Thanks to our moderate temperatures—both on land and in the water—Alabama is perfect for fishing no matter when you get the itch.
But now that summer is here, fishing season is about to really ramp up, especially on the Gulf Coast. And if you’re new to the angler life, or it’s been a few years since you’ve hit the high seas, it’s important to snag a fishing license before you begin.
Fortunately, getting an Alabama fishing license is pretty painless. Here are a few things to keep in mind while you’re planning your fishing trip.
Where do I go to get my fishing license?
The easiest way to get your Alabama fishing license is online through the aptly named Online License Purchasing System, which is not only convenient but quick. Or if you’re in a pinch because you waited until the day before your trip to get everything squared away, you can walk up to one of 300+ license agents and get your Alabama fishing license on the spot.
How much will my fishing license cost?
That depends on what kind of fishing you plan on doing, and for how long. Both freshwater and saltwater licenses come in annual and one-week versions, and there are various discounts (notably for disabled anglers) and add-ons (like a Reef Fish Endorsement) you can get. A year’s worth of saltwater fishing will cost you $24.35 and a seven-day trip will run you $10.15.
When does my annual fishing license expire?
This is worth paying attention to, because your Alabama fishing license unfortunately doesn’t last a whole year after you purchase it. Every Alabama fishing license expires August 31 and can be renewed again September 1. So if you want to make the most out of your fishing trips next year, set a reminder to renew in September.
Does my fishing license apply to all Alabama waters?
All Alabama waters are covered by fishing licenses, but you’ll have to choose between freshwater or saltwater. Of course, we’d recommend the saltwater license—the Gulf is far and wide, and there are all kinds of species you can reel in. (Of course, you could always get a license for both!)
Can I get an Alabama fishing license if I live in another state?
Absolutely. We welcome anglers from other states with open arms. Keep in mind, residency is determined by the state represented on your driver’s license, so if you’ve recently moved to Alabama you may need to get your driver’s license sorted out to be counted as a local. Check out the residency requirements if you’re not sure how you’d be counted.
If I’m taking my kids fishing, do they need a license too?
Not if they’re too young to legally drive! If your children are 15 or younger, they’re exempt from needing a fishing license in Alabama. Also, if you want to take your grandparents fishing, Alabama residents 65 and older don’t need a fishing license either.
Did we cover all of your questions? Then you’re ready to get your license and hit the Coast.
For more information on Alabama fishing licenses, visit Outdoor Alabama, the official site for the Alabama Department of Conservation and Natural Resources.