How Much Is a Fishing License in Louisiana

How Much Is a Fishing License in Louisiana? Here’s Everything You Need to Know About Fishing License in Louisiana

Do you love fishing? Well, if you are a resident or a non-resident of Louisiana who wants to go fishing in the freshwater or saltwater of Louisiana, you’ll require a fishing license. Note that, this rule applies to them who are age 16 and older.


However, do you know how much is a fishing license in Louisiana? Frankly speaking, the fishing license fee in Louisiana might vary from individual to individual based on their age, profession, residential status, fishing duration, capability, etc. on top of that, the fee depends on types of licenses.  Lifetime licenses for fishing in Louisiana are also available for certain groups of people.


However, if you want to know about the fee of the fishing license in Louisiana for all, this is the post you should read. In this article, we are going to include every detail possible regarding the fishing license and license fee in Louisiana including the fees for resident, non-resident, people with disability, military, students, and senior citizens. You may get your queries answered in the FAQ section given at the bottom of this post. Waiting no more, let’s dive in!


Fishing for Recreation Basic Information


It is mandatory for the residents and non-residents of Louisiana who are 16 and older to buy a basic fishing license if they want to catch fish in the Louisiana waters. In case someone wants to fish in the south part of the saltwater line, they are to own a saltwater license. By the way, if you are an angler who fishes with just a cane pole, you are to get a license for your line and hook only. You do not require any more licenses in that case.


How Much Is a Fishing License in Louisiana


There are some areas where you can catch fish from both fresh and saltwater. However, if you want absolute liberty to fish from any water, make sure that you have got both the basic license and saltwater license for you.


Apart from the basic and saltwater fishing licenses for recreational fishing, you might need to get licenses for certain activities and gears.


You are exempted from having basic and saltwater fishing licenses if:


  • You are a resident or non-resident of Louisiana under age sixteen (i.e. fifteen or below).
  • You are a resident of Louisiana for at least 6 months being born before June 1, 1940.


If you fit in one of the above categories, you have to keep your age of proof with you while fishing. Moreover, you are supposed to own appropriate gear licenses if you are from the second category (i.e. born before June 1, 1940).


Recreational Fishing License Buying and Expiration Date


You can buy your recreational fishing licenses on June 1 every year from the Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries (both online and offline) with one year of validity. So, if you purchase your fishing license on June 1 this year, this license is valid till June 30 of next year.


Genera Fishing License or Permit Type with Fees in Louisiana



License or Permit Type Fee For Resident Fee For Non-Resident Special Note
Fishing with Hook and Line or Cane Pole $2.5 No other license required for fishing with a cane pole.
Basic Fishing License $9.5 $60
Fishing in Saltwater $13 $30 Having a basic fishing license is mandatory.
1-Day Non-Resident Basic Trip $5
1-Day Non-Resident Saltwater Trip $17.5
Non-Resident Saltwater Fishing License for Season $30 Having a basic license is mandatory.
Fishing or Hunting for Senior Citizens $5 To get this license you must reach age 60 on or after June 1, 2000. This license for senior citizens does not cover hoop, trawls, nets, crab traps, or any similar special gears.
Louisiana Sportsman’s Paradise License. $100 It covers the basic and saltwater licenses along with other hunting licenses. Moreover, it includes all the gear licenses for recreational fishing and hunting except trawls that are longer than 16 feet.
3-Day Fishing License for Charter Passenger Boat $10 $10 This license is valid for 3 consecutive days. It allows you fishing in the saltwater areas of Louisiana. But you are required to keep a licensed guide with you all the time. The mothership license or the license number of the charter guide is also to be provided during the purchase of this license.
3-Day Fishing License for Charter Skiff $30 This license replaces the basic and saltwater licenses and comes with a validity of 3 consecutive days. It lets a non-resident fish in the saltwater areas of Louisiana in a charter skiff directed by a charter operation. However, the charter skiff must have a license.



Recreational Gear License Fees


Apart from having basic fishing licenses, an angler is also supposed to get licenses for the recreational gear that is used for fishing. In case, he or she fishes in saltwater areas, he or she should own a saltwater fishing license as well. Even if an angler owns a lifetime fishing license, he or she must purchase the applicable licenses for his or her recreational gear. Here’s a list of fees for using recreational gears in Louisiana:



License/Permit Type Fee for Resident Fee for Non-Resident Special Note
Cans or Buckets (up to 5) $10 $40
Crab Traps (up to 10) $15 $60
Crawfish Traps (up to 35) $15 $60
Hoop Nets (up to 5) $20 $80 You can only use wire and hoop nets for recreational fishing only in the freshwater areas of Louisiana state.
Oyster Tong (for per Tong) $5 $20
Pipes or Drums (up to 5) $10 $40
Slat Traps (up to 5) $20 $80
Trawls – for less than 16 feet $25 $100
Trawls – for 16 feet to 25 feet $80 $320 This is not covered in the Louisiana Sportsman’s Paradise License
Wire Nets (up to 5) $20 $80


Offshore and Federal Permits


Recreational Offshore Landing Permit (ROLP)


If you are a private recreational angler of or above age 16, you require and ROLP or Recreational Offshore Landing Permit to catch certain kinds of fishes in Louisiana waters. The fishes under this permit include:


  • Hinds
  • Snappers
  • Amberjacks
  • Billfish
  • Swordfish
  • Tunas
  • Dolphinfish
  • Wahoo
  • Cobia, and
  • Groupers


Fortunately, you do not require any cost for this permit. You do not need to have this permit if you are below 16 or a minor.


Note that, you need ROLP only when you plan to go for a recreational and private trip offshore. Otherwise, you do not need to get this very permit for fishing.


Neither you need it when you are on an offshore trip with a charter boat where you are a client and nor you need it if you keep yourself away from fishing or landing the fishes mentioned above. For example, if you are fishing speckled trout offshore, you do not require ROLP anymore.


But, if you are fishing snappers of any kind (red snapper, for example), you need the ROLP.


How Much Is a Fishing License in Louisiana


Angling Permit for Highly Migratory Species (HMS)


If you want to fish highly migratory species or HMS, you have to take an HMS Angling Permit. Here are the fishes that are currently categorized under Highly Migratory Species in Louisiana. This list includes some Atlantic tunas and other highly migratory species:


  • Bigeye
  • Albacore
  • Swordfish
  • Yellowfin
  • Skipjack
  • Bluefin
  • Sharks
  • Blue and White Marlin
  • Spearfish
  • Sailfish


Fishes caught under this permit are not allowed to be sold. The fee for the HMS Angling permit is $20. To apply for an HMS permit or renewal, you can adopt any of the ways mentioned below


  1. From Online
  2. You can download this application, fill it up, and submit it by using mail.
  3. Request sending you an application by calling at 888.872.8862


In case you are an owner of HMS Permit, you need to report to NOAA Fisheries within 24 hours of coming back from your trip. In that report, you have to submit all information regarding the landing and dead discards of bluefin tuna, blue and white marlin, swordfish, spearfish, and sailfish. There are three ways for reporting to NOAA Fisheries:



Related:How Much is a Fishing License in Utah


How To Purchase A Recreational Fishing Licenses?


A recreational fishing license in Louisiana can be purchase from one of the following sources:



When it comes to the payment for the recreational fishing licenses, you are at liberty to choose from MasterCard, American Express, Visa, and E-Check. However, you might need some handling or processing fees apart from the fee for recreational fishing licenses if you choose to buy your fishing licenses online.


One benefit of online purchasing of the recreational fishing licenses is that the authority will provide you with a unique authorization number that will enable you to use the license almost immediately.


As an online purchaser, you will also be provided with the PDF copy of the license, so that you can save in your electronic device and carry it always with you. You can also print the  Louisiana digital fishing license PDF and keep the hard copy with you. Both the PDF copy and the hard copy is valid to use while fishing.


In case of purchasing your licenses via mobile devices like tablets, smartphones, laptops, etc., you are not supposed to get any mail. What you will receive is just a text message with the authorization number and email with the PDF copy of your license for temporary use. You can save the file in your gadget or print for future use during fishing.


How to Get Qualified for Getting the Recreational Fishing License as a Resident?


If you notice the rate mentioned above, you will find that having the recreational fishing licenses as a resident will save you more money. To get qualified for having the fishing licenses as a resident, you must need to submit some documents as proof of your bona fide residency. You need to present or submit one of the following documents to be qualified for having a recreational fishing license as a resident of Louisiana:


  • The driving license of the State (with a validity of 6 months or above)
  • ID card as a citizen of Louisiana (This card is issued by the Public Safety Department of Louisiana)


Note that, you have to maintain compliance with the Bonafide residency requirements (check the FAQ to know who is a bona fide resident) to get the resident license. If you do not do so, you will be subject to civil and/or criminal sanctions.


Special Licenses and Permits for Fishing in Louisiana


Apart from the regular licenses to the residents and no-residents, there are four kinds of special licenses and permits available to be purchased from the Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries. The special licenses and permits are chiefly categorized as:


  • Lifetime Licenses
  • Disability Licenses and Permits
  • Military Licenses, and
  • Student Licenses.


Lifetime Licenses


Lifetime licenses are available for residents of Louisiana for hunting, fishing, or both the fishing and hunting. Your age will determine the cost of your licenses. A lifetime license is valid until you live on this earth. Even if you become a resident of other states, your license will remain valid.


If you are a non-resident of Louisiana, you can apply for the lifetime combination licenses for fishing and hunting.


If you are purchasing a lifetime fishing license, you will be having the basic fishing license and saltwater fishing license.


The Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries also lets you purchase lifetime gear licenses for recreational fishing.


How To Purchase Lifetime Fishing Licenses in Louisiana


  1. Contact the LDWF headquarter. (closed now due to COVID-19)
  2. Send mail to the LDWF office. You can send your payment by check, money order, and cashier’s check.
  3. Compose an email and send it to; make sure that you have scanned, fulfilled, and attached the application for lifetime licenses along with the other required documents. Do not forget to attach your birth certificate as well. Once your application and documents are received by the authority, you will be contacted via phone to make your payment using your credit card.


You can use this online application or call at 225.765.2887.


Keep in mind that, you might need to wait about three weeks for the processing of your data.


Types and Fees of Lifetime Licenses


License Type Resident Fee Non-Resident Fee
Lifetime License for Residents (from age 5 to 13) $200
Lifetime License for Residents (age 14 and above) $300
Lifetime Fishing/Hunting for Residents (from age 5 to 13) $300
Lifetime Fishing/Hunting for Residents (age 14 and above) $500
Lifetime Fishing/Hunting for Residents (for the senior citizens of age 60 and above) $50
Lifetime Fishing/Hunting Licenses for Non-Residents $3000
Lifetime Native Disabled Veterans Fishing/Hunting License for Non-Residents (Notarized birth certificate copy, driver’s license copy, and the application for the disabled veterans fishing/hunting license should be attached) $300
Lifetime Recreational Fishing Gear 10 times of annual fee for each gear type ( see the application for more information) 10 times of annual fee for each gear type (see the application for more information)




Disability Fishing and Hunting Licenses and Permits


Some disabled residents from Louisiana are offered the hunting and fishing licenses from the state either for free or at reduced fees. To get this kind of license, a disabled person requires to submit his or her valid Louisiana driving license or ID card. On top of that, he or she also needs to present proof of disability with the application for disability licenses.



License Type For Fee Application Link
Resident Disabled Veterans Hunting and Fishing License Resident veterans with a permanent SC (service-connected) disability classification of 50% or above Free
Resident Disabled Sportsman License Blind, single or multiple amputees, paraplegic. Anyone who uses permanent braces or comes with at least one or more artificial limbs. Free
Resident Disabled Fishing and Hunting Licenses Permanent or disabled completely. Available at reduced rates as follows:


●     $2.50 for basic recreational fishing licenses

●     $2.50 for a saltwater fishing license

●     $5 for basic hunting

●     $5 for Bow

●     $5 for the big game

●     $5 for primitive firearm
Developmentally Disabled Fishing and Hunting Licenses Developmentally Disabled Free
Fishing for Mobility Impaired Mobility Impaired People No License Required Special Note: This is for those mobility-impaired people who are above age 60. They can use 1 slat trap or/and one hoop net up to 18 feet by 8 feet. Valid ID card required.



Military Licenses for Fishing in Louisiana


If you are active military, retired military, surviving spouse of a military member who served for the country, or a member of Louisiana National Guard, you will be qualified for military licenses for fishing in Louisiana. Here’s a chart for the Military licenses for fishing in Louisiana with a fee:



License Type Fee
Basic Fishing License for Active Military $9.50 for residents and non-residents
Saltwater Fishing License for Active Military $5.50 for residents and non-residents.
Fishing/Hunting License for the Resident Louisiana National Guard $50 for the residents.
Fishing/Hunting License for the Resident/Non-Resident Native Retired Military $5 for the residents and the non-residents
Fishing/Hunting License for Surviving Spouse (Resident) $2.50 for the residents



Student Licenses for Fishing


If you are a student of high school, college, or university, you are eligible to apply for students’ licenses for fishing. Here is the list of the fee for different types of student licenses.


License Type Fee
Basic Fishing License for Non-Resident Students $9.50
Saltwater Fishing License for Non-Resident Students (Basic License required) $5.50


Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)


How long does a Louisiana fishing license last?

Generally, a fishing license comes with 1 year of validity (lifetime validity licenses are also available under special licenses). So, if you take a license for the 2019-20 session, your fishing license purchase starts on the 1st of June 2019, and the license remains valid till 30th June 2020.


Can I get a Louisiana fishing license online?


Yes, you can buy or renew the Louisiana fishing license online very easily. Just visit the official website of the Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries and apply for a fishing license or renewal of the existing license.


How much is a fishing license cost in Louisiana?


It depends on a variety of factors including age, license type, and profession. Have a look at the license fee chart given above to get the whole picture of fishing license costs in Louisiana.


I am a student. Can I buy a fishing license in Louisiana?


Yes, you can. If you are a student and want to get your fishing license in Louisiana, you have to contact the LDWF Headquarters at 2000 Quail Drive, Baton Rouge. You can also purchase your fishing license as a student by mailing at the LDWF office. Find the fee of the fishing licenses for students above in the main article.


How much is a fishing license at Walmart in Louisiana?


In case you want to get a fishing license with one year of validity from Walmart, you are to pay 40 USD.


Who is a Bona Fide Resident of Louisiana?


To get the fishing licenses from the Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries, you have to prove that you are a bona fide resident of Louisiana. You are assumed to be a bona fide resident if you are living in this state continuously for six months or more from the date of application of your fishing licenses.


You can also be qualified as a bona fide resident of Louisiana in case you have established your legal domicile in this state.


For all cases, you have to maintain compliance with the following conditions given below if you are a bona fide resident:


  • As a voter, you have registered yourself as a voter of Louisiana state.
  • As a driver of any motor vehicle, you have got a valid driver’s license from Louisiana.
  • If you own a motor vehicle that is located within Louisiana, you have to make sure that you have got a valid Louisiana registration for the vehicle.
  • In case of earning income, you have properly filed the Louisiana state income tax return. On top of that, you comply with the income tax law and regulations of the state.


If you are an individual, corporation, or legal entity with the resident license of the other country or state, you are not supposed to be qualified for the resident license in the state of Louisiana.


Can I fish in Louisiana without a fishing license?


You do not require Saltwater or Basic Fishing licenses in case you are someone below 16 years old (for example, if you are 15 or below). You are exempted from these licenses also if your birth date is before June 1, 1940, along with being a resident of Louisiana for at least 6 months.


How can I replace my lost license?


You are to pay $2 for obtaining a duplicate license if you have lost any of your real fishing licenses. If you lose both the Basic Fishing License and Saltwater Fishing License, you have to pay $4 for getting the duplicates for both the licenses. However, if you purchased your license online or via a mobile device, you do not pay any fee. In those cases, what you all need is to reprint the license. Keep in mind that, you cannot have the facility of obtaining duplicate licenses if you purchased temporary licenses (for example, 1-day or 3-day of non-resident trip licenses for fishing.


When does my fishing license expire?


If your fishing license is bought on June 1 of 2020, this will expire on June 30 next year.


Where can I buy a Louisiana fishing license?


There are multiple options available for the residents of Louisiana to buy new licenses for fishing and hunting. Here are some of the options for you:


  1.  Go to New License and Renewal Page of Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries on your browser and buy your license.
  2. You can also buy your fishing license from the local license vendors such as Walmart.
  3. Contact the offices of Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries in Pineville, Monroe, Opelousas, Baton Rouge, and Lake Charles.


What are the payment options for the online purchase of a fishing license in Louisiana?


You can pay via MasterCard, Visa, and Discover when you buy a fishing license online. In case you need assistance regarding online payment or purchase, you can contact the helpline at (888) 362-LDWF (5393).


Do senior citizens need a fishing license in Louisiana?


Yes, they are required to have licenses for freshwater and saltwater fishing.


How much is the fine for fishing without a license in Louisiana?


Make sure that you comply with Louisiana fishing regulations while fishing and have a license of your own. If you get caught fishing without a valid license you are to pay a fine of up to $500 along with criminal charges. On top of that, you might get imprisonment if the violation is severe. So, it is way better to get a fishing license before you go fishing.


Who needs a Louisiana fishing license?


A resident or non-resident of Louisiana with age 16 or older needs to have a fishing license to catch fish in the Louisiana waters.


At what age do you not need a fishing license in Louisiana?


If you have reached age 16 (or above) and you want to go fishing, you need to have a fishing license in Louisiana.


Is my fishing license expired?


Your basic and saltwater fishing licenses validity expires after one year. However, the Louisiana fishing license expiration date varies for other types of licenses. The validity of the fishing license is written on your license. So, check your license to know the date when your fishing license expires,


Can I buy a lifetime fishing license in Louisiana?


Yes, you can. Check the Lifetime License section above to know more about lifetime fishing licenses in Louisiana.


Does Louisiana have fishing licenses for the military?


Yes. Louisiana offers fishing licenses to the active, military, survival spouse, and other military officers at a special rate.


What about a Fishing license for non-resident veterans?


LDWF lets the veterans use a non-resident fishing license in Louisiana.


Is a lifetime fishing license worth it?


Yes, we believe so. It is because it saves you a lot of money and the time that you would otherwise require to renew your licenses. On top of that, it is not much costly compared to the annual licenses.


Where can I buy a rod License?


You can buy a license for a rod or any other recreational fishing gears by contacting the Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries. Call at the number mentioned in this article or send a mail to them for purchasing any licenses.


Does Walmart offer fishing licenses?


Yes, you can buy fishing licenses from Walmart.



Do you need a fishing license if you are disabled?


Yes. However, a mobility-impaired veteran of 60+ age does not require a license to catch catfish for home consumption.


Final Thoughts


So, by now you know almost everything about how much is a fishing license in Louisiana. If you have a further query regarding the fishing licenses and fees in Louisiana, check the Frequently asked sections given below. We expect that you would love fishing in Louisiana.

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