From woods to water, find your next adventure with your Rhode Island Hunting and Fishing License!
DEM has launched a new website to serve as a one-stop-shop where Rhode Islanders who fish, hunt, and boat may obtain all the licenses, permits, and tags they need to participate in these activities. The single, unified hub — called Rhode Island Outdoors (RIO) — will modernize and simplify all outdoors licensing and permitting services that DEM administers. You can now go online or visit vendors across the state to purchase hunting and fishing licenses and permits, so you can get outdoors and enjoy the many recreational opportunities made possible through conservation and management of Rhode Island’s natural resources.
Rhode Island Outdoors
View Sales Agent Locations
View the Factsheet on Recent Fee Increases
To learn more hunting and fishing licenses in Rhode Island, read the sections outlined below:
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 and reprint when you need to. There is no cost for reprinting damaged or lost licenses.
What do I show RI Environmental Police if I'm asked for my license?
Rhode Island State law still requires you to carry your signed license document with you. Check the DEM regulation webpage or the annual Rhode Island regulation abstracts for the full hunting and fishing rules, seasons, and bag limits.
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.
How do I self-print all my active licenses and permits?
When you log into your online account, select the "reprint" button next to your purchased products. This button will print ALL your active licenses, permits, and tags in a single document. Email email@example.com if you need any assistance.
Can I purchase licenses in person?
Yes! Visit DEM's Office of Boating Registration & Licenses in Providence (M-F 8:30 AM - 3:30 PM) or stop by a participating sales agent location.
View the list of sales agents
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. The fees, by law, already include an "agent commission" that goes towards system development, operation, support and maintenance.
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 8:30 AM to 3:30 PM, 3rd floor, 235 Promenade Street, Providence (Directions)
Who do I call if I have trouble or questions about buying a license online?
If you have trouble using the web site, email RI.gov at firstname.lastname@example.org or call them at 401-831-8099 weekdays from 9:00 AM through 5:00 PM (EST). If you have questions about what license to buy, call DEM at 401-222-6647 weekdays from 8:30 AM to 3:30 PM.
I qualify for a No-Cost license. How does the 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
If you qualify for a no cost license, you may purchase your license in person at DEM, by mail or through the online system. In all cases, you must hold a current document from the federal agency that issued the disability decision. If you already hold a no cost permanent hunting or fishing license and would like to buy additional permits or privileges or receive information about additional hunting or fishing opportunities, you must enter your information in the new system. The system will issue a new permanent license, and allow you access the online system to buy future permits or privileges.
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
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.
When do hunting permits go on sale?
Permits are available for purchase online and in-person a few days before their respective seasons start. For example, Spring Turkey tags will go on sale on April 1st.
Why is DEM asking me to input my SSN into the online system?
In order to expand the use of their licensing system to include recreational boating renewals and those who hold commercial marine licenses DEM needed to replace the previous system. A more modern system offers greater overall convenience and several features not supported by the current software. The new system is product based and in use by some of the largest hunting and fishing states in the country including Pennsylvania and Illinois. By design, the system uses SSNs as a unique identifier to ensure that each customer can establish a unique, secure account. This transition will help reduce duplicate accounts and the number of varying platforms a license purchaser must navigate to purchase other DEM licenses available to recreate in Rhode Island. The SSN is a unique identifier that is associated with individuals that do not have or are not old enough to obtain a driver's license.
Additionally, to provide effective child support enforcement, DEM is required to comply with certain laws relating to the collection of social security numbers. Federal law (42 U.S.C. § 666(a)), requires each State to implement a process by which they can deny or rescind licenses (professional, occupational or recreational) to individuals owing child support or failing to comply with court orders relating to paternity or child support proceedings. Rhode Island General Laws Chapter 15-11.1 states that a person can be denied a recreational license if that person is behind in paying court-ordered child support. Tyler Technologies will store SSNs in a secure database and SSNs will only be available upon request to the RI Office of Child Support Services or RI Division of Taxation for compliance with R.I. Gen. Laws Chapter 15-11.1.
When you first log into RIO, or create a new account, the system will ask for an SSN. This is required to ensure that each RIO account is unique and secure. If you can't or choose not to provide an SSN or passport number, you will need to visit the DEM headquarters Boating Office (M-F 8:30 AM to 3:30 PM) at 235 Promenade Street, Providence, RI to have your unique customer account created and verified. You will need to provide another form of ID (state-issued driver’s license, or military ID). Once created and verified, you will be able to make purchases via the RIO website or at authorized agents.
Do I have to show my Social Secuirty Card?
No, you are not required to show your social security card.
Who will see my Social Secuirty Number?
Your Social Secuirty Number (SSN) will not be printed on any document (e.g., your hunting, fishing or boating license and permits). SSNs are encrypted and securely stored in a technical environment required to meet stringent security standards. Access is kept confidential with very limited access, including limited from DEM staff access, including law enforcement officers. While customers can use their own SSN as a means to access the system, you will not need to provide it once your account has been established. Customers can continue to use their unique customer number, RIHFID number from the previous system, or their driver’s license number when visiting authorized sales agents or establish a secure username and password when making purchases online.
What types of licenses are available through RIO?
Using RIO, customers can renew their licenses, permits, and tags for hunting, trapping, freshwater fishing, and saltwater fishing. In the coming months, the website will add functionality for segments including recreational boating registration, commercial fishing licensing, ATV/snowmobile registration, and hunter safety program modules.