When Do You Need a Fishing License in Arizona? Explained by Age

What Age Do You Need a Fishing License in Arizona?

Fishing is a popular pastime for many outdoor enthusiasts, providing relaxation and an opportunity to connect with nature. If you’re planning to go fishing in Arizona, it’s essential to understand the regulations surrounding fishing licenses. One key factor that determines whether or not you need a fishing license is your age.

1. Obtaining a Fishing License

In Arizona, individuals of certain ages are required by law to obtain a valid fishing license before casting their lines into the state’s beautiful waters. However, the specific age at which one needs a fishing license may vary depending on several factors.

2. Age Requirements for Residents

If you are an Arizona resident eager to embark on your angling adventures, it’s important to know when you must acquire your fishing license:

a) Under 10 years old:

No fishing license is necessary if you’re under ten years old; however, please note that children must be accompanied by someone who possesses a valid fishing license or falls within applicable exemptions.

b) 10-17 years old:

If you fall between the ages of ten and seventeen, congratulations! You can fish without obtaining an individual license as long as your parent or guardian has one and accompanies you during the activity.

c) Over 18 years old:

Once you reach adulthood (over eighteen), regardless of parental supervision or guardianship status, every adult angler must have their own valid Arizona fishing license.

3. Non-Resident Age Restrictions

If you are visiting from out-of-state but wish to experience the joys of fishing in Arizona’s abundant waterways, pay close attention to the following non-resident age restrictions:

a) Under 10 years old:

Non-residents under the age of ten can fish in Arizona without obtaining a fishing license, as long as they are accompanied by someone with a valid out-of-state fishing license or falls within applicable exemptions.

b) 10 years and older:

If you’re aged ten and above, regardless of your residency status, every individual must possess their own valid fishing license to enjoy angling in Arizona’s waters. The accompanying adult does not need an Arizona license but should have a valid out-of-state permit.

4. How to Obtain a Fishing License

Fortunately, acquiring an Arizona fishing license is straightforward and convenient. There are various options available for residents and non-residents alike:

a) Online Purchase:

The easiest way to obtain your fishing license is through the online portal provided by the Arizona Game and Fish Department (AZGFD). Visit their official website, follow the prompts, provide necessary information such as identification details and payment method, then print your temporary permit before receiving your physical copy in the mail.

b) In-Person at AZGFD Offices or Vendors:

You can also obtain your fishing license in person at any nearby AZGFD office or from authorized vendors throughout Arizona. Consult AZGFD’s website for specific locations near you.

5. License Fees

It’s important to note that there may be fees associated with obtaining a fishing license in Arizona. These fees vary depending on several factors such as residency status, duration of validity (e.g., one day versus annual), type of waterbody being fished (e.g., general vs special regulations waters), and age bracket. The AZGFD website provides detailed information on the current fee structure, ensuring you are informed before making your purchase.


Fishing is a cherished activity throughout Arizona’s picturesque lakes, rivers, and streams. Understanding the fishing license requirements based on your age will help ensure compliance with local regulations while enjoying this beloved pastime. Remember to obtain a valid fishing license if required and always adhere to catch limits and conservation practices to protect Arizona’s aquatic ecosystems for future generations of anglers.