How to Get a Walmart Fishing License: What It Costs & Where to Go

You can get a fishing license in 47 different US states at Walmart stores. Find out where to go within the store and how much it costs in this article

We often get asked can you get a fishing license at Walmart. And the answer is, yes, you can easily get a fishing license from a Walmart stores, as long as it is one that includes a Sports & Outdoors section (almost all do).

Getting a Walmart fishing license is a quick and easy way to make sure you are fishing legally and will cost (on average) about $25 for an annual license.

The fishing licenses sold at Walmart are the exact same documents issued by natural resources departments and are completely legitimate.

And with more than 5000 stores across the US, chances are there is a Walmart near you that you can visit to get a license.

Can You Get a Fishing License at Walmart? Yes, you can get a fishing license at Walmart stores in all states. Head to the Sports & Outdoor section and make sure you bring some photo ID. Pay the fishing license fee applicable in your state and you have a legitimate fishing license.

What Price is a Walmart Fishing License? On average $25 for an annual license for a resident and $60 for a non resident. Fishing licenses bought at Walmart cost the same as via your state’s wildlife department so it varies from state to state.

How to Get a Fishing License at Walmart

It’s not widely known to most anglers, but you can get a fishing license at Walmart stores across the US.

For many people, this Walmart fishing license is a better option than heading into their state’s licensing department or navigating a clunky government website.

In this guide to getting a fishing license at Walmart, we’ve broken down the easiest way to get yourself licensed to avoid fines and ensure you are contributing to the health of our beloved recreational fisheries.

Get a Fishing License at Walmart in Person

Walmart Sporting Goods Section
Walmart Sporting Goods Section

Follow these easy steps to get your Walmart store:

  1. Bring a photo ID and proof of residency (a utility bill, for example)
  2. Head to the Sports and Outdoor section of the store
  3. They’ll give you a form that you can fill out on the spot and hand to the staff
  4. They will double-check your age and the type and duration of license you require (resident or nonresident; saltwater fishing or freshwater fishing) and let you know the price.
  5. There is no test or anything like that, but the Walmart fishing license staff will give you a booklet with the regulations that apply in the state you are getting the license for
  6. Once you’ve paid the applicable fee (see here for fishing license prices in all states), they’ll give you your fishing license, and you are done!
  7. Purchasing a fishing license at Walmart is that easy!

Get a Fishing License at Walmart online

While some articles claim you can get a fishing license online through Walmart, we’ve seen no evidence that that is the case.

You can get fishing licenses online, of course, but they are usually sold via the natural resources department’s website in your state. There are links on these sites to buy the license online. After buying the license online, in some cases, you can print the license out, and you are good to go until they send you the actual license to fish.

Why Get a Walmart Fishing License?

Many people find getting a Walmart fishing license to be convenient as it is a store that they visit frequently. Also, when you get your Walmart fishing license, you can also pick up fishing supplies, including lures and other tackle that you need. And with its convenient opening hours, it is easy to visit a Walmart store and get a Walmart fishing license.

Chances are, if you are a nonresident angler, you won’t know where the departmental office is anyway, so Walmart is an easier option. Nonresidents need a license to fish in pretty much all states.

Walmart Fishing License FAQs

Who Needs a Fishing License?

Anyone who wants to fish in the US needs a fishing license, with a limited number of exemptions.

In some states, people under 16 or 17 or over 65 don’t need a fishing license, and some states have exemptions or discounts for veterans, as well as seniors and people suffering from disabilities.

You need to get a license if you are a resident of the state or a nonresident angler.

What Type of Fishing Licenses Are Available

You can purchase a fishing license in these types:

  • 24-hour fishing licenses.
  • 3 or 5-day fishing licenses.
  • Annual fishing licenses

How Much Does a Walmart Fishing License Cost?

Here are some indicative costs for a Walmart fishing license. Obviously, the fishing license cost varies a bit from state to state and which bodies of water you plan to fish in, but this gives you a rough idea of the expected fishing license cost when you purchase a fishing license. See here for a full list of fishing license prices by state.

  • Licenses for individual residents – $19.
  • Licenses for individual residents of age 66 and above – $10
  • A one-day fishing license for both residents and non-residents – $11
  • Non-resident annual license – $40
  • Three-day tourist fishing licenses – $19

What States Offer Fishing Licenses via Walmart?

Forty-seven states in the US sell Walmart fishing licenses. Walmart has an agreement with these state governments to issue a valid nonresident or resident fishing license that is valid as the government-issued license.

Why Get a Fishing License?

Fishing licenses are not just a revenue-raising exercise for state governments. In most cases, the money raised via licensing fees goes to fish stocking and the enforcement of fishing rules, so it helps to create a better fishery for all recreational fishers.

So think of the fishing license cost as an investment in the quality of the fishery. The money raised via the fishing license cost also helps with river and stream rehabilitation and programs to help get young people fishing.

Where to Buy a Fishing License Near Me

Walmart has almost 5000 stores in the US, so buying a Walmart fishing license is relatively simple and faster and easier than visiting your fish and wildlife department. Other outdoor and hardware retailers also sell licenses, and of course, you can buy a fishing license through the relevant government departments/offices in your state.

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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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