Fishing in Minnesota is a cherished activity, with its numerous lakes and rivers offering plentiful opportunities for anglers. To legally fish in Minnesota, you need to obtain a fishing license. This guide provides comprehensive information on how to get a fishing license in Minnesota for 2024, including types of licenses, costs, purchasing methods, and state-specific regulations.

Who Needs a Fishing License?

In Minnesota, anyone aged 16 to 89 must have a current fishing license to fish legally, unless an exemption applies. Non-residents also need a license, but children under 16 do not need a license if a parent or guardian is licensed.

Types of Fishing Licenses

Minnesota offers a variety of fishing licenses to cater to different needs:

  1. Individual Angling License: For one person.
  2. Combination Angling License: Allows a married couple to fish individually or together.
  3. Individual Sports License: Allows one person to hunt small game and fish.
  4. Combination Sports License: Allows one spouse to hunt small game and fish, and the other spouse to only fish.
  5. Non-resident Individual Angling License: For non-residents to fish anytime during the license year in Minnesota.
  6. Lifetime Fishing License: Available for both residents and non-residents, with fees varying based on age and residency status.

License Costs

The cost of fishing licenses in Minnesota varies based on the type and duration of the license:

License TypeResident FeeNon-Resident Fee
Individual Angling (Annual)$25$51
Combination Angling (Annual)$40N/A
Individual Sports (Annual)$41N/A
Combination Sports (Annual)$57N/A
Lifetime License (0-3 years)$344$821
Lifetime License (4-15 years)$469$1,046
Lifetime License (16-50 years)$574$1,191
Lifetime License (51+ years)$379$794
24-Hour License$12$14
72-Hour License$14$43
7-Day LicenseN/A$43
14-Day License (Married Couple)N/A$54
Family LicenseN/A$68
Youth License (16-17 years)$5$6
Trout Stamp$11$11

Purchasing Methods

Fishing licenses in Minnesota can be purchased through several convenient methods:

  1. Online: Visit the Minnesota Department of Natural Resources (DNR) website to purchase and print your license.
  2. By Phone: Call 1-888-665-4236 (1-MN-LICENSE) to buy your license over the phone.
  3. In Person: Licenses can be bought at DNR offices, local retailers such as Walmart, hardware stores, and bait and tackle shops.

Important Regulations

  • License ValidityFishing licenses are effective from March 1 to the last day of February of the following year.
  • Carrying Your LicenseAnglers must carry their license while fishing or traveling from an area where they were fishing.
  • Exemptions: Certain groups, such as residents younger than 16, residents 90 and older, and Minnesota residents enlisted in the U.S. Armed Forces on leave, do not need a fishing license.

Conservation Efforts

Fishing license fees support conservation initiatives, habitat restoration, and public access to fishing opportunities. The revenue goes into the Game and Fish Fund, which is dedicated to fish, wildlife, law enforcement, and other outdoor-related activities.


Obtaining a fishing license in Minnesota is a straightforward process that supports the state’s conservation efforts and ensures sustainable fishing practices. Whether you’re a resident or a visitor, make sure to get your license before heading out to enjoy the rich fishing heritage of the “Land of 10,000 Lakes.”

For more detailed information and to purchase your license, visit the Minnesota DNR website.

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