How Much Does an Iowa Fishing License Cost? Your Essential Guide

The Cost of Fishing License in Iowa: Exploring the Pricing and Regulations


Fishing is a beloved outdoor activity that allows individuals to reconnect with nature while enjoying the thrill of reeling in a prized catch. If you’re planning to cast your line in the scenic waterways of Iowa, one crucial aspect you need to consider is obtaining a fishing license. In this blog post, we will delve into the pricing and regulations surrounding fishing licenses in Iowa.

Why Do You Need a Fishing License?

Before diving into the details, let’s understand why having a fishing license is essential. A fishing license serves multiple purposes such as conservation efforts, maintaining fish populations for future generations, funding fisheries management programs, preserving aquatic habitats, and ensuring fair access for all anglers.

Fishing License Options

Iowa offers various types of fishing licenses tailored to meet different needs. Here are some popular options:

Resident Licenses:

As an Iowa resident aged 16 or older but under 65 years old, you have several choices when it comes to purchasing your fishing license:

  • Annual Fishing License: This grants you unlimited access to fish throughout the year.
  • Seven-Day Fishing License: Ideal for those who want flexibility during their vacation or short trips.
  • One-Day Fishing License: Perfect if you just want to try out angling or only plan on going once.

Non-Resident Licenses:

If you’re visiting from out-of-state or reside outside Iowa permanently but wish to experience its fantastic fishing spots:

  • Annual Non-Resident Fishing License: Allows non-residents aged 16 or older unlimited opportunities throughout the year.
  • Trip-Short Non-Resident License: Great for those planning a short visit to Iowa.

License Fees

Now let’s discuss the cost of fishing licenses in Iowa. It’s important to note that these prices are subject to change, so it’s wise to double-check with the official resource before making any purchase.

Resident Licenses:

  • Annual Fishing License: $19.00*
  • Seven-Day Fishing License: $13.50*
  • One-Day Fishing License: $9.50*

Non-Resident Licenses:

  • Annual Non-Resident Fishing License: $48.00*
  • Trip-Short Non-Resident License (Three Consecutive Days): $19.00*

*These prices are accurate at the time of writing but may be subject to change without notice.

Purchasing Your Fishing License

Obtaining your fishing license in Iowa is quick and convenient, thanks to several options available:


You can visit a local bait shop, sporting goods store, or authorized retail outlet that sells fishing licenses.


Visit the official website of the Iowa Department of Natural Resources (DNR) where you can conveniently purchase and print your license from home.

Note: Accepted payment methods may vary depending on where you choose to buy your license.

Fishing Regulations and Guidelines

It’s crucial for anglers in Iowa to familiarize themselves with state-specific regulations governing fishing activities. Here are some key guidelines:

1. Size and Possession Limits:
– Different fish species have specific size limits.
– Know the maximum number of fish you can possess and transport.

2. Seasonal Restrictions:
– Some waterways have specific fishing seasons or restrictions.
– Stay updated with any closures or special regulations that may apply.

3. Special Fishing Areas and Rules:
– Certain areas, such as trout streams, may have unique rules like catch-and-release only.
– Research and abide by any specific guidelines for your chosen fishing destination.


A fishing license is a small investment that allows you to experience the joy of angling legally while contributing to fisheries conservation efforts in Iowa. By understanding the available license options, associated fees, purchasing methods, and regulations, you’ll be well-prepared for an enjoyable day on Iowa’s beautiful waters. So grab your gear, buy your fishing license, respect nature’s bounty, and create memorable experiences in the Land of Fields and Streams!