How to get a Fishing License

FRESHJWATER-JakesFishThe weather is getting colder so we may be in for some ice fishing soon. Don’t forget that your fishing license expires on the new year. You don’t want to be on the ice with out your card. We can help. The Goose Hummock Shop is your one-stop store for all Massachusetts 2018 Fishing Licenses. Simply stop by, answer a few questions as our staff fills out your registration form and we can have you one the water in no time at all.

There are two licenses for fishing in the state depending on what type of fishing you will be doing, freshwater or saltwater.

How to get a license:

Here are 3 ways to buy a MA saltwater fishing permit:

1. Online (with a credit card) at MassFishHunt.

2. By phone (with a credit card) by calling 1-866-703-1925 anytime from 5:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m., 7 days a week.

3. In person at The Goose Hummock Shop.

*All licenses are subject to a $1.50 State processing fee. Those purchased thru the Goose are subject to an additional $1.50 processing fee.


Massachusetts freshwater fishing licenses are required for anglers who plan to catch fish from inland state waters. Depending on the applicant’s residency status and the type of marine wildlife they would like to catch, fishing permit application fees may vary. Available freshwater fishing licenses include:

  • Freshwater Residential Fishing License: $27.50
  • Freshwater Youth Residential Fishing License (ages 15 through 17): Free
  • Freshwater Senior Residential Fishing License (ages 65 through 69): $16.25
  • Freshwater Senior Residential Fishing License (ages 70 or older): Free
  • Freshwater Residential/Non Resident Paraplegic Fishing License: Free
  • Freshwater Non Resident Fishing License: $37.50
  • Freshwater Non Resident Three-Day Fishing License: $23.50
  • Freshwater Residential Three-Day Fishing License: $12.50
  • Freshwater Youth Non Resident Fishing License: $11.50
  • Freshwater Residential/Non Resident One-Day Fishing License (Quabbin Reservoir): $5.00
  • Residential Sporting License: $45.00
  • Senior Residential Sporting License (Age 65-69): $25.00
  • Senior Residential Sporting & Trapping License (Aged 70 or Over): Free

Freshwater fishing licenses may be subjected to a change of fees without notice.

Disabled Massachusetts residents (blind, paraplegic, and intellectually disabled) may qualify for a free MA freshwater fishing license.

To qualify for the free freshwater Massachusetts fishing license on account of a disability: (1) you must be a resident citizen of the US; (2) you must have been a legal resident in Massachusetts for at least 6 consecutive months immediately before applying; and (3) you must submit proper medical proof of disability along with your license application.

Note: If this is your first time applying for a MA resident disabled fishing license, you’ll have to submit your application and a letter from your physician directly to the Boston office of the Massachusetts Division of Fisheries & Wildlife.

All MA freshwater fishing licenses expire at the end of December in the year of purchase.


ErikAlbiesAs of Jan. 1, 2011 all anglers 16 years of age or older are required to purchase a MA Recreational Saltwater Fishing Permit, including up to the first dam in rivers and streams that flow to the ocean.  The cost for a 2017 saltwater fishing permit is $10 for ages 16-59. For anglers aged 60 and up, it’s free.

The permit is valid for a calendar year, expiring on December 31st.


If you’re fishing on a permitted for-hire vessel (i.e., a licensed charter boat or head boat), the boat’s license will cover you. You won’t need your own.

If you’re a resident of, and have recreational saltwater fishing permit from, a state that has a reciprocity agreement with Massachusetts, that permit will cover you while fishing in Massachusetts marine waters. (Massachusetts has reciprocity agreements with New Hampshire, Rhode Island, and Connecticut.)

If you are fin-fishing exclusively in federal waters and possess a Highly Migratory Species permit, you do not need a Massachusetts saltwater fishing permit as long as you do not land any fish in Massachusetts. If you retain fish and bring them back into Massachusetts state waters, or you fish in Massachusetts state waters, then you must have the Massachusetts saltwater permit.

If you’re aged 60 or over, or disabled, you’ll still need the permit – but it’s free.

To learn more about the MA saltwater fishing permit requirements, visit the Mass. Division of Marine Fisheries website.