Georgia Fishing License 2023: Types, Costs and How To Buy

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Georgia is home to some fine fishing in both freshwater and salt.

The state has 100 miles of coastline that is not as heavily fished as neighboring Florida and has some excellent bass fishing.

To fish in Georgia within the rules you’ll need a Georgia fishing license in most circumstances.

We’ve put together all the latest Georgia fishing license information from price to which license to get and where to buy it,.

Fishing in Georgia

First a quick word on fishing in Georgia. Along with excellent largemouth and smallmouth bass fishing, Georgia also has great fishing for walleye and the various panfish species, as well as catfish.

There is also mountain trout fishing in parts of Georgia. Coastal fishing is a real highlight in Georgia with redfish, spotted seatrout, flounder, tarpon, sheepshead and other saltwater targets a real possibility.

Who Needs a Fishing License In Georgia?

Georgia law requires anglers age 16 and older to have a current Georgia fishing license in their possession while fishing in fresh or salt water in Georgia. 

Who is Exempt from Needing a Fishing License in Georgia?

  • Youth under 16 years of age
  • Resident seniors age 65 or older with proof of age or residency (such as a valid Florida Driver’s Licence or ID Card) or possessing an optional Resident 65+ Hunt/Fish Certificate (more here on seniors discounts and exemptions in other states)
  • Florida residents certified as totally and permanently disabled who possess a Florida Resident Disabled Person’s Hunting and Fishing License (more here on discounts and exemptions for people in other states with a disability)
  • Florida residents who are members of the Armed Forces of the United States, who are not stationed in this state and home on leave for 30 days or less, upon submission of orders
  • Those fishing in a fish pond of 20 acres or less which is located entirely within the private property of its owner
  • Individuals fishing in a fish pond of 20 acres or more, whose owner has purchased a fish pond license at a fee of $3 per surface acre

Fishing License Types in Georgia

Georgia offers short-term licenses with limited privileges all the way to full-privilege licenses that last a lifetime.

Cost: How Much is a Fishing License in Georgia?

Resident Fishing Licenses

For purposes of purchasing recreational hunting and fishing licenses—except lifetime licenses—“Georgia Resident” means a person who has been domiciled within the State of Georgia for a period of at least three consecutive months before license purchase (declared Georgia their only state of legal residence as shown by a Georgia driver’s license or official GA ID card with a Georgia address). Domiciled means a person’s fixed, permanent, and principal home for legal purposes. A person may own land or dwellings and may stay for a time in several states, but may only have one domicile, and therefore may not be a resident of two states at the same time.

Fishing License Type (Resident)Cost
One-Day Apprentice Hunting & Fishing License $5.00
Annual Combo Hunting & Fishing License $30.00
One-Day Combo Hunting & Fishing License $5.00
Seasonal Commercial Fishing License $20.00
Annual Disability Fishing License $3.00
Annual Fishing License $15.00
Optional Youth Fishing License (<16)(Multi-Year)$10.00
Annual Senior Fishing $4
Lifetime Senior Fishing $35
Annual Senior Sportsman $7
Lifetime Senior Sportsman $70
Annual Sportsman Additional Day$3
Sportsman$65
One-Day Sportsman $25
Annual Trout License (must additionally have a Fishing License) $10.00
One-Day Trout License (must additionally have a Fishing License) $5.00
Source: https://georgiawildlife.com/licenses-permits-passes/choose

Non Resident Fishing Licenses

These licenses are applicable to all visitors to Georgia who want to fish from other states or countries. Non resident licenses are typically more expensive than resident licenses and some of the discounts and exemptions that apply to residents, veterans, the disabled and seniors don’t usually apply to non resident license holders.

Fishing License Type (Non-Resident)Cost
One-Day Apprentice Hunting & Fishing License$30.00
Annual Combo Hunting & Fishing License $150.00
One-Day Combo Hunting & Fishing License $30.00
Commercial Fishing License Seasonal $200.00
Annual Fishing License$50.00
Sportsman Additional Day$20
Annual Sportsman$400
One-Day Sportsman $170
Annual Trout License (must additionally have a Fishing License) $25.00
One-Day Trout License (must additionally have a Fishing License) $10
Source: https://georgiawildlife.com/licenses-permits-passes/choose

Who Can Purchase Discounted Georgia Fishing Licenses?

Georgia offers discounted Disability Hunting and Fishing Licenses for resident veterans, active duty military, seniors and people who are disabled. 

The Disability Hunting and Fishing License cannot be obtained or renewed online – you will need to complete the Disability License Application form and mail it and supporting documents to the address on the form. Additional information and instructions for completing the form are on the back of the application. Strict document requirements are on the back of the form, and should be carefully reviewed and followed. 

Special Fishing Licenses in Georgia

The state of Georgia offers combo hunting and fishing license for its residents aged 16-64 years old. A Combo License combines basic hunting and basic fishing privileges. 

The prices are as follows: $30 annual;  $5 for one-day; & $1 for additional days.

Where Can I Buy A Georgia Fishing Licence?

Largemouth Bass Fishing
Largemouth Bass Fishing in Georgia is a popular activity and great fun

Georgia Wildlife Resources Division

The Georgia Department of Natural Resources’ Wildlife Resources Division issues a license for fishing privileges in fresh and saltwater, and for hunting.

Online

You can purchase online through its website GoOutdoorsGeorgia.com — that offers most recreational licenses, passes, permits, and stamps. 

You may also speak with a local representative who can help you. Just dial 1-800-366-2661 available from Monday–Friday 8:00 a.m.–6:00 p.m., Saturday–Sunday 9:00 a.m.–5:00 p.m.

In Person

You can buy Georgia fishing licences from approved stores – including Walmart – and from Department of Natural Resources offices.

What Happens with Georgia Fishing License Fees?

License fees support the conservation of Georgia’s aquatic resources.

Does Georgia Have Reciprocal License arrangements with neighboring states?

The State of Georgia and the State of South Carolina has reciprocal agreement that allows fishing in the waters covered without obtaining a fishing license from the bordering state.

The provisions of this agreement shall be applicable to the waters which lie adjacent to or within both the State of South Carolina and the State of Georgia. Check full details of the agreement here.  See here for Florida fishing license information.

Does Georgia offer Lifetime Fishing Licenses?

Yes. Georgia does offer two lifetime licenses for its residents. Lifetime Sportsman’s Licenses are offered for people under 65 and are only available for purchase by downloading a Lifetime Sportsman’s License application. Once legally obtained, Georgia lifetime licenses remain valid even if a person later becomes a resident of another state. 

Georgia residents 65 and older can also get a Senior Lifetime Sportsman’s license So, if you were born before July 1, 1952, you are eligible to get a lifetime license at no cost. If you were born after June 30, 1952 your lifetime license is at a greatly discounted rate of $35–$70.

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AUTHOR
Rick Wallace is a passionate angler and fly fisher whose work has appeared in fishing publications including FlyLife. He's appeared in fishing movies, founded a successful fishing site and spends every spare moment on the water.