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Alaska Fishing Licenses

Alaska fishing licenses are required for all residents who would like to partake in fishing for either leisure or commercial purposes. The state of Alaska offers both commercial and recreational fishing licenses through the state’s Department of Fish and Game. To secure a proper license to fish for yourself, members of your family, friends or all of the above, complete a fishing license application and submit it using one of the approve methods provided by the state wildlife department. The two most common licenses to choose from include either the sport fishing license (recreational) or the commercial fishing license. Before fishing license applicants can submit an application to buy a fishing license in Alaska, they must meet the minimum requirements for obtaining fishing licenses, including being at least 16 years of age. Applicants must also adhere to the Department of Fish and Game’s standard procedure of getting fishing permits. Applicants will be required to submit various documents proving personal demographics such as their residency status, U.S. citizenship and Social Security Number. You must also pay the appropriate fishing license fee, which varies depending on a number of factors. The state of Alaska offers resident fishing licenses and non resident fishing licenses to all citizens. Additionally, senior citizens, disabled veterans and military members may also obtain an Alaska fishing permit at a discounted price.  Continue reading to learn everything you need to know about how to get fishing licenses in Alaska today:

  • Sport fishing licenses
  • Commercial fishing licenses


Alaska Sport Fishing Licenses

The most commonly purchased fishing license in Alaska is the sporting permit to fish, otherwise known as the recreational fishing license. The Alaska Department of Fish and Game offers three methods to residents and non residents for buying fishing licenses: online, in person and by mail. To buy fishing licenses online, visit the Alaska Department of Fish and Game website, click on the “Buy Your License Online” option and follow the on-screen instructions. Applicants must provide a valid credit or debit card for online purchases.

To buy hunting licenses by mail, visit the Alaska Department of Fish and Game website to print a Sport Fishing, Hunting, Trapping License Application. Complete the form and mail it along with the license fee to the following address:

Department of Fish and Game
Licensing Section
P.O. Box 115525
Juneau, AK 99811-5525

All applicable fees must be paid at the same time that you submit your Alaska fishing license application. Fishing license fees vary depending on a number of factors. Visit the Alaska Department of Fish and Game website to find a full list of department branch locations. All state offices are open from Monday to Friday, between the hours of 8 a.m. and 5 p.m.

Note: Anglers interested in fishing for king salmon must purchase a separate king salmon stamp, which can be obtained online or in person. King salmon stamps are available for both residents and nonresidents.

Alaska Commercial Fishing Licenses

Alaskan visitors and residents who plan to catch fish for commercial  purposes in state waters are required to buy a commercial fishing permit. The Alaska Department of Fish and Game has simplified the process of getting a commercial fishing license in Alaska by offering it both online and in person.

Commercial anglers who sell certain fish species by the pound must have their scales tested on an annual basis by the Alaska Department of Transportation.

For information regarding vessel licenses or how to renew your Alaska commercial fishing license, contact the AK Commercial Fisheries Entry Commission. Applicants must complete a Commercial Fisheries Entry Commission 2016 Vessel License Application and include the following:

  • Vessel owner’s name, Social Security Number and address
  • Vessel’s name, number, engine and type of fishing activity it will be used for
  • Vessel owner’s (or authorized representative’s) signature
  • Credit card information and authorization for fee payment

Once the form is completed, submit it by mail to the following address:

P.O. Box 110302
Juneau, AK 99811-0302

The required vessel licensing fees depend on the length of the applicant’s vessel. Vessel license fees typically range from $350 to $900, with the high end pertaining to vessels that are over 300 feet.

For any additional information, contact the Fisheries Entry Commission by email at, or call the commission at 907-789-6150.

Fishing Frequently Asked Questions

Oftentimes you can buy a fishing license through your state’s fishing department website. You will most likely need to create an account on the webpage and have a printer nearby to finalize your transaction. Make sure to also have a valid credit card on hand, as no other form of payment is accepted by state departments online. Take note that, as proof of your residency, you may be required to enter your driver’s license number.
In a general sense, a good number of states offer the following types of fishing licenses: a regular fishing license and a commercial fishing license. Depending on where you reside, you may also have the option to get a saltwater license to fish, if you are by coastal waters. In addition to these permits, you may be required to buy a fishing stamp, depending on the specific type of fish species you intend to catch.
A regular fishing permit is often valid for the period of a full year. However, you may also have the option to obtain a license to fish that is good for 24 hours or 72 hours, for example. In some instances, a weekly fishing license or a lifetime license may also be available. Lifetime licenses to fish are the most suitable option for those anglers who intend to fish for the duration of their lives. Keep in mind that if you would like to continue fishing after the expiration date of your current licensure, you will be required to get a new permit to fish.
The fees related to a state fishing license may vary, depending on a few factors. But senior residents and military veterans can usually get a fishing license that is free of charge, as long as they can present official documentation that supports their residency or military service. Resident licenses to fish are often more affordable than nonresident licenses. The most costly licenses are for those who would like to get lifetime credentials.
In the event that you have lost your fishing license or it was stolen, the most common way to obtain a duplicate is through your state’s fishing department. You may be required to make an in-person visit to a nearby office or to contact a licensed agent directly. Depending on where you reside, you may also have the option to order a fishing permit replacement online. But, to be sure, it is important that you double check with your state department first, as you may also need to bring in certain documentation, such as your driver’s license or ID card.
This site is privately owned and is neither affiliated with, nor endorsed by, nor operated by a government agency.