Fish & Boat Commission — take a risk — sell more licenses
To sell more fishing licenses, the Legislature has granted the Pennsylvania Fish & Boat Commission permission to lower the cost of fishing licenses and permits by making attractive packages. The agency needs to think outside the box and be willing to take risks to recruit and retain more license buyers. Ask yourself — what do stores and businesses successfully do to increase their business?
In last week’s blog, I detailed the reasons for this need and offered two suggestions to get this started. This time, I’m back with eight more – hopefully creative – ideas.
1. Those 21 and older should always have the option to purchase a two-year license and save 20 percent, tack on a third year and save even more. Now we would be talking something that might influence people to purchase multi-year licenses.
2. Discounted licenses should be sold at all Fish & Boat Commission-sponsored fishing schools and Take Your Kid Fishing and other such events. Do they really want to attract new anglers?
3. First-time license buyers — purchase your fishing license in December and save 10 percent.
4. How about selling a five-year discount “loyalty card” for $8. Use it each year and save $2 off of your license and $1 off of your trout-salmon or Lake Erie permits. Use it all five years and save $15. Don’t use it and the Fish & Boat Commission makes a profit. Use it and the Fish & Boat Commission makes a profit. Again – it’s a “no-brainer.”
5. Maybe a “frequent fisher” discount – purchase a license in successive years and get 10 percent off — the Point-of-Sale computer would keep track. Wouldn’t it be great for the sales agent to announce to you, “You’ve purchased a license and trout stamp two years in a row and saved $3.40”?
6. Consider making a deal with a state Department of Conservation and Natural Resources sell 7-day resident licenses that would only be good inside a specific state park [Not valid March 15-May 15]. Make them $19.99 — sounds fair to me.
7. They definitely need reduced-rate “family packages” covering the husband, wife and any number of 16 to 18-year-olds. How about mother–daughter or father–son combos?
8. Lastly — how about a “bargain basement sale” in mid-October? Maybe a resident license-trout stamp combo (good for 75 days) for only $9.99, plus the issuing agent fee. Anglers could afford to invite a friend fishing for a day and not break the bank.
Using three or four of my 10 suggestions would surely increase license sales, but they involve risk. Commissioners — take a risk — attract and retain license buyers.