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Alaska Department of Fish and Game

Sport Fishing Guides & Charter Requirements

Both sport fish guiding businesses and individual sport fishing guides must have separate licenses unless the owner of the business is also the guide.

In order to provide guided sport fishing trips to anglers for compensation in the State of Alaska, you must have the following:

  1. A Sport Fishing Business Owner Operator’s License issued by the Alaska Department of Fish and Game (ADF&G).
  2. Business Insurance (applicable to the Business Owner). Liability or marine protection policy providing coverage of at least $100,000 for each incident, and $300,000 for incidents in a year covering all periods of time when the owner or owner's employees are providing sport fishing services to clients.
  3. A valid State of Alaska Business License issued by the Dept. of Commerce and Economic Development.
  4. A Sport Fishing Guide License issued by ADF&G.
  5. Current Alaska Sport Fish License, tags (e.g., king salmon stamp), and permits that are required to engage in the sport fishery for which the sport fishing guide services are being provided.
  6. A current USCG Operator’s license if operating a motorized vessel on navigable waters. Determination of navigable waters is made by the U.S. Coast Guard.
  7. Certification in first aid by the American Red Cross or a similar organization.
  8. Status as a resident of the United States, Canada, or Mexico, or a resident alien.
  9. Vessel Registration (if guiding from a vessel).

Sport Fishing Guide Services and Guides are defined by state statute 16.40.299 (1)(2).

More specific information can be found on the tabs above.

Assistants, deckhands, and similar persons who work directly under the supervision of and on the same vessel as a State of Alaska licensed fishing guide are exempt from the guide licensing requirements.

The Department of Fish and Game provides information about the requirements of other agencies as a courtesy. Every attempt has been made to make this as complete as possible. However, because changes in other agency information are beyond our control, we cannot accept responsibility for ensuring that this list of other agency requirements is complete. You are responsible for meeting all necessary requirements for the area in which you will be operating.