F80 Fishing License: Everything You Need to Know

Fishing is a popular recreational activity in New York, with over 7,500 lakes and ponds, 70,000 miles of rivers and streams, and hundreds of miles of diverse coastline to explore. To legally fish these abundant freshwaters and saltwaters, most people need to purchase a New York State Fishing License.

There are several types of fishing licenses available for both residents and non-residents. These range from single-day licenses costing just $5 up to lifetime licenses for $460. Discounted or free licenses may also be available for certain groups.

This comprehensive guide will provide everything you need to know about obtaining an F80 fishing license in New York.

Who Needs a Fishing License in New York?

In general, anyone over the age of 16 needs a fishing license to catch freshwater fish and certain saltwater species in New York. This includes both residents and non-residents.

You do not need a fishing license if:

  • You are fishing on a licensed fishing preserve
  • You are fishing during New York’s designated Free Fishing Days (typically 4 days per year)
  • You are attending a free fishing clinic
  • You are a resident landowner fishing your own occupied farmland
  • You have a farm fish pond license fishing those private waters
  • You are Native American fishing on reservation land
  • You reside at a VA hospital/facility in New York

For saltwater fishing, a marine fishing registry is required instead of a fishing license when catching migratory or saltwater species like striped bass.

Types of Fishing Licenses Available

New York offers several types of fishing licenses valid for freshwater fishing:

  • Annual license – valid for 365 days
    • $25 for residents age 16-69
    • $50 for non-residents
  • 7-day license
    • $12 for residents
    • $28 for non-residents
  • 1-day license
    • $5 for residents
    • $10 for non-residents
  • Lifetime licenses
    • $460 for residents age 0-69. Not available for non-residents.

Discounted or free licenses are also available for certain groups, including:

  • Seniors over 70 years old
  • Disabled veterans
  • Legally blind residents
  • Native Americans fishing on reservations
  • Military members of NY Organized Militia

Purchasing a Fishing License

Fishing licenses can easily be purchased onlineby phone, or in-person at many bait & tackle shops, sporting goods stores, town clerks offices, and more.

When applying, you will need:

  • Proof of NY residency to get a resident license
  • Your driver’s license or non-driver ID number
  • credit/debit card to pay

Online purchases allow you to print out a temporary license immediately as proof of licensing until the actual license arrives by mail later.

General Fishing License Regulations & Info

  • Fishing licenses must be kept on your person while fishing as proof of licensing
  • Licenses need to be shown to any authorities who request to see them
  • Licenses expire annually on March 31st
  • 1-day licenses are only valid for the specified calendar day
  • Special permits may be needed for certain species like trout

Border Water Fishing Regulations

New York’s fishing license is valid on some border waters like the Delaware River and Greenwood Lake (with restrictions) but is not valid on other boundary waters including:

  • Lake Ontario (bordering Canada)
  • Lake Erie (bordering Canada & Pennsylvania)
  • St. Lawrence River (bordering Canada)
  • Niagara River (bordering Canada)
  • Lake Champlain (bordering Vermont & Canada)

So check regulations carefully before fishing boundary waters.

Saltwater Fishing Regulations & Licenses

A New York State fishing license covers freshwater fishing only. For saltwater fishing, most anglers need a marine fishing registry instead of a fishing license when fishing:

  • In the ocean
  • In any tidal waters
  • For migratory fish of the sea

The registry costs $15 annually. Some additional permits for fishing specific saltwater species may also be required. Verify regulations before saltwater fishing.

Enforcing Fishing Regulations

Conservation officers and other authorities enforce fishing licenses and regulations in New York. Penalties for violations can include fines up to $250 per offense.

Help protect New York’s aquatic resources by understanding and following all fishing regulations. Purchase required licenses, adhere to limits, and report violations.


We’ve covered everything you need to know about getting an F80 fishing license in New York State. With reasonable license fees and abundant waters to explore, fishing New York’s lakes, rivers and coastline promises fantastic adventures. Verify you have the proper permits, learn the local regulations, and respect catch limits when landing your next big catch!

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