Mr. CEO, It is all about your comfort zone. Fish can be caught without a pod or carp rod or boilies etc... Some are very proud of not having to purchase anything and create their own pods and gear. At the other extreme, some want the best gear the hobby can offer. You will probably find your comfort zone somewhere in between. I have different pods and rod holders, purchased over the years which I take great care of because I enjoy the diversity and choice, i.e. short session, long session, overnight, tournaments.... I enjoy a good pod that will hold my rods off the ground and that allows me to fine tune my presentations, alarms and drop-back indicators. You may be able to find a used pod in the trading post or on line, otherwise Big Carp Tackle is good choice.