The Fastest Way to Purchase a Freshwater Fishing License in the U.S.

Fishing Licenses The Fastest Way to Purchase a Freshwater Fishing License in the U.S.

The Fastest Way to Purchase a Freshwater Fishing License in Any State

If you are planning a fishing trip to a nearby lake, river, or other body of freshwater, purchasing a fishing license is a must. Purchasing fishing licenses online makes obtaining a freshwater fishing license easier than ever. The cost for a freshwater fishing license varies from around $25 to over $50, depending on the state and your residency status. Still, it is a must-have to legally fish in every state in the U.S. and the District of Columbia. Not paying for a freshwater fishing license or saltwater fishing license before heading out on the water is risky and can lead to expensive fines. Therefore, knowing the steps for purchasing a fishing license is necessary for anglers across the United States.

With many states providing a fishing license online, getting a freshwater license can be simple. However, if you do not know where to begin, DoNotPay’s online tool can help. DoNotPay makes getting a freshwater fishing license fast and easy without the hassle of figuring out the type of fishing license required on your own. 

What are the Different Types of Freshwater Fishing Licenses?

When purchasing a freshwater fishing license for the first time, the options can seem overwhelming. Understanding the different fishing licenses is necessary to decide the correct one needed for your fishing trip. Whether you plan to catch fish within the state you live in or at a travel destination in another state, you'll need to purchase any necessary license and additional stamps/permits required if fishing for specific species or in designated areas.

Resident Freshwater Fishing LicenseYour license rate is typically cheaper if you are a resident of the state you are purchasing the freshwater fishing license for.
Non-Resident Freshwater Fishing LicenseIf you are fishing in freshwater bodies outside your home state, you must purchase a non-resident fishing license. While the cost for a freshwater non-resident license is typically higher than for residents of the state, it is still an affordable option for spending time outdoors.
Annual Freshwater Fishing LicenseA yearly freshwater fishing license ensures the ability to legally fish in the state for the calendar year. An annual license is often popular among avid anglers.
Single-Day Freshwater Fishing LicenseWhen on vacation or if you only occasionally fish, a one or two-day license allows you to legally catch fish in local lakes and streams for only the days you purchase it. Typically, it is the most affordable option for the occasional angler.
Multi-Day Freshwater Fishing LicenseMany visitors who plan fishing trips in other states purchase a three or seven-day freshwater fishing license. It allows the purchasers to lake, river, or backcountry fish for a set number of days.

Steps to Purchasing a Freshwater Fishing License on Your Own

While all fishermen know a fishing license is required to legally catch fish from America's waterways for recreational or business purposes, many first-time anglers may not know where to get a fishing license.

  1. Find the state's recreational licensing website for the corresponding destination you'll need a freshwater fishing license.
  2. Create an account to access your license from their fishing app or use your phone or tablet to log into your account.
  3. Indicate whether you're a state resident or a visitor (non-resident).
  4. Choose the type of freshwater fishing license needed. You may only require a single-day, three-day, or week-long license if you are vacationing.
  5. Add any additional permits or fish-specific stamps required if fishing in listed freshwater areas or for certain species.
  6. Complete your freshwater fishing license purchase to receive confirmation or a reference number to start fishing right away.

The process of obtaining a fishing license in any state online is easier than:

  • Finding a retail location approved to sell state licenses
  • Standing in line to purchase a freshwater fishing license
  • Openly giving out your contact information for other shoppers to hear
  • Wasting time in a store when you could've been fishing

However, the online freshwater fishing license purchase can be complex and hard to navigate, especially if purchasing multiple freshwater fishing licenses. DoNotPay takes the hassle of creating multiple accounts for different states and purchases freshwater fishing licenses on your behalf, so you can start fishing more quickly. 

Do You Always Need a License for Freshwater Fishing? 

In most states, anyone between the ages of 16 to 65 must have a freshwater fishing license when catching bass or other freshwater fish for sport or business. It is best to check with the state and localities you're obtaining a license, but the typical exceptions to requiring a fishing license are:

  • Anyone under the state's minimum fishing license age requirement
  • Senior citizens over the state's fishing license age requirement
  • Fishing on a private pond or waterway on family-owned land

DoNotPay Makes it Easy to Get your Freshwater Fishing License 

Determining the freshwater fishing license type and navigating the steps to creating an account for each state can be time-consuming and confusing. Luckily, DoNotPay makes getting your freshwater fishing license in any state simple and straightforward.  

How to get your freshwater fishing license using DoNotPay:

If you want to get your fishing license but don't know where to start, DoNotPay has you covered in 3 easy steps:

  1. Search "fishing license" on DoNotPay and select the state you would like a fishing license for.


  2. Indicate whether you are a resident or non-resident, and choose the type of license you want. For example, saltwater vs. freshwater license, three-day only pass, and more.


  3. Provide your contact information, a copy of your government-issued ID, and pay the fee required by the state.


Contact DoNotPay to experience the easy way to get your freshwater fishing license online. We purchase freshwater, saltwater, and other licenses on your behalf, so you can legally begin fishing quicker with less upfront paperwork.

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