New decal required for nonresidents to ride in Arizona, purchased only through AZGFD
PHOENIX — The Arizona Game and Fish Department (AZGFD) reminds seasonal residents and visitors who brought an off-highway vehicle into the state that they must now purchase an OHV decal prior to heading out on trails.
The new decal is required under a 2019 law that was supported and carried by the riding community to allow nonresidents to lawfully ride within the state while funding trail maintenance, education and law enforcement efforts.
Since the nonresident OHV decal went on sale Sept. 1, nearly 3,000 have been purchased by residents in 36 states and Canada. So far data shows the most decals were purchased by users in California, Utah, Nevada and Idaho.
All OHVs designed by the manufacturer primarily for use over unimproved terrain and that weigh 2,500 pounds or less are required by law to display a valid OHV decal to operate on public and state trust lands. This includes “street legal” OHVs that meet those two requirements.
Both resident and nonresident OHV decals cost $25 (plus a processing fee) and are good for one year from the purchase date. While the resident OHV decal can be purchased at any Arizona Department of Transportation Motor Vehicle Division office or at www.servicearizona.com, the nonresident OHV decal can only be purchased online through an Arizona Game and Fish Department portal account, which can be created at www.azgfd.gov by clicking “My Account.”
The decal is not sold at AZGFD offices. Nonresidents with multiple machines must also purchase additional decals, as each OHV must have its own decal. Owners should also know the following:
- Decals are not transferable between OHVs.
- The nonresident OHV decal will be mailed within two to three weeks from the date of purchase, but purchasers can show their receipt (or a screenshot of it) for up to 30 days as proof of decal purchase.
- Exemptions from the law include those participating in OHV special events; operating on private land; loading or unloading from a vehicle; operating during an emergency, if directed by a law enforcement officer; or if the OHV displays a valid dealer license plate.
- Helmets are required by law to be worn by all operators and passengers under the age of 18, but they’re strongly recommended for everyone.
Prior to the new law, nonresident OHV owners could ride their machines within the state for up to 30 days if their machine had a current OHV decal from their home state. However, there no longer is a grace period allowing nonresidents to operate without an Arizona decal.
Those caught riding without a current decal can be fined. For more information visit www.azgfd.gov/OHV.