frequently asked questions

frequently asked questions

Will I get seasick from any of these tours or fishing trips?

Rest assured, Ketchikan is protected by small and large islands in all directions which means there is very seldom any swell and always a place to hide on the leeward side of an island to get out of the wind. So, you can focus on catching some fish and stop worrying if you packed your Dramamine!

Will I make it back to the ship in time?

Absolutely, cruise ship schedules are planned out months in advance detailing down to the hour. This is available for the public and us. Any updates or changes to the schedules are communicated to us as well. In a decade of charters and thousands of guests, not one has missed their ship.

If I catch something, can I ship it home?

Of course! We understand that many people come to Alaska for the fishing experience alone and what better souvenir than the fish you caught? Cedars lodge, located adjacent to the cruise ship berths, will fillet, package, flash freeze, and overnight ship your fish at a day of your choosing. All you need to do is fill out a one-page form and I will personally drop your fish off for processing. (Prices for shipping are based on filleted pounds, and overnight shipping rates.)

What should I wear for my tour or fishing trip?

Guests should dress in warm layered clothing. Ketchikan summers are spectacular and have plenty of days that require sunscreen, however it is located in the largest rain forest in North America, the Tongass. Guests are advised to bring waterproof or resistant boots, jacket, and pants. 

How do I locate your boat for our scheduled tour or fishing trip?

Our cruise ships guests will all be within walking distance of our moorage. We will personally be meeting each group at their ship with a Ketchikan Fishing Expeditions sign with your name on it. In town guests will meet at a pre determined location.

What food and beverage accommodations will Ketchikan Fishing Expeditions provide on my tour or fishing trip?

Water, chips, and granola bars will be provided. Guests are encouraged to bring any food they may want during the trip. Alcohol is allowed on charter as long as guests are of legal drinking age. Alcohol will not be provided. 

Will there be a bathroom on the tour or fishing trip?

There is a portable marine head in the cabin of the boat, so a restroom is available when nature calls. With that being said, men are encouraged to use the urinal 360 degrees around the boat!

How many people can I bring on my charter?

This is a 6PAC charter, this means the boat will be licensed for 6 paying customers max. The standard trip rates start at a 4-person minimum. This is done to keep from mixing groups and having guests with conflicting expectations on the same charter. When you book with Ketchikan Fishing Expeditions you are getting the whole boat.

What is your cancellation policy? How much is the deposit?

Cancellation policy is full refund if cancelled outside of 30 days, inside of 30 days but outside of 10 is loss of 50 percent of the deposit, trips cancelled within 10 days are loss of deposit. Any cancelations due to weather will receive a full refund. The deposit is the full price of the charter including tax, you do not have a completed booking without payment.

Do I need a fishing license for my fishing trip? If so, how do I acquire one?

Fishing Licenses can be bought in advance online through the state of Alaska by clicking here.

By buying and printing out your Alaskan fishing license in advance of your fishing trip, you can save a lot of time on tight turnarounds and short trips. Otherwise, you risk long lines and wait times by finding a vendor when you arrive.

Depending on how many days you are fishing in Alaska and whether you want/need a king salmon stamp will determine the cost of the license. A one-day license in 2022 was $15. Feel free to call us and we will gladly answer any questions you might have.

Do you guarantee we will catch fish?

We do not guarantee you will catch fish, we are fishing for wild Alaskan fish that move with the tide, weather, and pressure from predators and fishermen. What we do guarantee is that we will try every tactic in our arsenal to help you be successful. With that being said in ten years of charters we have yet to have a no catch trip. 

Should we tip our captain or guide, if so how much?

Gratuities are not included in the price of the trip. The industry standard is 15-20% of the price of the charter. if you had a great experience and would like to tip your captain or guide then gratuities are recommended and always greatly appreciated. 

Are travel times to and from the fishing grounds included in the duration of the charter?

Yes, travel times are included in the duration of the charter. Average “run” times vary based on the species targeted and weather conditions. An average trip to and from the prime halibut and salmon fishing grounds are about 45 minutes each way. So for example during a 6 hour halibut trip you will generally spend 1.5 hours of that time running to and from the fishing grounds. Whales, eagles, sea lions, and porpoises are common sightings during travel so keep your eyes out. During shorter trips we will generally run to closer but still productive fishing areas. Ask your captain what he thinks is best based on your time and expectations.

If we decide to head back early is there a refund? Can we stay longer if we want to?

Guests who would like to return early will not be given a refund of the agreed upon price of the charter. However if guests would like to fish longer simply ask your captain. If there are no conflicting schedules we are always happy to stay out on the water longer. A “pay by the hour” discounted price will simply be added to the charter. 

Are there any species limits and size restrictions I need to be made aware of?

2022 Size restrictions were as follows:


1 fish per day 2 in possession. Size limit under 38 inches or over 80. (This is a reverse slot limit intended to release large breeding females.)


28 inches or longer—Bag, possession, annual and size limits are established by emergency order, as specified in the Southeast Alaska King Salmon Management Plan.


16 inches or longer: 6 of each species per day, 12 of each species in possession.


Alaska Residents—No size limit: 1 per day, 2 in possession.

Nonresidents—1 per day, 1 in possession; 30–45 inches or 55 inches and longer, annual limit of 2 fish, one of which is

30–45 inches in length, and one that is 55 inches or greater in length, harvest record required.


Pelagic rockfish include Black, Blue, Dark, Dusky, Widow, and Yellowtail. These six species are uniformly gray, green, brown, or black All rockfish not listed as pelagic are considered nonpelagic.

No size limit: 5 per day, 10 in possession.


No retention


No size limit: 1 per day, 1 in possession.

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