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TN Fishing License Cost: The Ultimate Guide for 2024

Are you planning a fishing trip to the beautiful state of Tennessee in 2024? Before you cast your line, it’s essential to understand the fishing license requirements and costs. In this comprehensive guide, we’ll cover everything you need to know about obtaining a Tennessee fishing license, with a special focus on daily permit options.

Why You Need a Fishing License in Tennessee

Tennessee is home to a diverse array of fish species and stunning waterways, making it a popular destination for anglers. However, to legally fish in the state’s public waters, you must possess a valid Tennessee fishing license. This requirement applies to both residents and non-residents aged 13 and older.

Purchasing a fishing license not only ensures compliance with state regulations but also contributes to the conservation and management of Tennessee’s fisheries. The funds generated from license sales support various initiatives, including:

  • Fish stocking programs
  • Habitat restoration and enhancement
  • Access improvements
  • Educational programs
  • Research and monitoring

By obtaining a fishing license, you’re actively participating in the preservation of Tennessee’s aquatic resources for future generations.

Tennessee Fishing License Options

Tennessee offers a variety of fishing license options to cater to different angler preferences and durations of stay. Let’s explore the available choices:

Daily Fishing Permits

If you’re planning a short fishing trip or want to test the waters before committing to a longer license, a daily fishing permit is an excellent option. Here’s what you need to know:

  • Resident Daily Fishing Permit: Tennessee residents can purchase a daily fishing permit for just $6.50 (as of 2024). This permit allows you to fish for a single day in all public waters across the state.
  • Non-Resident Daily Fishing Permit: For non-residents visiting Tennessee, the daily fishing permit costs $11.50 (as of 2024). Like the resident version, this permit grants you access to all public waters for a single day of fishing.

It’s important to note that daily fishing permits do not include trout fishing privileges. If you wish to target trout, you’ll need to purchase an additional trout license (more on that later).

Annual Fishing Licenses

For anglers who plan to fish in Tennessee more frequently or throughout the year, an annual fishing license offers better value and convenience. The costs for annual licenses in 2024 are as follows:

  • Resident Annual Fishing License: Tennessee residents can purchase an annual fishing license for $33.00. This license is valid for 365 days from the date of purchase and allows you to fish in all public waters across the state.
  • Non-Resident Annual Fishing License: Non-residents can obtain an annual fishing license for $49.00. Like the resident version, this license is valid for 365 days and grants access to all public waters in Tennessee.

Annual fishing licenses provide the flexibility to fish whenever you want throughout the year without the need to purchase daily permits each time you hit the water.

Trout Fishing Licenses

If you’re interested in fishing for trout in Tennessee, you’ll need to purchase an additional trout license along with your regular fishing license. Trout licenses are required for all anglers, regardless of age, who fish in designated trout waters.

  • Resident Trout License: Tennessee residents can add a trout license to their existing fishing license for an additional $21.00 (as of 2024).
  • Non-Resident Trout License: Non-residents can purchase a trout license for $41.00 (as of 2024) to complement their regular fishing license.

Trout licenses are valid for the same duration as your regular fishing license (daily or annual) and must be renewed accordingly.

Specialty Licenses and Exemptions

Tennessee offers several specialty licenses and exemptions to accommodate specific groups of anglers:

  • Lifetime Sportsman License: Tennessee residents can invest in a lifetime sportsman license, which includes both hunting and fishing privileges. The cost varies based on age, ranging from $320.00 for children under 3 years old to $1,976.00 for adults aged 13-50 (as of 2024).
  • Senior Citizen Licenses: Tennessee residents aged 65 and older can purchase discounted annual fishing licenses. The senior citizen annual fishing license costs $10.00, while the senior citizen annual sportsman license (including hunting and fishing) is priced at $49.00 (as of 2024).
  • Disabled Licenses: Tennessee offers discounted fishing licenses for residents with certain disabilities. These include:
    • Legally blind individuals
    • Persons permanently confined to a wheelchair
    • Intellectually disabled individuals
    • Recipients of SSI benefits due to intellectual disability
    • Disabled veterans with a 30% or more war-related disability or 100% service-connected disability

    The cost for a permanent sport fishing license for disabled individuals is $10.00 (as of 2024).

  • Exemptions: Some anglers may be exempt from purchasing a fishing license in Tennessee. These include:
    • Children under 13 years old (resident or non-resident)
    • Tennessee residents born before March 1, 1926
    • Military personnel on leave with valid leave papers
    • Landowners fishing on their own property
    • Tenants and their dependents fishing on the landowner’s property with permission

It’s crucial to review the specific requirements and documentation needed for specialty licenses and exemptions to ensure eligibility.

Where to Purchase a Tennessee Fishing License

Obtaining a Tennessee fishing license is a simple process with multiple options available:

  1. Online: Visit the Tennessee Wildlife Resources Agency (TWRA) website to purchase your fishing license online. You can print your license immediately or save it on your mobile device.
  2. TWRA Mobile App: Download the “TWRA On the Go” mobile app for iOS or Android devices. The app allows you to purchase and store your fishing license digitally.
  3. License Agents: Over 900 license agents across Tennessee, including sporting goods stores, bait and tackle shops, and some county clerk offices, can issue fishing licenses in person.
  4. TWRA Regional Offices: Visit one of the four TWRA regional offices located in Jackson, Nashville, Crossville, and Morristown to purchase your fishing license directly from the agency.

When purchasing your license, be prepared to provide your personal information, including your name, address, date of birth, and Social Security Number (required by federal law).

2024 Tennessee Fishing Guide and Regulations

Before embarking on your fishing adventure in Tennessee, it’s essential to familiarize yourself with the state’s fishing regulations. The TWRA publishes an annual Tennessee Fishing Guide that outlines the rules, seasons, creel limits, and other important information for anglers.

The 2024 Tennessee Fishing Guide is available in a convenient digest format, making it easy to carry with you on your fishing trips. You can obtain a hard copy of the guide at any location where fishing licenses are sold, at TWRA regional offices, or by downloading a digital version from the TWRA website.

Some notable regulation changes for the 2024 fishing season include:

  • Increased creel limits for certain species in specific waterways
  • Expansion of catch-and-release areas to promote sustainable fishing practices
  • Updated size restrictions for popular game fish

Make sure to review the 2024 Tennessee Fishing Guide thoroughly to stay informed about any changes that may affect your fishing plans.


Obtaining a Tennessee fishing license is a vital step in ensuring a legal and enjoyable fishing experience in the Volunteer State. Whether you opt for a daily permit or an annual license, your contribution supports the conservation and management of Tennessee’s valuable aquatic resources.

By understanding the different license options, costs, and regulations, you can confidently plan your fishing trips and make the most of your time on the water. Remember to always carry your fishing license with you and adhere to the state’s fishing rules to promote responsible angling practices.

So, grab your gear, purchase your Tennessee fishing license, and get ready to create unforgettable memories in the state’s stunning lakes, rivers, and streams. Happy fishing!

For the most up-to-date information on Tennessee fishing license costs and regulations, visit the official Tennessee Wildlife Resources Agency website.

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