Press Kit

Boating & Fishing Facts

Each year, it seems that televisions are bigger, computers get smaller and portable devices become more complex. But in the great outdoors, it’s what stays the same that matters. Surveys from various sources point to the same conclusions: Regardless of what else may change, recreational boating and fishing continue to contribute significantly to the U.S. economy, enhance peoples’ quality of life and preserve the country’s natural beauty. The most recent data available on outdoor recreation show just how important these two activities are.


According to…


Source: 2015 Special Report on Fishing


  • 46 million Americans participated in fishin in 2014 (15.8% of the U.S. population ages 6 and older).
  • 47% of first-time fishing participants are female.
  • Fishing is the second most popular outdoor activity among adults.
  • More than 85% of adult anglers fished as a child, before the age of 12.
  • Nearly 83% of fishing trips involve more than one person.
  • Almost 4.3 million youth would liket to try fishing.
  • 81% of fishing trips are spontaneous or planned within a week of the trip.
  • 80% of participants reported catching a fish during their last fishing trip.
  • Freshwater fishing remains the most popular type of fishing with more than three times the number of participants (almost 38 million people) as saltwater fishing.
  • Hispanic fishing participants average 25.8 days on the water; over six days more than the average for all fishing participants (19.4 days).


Source: 2010 Quantitative Study of Consumer Attitudes

The Boating Lifestyle

  • Despite the economic downturn, nearly half of all consumers claim they are still in the market for a boat in the next three years.
  • Consumers as a whole are not moving away from boating, but rather are more likely to try and find ways to make boating less costly. For example, they plan on doing more repairs themselves or plan to spend less on accessories for their boat.
  • Three in 10 consumers are considering purchasing a pre-owned boat.
  • The main reason why current boat owners are not in the market for a boat (new or used) is that 66 percent are simply satisfied with their current boat.

Intent to Purchase a New Boat

  • Having family and friends who go boating on a regular basis is the strongest predictor of future purchase intent.
  • Having a fishing license is another predictor of future purchase intent.
  • Participation in other outdoor activities such as camping, hunting or mountain biking is another key predictor.


Source: 2006 Recreational Boating Statistical Abstract (2007)

  • Over 36% of the American population, or 88.5 million people, went boating in 2013.
  • In 2013, there were nearly 16 million recreational boats in use
  • Over half a million new boats were sold in 2013, totaling nearly $37 billion in sales.

Source: 2006 National Survey of Fishing, Hunting & Wildlife-Associated Recreation (2007)

  • One in eight American adults – more than 30 million – fish, as do some eight million children ages six to 15. In 2006, they fished 517 million days and took 403 million trips.
  • Anglers pumped more than $42 billion dollars into the national economy in 2006. Of that total, nearly $18 billion was spent on travel-related expenses, with $6.3 billion going to food and lodging, and $5 billion to transportation costs.


Additional research and reports, including Hispanic media research, can be found in the Take Me Fishing Resource Center.