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RI Hunting & Fishing Licenses
  • Fishing
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  • Fishing
Getting ready for deer season?

Deer permits and Resident All Outdoors Packages will be going on sale August 15 at sales vendors and online at https://www.ri.gov/DEM/huntfish.

A limit of 350 All Outdoors Packages will be sold on a first come first serve basis and are available to Rhode Island residents only. The All Outdoors package consists of 7 zone 1/zone 2 resident deer permits, (2 of which are antlered deer tags and 5 are antlerless deer tags). These permits are not weapon (archery/muzzleloader/shotgun) season specific and can be used in any combination provided the zone bag limits (no more than 3 antlerless deer in zone 1 and no more than 2 antlerless deer in zone 2) are adhered to. This package is popular because it gives the hunter flexibility as they can choose which season(s) to hunt and use their permits, while also saving money!

For the 2018/2019 Hunting regulations please visit http://bit.ly/2Oybedq.

From woods to water, find your next adventure with your Rhode Island Hunting and Fishing License!

DEM is proud to join states across the country in providing hunting and fishing licenses online. You can now go online or visit vendors across the state to purchase hunting and fishing licenses and permits. It’s easier than ever to purchase Rhode Island hunting and fishing licenses, permits, tags and stamps, so you can get outdoors and enjoy the many recreational opportunities made possible through conservation and management of Rhode Island’s natural resources.

 

Buy Online >

View Sales Agent Locations

View the Factsheet

To learn more hunting and fishing licenses in Rhode Island, read the sections outlined below:

Online License FAQs

Which licenses are available and when can I purchase them?

You can purchase freshwater fishing, recreational saltwater fishing, hunting, and combination freshwater fishing and hunting licenses, as well as trout stamps and hunting permits online. Both resident and non-resident licenses may be purchased. Hunters can also report their harvests online.

There are two ways to buy a license: online or in person at one of DEM’s licensing agents.
Online: https://www.ri.gov/DEM/huntfish

From Agents: Visit DEM's Boating & Licensing Office in-person Monday-Friday from 8:30am to 3:30pm (directions) or an authorized sales agent, which includes some municipalities. Be sure to check the list of agents available within the online system (link to list that RII is compiling through the system). View the list of sales agents

What is a RIHFID?

When using the new online system for the first time, you will be issued a Rhode Island Hunting and Fishing ID (RIHFID). This number is unique to you and can be used to quickly access the system in the future to reprint lost or damaged license and permits, purchase additional permits or renew licenses in subsequent years.

What documents do I need to purchase a fishing or hunting license

You will need a driver's license, government issued identification card, military identification, green card or passport number to verify your identity.

If you are applying for a hunting license or archery permit and have not been a member of the armed forces (military ID# required), you must complete a course in safe hunting or archery practices and have been issued a Hunter Education Certificate. You will need your hunter safety certificate number or a previous hunting license from Rhode Island or another state.

If you are unable to locate your certification, you may also attest under penalty of perjury that you have achieved hunter safety certification and qualify for hunting licenses and permits. The DEM will be conducting audits of the system, including these attestations and if selected for audit, you will have to provide proof. Failure to provide proof of certification may result in criminal charges and revocation of licenses and permits.

For Minors: Minors under 18 years of age who do not yet possess a driver's license or state issued non-driver photo identification may enter their parent or legal guardian's driver's license number when purchasing an RI Hunting or Fishing license. Those over the age of 18 years must have their own driver's license or state issued non-driver photo identification.

What documents do I need to purchase a fishing or hunting license

You will need a driver's license, government issued identification card, military identification, green card or passport number to verify your identity.

If you are applying for a hunting license or archery permit and have not been a member of the armed forces (military ID# required), you must complete a course in safe hunting or archery practices and have been issued a Hunter Education Certificate. You will need your hunter safety certificate number or a previous hunting license from Rhode Island or another state.

If you are unable to locate your certification, you may also attest under penalty of perjury that you have achieved hunter safety certification and qualify for hunting licenses and permits. The DEM will be conducting audits of the system, including these attestations and if selected for audit, you will have to provide proof. Failure to provide proof of certification may result in criminal charges being filed and revocation of licenses and permits.

For Minors: Minors under 18 years of age who do not yet have a driver's license or state issued non-driver photo identification, may enter their parent or legal guardian's driver's license number when purchasing a RI Hunting or Fishing license. Those over the age of 18 years must have their own driver's license or state issued non-driver photo identification.

I am a Junior Hunter and do not have a government issued identification. How do I buy a license?

Minors under 18 years of age who do not yet have a driver's license or state issued non-driver photo identification, may enter their parent or legal guardian's driver's license number when purchasing a RI Hunting license. Those over the age of 18 years must have their own driver's license or state issued non-driver photo identification.

What will my license look like?

Your license will print on an 8.5” x 11” piece of paper. Every completed transaction will produce a printable document which lists all active licenses and permits. Whether you purchased them online or at a vendor, your system profile will update every time you add a new license, permit, tag and/or stamp.

Rhode Island State law requires you to carry your signed license document with you. Check the DEM website or the annual Rhode Island regulation abstracts for the full hunting and fishing rules.

If you damage or lose your license, simply log into the system using your email or RIHFID number and reprint when you need to. There is no cost for reprinting damaged or lost licenses.

Is there any added fee involved with purchasing licenses and permits online?

No, there are no added fees if a license or permit is purchased online.

Is there an added fee involved if I purchase in-person?

Sales Vendors:Yes, there are Enhance Access Fees as follows:

  • Residents: $2 per license and $0.50 permit
  • Non-resident: $3 per license and $1 permit
  • No enhanced access fee for Residential Recreational Saltwater Licenses or No Cost Licenses

Enhanced Access Fees offset the administrative costs to bill, track and account for the transactions from sales agent locations and for system development, operation, support and maintenance. The agent commission, which is included in the license or permit fee, goes to the sales agent to offset their costs for processing and printing your license at their location.

At DEM:There is no additional fee if you pay with cash or a personal check. If you use a credit or debit card to pay for your license, there is a credit card processing fee. Purchases can be made at DEM's Boating Office, Monday-Friday 8:30am to 3:30pm, 3rd floor, 235 Promenade Street, Providence (Directions)

Do I need a printer to purchase a license, tag, or permit online?

Yes. For a license to be valid it must be printed out and signed by the applicant. The license you print at your printer is a valid, official license and no other license will be mailed to you. You may also want to print out the transaction receipt for your records.

Licenses are printed on plain 8.5" x 11" paper and can be printed in color or black and white.

What do I do if my printer failed when printing the license or my license gets wet and I need to print another?

You will have a unique “Customer Number” or RIFHID when you purchase your hunting or fishing license. Simply log into the system, access your account, and reprint when you need to. There is no cost for reprinting damaged or lost licenses.

Can I purchase licenses in person?

Yes! Licenses will still be available for purchase at DEM's Office of Boating Registration & Licenses in Providence and participating sales agent locations across the state.
View the list of sales agents

I qualify for a No-Cost license. How does the new online system affect me?

No cost licenses are available if you are:

  • over 65 AND a Rhode Island resident
  • a veteran with 100% disability status from the Department of Veterans Affairs
  • a person with 100% total disability status from the Social Security Administration

You may obtain your no cost license in person at DEM, by mail, or through the online system if you are in one of these categories.

If you hold a 100% disability status either from the Social Security Administration or Veteran’s Affairs, you must hold a current ORIGINAL DOCUMENT OF THE FINAL DECISION(S). This document MUST be on agency letterhead, from the appropriate federal agency(ies) that issued the required disability decision (i.e. the Social Security Administration or the Department of Veterans Affairs). If you are unsure of your disability status, it is best to call or visit DEM.

People who are over 65 or who are a veteran with 100% disability status will be issued a permanent license for freshwater fishing, hunting or freshwater fishing/hunting combo licenses. People with 100% total disability status will be issued a new license each year after confirmation that the status is still 100%.

Special conditions apply for no cost saltwater licenses. Over 65 saltwater fishing licenses are free but need to be renewed each year. People with 100% disability status are exempt from needing a license for saltwater fishing but must have the original document of the final decision available while saltwater fishing in Rhode Island waters.

To apply in person at DEM, please bring a photo ID and an ORIGINAL DOCUMENT OF THE FINAL DECISION(S). Office hours are 8:30 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. Monday through Friday. (directions)

To apply by mail, please complete an application and mail the application and a copy of your photo ID and the ORIGINAL DOCUMENT OF THE FINAL DECISION(S). Please allow two weeks for processing.

The address to obtain your license in person or by mail is:
DEM Licensing Office
235 Promenade Street, Room 360
Providence, RI 02908
(401) 222-3576

To purchase online, you will be required to certify that you have an ORIGINAL DOCUMENT OF THE FINAL DECISION(S). You will also be required to enter the date the decision expires. The Department will audit compliance with the certification and may, at any time, request a copy of the current DOCUMENT OF THE FINAL DECISION(S). Failure to submit the documentation by the date requested may result in suspension of your fishing and hunting license. Also, Rhode Island General Law 11-18-1 prohibits giving false document to an agent, employee or public official. Penalty is a misdemeanor punishable by a fine of up to $1,000 or imprisonment up to one year.

I am over 65 and qualify for a No Cost License. How does the new online system affect me?

If you are a Rhode Island resident over 65 or you are a veteran who is 100% permanently disabled and have an existing permanent Rhode Island hunting or fishing license, you may set up an account in the system and enter your birthdate. You may also visit DEM or an agent and show your current license. The system will issue a new permanent license at no cost and you will then be able to access the online system to buy future permits or privileges if you wish.

Does the online licensing website offer resident and nonresident fishing/hunting licenses?

Yes, both can may be purchased online.

What type of payment does the online system accept?

The online system accepts Visa, MasterCard, American Express and Discover.Payment types accepted at other agents may vary by location.
View the list of sales agents

Is the online licensing website secure for credit card transactions?

Yes, Rhode Island Interactive who provides this service is fully secure and a PCI/DSS certified payment provider.

Who do I call if I have trouble or questions about buying a license on-line?

If you have trouble using the web site, email RI.gov at rihelp@egov.com or call them at 401-831-8099 weekdays from 9:00 a.m. through 5:00 p.m. If you have questions about what license to buy, call DEM at 401-222-6647 ex 4931 weekdays from 8:30 a.m. to 3:30 p.m.

How long will DEM Enforcement honor my paper permanent licenses?

DEM environmental police officers will allow you to fish using a previously issued permanent license forever, however in order to purchase a trout stamp OR any hunting permits, you will need to register in the new system and be issued a permanent license in the new system.

Are purchases for license and permits refundable?

Purchases are generally not refundable. Any requests for refunds must be made in person at the DEM.

What if I make a mistake when purchasing my license or permits, can I fix the error and get a new document?

If you have made an error when purchasing your license or permits (example: you entered your address incorrectly) you can exchange your license at any authorized agent. They will be able to void your incorrect license and issue a new one. Exchanges are one for one and only for the same type of license or permits.

If I purchase a non-resident license and then move to Rhode Island, can I exchange my license?

Customers requiring any type of exchange (other than a one for one for the same type of license) will need to visit the DEM to request the exchange.

Can I purchase a license or permits on behalf of another person?

No. Agents will only issue licenses to individuals who are present at the time of purchase. Online sales allow you to only purchase licenses and permits for the individual signed into the system and you will be required to attest that you are the licensee at the time or purchase.

Do I need an email address to use the new system?

No, an email address is not required – although it is highly encouraged. Using an email address allows you to receive electronic copies of your receipts and to quickly access the system to reprint or renew licenses and permits. The Department will also email you about hunting and fishing season dates and special programming and reminders to renew your licenses. DEM will not sell or provide your email to outside businesses or entities.

Freshwater Fishing FAQs

Who Needs a License?

Licenses are required of anglers fifteen (15) years of age and older.

Which Rhode Island ponds have reciprocal license privileges with abutting states?

Killingly Pond, Hazard Pond, and Peck Pond have license reciprocity with Connecticut. Wallum Lake has license reciprocity with Massachusetts.

What are the dates of the FREE FISHING DAYS?

On the first full weekend of May each year, neither a Rhode Island resident nor a resident of any other state is required to possess a freshwater fishing license or a trout conservation stamp.

Are there "KIDS ONLY" ponds?

Yes! The following trout-stocked waters are restricted to fishing by people fourteen (14) years of age and younger:

  • Lloyd Kenney Pond in Hopkinton
  • Frosty Hollow Pond in Exeter
  • Geneva Brook & Pond in North Providence
  • Lapham Pond in Burrillville
  • Seidel's Pond in Cranston
  • Silvy's Pond in Cumberland

The following ponds are restricted to persons fourteen (14) years of age and younger only for the first two days of the season (second Saturday in April):

  • Cass Pond in Woonsocket
  • Slater Park Pond in Pawtucket
  • Ponderosa Pond in Little Compton
Do I need a trout stamp?

A trout conservation stamp ($5.50) is required of any person wishing to keep or possess a trout, salmon, or charr caught in Rhode Island waters or by any person fishing in a "catch-and-release" or "fly-fishing ONLY" area.

Exemptions: Minors under 15 years of age; RI residents over 65 years of age; persons with a 100% disability; landowner and members of their family when fishing from property on which they are actually domiciled; persons possessing trout taken from a lake or pond which shares a border with a neighboring state; persons possessing privately-owned trout caught in privately-owned ponds.

Are designated trout ponds ever closed?

Yes, fishing in designated trout ponds is prohibited from March 1 up to opening day annually. Opening day is the second Saturday in April annually.

Can I use corn for bait in any trout waters? Can I chum in trout waters?

NO

Saltwater Fishing FAQs

Who Needs a License?

To fish recreationally for finfish in Rhode Island's marine waters, saltwater anglers and spearfishers must have:

  • A RI Recreational Saltwater Fishing License, or
  • A National Saltwater Angler Registration, or
  • A recreational saltwater fishing license from a reciprocal state. Rhode Island honors recreational saltwater fishing licenses from New York, Connecticut, Massachusetts, and Maine.

The state-license and federal-registry programs are designed to improve the quality of marine recreational fishing data. In turn, the improved data helps ensure that recreational fishing regulations are fair, effective, and based on sound science.

Who is exempt from obtaining a recreational saltwater license?

No license is required for:

  • Anglers who are under 16 years of age
  • Anglers fishing on licensed party or charter boats
  • Anglers who hold a license from a reciprocal state
  • Anglers who hold a NOAA Fisheries registation
  • Anglers who hold Highly Migratory Species Angling Permits
  • Anglers who are on leave from active military duty
  • Anglers who are blind or permanently disabled

Additionally:

  • Licensed commercial fishermen do not need a recreational license if they are fishing in commercial mode. However, they do need one if they are fishing in recreational mode.
  • Licensed party or charter boat operators do not need a recreational license if they have a RI Party and Charter Boat license and are fishing in party/charter mode. However, they do need a recreational license if they are fishing in recreational mode, without paying customers aboard.
  • Anyone who is a non-fishing passenger on a boat on which others are fishing does not need a recreational license, as long as the passenger does not engage in any angling or spearfishing activity.
  • Anyone who is recreationally fishing in a way that does not involve angling (defined as any use of a hook and line), or spearfishing (defined as any use of a spear or powerhead), does not need a recreational license. Thus, a recreational license is not needed to fish recreationally using recreational cast nets, minnow traps, dip nets, umbrella nets, seine, or eel pot. The State regulations covering recreational beach seines/bait nets must be adhered to when collecting bait species.)
  • A separate RI recreational lobster license is needed to take lobsters, and for non-residents, a separate recreational shellfish license is needed to take shellfish. Additionally, non-residents may not harvest blue crabs.
Where does the license apply?

RI waters: RI's recreational fishing license applies in all of RI's marine waters, which begin at the inland edge of all tidal water areas and extend seaward out to three miles. The defined boundaries separating RI's freshwaters and saltwaters can be found in section 2.6 of DEM's Freshwater and Anadromous Fishing Regulations.

Federal waters: The RI license also applies in all offshore federal waters, which extend seaward from the seaward edge of all state waters.

Other state waters: The RI license also applies in the state waters of Massachusetts, Connecticut, Maine and New York, as well as in the waters of all other states that honor RI's license.

When does the license expire?

All yearly RI licenses expire each year on December 31. All yearly RI licenses must be renewed annually. All seven-day RI licenses expire seven days after their activation date.

What if I am not a RI resident, but have a license from my home state or some other state, and plan to fish in RI waters?
RI will honor any license from any state that also honors RI licenses. Massachusetts, Connecticut, Maine and New York licenses are reciprocal, and so they apply in RI waters.
What if I am not a RI resident, and don't have a license from my home state or some other state, and plan to fish in RI waters?
You can readily obtain a RI non-resident license. However, be advised that you may or may not be able to use that license in your home state (e.g., if you are a Connecticut or Massachusetts resident, you will need to obtain a Connecticut or Massachusetts license to fish in Connecticut or Massachusetts waters).
How are the revenues from license fees used?
All license fees from saltwater fishing licenses are deposited in a restricted receipt account, managed by DEM. In accordance with the State law governing the license program, revenues from license fees can only be used to administer and enforce the license program, improve the management of RI's marine recreational fisheries, particularly with regard to developing more accurate assessments of recreational catch and effort, and to enhance recreational fishing access opportunities in the state. Saltwater license fee revenues cannot be used for any purpose that is unrelated to marine recreational fishing in Rhode Island.

Hunting FAQs

Am I required to complete a hunter education course to legally hunt in Rhode Island?

Rhode Island requires that no license to hunt shall be issued to any person unless that person has held a license in a prior year or unless that person is in possession of a hunter education card issued by Rhode Island or under an equivalent state hunter safety program or from a jurisdiction that meets or exceeds International Hunter Education Association standards. Those qualifying only for use of archery equipment will be issued a hunting license designated "archery only" and are limited to the use of bows and arrows while hunting or pursuing game in this state. Persons who are serving in or have been honorably discharged from the United States Army, Navy, Air Force, Marine Corps or Coast Guard are exempt from hunter education requirements.

Learn more about hunter education

Can I obtain a Rhode Island hunting license by providing a hunting license issued by another state?

Yes. You must have your hunter safety certification number or a previous hunting license from Rhode Island or another state.

Do I need an archery proficiency card to bowhunt for deer?

Most mainland archers do not need an archery proficiency card. Individuals who wish to hunt deer with bow and arrow on Prudence Island, Patience Island, Block Island, Beavertail or in the Town of Lincoln must hold an Archery Proficiency card.

Is there an age requirment for hunter/bowhunter education courses?

There is no minimum age requirement to enroll in the hunter education course or bowhunter education course. The student must be mature enough to understand the information presented, pass the written exam and participate in practical exercises as required. The student must also demonstrate to the satisfaction of the instructor that they possess the skills and attitude to responsibly and safely participate in any hunting activity.

Learn more about hunter education

How old do I have to be to hunt in Rhode Island?

Persons age 12 to 14 who have completed a course may obtain a junior hunting license and may hunt in the immediate company of a qualified licensed adult twenty-one years of age or older. An individual may hunt unsupervised at 15 years of age.

Who is not allowed to hunt in Rhode Island?

Rhode Island General Law 20-13-5 PROHIBITS the following persons from PURCHASING or POSSESSING a Hunting License:

  • Persons convicted of a crime of violence*
  • Fugitives from Justice
  • Anyone declared Mentally Incompetent
  • Drug Addicts
  • Habitual Drunkards

* “Crime of Violence” shall mean and include any of the following crimes or an attempt to commit any of them; murder, manslaughter, rape, first or second degree sexual assault, first or second degree child molestation, kidnapping, first and second degree arson, mayhem, robbery, burglary, breaking and entering, any felony involving the illegal manufacture, sale or delivery of a controlled substance classified in schedule I or schedule II of 21-28-2.08, any violation21-28-4.1 or 21-28-4.01.2 or conspiracy to commit any violation of these statutes, assault with a dangerous weapon, assault or battery involving grave bodily injury, and or assault with intent to commit any offense punishable as a felony; upon conviction of an offense punishable as a felony offense under 12-29-5 (domestic violence). Penalty is a misdemeanor, punishable by a fine not more than five-hundred dollars ($500.00) or imprisonment for up to ninety (90) days or both.

Purchase RI Licenses Online

Do you need to:

  • Buy a license, permit, tag or stamp?
  • Register or Update your online profile
 

Buy Online >

View Sales Agent Locations

RI Hunting & Fishing Regulations
Contact
Online System:
Technical Questions for Online Purchases:

Boat Registration & Licenses (Hunting, Fishing, Shellfishing)
235 Promenade Street, 3rd Floor
Providence, RI 02908
Monday-Friday 8:30 am to 3:30pm
Directions
Phone: 401-222-6647 (Boating)
Phone: 401-222-3576 (Licenses)

Marine Fisheries:

Boat Title Questions:

Hunting & Fishing: