Key West Fishing Docks logo

A Key West Kayak Fishing Guide Book & Charter Resource • E-Mail Us

Key West Fishing Info

Key West Fishing home
Deep Sea Fishing
Flats Fishing Key West
Reef Fishing Key West
Light Tackle Fishing

Kayak Fishing

Fly Fishing in Key West
Charter Boats
Party Boat Fishing
Corporate Fishing Trip
Key West Kayaking Info
Key West Kayak Tours
Snorkel & Kayak
Kayak Fishing Photos
Kayak Fishing - press


Other Angler Info

Fishing Report
Reports from those that know - the local guides.

Florida Saltwater Fishing Regulations
Recreational size minimums, bag limits, and closed seasons

Record Catches State and World Records for Key West's many fish.

Annual calendar of fishing events.

Paint & Release
A collection of original fish illustrations.

Fishing Seasons
When are they biting? Our guide to what's hot.

Fishing Licenses
Regulations you should know and how to get a license.


Florida Fishing License Information

The magnificent Marlin, above, does not come to the boat without a huge fight.

Most everyone who fishes in Florida is required to have a fishing license. With such a diverse and bountiful fishery, it is no surprise that Florida has separate saltwater and freshwater fishing licenses. Key West, since there is no fresh water fishing, requires only the saltwater license.

The regulations and requirements for fishing in Florida have recently changed, as of August 1, 2009:

NEW REGULATION: Florida residents fishing for saltwater species from the shore or from a structure fixed to shore will need a state fishing license. The annual resident shoreline fishing license costs $9.00. Residents do not need to purchase this license in addition to other saltwater fishing licenses. This $9.00 license covers shoreline fishing only - not fishing from watercraft. Resident anglers may consider purchasing a $17.00 one-year saltwater license which covers both shoreline and watercraft recreational fishing.

The rules, in general:

  • If you are fishing from a boat or land, age 16 or older, you must have a fishing license.
  • Charter boats carry a license for their passengers, so those anglers are covered while fishing on that vessel.
  • If you bring your own boat, you will need your own fishing license.
  • If you are a are a non-resident fishing from boat, land, bridge, or pier, you will need to obtain a fishing license.

Exceptions to the rules (who doesn't need a fishing license):

  • under 16 years of age
  • Florida resident over 65 years of age
  • fishing from a for-hire vessel
  • fishing from a pier with a valid pier saltwater fishing license
  • Florida resident who is a member of the U.S. Armed Forces, home on leave for 30 days or less
  • Florida resident who possesses a Florida Resident Disabled Person Hinting and Fishing Certificate
  • Florida resident who qualifies for food stamps, temporary cash assistance, or Medicaid from Dept. of Children and Family Services and carries and issued ID card while fishing
  • Any resident fishing for recreational purposes only, within her or his county of residence with live or natural bait, using poles or lines not equipped with a fishing line retrieval mechanism will not have to purchase a license.

There are some other regulations and exceptions. Usually, those affected will know who they are (educational, commission employees). All the regulations can be seen at the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission website.

Purchasing a license

To purchase a license online:

  • visit the Florida Conservation website. There, you can purchase a license that will be valid when you are planning to fish Key West.
  • Or if you prefer, you can call up their toll free number and buy a license 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. They can be reached at 1-888-FISH-FLORIDA.
  • You can also buy a fishing license at many bait and tackle shops, as well as the Monroe County Tax Collectors office on White Street and Truman Ave in Key West. But since you obviously are a planner, take care of that license before you get to Key West and then you can focus on where that fish is hiding.



Suggested Reading
"Outstanding...if you fish Florida, a must-have"
Florida fishing guide book
Sport Fish of Florida
by Vic Dunaway

More Info & Ordering

Keys Fishing Fact
The Florida Keys are located in the most biologically diverse area of the Atlantic Ocean. Due to the Gulf of Mexico and the Atlantic Ocean sandwiching the islands, while the warm Gulf Stream current meanders close by, the ocean surrounding the Keys contains more species of fish than anywhere else in the Atlantic.

"A Fishing Paradise"


© Copyright 2018 - | All Rights Reserved