Decoding the Validity Duration of a South Carolina Fishing License: A Complete Guide

How Long is a South Carolina Fishing License Good For?

Understanding the Duration of a South Carolina Fishing License

If you’re an avid angler or planning to embark on a fishing adventure in the beautiful state of South Carolina, it’s essential to have your fishing license sorted. A common question that arises among fishermen is how long their South Carolina fishing license remains valid. In this blog post, we will discuss the duration and validity periods for different types of licenses available in South Carolina.

Different Types of Fishing Licenses

Before delving into the specific durations, let’s first understand the various types of fishing licenses offered by the state. The South Carolina Department of Natural Resources (SCDNR) provides several options to cater to diverse needs:

1. Resident Freshwater Fishing License: This option is specifically designed for residents who only fish in freshwater bodies within South Carolina.
2. Non-Resident Freshwater Fishing License: Visitors from outside the state can acquire this license if they solely plan on freshwater fishing.
3. Resident Combination Fishing License: Anglers who wish to fish both in freshwater and saltwater can opt for this comprehensive license.
4. Non-Resident Combination Fishing License: Similar to its resident counterpart, non-residents can obtain this combination license.
5. Youth and Senior Citizen Licenses: Available at discounted rates, these licenses cater to young anglers below a certain age bracket and senior citizens aged 64 or older.

Each type has different durations associated with it; thus, it’s important to choose one that suits your specific requirements.

Fishing License Durations

Now let’s dive into understanding how long each type of fishing license remains valid once acquired:

1. Annual Licenses:
– Resident Freshwater/Saltwater Combination & Individual Freshwater/Saltwater Licenses are valid for one year from the date of purchase.
– Non-Resident Freshwater/Saltwater Combination & Individual Freshwater/Saltwater Licenses are also valid for one year from the date of purchase.

2. 14-Day License:
– This license is perfect for short-term visitors or tourists who plan to fish in South Carolina. It remains valid for a duration of exactly 14 consecutive days, starting on the day of purchase.

3. Youth and Senior Citizen Licenses:
– Both youth and senior citizen fishing licenses have an annual validity period similar to that of regular resident or non-resident licenses, lasting one year from the date of purchase.

It’s important to note that regardless of the chosen license type, all anglers are required by law to carry their fishing license with them while engaging in any fishing activity within South Carolina waters.

Renewing Your Fishing License

To ensure uninterrupted enjoyment of your favorite pastime, it’s crucial to renew your fishing license before its expiration. Fortunately, South Carolina offers convenient options for renewal:

1. Online Renewal: Visit SCDNR’s official website and follow their simple instructions to renew your fishing license online.
2. Phone Renewal: Dial SCDNR’s customer service number during business hours and provide them with the necessary details for renewal.
3. In-person Renewal: If you prefer face-to-face interaction, you can visit any designated Department office or certified licensing agent across South Carolina for prompt assistance regarding your renewal.

Remember that failing to renew your license promptly may result in penalties or fines if caught without a valid permit while engaging in recreational fishing activities.

Fishing Responsibly

While understanding how long a South Carolina fishing license remains valid is vital, it is equally essential to practice responsible angling habits throughout your journey as an angler:

1. Adhere to Size Limits: Respect size limits set by SCDNR to preserve fish populations and promote sustainable fishing practices.
2. Follow Bag Limits: Familiarize yourself with bag limits, which limit the number of fish you can harvest per day, ensuring a healthy ecosystem for future generations.
3. Practice Catch and Release: Whenever possible, practice catch and release techniques to conserve fish species and contribute to the overall well-being of South Carolina’s aquatic habitats.

By following these guidelines, we can protect our natural resources while enjoying the thrill of fishing in South Carolina.


In conclusion, the duration of a South Carolina fishing license depends on several factors such as residency status, chosen license type, or age category. Annual licenses typically remain valid for one year from the date of purchase, while 14-day licenses are perfect for short-term visitors. Youth and senior citizen licenses also have a one-year validity period. Ensure timely renewal of your license through online platforms or authorized agents. Remember to fish responsibly by adhering to size limits, bag limits, and practicing catch-and-release methods whenever possible. So get your fishing gear ready, obtain a valid South Carolina fishing license that suits your needs perfectly, and embark on an exciting angling adventure!