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Conservation > AIS Bringing Watercraft into Montana

Planning to Bring Watercraft into Montana?


All watercraft entering Montana are required to be inspected for aquatic invasive species. You must obtain an inspection before launching on Montana waters. Stop at all open inspections stations you encounter. Find inspections stations here

  • Boats with a ballast or bladder, such as wakeboard or wake-surfing boats, that intend to launch on Montana waters must obtain a decontamination before launching.

  • If you do not encounter a Montana watercraft inspection station while traveling, inspections conducted in Idaho and Wyoming fulfill Montana’s inspection-before-launch requirements. Stop at ALL open inspection stations you encounter in Montana where your watercraft may be re-inspected.


Non-resident watercraft launching in Montana must purchase a Vessel AIS Prevention Pass (AISPP). Purchase the Vessel AISPP at FWP regional offices or online here. Proof of purchase can be electronic (cell phone) or paper receipt, there is no decal.

  • Motorized watercraft fee is $30. 

    • Required for all motorized watercraft, including sailboats, powered by a fuel or electric motor.

  • Nonmotorized watercraft fee is $10.

    • Required for all nonmotorized watercraft (both hard/rigid and inflatable) including drift boats, canoes, kayaks, rafts, catamarans, row boats, pedal boats, stand-up paddle boards, fishing pontoon boats and other similar vessels.

  • Vessel AISPP is NOT required for inner tubes, water sports toys, windsurfers/sailboards, air mattresses, and fishing belly boats/float tubes.

The Vessel AISPP expires on December 31.

The Vessel AISPP is not transferable between vessels.


Commercially Hauled Watercraft

Requirements for Commercially Hauled Watercraft Entering the State of Montana. MCA 80-7-10

Commercial haulers transporting watercraft should be aware of Montana’s laws and rules. MCA 80-7-1015

  • Penalties can reach up to a no bond felony. MCA 80-7-1014

  • It is illegal to transport aquatic invasive species, dead or alive, within the state of Montana. Aquatic invasive species can be plants, animals or diseases. MCA80-7-1010

  • All watercraft being transported in the state of Montana must stop at all open watercraft inspection stations. MCA80-7-1011

  • It is illegal to transport surface water in the State of Montana. ARM 12.5.706(e)

  • All aquatic vegetation must be removed from watercraft and trailers prior to transport. ARM12-5-706 (d)

  • All watercraft must be inspected prior to launch in the State of Montana. ARM 12-5-706(b)

MDT Motor Carrier Services Guide and Regulations


Questions? Call 406-444-2440