License Requirements
The services of the North Carolina Wildlife Resources Commission are financed primarily through the sale of hunting, trapping and fishing licenses.

The numerous types of licenses authorized to be sold by the Commission differ with the respect to the activities authorized, the places where and periods during which they are authorized, and the places of residence of the user.

Residence Requirements

License Types

As listed herein, the several licenses are placed in five general categories.

Save Your Old License, Hunter Safety Course Required

As of July 1, 1991, a person regardless of age, may not purchase a hunting license or hunt in North Carolina without producing a certificate of having completed a hunting safety course or have a copy of a hunting license, or signing a statement that they had a license. Write the Division of Wildlife Enforcement for information on Hunter Safety Courses.

Annual Licenses

Annual License Fees Resident Nonresident
State Fishing (basic) $ 15.00 $ 30.00
State Hunting (basic) 15.00 $ 40.00
Combination Hunting & Fishing (basic) 20 -
County Fishing (basic) 10 -
County Hunting (basic) 10 -
State Trapping (basic) 25 100
County Trapping (basic) 10 -
Special Fishing Devices (basic/non-commercial) 10 50
Special Fishing Devices (basic/commercial) 100 100
Comprehensive Hunting 30 -
Comprehensive Fishing 20 -
Sportsman 40 -
Short-term Licenses

Short-term fishing licenses are available for one-day and three day periods. There are two types of short-term fishing licenses:

Short-term License Fees Resident Nonresident
State Fishing    
1 day (basic) $5.00 $ 10.00
3 day (basic) - $ 15.00
Nonresident 6-day Hunting (basic) - $ 25.00
Nonresident Big Game 6-day - $ 25.00
Additional Privilege Licenses

These annual licenses authorize particular hunting or fishing activities and must be obtained in addition to the appropriate basic license. Additional privilege licenses are as follows:

Additional Privilege License Fees Resident Nonresident
Special Trout Fishing $ 10.00 $ 10.00
Waterfowl Hunting 5.00 5.00
Big Game Hunting 10.00 40.00
Nonresident Bear Hunting - 100.00
Game Lands 15.00 15.00
Hunt and Fish Guide 10.00 Reciprocal
Controlled Hunt Preserve 15.00 15.00
Falconry 10.00 10.00
Lifetime Licenses

These licenses are valid for the lifetime of the license holder.

Lifetime License Fees Resident Nonresident
State Comprehensive Fishing $ 250.00 -
State Comprehensive Hunting $ 250.00 -
Sportsman (age 12 and older) $ 500.00 $ 1000.00
Sportsman (ages 1-11) $ 350.00 $ 350.00
Sportsman (under age 1) $ 200.00 $ 200.00
Special Sportsman License 
Age 70
$ 10.00 -
Special Combination Hunting - Fishing License Disabled Veteran $ 7.50 -
Special Fishing License 
Legally Blind
No charge   -
Guest Fishing License

A guest fishing license my be purchased by the owner or lessee of private property bordering inland or joint fishing waters, including public mountain trout waters. This license entitles persons to fish from such property, including any pier or dock originating on such property, without any additional inland fishing license. The license is not valid for any property operated for commercial purposes.


  Resident Nonresident
Guest Fishing License $ 50.00 -

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updated: July 10, 2000