Vertical jigging reels are almost exclusively spinning types with sizes ranging from 4000-8000, with 5000-6000 class being the most common here in South Florida.
1. Daiwa BG ($)
The Daiwa BG is the go-to saltwater sport fishing workhorse. It features a durable aluminum body, 7 bearings, and good braided line capacity. These reels are well built, with silky smooth line retrieve and powerful drag - important for fighting offshore gamefish. It is also a fantastic value for the price and would make a good entry into lighter vertical jigging.
2. Daiwa Saltist ($$)
The Saltist features a better handle than the BG, and most importantly: better bearing seals. This helps keep corrosive saltwater out and keeps grease in. If you're looking for a reel that will last longer and power though tough conditions, consider this mid-priced option.
3. Shimano Saragosa SW ($$)
The Shimano Saragosa is a reel that has a serious cult following. It is a mainstay in all kinds of saltwater fishing, and is a very respectable vertical jigging reel. Built with quality components, it is well suited for offshore environments and demanding anglers. It's body is IPX8 waterproof, along with a gasket sealed waterproof drag system. You'll find many experienced vertical jiggers fishing these highly dependable reels.
4. Penn Slammer IV ($$)
The Penn Slammer IV is a very well equipped mid-priced option for vertical jigging. Featuring improved IPX6 seals over it's less expensive cousins, it is better suited for offshore fishing. This reel holds plenty of line and features an extremely impressive 60lbs max drag in its largest model. Paired with a good rod, this would an incredibly powerful jigging combo.
5. Daiwa Saltiga ($$$)
You'll find anglers using the Saltiga in some of the toughest conditions, and for good reason. From taking on harsh runs from Giant Trevally or GT's, to jigging up a huge yellowfin from great depths, this reel was specifically created to withstand what other reels can't. The Saltiga is an extremely smooth, lightweight and robust fishing machine for those who push the limits on their tackle consistently. It represents the pinnacle of Daiwa's product line, and with it being refreshed for 2023, it is one of our top contenders for anglers who are serious about vertical jigging.
Our size/spec recommendation: 5000-6000/XH
6. Shimano Stella SW-C ($$$)
The coveted Shimano Stella represents the best of the Shimano lineup. Odds are your favorite fishing content creators are rocking one already. It features arguably the smoothest retrieve of all spinning reels, cold forged internal gears and strong drag for stopping the most powerful of sport fish. This reel has been the gold standard in the saltwater community for years, if you are looking for a lux spec reel that will stand the test of time, this might be your choice.