Maine Fishing License Guide: How to Obtain Your License

Fishing is a popular recreational activity in Maine that draws hundreds of thousands of anglers each year. However, to legally fish in the state’s bountiful freshwater lakes, rivers, streams, or saltwater coastline, most people age 16 and older need to purchase a fishing license. This guide will provide everything you need to know about getting properly licensed for a fishing trip in Maine.

Who Needs a Maine Fishing License

A valid Maine fishing license is required for both residents and non-residents age 16 and older who want to:

  • Fish in inland waters
  • Transport fish taken from inland waters
  • Fish coastal waters or have migratory fish in possession

There are a few exceptions to the license requirement:

  • Free Fishing Days: On February 17–18, 2024, and June 1–2, 2024, all state residents and non-residents can fish without a license. However, all other regulations still apply.
  • Landowners: Maine residents and their immediate family members can fish without a license on water surrounded by land they own and live on.

Types of Maine Fishing Licenses

Maine offers several types of fishing licenses for both residents and non-residents:

Resident Licenses

  • Season Fishing License ($25): Valid for the calendar year. Allows fishing in inland and coastal waters.
  • Combination Hunting and Fishing ($43): Allows fishing and hunting of legal species.
  • 1-Day Fishing License ($11): You can exchange for a season fishing license by paying the difference in cost.

Non-Resident Licenses

  • Season Fishing License ($64): Valid for the calendar year.
  • 15-Day Fishing License ($47): Can exchange for a season fishing license by paying $17 plus agent fee.
  • 7-Day Fishing License ($43)
  • 3-Day Fishing License ($23)
  • 1-Day Fishing License ($11)

How to Obtain a Maine Fishing License

You have several options for purchasing your Maine fishing license:


The fastest and most convenient way is to use Maine’s Online Sportsman’s Electronic System (MOSES) portal. You can purchase fishing licenses online 24/7 and print them out upon payment.


Licenses can also be obtained in person at certain town clerk offices, sporting goods stores, bait shops, convenience stores, and turnpike service centers. Most agents charge an additional $2 agent fee.

By Phone

To order a license by phone, you can contact the Maine Department of Inland Fisheries and Wildlife (MDIFW) at 207-287-8000.

When applying, you will need to provide identifying information like your date of birth. First-time hunting license buyers also need proof of completing a Hunter Safety Course.

License Fees

License fees for Maine fishing licenses are:

License Type Resident Fee Non-Resident Fee
Season (16+) $25 $64
Combination Hunting & Fishing $43 $150
1-Day $11 $11

Discounted licenses are available for certain groups, like disabled veterans, seniors age 70 and older, and students. Lifetime licenses are also available.

Carrying and Displaying Your License

When fishing in Maine, you must have an electronic or paper copy of your fishing license on you at all times. If asked by any warden, law enforcement officer, or Maine wildlife official, you must present your license for inspection.

Fishing Rules and Regulations

In addition to having a proper license, anglers must follow Maine fishing laws covering seasons, bag limits, size restrictions, and acceptable gear for inland and coastal waters. Make sure you review the statewide regulations before fishing.

Obtaining a license is essential for legally fishing Maine’s abundant waters. Follow this guide to get properly licensed based on your resident status before enjoying a fishing trip in Vacationland!

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