a man and woman smiling with a fish

How to Obtain Alaska Fishing Licenses

Are you planning to visit the Kenai River, Copper River, or Bristol Bay to catch some delicious saltwater and freshwater fish? Alaska is any fisherman or fisherwoman’s dream; however, a fishing license is required to fish in Alaska. 

The easiest way to buy an Alaska fishing license is to buy it from a local fishing license vendor or purchase the license online. Read on to learn everything about buying a sport fishing license, including the difference between non-resident and resident licenses in Alaska. 

In Alaska, who needs a fishing license? 

Any non-resident 16 years or above needs to obtain a fishing license to fish in Alaska. For residents, anyone 18 years or older needs a fishing license, although some residents of Alaska can fish without a license, which we will discuss later in the article. 

Different fishing licenses are available for non-residents, residents, disabled anglers, or those in active military duty. The charges also vary depending on the length and type of license and age of the applicant. 

The funds generated by the sale of fishing licenses are used to support research and management of Alaska’s wildlife and fish resources. 

License for residents 

You are considered a resident of Alaska if you: 

  • Have resided in Alaska for 12 months or more without claiming residency in any other state, territory, or country. 
  • Have been stationed in Alaska for the past 12 months or longer as a military service member or their dependent. 

Some King Salmon and Rainbow Trout fisheries have yearly harvest restrictions to be recorded. A Sport Fishing Harvest Record Card needs to be obtained along with a fishing license, available at license vendors, Fish and Game offices, and online. 

For resident anglers under 18, senior residents, and disabled veterans with ADF&G Permanent Identification Cards, the harvest record card is free of cost. 

If you plan on fishing for Chinook King Salmon, a current yearly King Salmon Stamp must also be purchased ahead of time. 


From opting for an annual permit to choosing a license for a couple of days to an annual option, being an Alaska resident, you have many options you can choose from. In addition, hunters can purchase combo licenses. Listed below are the available sports fishing Alaska licenses and their costs: 

Type of Resident Licenses  Cost 
Annual  $20 
Annual (low income)  $5 
Annual (for the blind)  $0.50 
Duplicate (replacement)  $5 
Duplicate (replacement for low income)  $2 


King Salmon Stamp for Residents  Cost 
Annual  $10 
Duplicate (replacement)  $5 


License for Non-Residents 

If you are not a resident of Alaska, you are not eligible for certain licenses like blind and low-income licenses. However, you have additional options for picking the length of certain permits. Like residents, you must also purchase a King Salmon Stamp if you plan to fish for Chinooks. 

If you are a Yukon territory resident, you can purchase salmon stamps and non-resident licenses, but at the resident rates. 


Non-residents have a wide variety of licenses to choose from regarding the duration. Below is the list of options available for non-residents: 

License for Non-Residents  Cost 
1 day`  $15 
3 days  $30 
7 days  $45 
14 days  $75 
Annual  $100 
Annual Hunting and Sports Fishing  $260 
Annual Hunting and 1 day Sports Fishing  $175 
Annual Hunting and 3 day Sports Fishing  $190 
Annual Hunting and 7 days Sports Fishing  $205 
Annual Hunting and 14 day Sports Fishing  $235 
Duplicate (replacement)  $5 


King salmon Stamps for Non-residents.  Cost 
1 day  $15 
3 days  $30 
7 days  $45 
14 days  $75 
Annual  $100 
Duplicate (replacement)  $5 


License for Non-Residents Military persons  Cost 
Annual  $20 
Annual Hunting and Sports Fishing  $60 
Duplicate (replacement)  $5 


King Salmon Stamps for Non-resident military  cost 
Annual  $30 
Duplicate (replacement)  $5 


People who don’t need a fishing license 

The state’s handicapped veterans with a veteran’s license and Senior Alaska citizens (60+) with a Senior Permanent Identification Card are exempt from purchasing an Alaska fishing license. 

Anglers under 18 (residents) and 16 (non-residents) do not need to acquire a King Salmon Stamp, but they must still obtain a Harvest record card. If you are a holder of the Alaska sports fishing license for the blind or low income, you don’t need to purchase the King Salmon Stamp. 

Where do I buy an Alaska fishing license from? 

Most of the time, an Alaska fishing license is already included in the price of the charter boat for fishing. Of course, this is only true if you arrange a trip with a licensed captain, guide, or outfitter, like Action Alaska Sportsfishing. Make sure you double-check with them first. 

Otherwise, a license or stamp can easily be purchased at sporting goods stores, fish and game offices, or online.