PA Trout Fishing License Guide: How to Get Yours

Get Your PA Trout Fishing License Easily: Step-by-Step Instructions

Are you ready to experience the thrill of trout fishing in Pennsylvania’s stunning waters? Before you can cast your line and reel in your catch, you’ll need to obtain a valid PA trout fishing license. Don’t worry; the process is simple and straightforward. In this comprehensive guide, we’ll walk you through each step of acquiring your license, ensuring you’re fully prepared for your upcoming fishing adventure.

Why You Need a PA Trout Fishing License

It’s Required by Law

In Pennsylvania, anyone aged 16 and above must possess a valid fishing license to fish in the state’s waters. This requirement applies to both residents and non-residents alike. Fishing without a proper license can lead to fines and legal consequences, so it’s essential to obtain one before embarking on your fishing trip.

Licenses Fund Conservation Efforts

By purchasing a PA trout fishing license, you’re not only gaining access to world-class trout fishing opportunities but also contributing to crucial conservation efforts. The revenue generated from license sales directly supports the Pennsylvania Fish and Boat Commission’s initiatives, including maintaining and improving fish habitats, implementing stocking programs, and promoting sustainable fishing practices. Your license purchase plays a vital role in preserving Pennsylvania’s fishing heritage for generations to come.

Types of PA Trout Fishing Licenses

Pennsylvania offers a variety of trout fishing licenses to accommodate the needs of different anglers:

Annual Resident Permit

If you’re a resident of Pennsylvania, you can purchase an annual fishing license that remains valid from December 1st of the current year to December 31st of the following year. As of 2024, the cost of an annual resident fishing license is $22.97.

Annual Non-Resident Permit

Non-residents can also obtain an annual fishing license, which shares the same validity period as the resident license. The cost for a non-resident annual license in 2024 is $52.97.

Tourist Permits

For those visiting Pennsylvania for a shorter duration, the state offers two convenient tourist permit options:

  • 7-Day Tourist Permit: This permit is perfect for a week-long fishing getaway, as it remains valid for seven consecutive days. The cost for a 7-day tourist permit in 2024 is $34.97.
  • 3-Day Tourist Permit: If you’re planning a shorter fishing trip, the 3-day tourist permit is an excellent choice. It’s valid for three consecutive days and costs $26.97 in 2024.

How to Get Your PA Trout Fishing License

Obtaining your PA trout fishing license is a breeze, with two convenient options available:


The quickest and most convenient way to get your license is by purchasing it online through the Pennsylvania Fish and Boat Commission’s official website. Follow these simple steps:

  1. Visit the Pennsylvania Fish and Boat Commission’s online store.
  2. Click on the “Buy a License” button.
  3. Select the appropriate license type (e.g., annual resident, non-resident, or tourist permit).
  4. Provide the necessary personal information, such as your name, address, and date of birth.
  5. Pay the license fee using a credit card or debit card.
  6. Print your license immediately or opt to receive it via email.

In Person

Alternatively, you can purchase your PA trout fishing license in person at various locations throughout the state, including:

  • County treasurers’ offices
  • Registered license issuing agents (e.g., sporting goods stores, bait and tackle shops)
  • Pennsylvania Fish and Boat Commission regional offices

To find a license issuing agent near you, consult the PFBC’s interactive map.

Required Information

When applying for your PA trout fishing license, you’ll need to provide the following information:

  • Full name
  • Address
  • Date of birth
  • Phone number
  • Email address (optional)
  • Driver’s license number or state-issued ID number

PA Trout Fishing Regulations You Should Know

To ensure a responsible and enjoyable fishing experience, it’s crucial to familiarize yourself with Pennsylvania’s trout fishing regulations:

Trout Seasons

Pennsylvania has two distinct trout seasons:

  1. Regular Season: The regular season typically begins on the first Saturday in April and continues through Labor Day. During this period, anglers can keep up to five trout per day, with a minimum size of seven inches.
  2. Extended Season: The extended season starts the day after Labor Day and runs through the last day of February of the following year. During this time, anglers can keep up to three trout per day, with a minimum size of seven inches.

Size and Creel Limits

In addition to the seasonal limits mentioned above, there are specific size and creel limits for different trout species:

  • Brown Trout and Rainbow Trout: The minimum size for these species is 7 inches, with a daily limit of 5 (combined species).
  • Brook Trout: The minimum size for brook trout is 7 inches, with a daily limit of 3.
  • Lake Trout: For lake trout, the minimum size is 15 inches, with a daily limit of 2.

Special Regulations Areas

Certain waters in Pennsylvania are subject to special regulations that differ from the statewide rules. These areas may have unique seasons, size limits, creel limits, or gear restrictions. Always consult the Pennsylvania Fishing Summary Book or the PFBC website for specific regulations pertaining to the water you plan to fish.


With your PA trout fishing license in hand and a clear understanding of the regulations, you’re ready to embark on an unforgettable fishing adventure in Pennsylvania’s pristine waters. Remember to practice catch-and-release when possible, respect the environment, and cherish the beauty of Pennsylvania’s trout streams. Tight lines and happy fishing!

For a comprehensive resource on fishing licenses and regulations across the United States, visit Our website is dedicated to providing up-to-date information and solutions for anglers looking to explore the diverse fishing opportunities available throughout the country.

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