If you’re considering fishing in Montana and unfamiliar with the local area and laws, then learning more about Montana fishing licenses before you go fishing is essential. Not only is a fishing license a legal requirement in most states, but fees raised from licenses typically go directly back into ensuring the ongoing health of the fishery so that future generations of anglers can enjoy the same, if not better, fishing opportunities we enjoy today.

In the following guide to Montana fishing licenses, we’ll cover:

If you love jig fishing, be sure to check out The Ultimate Guide to Jig Fishing: Tips, Techniques, and Best Practices for Beginners

Even the most experienced anglers need some assistance locating the best fishing spots, especially when fishing in a new location or on a quick fishing trip somewhere unfamiliar. Thanks to the premium Fishing App, you’ll know the ideal time to go fishing in Montana or when you’re better off just relaxing at home. 

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Types of Montana Fishing Licenses

Montana offers both resident and non-resident fishing licenses. Along with the resident or non-resident permits, they also provide:

  • Entire Season or Annual Fishing Licenses – These licenses are valid from the 1st of March through to the end of February of the following year.
  • Short-Term LicensesYou have two options with Montana’s short-term permits, either two-day or ten-day permits, which run consecutively from the date of purchase. 

In order to qualify as a resident for the purpose of obtaining a fishing permit, you must have physically resided in Montana for 180 consecutive days along with meeting other requirements such as having your car title and license registered to your Montana home address. 

There is also the option of obtaining a non-resident Combination or Resident Sportsman package, which includes a season or annual fishing license.

Cost of Montana Fishing Licenses

Please note that Montana’s fishing licenses are subject to change, and prices listed below may not reflect the current or latest prices listed on the Montana Fish, Wildlife, and Parks website. For the 2024 fishing season, the below license costs are:

Annual Fishing Permit:

  • Resident Adult Full Season – $21.
  • Resident Youth (10-17) Full Season – $10.50.
  • Resident Senior (62 and above) Full Season – $10.50.
  • Non-Resident Full Season – $100.

Short-Term 2-Day Licenses (Residents):

  • Resident – $5.
  • Youth – $5.
  • Senior – $5.

Short-Term Licenses (Non-Resident):

  • 1-Day Non-Resident – $14.
  • 5-Day Non-Resident – $56.

Age Requirements for Montana Fishing License

If you plan on fishing in Montana, most anglers must purchase both a fishing license and a conservation license. There is also an additional angling pass called the Angler Aquatic Invasive Species Prevention Pass, which is required to be obtained by all anglers. It is a program that was put in place in 2017 to help combat invasive species across the state.

Anyone over the age of 11 is required to purchase the correct permits. 

Youths aged 11-17 are required to purchase the correct permits but receive a discount. There is also a senior discount available to all resident anglers over the age of 62. There are also special licenses available to disabled anglers, veterans, students, injured veterans, and active military personnel.

Where to Obtain a Montana Fishing License

When it comes to purchasing a Montana fishing license, you have a variety of different purchase options, which make it easy and convenient to get the correct license type. If you have access to the internet, then going online to the Montana Fish, Wildlife & Parks website is one of the quickest and easiest ways to purchase your permits for the season.

Once you buy your license online, you can print a copy for your records. You will need to ensure that you meet all of the identification requirements when purchasing your permit online. 

Montana Fish, Wildlife & Parks also has a mobile application that makes buying and carrying your fishing and hunting licenses on your mobile device or tablet easy and convenient. 

If you prefer to purchase your license in person, you also have the option of visiting one of Montana’s many licensed retailers. You can see the complete interactive list of physical locations by visiting the Montana Fish, Wildlife & Parks fishing license provider list here.

It’s important to note that fishing seasons, costs, size limits, and bag limits can change from season to season, so even if you’ve fished in Montana before, it’s a good idea to read up on any regulation changes that may affect you.

Complete Guide to Montana Fishing Licenses – Conclusion

There you go! Everything you wanted to know about Montana fishing permits, including the different types of licenses available, costs associated with permits, age requirements, and where to get one.

Get your personalized fishing map

Answer a quick quiz and get your own personalized fishing map

Because of the latest forecasting technology, the Fishbox App allows anglers to accurately track weather conditions and predict the best time to go fishing. Fishbox App utilizes an in-depth analysis of weather patterns, fish behavior, and tidal and lunar conditions to tell you the best time to go fishing and when you’re better off relaxing at home.

If you have any questions about fishing licenses or permits in Montana, drop us a line! We’re always happy to answer any questions and love to read feedback.

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