Want to know just how satisfied Crab Island Jimmy Pontoon Charter customers are? Ask owner Jimmy Perkins to pull out his phone and show you some videos. His favorite shows a limo filled with bachelorette attendees pulling into the parking lot, with one cheering and smiling through the sunroof. Moments later, beautiful happy women are streaming out of the car and running up to meet Jimmy, the man who had helped them plan their perfect event.
Jimmy is one of the original Crab Island vendors, starting out by selling ice cream and t-shirts before getting into the pontoon boat business several years ago. His fleet of six pontoon boats is ready for the season, along with a crew of skilled operators. The boats can hold up to 12 passengers and if your party is larger than that, you can charter two.
His operators, as well as the ice cream and t-shirt vendors, are among the folks who work out at Crab Island and help keep visitors safe along the way.
“Every year, we probably have 200 to 250 confirmed saves,” he says. “We keep them on (Crab) Island and make sure they don’t get caught in the current.”
For folks who are looking for the crystalline turquoise and emerald waters on social media, Jimmy suggests looking at a Farmer’s Almanac and scheduling your vacation – as well as your pontoon charter – around the tides. An incoming midday tide brings in the clear blue Gulf waters, while an outgoing tide is carrying the darker waters of Choctawhatchee Bay.
“Not everybody can have high tide,” Jimmy says. “Check your tide chart to see when the high tide is going to be close to 1 or 2 or 3.”
A common question that makes him smile are whether the often-photographed and widely shared blue waters of Crab Island were photoshopped. Folks wonder, Jimmy says, when they come on a day with less favorable tides.
Other tips involve having fun at Crab Island, without endangering yourself of others in your party.
Don’t jump off in shallow water, drink responsibly, make sure life preservers are out and easily accessible, don’t bring glass bottles and learn how to swim.
He also suggests making sure your charter boat is U.S. Coast Guard approved.
Book your charter early in your trip planning process and plan your day on the water early in that trip. If weather is a problem, Jimmy will work with you to get you out on the water another time.
“We get one shot at making your day perfect,” he says. “And we do it every time.”
Book a trip with Crab Island Jimmy's!