Table of Contents

Download the PDF Version

It's the Law

All operators are required to obey laws that regulate your vessel’s registration and operation.

Registering Your Vessel

You must have an Arizona Certificate of Number (registration number) and registration decals to operate, moor, or anchor your vessel legally on the waterways of Arizona.

The only exceptions are:

  • Non-motorized vessels
  • Vessels used solely as lifeboats
  • Vessels documented with the USCG
  • Vessels with valid registration in another state or country that are on the waters of Arizona for 90 or fewer consecutive days

The Certificate of Number (registration card) must be on board and available for inspection by a law enforcement officer whenever the vessel is operated.

Arizona Certificate of Number
Arizona Certificate of Number

The registration number and registration decals must be displayed as follows.

  • Number must be painted, applied as a decal, or otherwise affixed to both sides of the bow.
  • Number must read from left to right on both sides of the bow.
  • Number must be in at least three-inch-high BLOCK letters.
  • Number’s color must contrast sharply with its background.
  • Letters must be separated from the numbers by a space or hyphen: AZ 6266 BS or AZ-6266-BS.
  • No other numbers may be displayed on either side of the bow.
  • Decals must be affixed to both sides of the vessel within three inches in front of the AZ of the registration number.
Arizona registration number and decal placement.
Arizona registration number and decal placement.

If your vessel requires registration, it is illegal to operate it or allow others to operate your vessel unless it is registered and numbered as described above.

Where to Register

Applications for new boats, transfers of ownership, and duplicate registrations can be processed through the mail or at any Arizona Game and Fish Department office (see the Arizona Boater's Directory).

Please call 602-942-3000 before sending your application through the mail to ensure that the proper evidence and fees are submitted.

How to Renew

  • In person at any Arizona Game and Fish Dept. office
  • Online at with these easy steps:
    1. Locate your AZ Boat Number.
    2. Click on Watercraft Registration.
    3. Click on Renew Registration Online.
    4. Click Start.

For the latest information on vessel fees and registration questions, contact any Arizona Game and Fish Department office or call 602-942-3000.