How Much Is a Fishing License: All 50 States 2024 Prices

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This article provides a table with the up-to-date cost of fishing licenses in all US states and links allowing you to purchase a license online in all 50 states.

(There is no single national fishing license, as recreational fishing in waterways is regulated by the states).

We also provide information here on choosing what type of fishing license you need in each state and where you can buy one.

How Much Is a Fishing License – All States’ Prices in One Table With Online Purchase Links

Every state sets its own price for fishing licenses, and the price of a fishing license varies depending on the duration of the license required and whether or not you are a resident of that state.

The actual price of an annual fishing license in each state for residents and non-residents is tabulated below. The median and average costs of a fishing license are at the bottom of the table. As you can see, based on the average price, you can expect to pay $25 for an annual fishing license if you are a resident and $60 for an out-of-state fishing license.

(click for details and how to buy)
Resident license fees
Non-resident license fees
$14.05 (Freshwater)
$24.75 (Saltwater)
$54.20 (Freshwater)
$53.10 (Saltwater)
Arkansas$22.50 with trout stamp$70.00 with trout stamp
California $52.66$142.50
Colorado $36.08$100.57
Connecticut $32.00$63.00
Delaware $12.70$26.20
Florida$17.00 (Freshwater)
$17.00 (Saltwater)
$32.50 (Combo)
$47.00 (Freshwater)
$47.00 (Saltwater)
Georgia $15.00$50.00
Idaho $30.50$98.25
Illinois $15.00$31.50
Indiana $17.00$35.00
Iowa $22.00$48.00
Kansas $27.50$52.50

$9.50 (Freshwater)
$13.00 (Saltwater)
$60.00 (Freshwater)
$30.00 (Saltwater)
Maine $25.00$64.00
Maryland $25.50 (Freshwater+trout)
$15.00 (Saltwater)
$40.50 (Freshwater+trout)
$22.50 (Saltwater)
Massachusetts $27.50 (Freshwater)
$10.00 (Saltwater)
$37.50 (Freshwater)
$10.00 (Saltwater)
Michigan $26.00$76.00
Minnesota $25.00$51.00
Mississippi $12.29 (Freshwater)
$12.29 (Saltwater)
$64.29 (Freshwater)
$34.29 (Saltwater)
Missouri $12.00$49.00
Montana $31.00$103.50
Nebraska $38.00$84.00
Nevada $40.00$80.00
New Hampshire $45.00 (Freshwater)
$11.00 (Saltwater)
$63.00 (Freshwater)
$11.00 (Saltwater)
New Jersey $33.00 with trout stamp$54.00 with trout stamp
New Mexico $25.00$56.00
New York $25.00$50.00
North Carolina $25.00 (Freshwater)
$16.00 (Saltwater)
$45.00 (Freshwater)
$32.00 (Saltwater)
North Dakota $18.00$48.00
Ohio $25.00$50.96
Oklahoma $25.00$55.00
Oregon $44.00$110.50
Pennsylvania $32.94 with trout stamp$62.94 with trout stamp
Rhode Island $23.50 with trout stamp$40.50 with trout stamp
South Carolina
$10.00 (Freshwater)
$10.00 (Saltwater)
$35.00 (Freshwater)
$35.00 (Saltwater)
South Dakota $28.00$67.00
Tennessee $56.00 with trout stamp$50.00 ($99 with trout stamp)
Texas $30.00 (Freshwater)
$35.00 (Saltwater)
$40.00 (Combo)
$58.00 (Freshwater)
$63.00 (Saltwater)
$68.00 (Combo)
Utah $34.00$85.00
Vermont $28.00$54.00
Virginia $23.00 (Freshwater)
$17.50 (Saltwater)
$39.50 (Combo)
$47.00 (Freshwater)
$25.00 (Saltwater)
$71.00 (Combo)
Washington $29.50 (Freshwater)
$30.05 (Saltwater)
$55.35 (Combo)
$84.50 (Freshwater)
$59.75 (Saltwater)
$124.65 (Combo)
West Virginia $29.00 with trout stamp$53.00 with trout stamp
Wisconsin $30.00 with trout stamp$60.00 with trout stamp
Wyoming $27.00$102.00

Fishing License FAQs:

What Are the Different Types of Licenses?

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All states have a freshwater fishing license. Some states also require a saltwater fishing license. It is worth noting that in some cases, the saltwater fishing license is only required for certain waterways.u003cbru003eu003cbru003eIn a few cases, states offer a combination fishing licenses that allows you to do both freshwater fishing and saltwater fishing in that state.

Temporary/Multi-Day Licenses

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The annual fishing license is the most common type sold because it is the best value for money, particularly if you are a resident of the state. However, you can buy temporary fishing licenses too:u003cbru003e- One day licensesu003cbru003e- Multi-day licenses (most commonly 3-day, 5-day and 10-day licenses)u003cbru003e- Multi-day fishing licenses are valid for consecutive days starting on a date specified at the time of purchase. You can get a 1 day or multi-day fishing license, but at some point, it is cheaper to just buy the annual fishing license. u003cbru003e- Temporary licenses are a great way for non-resident anglers to fish while on vacation in other states. Temporary licenses usually cost less than $30 for non-resident anglers and less than $20 for residents of the state.

Can You Buy a Fishing License Online?

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The only place to buy licenses online is the government website in the state you are fishing in – usually the Fish and Wildlife Department’s site site. We’ve included the right link to the relevant department in each state in our table above. You can use these links to buy a fishing license if you are a resident or a non-resident.u003cbru003eu003cbru003eThere have been warnings of several illegitimate websites that pretend to sell licenses to unsuspecting anglers. Most of these sites get shut down quickly, but they can pop up from time to time.

At What Age Do You Need To Buy a License?

The legal age at which you have to purchase a fishing license varies between 12 and 16, depending on what state you are in. Youth licenses are usually significantly cheaper to help encourage children to fish. Kids under 12 can fish free in most states – but just check local regulations just to be sure.

What Other Groups of People Don’t Need a License?

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Some states have exemptions from license fees for veterans (see u003ca href=u0022 data-type=u0022postu0022 data-id=u00221010610u0022 target=u0022_blanku0022 rel=u0022noreferrer noopeneru0022u003ehereu003c/au003e for details), the disabled (see u003ca href=u0022 data-type=u0022postu0022 data-id=u00221010739u0022u003ehereu003c/au003e), and people aged 65 and over (see here for u003ca href=u0022 data-type=u0022postu0022 data-id=u00221012388u0022 target=u0022_blanku0022 rel=u0022noreferrer noopeneru0022u003eseniors discounts in all statesu003c/au003e).u003cbru003ePeople on active service in the US armed forces don’t need a fishing license in some states.u003cbru003eSome states don’t require a license when you fish for species perceived as undesirable, such as common carp.

Additional License Fees You May See

Some states require extra “endorsement” permits for specific species of fish like trout, salmon, and paddlefish. These are listed in the table above and usually cost around $5 to $15 (on top of the normal license fees), depending on the state. 

Does Walmart Sell Fishing Licenses?

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Yes, Walmart sells fishing licenses at thousands of stores around the US. As we detail in u003ca href=u0022 target=u0022_blanku0022 rel=u0022noreferrer noopeneru0022u003ethis article on buying a fishing license at Walmartu003c/au003e, you can purchase it from the team at the hunting and fishing department.u003cbru003eu003cbru003eWalmart applies a small surcharge to the price charged by the local fish and wildlife department, but it is minimal. The guys at Walmart will also give you a copy of the latest fishing regulations for the area you plan to fish.

Why Do You Need a License To Fish?

Fishing licenses help fund restocking programs, stream and bank rehabilitation efforts, fisheries enforcement, and many other initiatives that benefit recreational anglers. $20 or $30 in license fees a year is a small price to pay for the ongoing sustainability of recreational fishing in your area.

Do You Need a Fishing License for Catch and Release?

Yes, you do. As a general principle, catch and release fishing is encouraged in areas where the u003ca href=u0022 data-type=u0022pageu0022 data-id=u00222016499u0022 target=u0022_blanku0022 rel=u0022noreferrer noopeneru0022u003efish speciesu003c/au003e you are catching is threatened. Remember to u003ca href=u0022 target=u0022_blanku0022 rel=u0022noreferrer noopeneru0022u003ekeep them wetu003c/au003e if you are fishing catch and release.

Do You Need a Fishing License To Fish on Private Property?

In most states, you can fish on a private pond without a fishing license as long as the lake or pond does not have any inlets or outlets and is privately stocked with fish.

Final Thoughts

We hope this guide has helped you find out how much a license costs in your state (or the state you are planning to fish) and provided you with the best type of license to purchase, along with some ideas on how and where to get it.

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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. He's into kayak fishing, ultralight lure fishing and pretty much any other kind of fishing out there.
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