Last Updated on
Mystery Tackle Box and Lucky Tackle Box are pretty popular with skilled and beginner anglers alike. If you were also thinking about getting a surprise tackle box, then these are the two main services to choose from.
Which one is better though? Is there even a better option? Let’s find out!
What Are Mystery Tackle Box And Lucky Tackle Box?
Mystery Tackle Box and Lucky Tackle Box are both subscription services where you are sent a monthly tackle box. Each monthly box includes fishing gear such as hooks, baits,fishing manuals, and some other good stuff.
The thing that makes the monthly boxes mystery or lucky is that you are receiving new hand-picked gear each time, and it’s highly unlikely to receive a duplicate product since your history of purchases and boxes is tracked.
As some anglers online phrase it, the mystery or lucky boxes are kind of Christmas gifts that come every month. You don’t know what you are going to get, and you are also getting the fishing tackle at a discounted price.
But while Mystery Tackle Box and Lucky Tackle Box are similar at their core, there are key differences between them in terms of pricing, box contents, shipping policy, and packaging.
Mystery Tackle Box
First, let’s overview Mystery Tackle Box, which is the older of the two. In fact, Mystery Tackle Box is one of the oldest services of its kind, if not the oldest.
Mystery Tackle Box plans& pricing
Mystery Tackle Box has 3 plans plus the 3-month Beginner Series. The contents and pricing of these packages differ drastically. The key thing that is common is that MTB (and also Lucky Tackle Box) doesn’t refund these items, though they do send replacement gear if something is missing or damaged.
A little side note – the box contents and pricing for both Mystery and Lucky Tackle Boxes are shown as of late October 2019.
The Beginner Series isn’t a subscription service like the 3 Mystery Tackle Box Plans. Instead, this service offers one monthly box for 3 months for a $59.97 one-time fee and free shipping. The purpose of this service is to introduce beginners to fishing and provide them with a few pieces of essential tackle.
The Beginner Series boxes are as follows:
- Month 1: Intro to Fishing.In this box, you get line and tackle, as well as instructions on basic knots, spinning reel dos and don’ts, and fishing safety & etiquette.
- Month 2: Beyond the Basics. This box introduces you to hard baits, as well as teaches you how to set the hook and where & when to fish.
- Month 3: First Rig. The last box in the Beginner Series includes swimbaits, spinnerbaits, and crankbaits, as well as introduces you to the Texas rig and teaches you how to read fish & water behavior.
This box is pretty nice, but we feel that beginners shouldn’t rely on it heavily. You can learn plenty of stuff in 3 months on your own, and while the Beginner box will provide you with some unique tips and gear, it should only be viewed as a supplement for fishing.
The subscription boxes start from the Regular plan, the cheapest Mystery Tackle Box plan. The pricing of the Regular plan is as follows:
- $16.99/month if bought monthly.
- $15.99/month if bought for 3 months ($47.97 in total and $3 savings).
- $15.49/month if bought for 6 months ($92.94 in total and $9 savings).
- $14.99/month if bought for 12 months ($179.88 in total and $24 savings).
As Mystery Tackle Box claims, you are gettingaround $25 in value for the $15-$17 paid per month. However, Mystery Tackle Box doesn’t specify how many items you are getting with the Regular subscription, though it does tell that you are getting things like hard & soft baits and articles containing fishing tips & tricks.
This box is available in the following species options:
- Bass: largemouth, smallmouth, and spotted.
- Trout: rainbow, brook, brown, and cutthroat.
- Inshore saltwater: redfish, snook, flounder, and speckled trout.
- Panfish: crappie, perch, and bluegill.
- Catfish: blue, channel, and flathead.
- Walleye &sauger.
The Pro plan is a step-up from the Regular subscription and offers around $40 in value. It is priced as follows:
- $26.99/month if bought monthly.
- $25.99/month if bought for 3 months ($77.97 in total and $3 savings).
- $25.49/month if bought for 6 months ($152.94 in total and $9 savings).
- $24.99/month if bought for 12 months ($299.88 in total and$24 savings).
Priced $10 higher than the Regular plan, the Pro plan offers higher-quality fishing tackle, perhaps in higher numbers.
The species selection is nearly the same, except that you are getting a Multi-species option instead of Catfish. The multi-species box includes tackle aimed at bass, catfish, and panfish.
Finally, you have the Elite Box, which offers about $60 of value. For this box, MTB does specify how many items you are getting – Elite boxes usually come with 5-9 “hand-picked” and “high-end” pieces of tackle along with a collectible sticker and fishing tips & tricks.
The pricing of the Elite plan is as follows:
- $39.99/month if bought monthly.
- $38.99/month if bought for 3 months ($116.97 in total and $3 savings).
- $37.99/month if bought for 6 months ($227.94 in total and $12 savings).
- $36.99/month if bought for 12 months ($443.88 in total and $36 savings).
The pricing for long-term subscriptions is made a little more cost-efficient in the Elite plan than in others. MTB clearly wants you to purchase the Elite plan’s extended subscriptions!
While the included tackle is high-quality, you don’t have as many fish species to choose this box for – you only have the Bass and the Multi-species option that includes bass, panfish, and catfish. With that said, the poorer species selection doesn’t necessarily mean that you won’t be able to use the included gear for other fish species.
Mystery Tackle Box shipping
As of late October 2019, MTB shipped its boxes to the United States, Canada, and Mexico. The monthly subscription boxes ship for free in the US and Canada.
For other MTB items like fishing tackle and apparel, the shipping fee is $6.99 for Canada and the US and free if the order amounts to more than $59.Besides, MTB rods come with a $12 surcharge.
Some items are eligible for expedited shipping for a $9.99 fee.
When it comes to shipping times, the subscription boxes are shipped with UPS and generally ship in 3-6 business days within the continental US (all states except for Alaska, Hawaii, and Puerto Rico). The shipping times to the non-continental US, Canada, and Mexico usually are 2-3 weeks.
Mystery Tackle Box packaging
Depending on your preferences, MTB’s packaging can be both good and bad. The thing is that the tackle mostly comes in sample packages rather than retail packages.
MTB claims on its FAQ page that 90% of its subscribers prefer to get a higher variety of baits to full-size retail boxes. Small sample packages do allow MTB to save space and ship more stuff to you, but the sample packages may involve more plastic in them, not to mention that some people may dislike how they look and feel.
This may not be critical for you, but it should nonetheless be kept in mind.
Lucky Tackle Box
Lucky Tackle Box doesn’t differ from MTB that much. With that said, due to some noticeable differences in pricing and gear, you may prefer LTB to MTB.
Lucky Tackle Box plans& pricing
Lucky Tackle Box offers 3 plans – Regular, The XL, and Tournament. No beginner box services were offered as of late October 2019, but this isn’t too critical since LTB’s key productis its surprise boxes, just like MTB.
First off, the good thing about LTB is that it does provide you with information on how many items you are getting in each box. With the regular plan, you are getting 5 pieces of fishing tackle that are priced at around $25. The value is the same as in the MTB Regular plan.Aside from that, you are getting how-to fishing videos and exclusive discounts in all the subscriptions.
The pricing of the Regular plan is as follows:
- $16.99/month if bought monthly.
- $15.10/month if bought for 3 months ($45.30 in total and $5.67 savings).
- $14.78/month if bought for 6 months ($88.68 in total and $13.26 savings).
The base monthly fee is the same, but with the extended plans, LTB is actually a little bit more cost-efficient than MTB – you save $5.67 vs $3 in 3 months and $13.26 vs $9 in 6 months. With that said, there are no 12-month plans available, which may be a problem for some people.
The species selection is poorer as well – you have only bass, panfish/crappie/trout, as well as an option for ice fishing.
The XL plan includes 7 high-quality baits with an around $40 value. The pricing of the Regular plan is as follows:
- $26.99/month if bought monthly.
- $23.99/month if bought for 3 months ($71.97 in total and $9 savings).
- $23.49/month if bought for 6 months ($140.94 in total and $21 savings).
The XL plan is again more cost-efficient than MTB’s Pro plan, but you don’t have the 12-month option.
The box selection for the XL plan is a little bit wider – you can choose from bass, saltwater, multi-species, walleye, and fly boxes. The selection is a bit less specific than in MTB’s Pro plan though where you have specialized trout and panfish options, but this may not be a problem for you.
Finally, you have the Tournament box which comes with 13-16 high-end baits with a total value of $85, which is noticeably better than the MTB Elite box with its $60 5-9 baits.
The pricing is higher as well though:
- $46/month if bought monthly.
- $40.89/month if bought for 3 months ($122.67 in total and $15.33 savings).
- $40.04/month if bought for 6 months ($240.24 savings $35.76 savings).
In terms of box selection, the Tournament plan is similar to MTB’s Elite plan – you again have the options of bass or multi-species boxes.
The Tournament plan is noticeably more expensive than the Elite plan if bought monthly. But once you move to extended plans, the cost doesn’t differ much –there is an around $6-$13 difference between the extended MTB and LTB plans.Due to this, LTB may be a better option if you are willing to buy an extended plan.
But you again aren’t getting the 12-month option, which may be an issue for some people.
Lucky Tackle Box shipping
While LTB boxes are certainly more cost-efficient than MTB boxes, the shipping is plain better with MTB.
LTB, first of all, ships subscription boxesonly within the US, Puerto Rico, and Canada. No Mexico shipping was available as of late October 2019.
Not only that, but free shipping isonly available within the US, while Canada shipping costs $5. If you are in Canada, then those $5 could be a deal-breaker for you.
In terms of shipping time, LTB also isn’t as great– shipping takes 3-10 business days for continental US addresses and up to 14 business for Canada, Alaska, Hawaii, Puerto Rico, and Canada.
Lucky Tackle Box packaging
As for packaging, LTB appears to be a little better than MTB, though this will depend on your needs and preferences. LTB seems to include fewer sample packages in their boxes, which, though not necessarily an advantage, may be a good thing for some people.
So, in the end, we’ve got the following:
- The main benefit of MTB is shipping fees and times.
- The main benefit of LTB is cost-efficiency.
If you live in Canada, then Mystery Tackle Boxes may be a particularly appealing option for you since they ship for free and in a shorter time.
On the other hand, Lucky Mystery Box offers better pricing that will be especially appealing if you live in the US since the shipping there is free. Besides, due to the higher savings, the $5 shipping fee to Canada may not even be an issue for you, even though it means that you will be saving $5 less.
Mystery Tackle Box may also be a better option if you are looking for specific equipment – that’s because MTB offers more fish options with its cheaper packages.
If these aren’t big enough benefits for you to make a decisive choice, then we suggest that you buy both boxes for a month or two. You won’t be able to see the variety of tackle included in such a short time frame, but you should be able to get an idea of how high-quality and cost-efficient each of the offers is.