up the excitement level.

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If you have a 4 man crew split everything fuel. and Entry you are not really as expensive as you think.

I spend about $200.per day for fuel, that's $400 for a 2 day tournament, add $525 for amateur entry and big fish divide by 4 and your totals are not as bad as you believe. For my boat, it comes out to less than $250 per man for the tournament. Split any winnings and you might even make a little if you cash both ways. My boat is a 31' Chris Craft Commander Sport fisherman, she uses fuel. But that's what u get when you want to be comfortable when fishing. I did fish a couple of tournaments with my son on his Islander. Fuel was almost $100 for 2 days. We split it and the entry fee 4 ways. Biggest issue and the reason I don't fish tournaments is because in 2008 at the S.Haven tournament we had a blow day on Saturday, Sunday morning they sent us out in 20 knot winds, and called the tournament at 11:00. No refunds once you put your money in. If we had been in my boat we could have fished Sunday and Saturday.

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.... I enjoy the atmosphere at the tournaments enough to make it a priority. I also enjoy the smaller one day events, but higher stakes of the large tournaments do seem to ratchet up the excitement level.

I haven't tried the smaller events, but that sums it up right there.

Line Dancin - Yes it does take effort to put a crew together, and for me it's not always the same crew. Likewise for scheduling people for prefishing. It's a lot of work but it's also a lot of fun.

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It's like a $25 Black Jack table @ the Casino. It eliminates the amateurs and newbies. Play where you feel comfortable.

exactly what the complaint of the original poster is-he says that the tournys are all trying to lure new people etc. not drive them away how many first timers at a 25 dollar blackjack table? you must have really misunderstood the point he was trying to make

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How about this for a breakdown---

Last year we fished Michigan City 24U division in the Pro\AM 2 day tournament. We fished in an 18’ Lund with 3 guys so gas was cheap. Total cost for the tournament was $600 bucks. This is just gas, lodging, tournament fees—split 3 ways so we each paid $200. (so not including food and entertainment)

Entry Fee was $100

We got 2nd place and only netted $300 in winnings. We did ok in relation to the entry fee but it didn’t come close to covering the costs. Covering the costs would have been very nice.

Would I fish it again? Yes.

Will we pony up for AM division next time? Yes—better chance to cover costs.

Am I fishing it this year? No, baby #3 is due the same weekend.

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I feel for the pro's and that god awful amount entry fee.

Honestly I would rather find out who the best is by KISS (Keep it simple stupid)

2 days

3 fish (333 style)

1 entry fee (100-150) dollars

90-100% payout 10% to season winner(I understand trophies cost money but not that much) average of best 3 scores.

No divisions

Come get some!

Pros, AM, Weekend warrior,

Winner takes all 150 bucks a boat * 60 boats (about what Holland had in 2014) $9000 in total money. if 100% payout.

If some of these teams are as good as they say.... well prove it...

Back to the main point... no one can explain why the AM side costs so much....

BBQ lunch??



I would rather the boy scouts sold hot dogs and beer at least then a good cause is getting my money.

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I don't think anyone is making a living off off running these tournaments if that's what you're driving at. I don't know enough about the costs to break it down, but I do know most of the people running and working at the host tournaments are volunteers, so I don't believe anyone is breaking the bank on entry fees.

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We used to fish 3-4 pro -ams a year but now we do1 maybe 2. We always do the big red in holland. I love fishing these events especially when our crew is all family. Last couple years we got married,more hours,house payments so its tough to find the time. I love fishing the one day tournaments too. The steelheaders put on two good ones. If anyone wants to prove themselves or have fun the Mich challenge in may is low entry...80 bucks? And the payout for first is 2500. Also the kids and kings is one of my favorites.

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