Catch of the day: A crew reels in an impressive Marlin last week. *Photo by Nicola Muirhead
Catch of the day: A crew reels in an impressive Marlin last week. *Photo by Nicola Muirhead

The influx of fishing crews from across the world for the Billfish Championship has seen millions of dollars pumped into the island’s economy.

The competition, which runs until July 21, has attracted nearly 30 fishing boats and more than 300 participants.

Organisers have hailed this year’s event a huge success and say they are keen to explore the potential of the motor yacht market in Bermuda in the future.

Series producer, Dan Jacobs,  told the Bermuda Sun: “I have spoken with Government  and had discussions with tourism about breaking and creating awareness of the motor yacht market in Bermuda.

“There is huge potential.”

Mr Jacobs added: “This year’s fishing has been absolutely fantastic. We have had the best weather we are have seen in 13 years and the fishing has been great.

“The number participating this year has equaled 2012 which is great news given the economic climate.

“I could not be more pleased with how it has gone.”

Initial estimates suggest the series of Billfish fishing events will bring in around $4.5 million into Bermuda’s coffers. Mr Jacobs said: “These visitors have come from all over the world including Australia, the US and even Venezuela dumping millions into the community.

“We have had owners who have spent $98,000 just on fuel. 

“We estimate that each fishing boat brings in $150,000 to the local economy.

“Then there is also the amount they spend on accommodation.

“This year we have had 500 rooms at the Princess and people staying at Cambridge Beaches too. While our online score site has been getting 10,000 unique users from across the world.

“That is an incredible amount of global attention which is good for Bermuda, too.”

Work on next year’s Billfish Championship festivities will start again in earnest at the end of this month.

Mr Jacobs added: “It’s a year-long job. We do a lot of promotion through international sports fishing magazines and dedicated websites.

“We’ll be talking to our anglers in the build up to next year to see if any improvements can be made. 

“And our focus will be on promoting the Bermuda Billfish Release Cup, which takes place in June, and acts as a kind of tune-up for everyone.”

The Bermuda Sun contacted the Department of Tourism for comment but none was provided by time of print.