How Much Is A UK Fishing Licence? How To Avoid A Hefty Fine

If you want to fish in the UK, you need to have a valid UK fishing licence.

UK fishing licence 1

This is because fishing is regulated in the UK and a licence is required in order to fish legally.

There are different types of licences available, so it’s important to make sure that you get the right one for your needs.

1. How Much For A UK Fishing Licence?

If you’re fishing in England or Wales for trout, salmon, eels, smelt or freshwater fish, you must have a rod licence.

If you are caught fishing for these species without one, you could be fined up to £2,500.

Nobody wants that, so we’ve set out the prices and where to buy a rod licence below.

There are different rules for fishing in Scotland and Northern Ireland.

Children under the age of 13 DO NOT need a rod licence to fish. 

If you are asked by a bailiff of the water you are fishing, you must show this, otherwise they have a duty to report the offence to the police for fishing illegally.

You may also require another licence or permit to fish on private land, and we recommend checking with the landowner prior to fishing.

2. What type of rod licences are available?

UK rod fishing licence

How much is a fishing licence is determined by what type, because there are two main types of rod licence available.

The first is a salmon and sea trout licence that permits you to fish for salmon, non-migratory trout and all freshwater fish. 

This licence can be used in three ways. One rod for salmon, sea trout and non-migratory trout in rivers, streams and canals. Two rods for salmon, sea trout and non-migratory trout in lakes, reservoirs and ponds.

The final option is the use of three rods to fish for freshwater fish.

The second type of rod licence you can buy is a trout, coarse fish and all freshwater fish.

fishing on a river

Again, you can purchase this type of licence in three ways.

1 rod for non-migratory trout in rivers, streams, drains and canals. Up to 2 rods for non-migratory trout in reservoirs, lakes and ponds and up to 2 rods for freshwater fish.

You can also purchase a 12 month 3-rod licence to fish for all freshwater fish.

You can visit the .gov website to find out more about the type and rod limits of fishing licences available.

Spod and marker rods are exempt for rod limits, unless they have hooks attached. 

3. How long does a rod licence last?

Rod licences are available as follows:

  • 1 day
  • 8 days
  • 12 months

Fishing licences can be bought using a debit card or credit card. You will need your national insurance number for a 12 month licence, or blue badge if you have a disability.

If you are buying a rod licence for someone else, you will need their details such as date of birth. 

You can choose to start your licence on any day within a 3-day period of purchase. For example, if you bought a rod licence today, you can set it to start on Saturday if that was the day you intend to fish.

4. How Much Does A UK Fishing Licence Cost?

We have put together a table showing the current 2022 rod licence prices.

Licence typeTrout and coarse up to 2-rodTrout and coarse 3-rodSalmon and sea trout
1-day£6Not available£12
8-day£12Not available£27
12-month – over 65 or disabled£20£30£54
12-month – junior (13 to 16)FreeFreeFree

Unfortunately, there are no discounts for buying either a 1 or 8 day licence.

Go ahead and buy your fishing licence below, and save yourself a fine of up to £2,500.

5. Buying your rod licence

As you can see, fishing licences are reasonably priced, but it can be confusing as to what type of rod licence you need. 

Hopefully this article explains this well, but if in doubt, you can read through all the necessary information of the .gov uk website.

Did you know that money raised from fishing licence sales is vital to funding the environment agencies work to protect and improve fisheries and support the sport of angling.

This includes improving habitats for fish, facilities for anglers and tackling illegal fishing.

Don’t get caught fishing without a rod licence and buy one using  the link above.

Thank you for reading our ‘How Much is a UK Fishing Licence?’ informational post.

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