Pennsylvania Fishing License: Everything You Need to Know

If you’re planning to cast a line in the Keystone State, you’ll need a Pennsylvania fishing license. Not only does this license allow you to fish legally in Pennsylvania’s waters, but it also supports conservation efforts. This article provides a comprehensive guide on obtaining a Pennsylvania fishing license, ensuring you’re well-equipped for your angling adventures.

Types of Pennsylvania Fishing Licenses

Pennsylvania offers a variety of fishing licenses to cater to different needs. Here are the most common types:

  • Resident Fishing License: For Pennsylvania residents aged 16 or older who have lived in the state for at least 90 days before purchasing the license.
  • Non-Resident Fishing License: For non-Pennsylvania residents aged 16 or older.
  • Senior Resident Fishing License: For Pennsylvania residents aged 65 or older.
  • Youth Fishing License: For Pennsylvania residents aged 15 or younger.

In addition to these, Pennsylvania also offers a combination fishing and hunting license, a trout or salmon permit, and a Lake Erie permit. More information about these licenses can be found on the Pennsylvania Fish and Boat Commission’s website.

License Fees

The cost of a fishing license in Pennsylvania depends on the type of license and its duration. Here are the current fees for the most common Pennsylvania fishing licenses:

License Type Resident Senior Resident Non-Resident
Lifetime Not Available $51.90 Not Available
10-Year $211.90 Not Available $511.90
5-Year $106.90 $51.90 $256.90
3-Year $63.90 $31.90 $154.90
Annual $22.90 $11.90 $52.90
7-Day Not Available Not Available $34.90
3-Day Not Available Not Available $26.90
1-Day $11.90 Not Available $26.90

Lake Erie and Trout/Salmon Permit

If you’re planning to fish for trout or salmon in Lake Erie and take any of them home, you’ll need a permit. You can purchase permits for fishing or hunting on the Great Lake for these delicious species. The following table outlines the costs associated with obtaining a trout or salmon fishing license (note that the same fee applies to both locals and visitors):

Validity Combo Individual
10-Year $141.90 $81.90
5-Year $71.90 $41.90
3-Year $43.90 $25.90
1-Year $15.90 $9.90

How to Buy a Pennsylvania Fishing License

There are several ways to purchase a Pennsylvania fishing license:

  • Online: Visit the Pennsylvania Fish and Boat Commission’s website and follow the instructions provided. You will need to provide personal information and payment details to complete the transaction.
  • By Phone: Call the Pennsylvania Fish and Boat Commission at 877-707-4085 to buy a fishing license over the phone.
  • In Person: You can buy your Pennsylvania fishing license in person at regional offices of the Pennsylvania Fish and Boat Commission, sporting goods stores like Cabela’s, Dick’s Sporting Goods, and Fleet Farm, or at bait shops.

Pennsylvania Fishing License Regulations

Before you cast your line in any of the state’s waterways, you need to be aware of the Pennsylvania Fishing License Rules. The Pennsylvania Fish and Boat Commission is in charge of setting fishing rules and ensuring they are followed. The regulations can vary based on the type of fish you are targeting, the season, and the location where you plan to fish.

Some common fishing regulations include:

  • Catch Limits: These specify the number of fish that you can keep per day. Different species of fish may have different catch limits.
  • Size Limits: These specify the minimum or maximum size of the fish that you can keep. This regulation helps to protect the breeding stock of fish.
  • Seasons: Some fish species have specific seasons when they can be legally caught. It’s important to know these seasons to avoid fishing during prohibited times.
  • Special Regulations: Some waters in Pennsylvania have special fishing regulations that you should be aware of. These regulations can include specific gear restrictions, catch-and-release requirements, and more.

The Pennsylvania Fish and Boat Commission provides detailed information about fishing regulations in the state on their website. Before you go fishing, make sure to check the regulations for the area where you plan to fish. You can also call the commission to find out more about specific rules or to report fishing that is against the law.


Fishing in Pennsylvania is a fantastic way to explore the state’s beautiful waterways and support conservation efforts. With different types of licenses available and various ways to purchase them, it’s easy to get the right one for your needs. Remember to always have your license with you while fishing and follow the rules and regulations to ensure a safe and enjoyable fishing experience in Pennsylvania.

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