Idaho 2023 Nonresident Elk, Deer Tags Go on Sale Dec. 1st
Below is a news release from the Idaho Department of Fish and Game.
Nonresident deer and elk tags for the upcoming 2023 hunting season go on sale starting at 10 a.m. MST on Dec. 1. Licenses and tags can be bought online at GoOutdoorsIdaho.com, through the Idaho Fish and Game mobile app, or by phone at (800) 554-8685. They can also be bought in person at a license vendor location, or Fish and Game regional offices during normal business hours.
The number of available tags for each deer hunting unit and elk zone is available at https://idfg.idaho.gov/tag/quotas-nonresident.
Fish and Game encourages hunters to buy their license and tag at the same time. No refunds will be issued for the license if the hunter does not get the tag he or she wants. Each hunter buying online must create and log into their own customer account to purchase a deer and/or elk tag. Buying tags for multiple customers on one customer account is not allowed except for in-person purchases at vendors or Fish and Game offices.
What you need to know
If purchasing a deer or elk tag online or through the mobile app, a virtual waiting room will open 30 minutes prior, at which time customers can start logging in. If logged in before 9:30 a.m. MST, the customer will not be placed into the waiting room. At 10 a.m. MST, all customers in the virtual waiting room will be randomly assigned a place in line and given an estimated wait time to buy a license a deer and/or elk tag. Customers logging in after 10 a.m. MST will be placed at the back of the line.
Individuals will not have their place in line reserved if changing devices. If changing devices while in line, the individual will be placed at the back of the line on the new device.
After a person’s place in line has been reached they will have 10 minutes to enter the site. Once logged in, he or she can click “Buy a License, Permit, or Tag” in the upper left of the customer account home page.
After the selected tag is added to the shopping cart, the buyer has 20 minutes to complete the transaction. If the transaction is not completed within 20 minutes, the tag will be cleared from the shopping cart and made available for other hunters to purchase.
Due to the high-volume sales, customers should allow up to 24 hours to receive a purchase confirmation email. Tags will be postmarked within 10 business days of the sales date.
Expect long waits and popular tags to sell out fast
Demand for tags was extremely high last year, and hunters can expect long waits to purchase tags. Hunters reported wait times as long as six hours in previous sales. Many popular elk zones and deer hunting units will sell out within in the first few hours.
There will be no real-time tally of how many tags remain for each deer hunting unit and elk zone because tags will be sold simultaneously online, at vendors and regional offices. Fish and Game staff will try to post when zones and units are sold out, but there will likely be a lag time because tags are often added to or removed from online shopping carts.
Don’t panic buy
Hunters are reminded to make sure it’s the tag they want and know the hunting unit/elk zone as well as species and weapon type the tag is valid for. Tags can be exchanged prior to the opening of the season, if other tags are available, but licenses will not be refunded.
Idaho lifetime license holders must buy later
Nonresidents with Idaho lifetime hunting licenses can not buy deer and elk tags during this sale. They can buy during the resident tag sales period.
Disabled American Veterans (DAV) nonresident deer and elk tags
There will also be limited quantities of nonresident DAV tags at the discounted price available for sale at 10 a.m. MST on Dec. 1. At that time, 500 nonresident DAV deer tags and 300 nonresident DAV elk tags will go on sale. After these discounted tags are sold out, nonresident DAV hunters can still buy tags, but at full nonresident prices.
Disabled American Veterans must be at least 40 percent service-connected disability to buy discounted tags, and must submit the required DAV certification documents to Fish and Game before Dec. 1 so that there is time for the buyer’s profile to be reviewed and updated with DAV status.
How to prepare for the sale
To prepare for the 2023 license and tag sale, we suggest all nonresident hunters:
- Review the Big Game regulations on Fish and Game’s website.
- Nonresident deer hunters must select a regular deer tag or a white-tailed deer tag.
- Remember that a Game Management Unit must be selected when purchasing a nonresident deer tag, and an elk zone must be selected when purchasing a nonresident elk tag, and there are A and B tags most zones.
- Review the number of tags available for the unit or zone you intend to purchase. Note that many units and zones have a limited number of tags available, and could quickly sell out on Dec. 1, so nonresident hunters may consider a back-up option.
- If you have never purchased an Idaho license, permit, or tag, Fish and Game recommends that you complete your profile setup before Dec. 1 to expedite your checkout process. You may do so by visiting GoOutdoorsIdaho.com, and creating an account using the steps listed on the site.
- Ensure your mailing address is correct so that your tag is mailed to the correct location.
- Hunters born after 1974 must have a hunter education certification on file prior to purchasing a hunting license and tags.
Idaho’s nonresident tag system changed in 2021
Nonresident hunters in most general season elk and deer hunts are limited to 10 or 15 percent of the total hunters in each elk zone or deer unit based on hunter participation estimates averaged over the five years prior to 2021.
(Photo credit: Garett Gabriel/Idaho Department of Fish and Wildlife)