I hear the same thing every year. “You’re too hard to shop for.” And I never understand it. All you have to do is go into Bass Pro, Scheels, Cabelas, or any other outdoor store and hit up the fishing section. There are so many great things to get for any angler! So, if you’re reading this and you are one of those “hard to shop for” guys, or you are buying for one of those “hard to shop for” guys, keep reading. Below you’ll find the 21 best fishing gifts for $50 or less!
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1. Lure Retriever
It might be funny to have this lure retriever be the first item on the list, but at $16.99. this item will pay for itself in a hurry! It is very easy to use from a boat, but a little less effective if used from the land. The weight drops down the line and knocks the lure off whatever snag it’s hung on. From the land, it’s a little harder to manipulate. If this is for more of a bank fisherman, you may consider getting the telescopic pole lure retriever.
Price Range: $12-$35
One thing I’ve learned my lesson on in the last few years has been the need to have a good pair of fishing scissors or cutters with me at all times. Using your teeth is a bad idea. Over time, you will literally break your teeth, just like I did. Luckily, my fiancee is a dentist and was able to fix it. But not everyone is so lucky. Save yourself the hassle and get a nice pair of scissors or nail clippers that can handle cutting braid, mono, and fluorocarbon line.
Price Range: $4-$15
3. Life Jacket
When you’re out on the water, safety is a number one priority. Check your state’s regulations, but most require there be at least one life jacket per person on the boat. Bass Pro Shops offers some solid options on life jackets at an affordable price.
Price Range $20-$50
4. Fishing Gloves
Whether you are fishing in the summer or winter, fishing gloves are a great tool. They offer protection from the sun, wind, cold, bait, water, and more! These gloves by Kast King are especially cool in the wintertime. They keep your hands warm, they allow for your fingers to be uncovered to manipulate finicky fishing items like when you are spooling line. And, they allow you to operate your cell phone as well with them on.
There are other great options, too. For example, many guys go fishing at night. Or, they have to prepare their boat and fishing tackle in the dark at the ramp before launching when the sun comes up. Gloves with built in LED lights can be a lifesaver in these situations.
Price Range: $12-$45
5. Tackle Storage Boxes
As an angler progresses, he or she acquires more and more lures. This can present a problem with organization. Luckily, there are many storage solutions for fishing lures and tackle supplies. Plano makes some great, durable storage boxes.
These boxes are perfect to fit in boat compartments or in backpacks!
Price Range: $5-$25
6. Landing Net
Whether you fish from the boat or from the bank, a good fishing net is a fantastic tool to help land all those fish of a lifetime! Telescopic nets like this one can help you reach out a good distance from both the boat or bank!
The adjustability is nice as well because you can fold it down into a smaller profile for storage.
Price Range: $15-$50
7. Line Spooling Machine
Gone are the days of sticking a pen or pencil through the middle of the line spool and having someone hold that while you reel the line onto your reel. There are a variety of line spooling devices that make this chore so much easier.
Devices like this one from Piscifun are easy to use. Simply attach the reel and line to the line spooler and start winding. Having a device like this helps keep the line tight as it goes on the reel and can help prevent line jump where the line literally just seems to jump off the reel in big chunks.
Price Range: $20-$50
8. Filet Knife
There are a lot of anglers who practice and catch and release, but even the most disciplined like a good meal every now and then. Species like crappie, catfish, and walleye are all very popular to eat and common to catch. So, you need a good knife to help you clean your catch when you bring them home! The Bubba Blade knife is a very popular option. Just be sure that whatever brand you choose, that it has a strong, but flexible blade.
Price Range: $10-$50
9. Rod Socks
This might be one of the best investments I’ve made for my fishing equipment in recent years. Rod socks help protect fishing rods and help to keep them untangled as well.
These offer great protection from drops and general wear and tear. The best part is they are cheap! You can find them in any Bass Pro or Scheels, but there are a ton of great deals on Amazon. Be sure to look at the length measurements of the socks so you know they will fit the fishing rods. You’ll also want to find out if the rod socks are for casting or spinning rods.
Price Range: $3-8 a piece
10. Fish Counter
When you’re out on the water and having a great day, sometimes it can be hard to keep track of how many fish you put in the livewell.
A really handy tool is a fish counter that can be worn around the neck or attached to a belt loop. It is a device that conveniently allows an angler to keep track of how many fish they’ve caught or how many they’ve put in the livewell.
Price Range: $5-15
11. Fish Lip Grabber
Some tools are so simple that you didn’t even know you needed them. The Fish Lip Grabber is one of those tools.
This is great for those fish that have rough or sharp teeth or are maybe extra slippery to hold normally. If you have a new angler with you who isn’t as comfortable holding fish, this is a great tool to use so they can still grab a photo with their prized catch. You can find some that even have a built in scale.
Price Range: $8-25
12. Fish Cleaning Filet Board
Having a good filet board is a nice accessory to have laying around after filling limits on the boat. There are lots of good options, but the Filet Away Fish Mat is especially cool. It grips to the surface it sits down and also helps grip the fish. It is easy to clean and transport as well since it rolls up. If you wanted to go a little higher on the price range, you could even look into some fish cleaning tables.
Price Range: $20-50
13. Mystery Tackle Box
In the past couple of years, “subscription tackle boxes” have become a thing where you can order several months worth of boxes and get an assortment of lures sent to you, usually at a slight discount. You can also buy those same boxes one at a time, like this Elite bass fishing kit from Mystery Tackle Box.
Price Range: $22-50
14. Dave’s Custom Baits Fishing Lure
If that angler you know is a bass fishing fiend, then look no further than Dave’s Custom Baits. This company makes completely custom balsa crankbaits and jerkbaits. They are handcrafted from start to finish, which includes the carving and painting process. Each one is tested in the water before shipment to ensure optimum performance.
The erratic motion of the lure in the water is what triggers so many bites that other lures just won’t get.
Price Range: $50
15. Bait Towel with clip
Fishing can be a messy process. Fish are slimy and if you’re fishing with live bait, that can be dirty as well. Simple items like a bait towel can make a world of difference when out on the water. Some of the best ones have a clip on them that can easily be attached to belt loop. They aren’t in the way, but very quickly available when needed.
Price Range: $5-20
16. Needlenose Pliers
Fishing pliers may be one of the best tools any angler can have available on every outing. They can serve so many purposes like hook removal from a fish, clothes, or other items. They can assist with swapping out hooks on fishing lures and more.
The Lew’s needlenose pliers are outstanding, and can be found anywhere from $40 to just a touch over 50.
Price Range: $10-50
17. Bass Slippers
Here’s the gag gift on the list. If you really want to spice up any angler’s footwear, get them a pair of the bass slippers.
They may have been able to “talk the talk” with their fishing stories, but with this gift, you’ll be helping them really “walk the walk”, too.
Price Range: $20-25
18. De-Fishing Soap
As we’ve mentioned previously, fishing can be a messy business. You will get slimy and dirty whether you catch fish or not.
So, a great item to have on hand is some kind of de-fishing soap or wipes. These will help get that very distinct, nasty fish smell off your hands and skin after a day on the water. They will come especially in handy after cleaning a mess of fish.
Price Range: $5-15
19. Fishing Scale
Every angler needs a fishing scale. You have to keep them honest! Otherwise that big fish will keep growing and growing every time the story gets told!
There are a variety of scales available that will do the job. I have particularly liked the Rapala High Contrast Scale because of its many features, but also because of how easy the screen is to read in various light conditions.
Price Range: $15-50
20. Waterproof Phone Case
Whether we like it or not, phones are a necessity these days. They go with us wherever we are, and that includes the water. Talk to a few anglers and you are bound to hear at least one story about dropping a phone in the lake.
So, that makes this gift idea a perfect one. A waterproof phone case is a must have for any person who plans to have a phone out anywhere near the water.
Price Range: $8-20
21. Fishing Reports Membership Subscription
Newspapers used to cover outdoor sports and fishing reports consistently, but that is fading quickly. Now, specialized websites fill the void with fishing information for big, travel destination lakes. Trumanlakefishingintel.com is one of those sites that provides daily/weekly fishing reports and videos on how you can find the fish all over the lake. If you live in Missouri, or plan to travel to Missouri to fish Truman Lake, then a membership to Truman Lake Fishing Intel is a great idea. Gift cards are available, in addition to various memberships. You can use coupon code mahoneyoutdoors for $10 off any of the subscriptions.