NY Fishing License Cost: Your Guide to Prices and Fees

New York Fishing License Cost in 2024: The Ultimate Guide

Fishing is a beloved pastime for many New Yorkers, offering a chance to relax, enjoy nature, and hopefully reel in a big catch. However, before you can cast your line in the Empire State’s waters, you’ll need to obtain a valid New York fishing license. In this comprehensive guide, we’ll break down everything you need to know about New York fishing license costs in 2024, including types of licenses, fees, requirements, exemptions, and how to purchase one.

Types of New York Fishing Licenses and Fees

New York offers several types of fishing licenses to cater to different angling needs and budgets. Here are the main license types and their associated costs for 2024:

License Type Resident Fee Non-Resident Fee
Annual $25 $50
1-Day $5 $10
7-Day $12 $28

*Prices are subject to change and do not include the $10 transaction fee for phone or internet orders.

In addition to these standard licenses, New York also offers:

  • Lifetime Fishing License: A one-time fee of $460 for residents only, providing a lifetime of fishing privileges.
  • Senior Fishing License: An annual fee of $5 for residents aged 70 and above.
  • Disabled Veteran Fishing License: A free annual license for resident veterans with a 40% or more service-connected disability.

It’s important to note that all anglers aged 16 and older must have a valid fishing license to fish in New York’s waters, including lakes, rivers, streams, and the ocean up to 3 miles from shore.

How to Get a Fishing License in NY

Getting a fishing license in New York is a simple process with several convenient options:

  1. Online: Visit the New York State Department of Environmental Conservation (DEC) website to purchase your license securely online. You’ll receive a printable temporary license, with your official license arriving by mail within 10-14 days.
  2. By Phone: Call 1-866-933-2257 to purchase your license over the phone using a credit card. Note that there is an additional $10 transaction fee for phone orders.
  3. In-Person: Visit any license-issuing agent, such as sporting goods stores, tackle shops, or town clerks’ offices, to purchase your license in person. Find a nearby agent using the DEC’s license issuer locator.

When purchasing your license, you’ll need to provide personal information such as your name, address, date of birth, and driver’s license or non-driver ID number. If you’re a resident, you must also provide proof of residency, such as a valid New York driver’s license or non-driver ID.

Who Needs a Fishing License in New York?

As mentioned earlier, all anglers aged 16 and older must have a valid fishing license to fish in New York’s waters. However, there are a few exceptions:

  • Free Fishing Days: New York offers several free fishing days throughout the year, allowing residents and non-residents to fish without a license. In 2024, the free fishing days are June 29-30 and September 28.
  • Private Property: If you’re fishing on private property with the owner’s permission, you do not need a license. However, this exemption does not apply to private property where a fee is charged for fishing access.
  • Saltwater Fishing: While you need a license to fish in the ocean up to 3 miles from shore, you do not need a license for saltwater fishing if you’re on a licensed charter boat or party boat.

NY Fishing License Exemptions and Discounts

New York offers several exemptions and discounts for fishing licenses:

  • Senior Discount: Residents aged 70 and above can purchase a discounted annual fishing license for just $5.
  • Disabled Veteran Exemption: Resident veterans with a 40% or more service-connected disability are eligible for a free annual fishing license.
  • Native American Exemption: Members of the Shinnecock and Unkechaug Native American nations are exempt from needing a fishing license when fishing on their reservations or in adjacent waters.
  • Legally Blind Exemption: Legally blind residents are exempt from needing a fishing license but must carry proof of their disability while fishing.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) About NY Fishing Licenses

  1. Q: Can I use my New York fishing license to fish in other states? A: No, a New York fishing license is only valid for fishing within New York state waters. If you plan to fish in another state, you’ll need to obtain a license from that state’s fish and wildlife agency.
  2. Q: Do I need a separate license for saltwater fishing? A: If you’re fishing in the ocean up to 3 miles from shore, your regular New York fishing license covers you. However, if you’re fishing on a licensed charter boat or party boat, you do not need an individual license.
  3. Q: What happens if I lose my fishing license? A: If you lose your fishing license, you can easily replace it online, by phone, or in person at any license-issuing agent. There is a small fee for replacement licenses.
  4. Q: Are there any size or catch limits I need to be aware of? A: Yes, New York has specific size and catch limits for various fish species to promote sustainable fishing practices. Be sure to review the DEC’s fishing regulations guide before heading out to fish.
  5. Q: Can I purchase a fishing license as a gift for someone else? A: Yes, you can purchase a gift fishing license for another person online, by phone, or in person. You’ll need to provide the recipient’s personal information, such as their name, address, and date of birth.


Obtaining a fishing license is a crucial step for any angler looking to enjoy New York’s diverse fishing opportunities. By understanding the types of licenses available, their costs, and how to purchase them, you can ensure you’re fishing legally and responsibly. Remember to review the state’s fishing regulations, practice catch and release when appropriate, and above all, have fun out on the water!

Whether you’re a seasoned angler or a first-time fisher, New York’s abundant lakes, rivers, and coastal waters offer something for everyone. So get your license, grab your gear, and get ready to make some unforgettable fishing memories in the Empire State.

For the most up-to-date information on New York fishing license costs and regulations, visit the official New York State Department of Environmental Conservation website.

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