Starting baitcasting on a budget: Cheap Baitcasting Fishing Reels

Many assume that cheap baitcasting reels have to be bought new from a store or the Internet. The smart and savvy angler knows that cheap baitcasting reels does not mean the least expensive makes and models from manufacturers, but instead they know where to go to find the best deals.

As said in previous reviews, most fishing equipment is designed to catch the fisherman and not the fish. The same can be said for reels, but understand that cheap does not mean shoddy craftsmanship or less quality.

So to find cheap baitcasting fishing reels, a smart angler is going to avoid traditional stores and Internet locations like Amazon. Instead, they approach finding deals the old fashioned way.


There are few places to get the best possible deals on fishing equipment than a garage sale. Scour your local paper, normally on Thursday or Friday, to find where sales are going to be held. Some sales will have lists of possible goods for sale, so target the ones that offer fishing gear.

Take cash with you, and small bills for preference. It is not a bad idea to try and deal, particularly if someone has several different reels or equipment available.

There are two schools of thought on garage sales. Some get to the sales early in the a.m., trying to get the best choices; others go later on in the day as the sales are wrapping up, trying to get the best possible prices and deals. Either way, plan accordingly, and expect to spend most of the day shopping.


  • You can get some great deals very cheaply
  • It is a good way to get some fresh air
  • Family friendly, and you can look for things besides fishing gear


  • You may not find anything, or it has sold
  • Gas to get from sale to sale
  • Crowds are often common


The auction giant eBay has made several changes since its inception, and this is a great place to look for cheap baitcasting fishing reels. Look for used reels, free shipping and buy it now options. You will be pleasantly surprised at the number of options you may have available.


  • Cheap deals, often with more than one reel
  • Free shipping
  • Various ways to pay including cards and PayPal


  • You cannot physically hold or see the reel
  • Some sellers are less than frank or honest
  • It may take some time to get your reels


The daily paper has fast all but disappeared, but some still subscribe. Online is certainly an option as well. Scan the classifieds for the sport goods, and look what is available.

Smart shoppers also check for weekly circulars put out by their communities. Often, these are also available online, and you can search the entire document with Ctrl + F.


  • Many for sale will want to move them quickly
  • Easy to see the reels and check them out in person


  • Infrequency of items
  • Many will move quickly even as the ads appear


The now ubiquitous site has plenty of city choices available, and each city location has sporting goods for a category. There is a search function available as well.


  • Lots of potential places to find reels
  • Pictures available
  • Variety of locations across the U.S. and world
  • Good deals abound


  • Scammers frequent the site
  • Some searches yield results from across the country
  • Catching deals may be tough


The popularity of pawn shop reality shows has put the business in a new light. At one time, pawn shops were considered shady and unscrupulous, but these television programs have drastically changed the opinions of many.

Pawn shops are also a great place to find cheap baitcasting fishing reels. Pawn shops have the advantage of being able to see and touch the reels or work a deal with the broker for a good price, especially on a cash offer.


  • Lots of potential inventory
  • Many may be match to rods
  • Good prices


  • Smart brokers will check prices on some reels and price accordingly
  • No returns or refunds on most products

If you find a few reels that you like and purchase, the best thing to do next is take to a professional repair shop. The shop will be able to check the reels over, clean them and bring them to almost new working condition. You may spend a few more dollars, but a professional can bring a reel back to almost factory shape. This will provide you and your reels years of great service.

Most people do not consider the possibilities available to them when it comes to cheap baitcasting fishing reels, but with a bit of detective work and some time, it is very easy to find the perfect reel for your specific needs and desires. Follow the tips above, enjoy the process of searching and best of luck on finding that perfect reel.