best reciprocity states

Why They Are The Best Reciprocity States

Going to be traveling with your trusted firearm and wondering about which states are gun friendly and where you can continue to carry in?

Here are the 7 best reciprocity states, which allow anyone allowed to carry a gun to do so or reciprocate with the most states issuing concealed weapon permits.

What makes these states the best reciprocity states?

Mostly it’s how friendly they are, legislatively, to citizens of other states carrying a firearm in their borders and the degree of reciprocity with other states. Some states don’t want anyone to carry, some don’t reciprocate with any other states. Some don’t require a permit to carry at all.

The states on this list either reciprocate with enough states to make carrying there easy, or don’t require a license. This list is more an enumeration rather than ranking, since there are pros and cons to every state’s carry regulations.

The Best Reciprocity States


Indiana state reciprocity

While carrying requires a permit, Indiana reciprocity laws are quite generous for permit holders. Permits allow concealed or open carry, with any valid permit issued by any other state being recognized by Indiana. However, if you move to Indiana, you’ll have to get an Indiana license. Additionally, 31 states reciprocate with Indiana.

You can get a non-resident license if you have “regular business” or work in Indiana. Application fees - regardless of residency - are $10 for a four-year permit or $50 for a lifetime license - one of the few states to offer a lifetime carry permit.


Utah state reciprocity

The Beehive state, like Indiana, requires a permit to concealed carry. Open carry is allowed without a permit, but only if the firearm is “two actions” from firing, i.e. the slide being racked and trigger pulled. (For instance, a loaded magazine can be inserted into an automatic, but a round cannot be chambered.) Open carry while loaded requires a permit.

However, Utah recognizes all issued permits and most states recognize Utah’s. The state will also issue to non-residents. Fees are not unreasonable, at $39 for residents and $49 for non-residents. The permit is good for five years.


Kansas state reciprocity

Kansas doesn’t require a permit to carry, concealed or openly, so reciprocity doesn’t matter. If you’re legally allowed to have a gun, you can carry.

That said, residents of Kansas can be licensed by the state if they choose, and about 30 states recognize a Kansas CCH permit. However, obtaining the license costs $132.50, plus the cost of mandatory training (an 8-hour course) and a $16 to have the physical license issued. The state doesn’t issue licenses to non-residents except basically for military personnel, but the state recognizes valid licenses from elsewhere and you don’t need one anyway.


Vermont state reciprocity

Vermont is the only no-issue state in the union, as they do not issue permits. Vermont also doesn’t recognize out of state permits nor grants them to non-residents.

Vermont, widely considered the most libertarian state in the union, doesn’t license people to carry. Vermont is a constitutional carry state, meaning anyone who is legally entitled to possess a gun can carry it openly or concealed.

Naturally, reciprocity isn’t an issue for out-of-state residents, but Vermont residents are in a bind since they can’t get a CPL for carrying elsewhere.


Wyoming state reciprocity

Wyoming is much like Kansas, as the state issues licenses if applied for, but doesn’t require one to carry in any manner.

Residents can apply for a permit if they want to go out of state, and WY licenses are recognized by most U.S. states. Non-residents cannot obtain a Wyoming license, and Wyoming only recognizes out-of-state licenses which are valid state-wide in the state of issuance, and said state reciprocates with Wyoming.

However, you don’t need a license to carry in Wyoming, so it’s not like it matters.


alaska state capitol

Alaska, like Wyoming, Vermont and Kansas, is a constitutional carry state, so you don’t need a permit to carry there. However, Alaskans can get a permit if they desire. Non-residents cannot, which is kind of a shame since 37 states recognize or reciprocate with Alaska permits.


arizona state reciprocity

Arizona requires no license to carry, concealed or open. The state issues licenses to residents and non-residents alike, provided they satisfy eligibility, and recognizes all valid permits from other states. Most states recognize Arizona’s licenses, much like Alaska’s. These factors combined makes Arizona the most carry-friendly state in the union.

So there you have it - the Best Reciprocity States. Happy carrying. If you would like to learn more about states gun laws and how they interact with other states visit, or where you can find a great reciprocity map for each state.

Sam Hoober  

About The Author

Born in southeastern Washington State, Sam Hoober graduated in 2011 from Eastern Washington University. He resides in the great Inland Northwest, with his wife and child. His varied interests and hobbies include camping, fishing, hunting, and spending time at the gun range as often as possible.

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