Fishing & Hunting 3 min read

Carp Fishing For Beginners: What Equipment Do I Need?

fishing rods laying over a lake over sunrise
Published on Jul 16, 2022
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Carp angling has grown massively as a sport over the last few years across the world and particularly in the UK. 

If you’re familiar with angling or have recently looked at online stores or visited your local tackle shop, then you’ll know all too well how much equipment there actually is for the sport!

What with different types of rods, bait, hooks, weights, and even clothing – it can feel pretty overwhelming if you’re a beginner to carp fishing.

Buying all of your equipment can also be extremely expensive. So if you’re certain on investing, it’s a good idea to only buy what you really need while you get going. Sure, anglers' clothing is cool, but is it really necessary? 

What is Carp Fishing?

a man smiling holding a large fish

Carp fishing is essentially anglers going out to catch, ideally, carp as a fish species using a rod, reel, and other tackle that we will outline below.

Carp fish originate from the ‘Cyprindae’ family and are native to both Europe and Asia. They have become a popular fish to catch due to their sheer size and weight. 

If you’ve recently fancied trying out the popular sport of carp fishing, then find out below what you really need to purchase.

What Carp Fishing Essential Equipment Do I Really Need?

Fishing License

two men fishing holding a notepad and card

If you’re looking to take part in any type of fishing for freshwater fish in the UK, then you’ll need to purchase a fishing license. 

You can get this from the National Government website, and an annual pass will set you back around £30. But this will save you a heck of a lot if you get fined for fishing without one that could cost you up to £2,500 per rod! 

Carp Fishing Rod

a carp fishing rod over a lake

Of course, no fishing is possible without a fishing rod. A lot of anglers will actually fish with 2 rods or even more to multiply their chances of catching. 

Fishing rods come in various lengths, styles, and flexibility depending on where you’re wanting to fish and what you’re hoping to catch. With carp being strong fish, it’s important to get a strong rod that can withstand the weight. You can find all types of carp fishing rods, plus much more, over at North East Tackle Supplies.

Carp Fishing Reel

two fishing rods laid out on deck over a lake

As with rods, there are tonnes of different reels available for carp fishing and ones that can be used in tandem with a bite alarm for serious carp anglers. 

But to begin with, a simple bait runner reel should do the job and will be the most affordable option. Just make sure it’s suitable for use with your rod and the type of fishing you’re looking to do.

Suitable Carp Bait

a large fish eating at the bottom of a lake

Tackle shops such as Fishing Tackle and Bait are absolutely brimming with all different types of bait, so it’s difficult to know which will work best for you as a beginner at carp fishing.

To begin with, just focus on the basics and the less expensive types of bait. They’re often the ones that will work the best for you, anyway!

Some of the most common basic types of bait are sweetcorn, ground bait, pellets, boilies, and pop-ups. 


a man sat next to a lake fishing

You’ll likely be sitting out there for a long time, so ensuring you get a seat that’s comfortable is probably one of the best ways to spend your money.

If you already have a camping chair, then you could use this until you’re ready to really invest. Once you do start to look, you can find specialist carp fishing chairs, and some that even turn into beds for night fishing.

Strong Hook & Rigs

a fishing rig and hook

This is what you need to essentially attach your bait to your rod. 

As you gain experience you can make your own rigs, but they can be very fiddly to begin with. Ready-made rigs could therefore be the best and most affordable way for you to get started. 

A Landing Net

a net with fish in it

If you’re going carp fishing, then you’re probably going to want somewhere to put your prized possession after some intense angling!

You can pick up carp landing nets for under £20 which will certainly do the job for a beginner.


Charlotte Marshall

Lead Editor

Being a full-time content writer and part-time shopaholic, globe-trotter and avid lover of all things food (and wine)...I love researching the best money-saving hacks so that I can help fuel my own passions, and yours!


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