Can a Non-Resident Get a Fishing License? [Definitely YES!]

Non-Resident Fishing License

Every responsible angler knows the importance of fishing license. No matter where you fish, you must have one that is currently valid.

Traveling for angling is the best ways of spending vacation days, so naturally, many people ask how to get non-resident fishing license and is it even possible?

Everyone can get a license, and you don’t have to be a resident to do so. Unfortunately, non-resident license is the most expensive one. You should always check official websites and license requirements stated by local authorities.

Luckily, you have many ways to get a license, and I will mention these ways a bit later. What you should know now is that the process is simple.

Here I will tell you more about non-resident license requirements so that you know everything before your big fishing trip!

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What is a Non-Resident Fishing License?

A non-resident fishing license is a fishing license issued to every angler that is not a local resident.

Resident is considered to be a person that lives in a specific state (when talking about the USA) or lives/it is native in a specific country (Europe and almost all other countries).

To prove your residency, you must have documents that prove it, such as ID card, drivers license, or a passport. As a non-resident, it doesn’t matter where you come from, and same conditions apply to all foreigners.

But let`s get back to residency, especially in the US. Resident is a person that spends majority of the year in a given state and has a permanent address in the area. Mostly, that means at least 183 days per year.

But what if you moved in a state a month ago? Well, that depends on a state, and if some special requirements apply, those are stated by the authorities that issue fishing license.

Keep in mind that these rules can change so it is your responsibility to check.

Can a Non-US Resident Get a Fishing License?

Now you know what is a non-resident fishing license, but what if you come to the USA from another country, maybe even from another continent?

Can a non-US resident get a fishing license?

YES, no matter where you come from, you qualify for a non-resident license. For example, if you are going to Florida and plan to fish there, and you are coming from Australia, you will buy the same license as someone who is coming from California.

The same applies for a US resident travelling abroad for fishing (with some exceptions like overseas territories). If you are USA angler travelling to any European country for example (like my Slovenia), you will buy a non-resident license there.

Non Resident Fishing License - US

Where Can a Non-Resident Buy/Get a Fishing License?

Non-resident can buy a license in the same places as a resident. So, how can a non-US resident get a fishing license?

The easiest way is online. It is easy, fast, and can be done from anywhere. This is my favorite way. When travelling to foreign locations, you are always risking that the local store that sells licenses closes early, or that maybe there is a national holiday somewhere so you will end up without a license for the day.

But, if you really want to buy it in person, you can do it in tackle stores, bait stores, authorities offices, or even in stores like Walmart. Your options are various, as long as the stores are opened during your visit.

How Much Does a Non-Resident Fishing License Cost?

Let`s get to the important topic. How much will you have to pay?

It depends on a state, and although non-residents pay the most, it is still affordable.

Texas

In Texas, every non-resident needs a license except those younger than 17, Louisiana seniors who are older than 65 and have a valid Louisiana license, and Oklahoma residents older than 65.

Yearly license costs $58 for freshwater and $63 for saltwater. If you want all-water option, it will cost $68.

Florida

In Florida, non-residents must pay $47 for yearly freshwater license. There is a three-day option for $17, which is ideal for weekend trips. For those who are on a weeklong vacation there is a 7-day license for $30. Only exception are anglers younger than 16. Prices are the same for saltwater.

Georgia

In Georgia, non-residents can buy yearly license for $50. Everyone older than 16 need to have it. There is an option to buy day license for $10 and then $3.5 for any consecutive additional day. The same license covers saltwater.

Minnesota

Due to geographical position, only freshwater license may be bought in Minnesota as there is no saltwater.

Non-residents can buy various licenses, individual or family options. Here are some examples. Couples license costs $54 for 14 days. One day individual license is $14. If you want to fish for a week, it will cost you $43.

Additional stamps are required for certain species.

South Carolina

In South Carolina, non-resident can get annual license for $35, or a 3-year license for $105. Two-week option costs $11.

For saltwater, you will have to pay a bit more. Yearly license is $75, 7-day license is $35, and one-day is $10.

California

Annual option for a non-resident costs $142. This is the most expensive license on the list here, and among the priciest in the US.

For 10-day fishing, you will have to pay $52. Californian license covers both freshwater and saltwater fishing. It is required for all anglers older than 16.

Colorado

Non-resident will have to pay $102 for annual license. Of course, this is for freshwater and there is no saltwater license.

Additional rod can be used if you pay $11 extra. There is also a 5-day license for $33 and one day for $17. Additional day can be bought for $7.

Tennessee

This is one more state with freshwater only. Everyone who is 13 or older needs a license. As a non-resident, you can buy it for $99 for all species, or $50 that covers everything except trout. Three-day all species costs $40, or $20 without trout. For 10-day all species you will have to pay $60, or $30 without trout.

Idaho

In Idaho, only freshwater exists, and non-residents can buy a license for $108 valid for a year, or $320 for three years.

Additional consecutive days are charged $7 per day. For $44 you can buy three-day salmon and steelhead license. Only exempted anglers are those younger than 14.

Alaska

And lastly, Alaska. It is both freshwater and saltwater fishing paradise. To enjoy it, you will have to pay $15 for one day, $30 for 3 days, $45 for 7 days, $75 for 14 days, or $100 for one year.

Non-residents older than 16 must have a valid license. These requirements and prices apply to both freshwater and saltwater.

Non Resident Fishing License - Cost

Do Non-Residents Over 65 [Seniors] Need a Fishing License?

Seniors often have discounts, but unfortunately, that it reserved for residents only, at least in 90% of the cases. Exempted form having a license are just kids, both residents and nonresidents.

In specific situations, like in previously mentioned Texas, seniors can be exempted form these rules if they fit certain requirements.

But, if not specifically stated otherwise, it is safe to assume that even seniors need non-resident fishing licenses. This apples to all states and counties, no matter where you come from.

Do Non-Residents Under 14 [Kids] Need a Fishing License?

As already mentioned, no they don’t. But the limit is not necessarily 14. It can be a bit younger or older, depending on a state.

Although exempted from having a license, young anglers must obey all rules and regulations that apply to older anglers. This includes closed season, off limit areas and species, number of rods, allowed bait, size and bag limit, or any other specific rule that may apply in a certain area.

Keep in mind that if you are fishing with a child, you must have a valid license, even if you are just helping a young angler learn how to fish.

Non Resident Fishing License - Kids

What Happens if You Get Caught Without a Fishing License?

Fishing without a license is the most expensive form of fishing. First of all, you are giving bad example to everyone around you.

Secondly, you may get caught. If it is an honest mistake, you may end up with a warning. Otherwise, you are risking a fine that can go up to a few hundred dollars.

Your catch may be confiscated, and sometimes your gear too. If you are caught with protected species, or in protected area, you could face some jail time and thousands of dollars in fines. All of this is even bigger problem if you are a foreigner.

Be responsible, buy a license, and enjoy fishing!

Conclusion

I think I explained what is a non-resident fishing license, and the importance of having it. As a traveler, you must obey laws and regulations of states or countries you are visiting.

When compared with prices for your trip or even fishing gear, non-resident fishing license is actually quite affordable.

Buy it online or in a local store and enjoy care-free fishing vacation. Obey all rules that go with it and hopefully you will land a big one!

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