Illinois Fishing License

Explore everything you need to know about obtaining an Illinois fishing license. Find license requirements, fees, and purchase options for residents and non-residents. Get updates on regulation changes and learn about license exemptions. This category covers all the essentials for legal fishing in Illinois.

Fox River

Best Fishing Spots in Illinois in 2024

As an angler in the Land of Lincoln, you’re spoiled for choice when it comes to world-class fishing destinations. From the mighty Mississippi River to scenic lakes and reservoirs, Illinois offers an abundance of opportunities to reel in trophy catches.

Illinois Fishing License

How to Get Your Illinois Fishing License in 2024

Fishing is a beloved pastime in Illinois, offering anglers the opportunity to enjoy the state’s diverse waterways and reel in a variety of fish species. However, before casting your line, it’s crucial to understand the importance of obtaining a valid


The annual resident sport fishing license in Illinois costs $15. Seniors aged 65 and older pay a reduced fee of $7.75, while those 75 and over pay only $1.50.

Yes, anyone assisting a licensed angler, including those helping with commercial fishing or musseling, must have their own valid Illinois fishing license.

No, living in a subdivision with a private lake does not exempt you from needing a fishing license in Illinois. The landowner exemption does not apply to subdivision, club, or organizational lakes.

You can reprint a license purchased online at no charge. Regional DNR offices can issue replacements for $3 plus a small fee. Vendors with a DNR Direct terminal can also replace licenses for $3 plus a transaction fee.

Yes, the Illinois Department of Natural Resources designates a few Free Fishing Days each year where anglers can fish without a license. Check the IDNR website for the current year’s dates.

If you catch a tagged fish, report the tag number, color, date, location, and fish length to the IDNR phone number printed on the tag. Anglers are encouraged to release tagged fish to aid in research and population management.

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