It can get a bit complicated figuring out who needs a license to fish in Florida waters and if you do need one which one to get. They’ve even made it a bit harder with the addition of things like the Gulf reef fish survey and the shore-based shark fishing permit that will be required sometime this year.

The following people do not need a license; a child under 16 years of age, a Florida resident age 65 or older possessing proof of age and residency, a Florida resident certified as totally and permanently disabled, and a resident who is a member of the Armed Forces of the United States, that is not stationed in this state, and is home on leave for 30 days or less, upon submission of orders.

Land locked anglers who spend their days fishing on beaches, bridges, piers, or wade fishing must have a license in their possession unless the pier has purchased one. Many of the piers like the Pensacola Bay Bridge and Pensacola Beach Gulf Fishing Pier where you pay to fish will have a license that covers everyone on the pier. The good news is there is no charge for Florida residents to get a shoreline license.

A Florida resident is any person who has declared Florida as his or her only state of residence as evidenced by a valid Florida driver license or identification card with both a Florida address and a Florida residency verified by the Department of Highway Safety or any member of the United States Armed Forces who is stationed in Florida.

Costs of license are as follows; annual resident fishing (salt or fresh) 1-year $17.00, 5-year $79.00, nonresident fishing (salt or fresh) 1-year $47.00, 3-Day $17.00, 7-Day $30.00, saltwater / freshwater Combo 1-year $32.50, and saltwater / freshwater/ hunting Combo 1-year $48.00.

The FWC also issues lifetime licenses to Florida residents for hunting, freshwater fishing and saltwater fishing. Lifetime licenses can be purchased for the following amounts; 4 years or younger $126.50, 5-12 years old $226.50, and 13 years or older $301.50.

Fishing and hunting licenses can be purchased from the tax collector’s office or from a license vendor such as tackle stores, sporting goods stores, or big box stores.

They can be purchased over the phone by calling 888-HUNT-FLORIDA (486-8356) or 888-FISH-FLORIDA (347-4356). A $3.25 + 2.5% surcharge of total sale per person will be added to your purchase for phone orders. If you would like to buy one online, you can follow the link at A $2.25 + 2.5% surcharge of total sale per person will be added to your purchase for online orders.


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