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Fishing Licenses

Most people fishing in New York need a New York State Fishing License. There are three ways to get a fishing license in New York. You can visit an official License Issuing Agent, order over the phone, or order online through the link below.

SCAM ALERT: It has come to our attention that fraudulent websites claiming to sell NYS Freshwater Fishing Licenses are scamming users into providing personal information. While we work to resolve this issue, please be advised that the ONLY legitimate method to purchase your NYS fishing license online is through the official DECALS website.

Purchase Your Fishing License

Types & Fees

General Fishing Licenses (View residency qualifications)

Type Resident Fee Nonresident Fee
valid one full year (365 days)
from the date of purchase or renewal
$25 (ages 16-69) $50
$5 (ages 70+)
7-day $12 $28
1-day $5 $10

Free/Reduced Fee & Lifetime Licenses

License Requirements

You need a fishing license if you are 16 years and older and fishing for:

  • Freshwater fish species by angling, spearing, hooking, longbow, and tip-ups.
  • Frog species by spearing, catching with the hands or by use of a club or hook.
  • Freshwater baitfish for personal use.

Note: You need a marine fishing registration if fishing for migratory fish of the sea and saltwater fish species.

You do not need a fishing license if you are:

  • Fishing on a licensed fishing preserve
  • Fishing during the free fishing weekend
  • Fishing at a free learn to fish clinic
  • A resident landowner primarily engaged in farming (including lessees and members of their immediate families) when fishing on farm lands they are occupying and cultivating.
  • A farm fish pond license holder (including members of their immediate families) fishing on waters covered by the license.
  • A Native American living and fishing on reservation land.
  • A patient residing at a qualifying U.S. Veterans Administration hospital or facility in New York State.

License Requirements for Border Waters

Can I fish the non-NY portion of border waters with a New York State Fishing License?

Water State or Province Bordering Yes/No
Lake Ontario Ontario No
Lake Erie Ontario, Pennsylvania No
St. Lawrence River Ontario, Quebec No
Niagara River Ontario No
Lake Champlain Quebec, Vermont View information and map on reciprocal Fishing License for Lake Champlain
Delaware River & West Branch Delaware River (along boundary) Pennsylvania Yes
Greenwood Lake New Jersey Yes, from boat or ice only
Indian Lake Connecticut Yes, from boat or ice only

General License Information

Other Helpful Links/Resources

More about fishing in New York State

More about Fishing Licenses:

  • Contact for this Page
  • NYSDEC Fish and Wildlife
    625 Broadway
    Albany, NY 12233-4753
    Send us an email
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  • Page applies to all NYS regions