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APPLICATION TIPS S TA F F A R T I C L E SHANDI MARTINEZ W LICENSE APPLICATION SERVICE MANAGER e’ve made it through the bulk of application deadlines this year, and we only have a few more to go. There have been a few changes this year and a few extra hoops to jump through for some states, so I hope you didn’t miss any deadlines or have too much trouble applying. We’re always here if you run into trouble. ARIZONA Arizona has a pretty easy system to use, and they walk you through each step. Most states allow you to apply for all of the species at the same time with one checkout, but that’s not the case in Arizona. You have to fill out a separate application for each species and check out separately for each application. If you have already purchased a license for this year, you do not need to buy another one and you will only be charged $15 per species, just make sure they pull up your license number. If your license is about to expire, it will show up with red letters that let you know what day it expires. If that day is before the deadline, you will need to purchase a new license. Arizona offers one of the cheapest applications for youth. The youth license is only $5, and then they pay the $15 per species application fee. Youth can apply at age 10 in Arizona, which is a couple years younger than most states. Your kids can build up quite a few points for pretty cheap before they turn 18. Arizona also offers Juniors-Only deer tags. These tags are a great opportunity for kids to get out in the field and go hunting. Arizona still offers paper applications, but you have to submit a check for the entire tag fee. I don’t see any reason to apply with a paper application. It’s too easy to miss something or put an incorrect hunt code. The online system will not let you make a mistake other 8 than putting the wrong hunt code altogether. It won’t let you submit the wrong fees, miss something on your application, or apply for an invalid hunt code. PointGuard is not available if you apply on paper. I recommend purchasing the $5 PointGuard for every species, just in case. You can go five years without applying in Arizona without having your points purged, but I would strongly suggest not missing a year if you can help it. Arizona is one of the only states that awards you a loyalty point for applying consistently for five years. They will give it to you even if you apply for points only for five years, but as soon as you skip one year, you will lose your loyalty point and your five years starts over. Loyalty points are awarded per species. Arizona is also the only state I know of that gives you a permanent extra bonus point for every species for taking their hunter education course. If you live even remotely close to Arizona, it’s worth the drive to take their course and get your extra point. You will never hit max points without it. SOUTH DAKOTA If you have applied in South Dakota before, you will need your username and password to log in. They have a password lookup, but you need your username to look it up. If you can’t remember either one, you’ll have to call the Game, Fish, and Parks office to get it. If you’ve never applied, you will just hit the button that says “New User” and create your account. They give you an option to put in a question and answer if you forget your password. This is not required, but I recommend putting something in there. If you leave it blank, you will not be able to look up your password in the future and you will have to call them. Once you’ve logged in or created your account, you can either apply for a license if you’re applying for the draw or go to the “Preference Point Review and Purchase” if you just want to do points only. You can select whichever species you want and then go to “View Cart” and check out from there. The system is pretty straightforward once you have an account and get logged in. Be aware, they’re not extremely easy to get a hold of most of the time if you have to call for your login information. VERMONT Vermont’s application system is a little different than what you’re used to if you’ve only applied in the western states. Even though they have a bonus point system, there’s no login or ID number to access your information. Every year, you feel like you are applying for the first time. You can apply for the regular lottery and the archery lottery. These are two separate drawings, and you can apply or accrue points for each one. Vermont lists the hunt choices for the regular lottery opposite of how they list them for the archery lottery. For the regular lottery, they list your choices and then for each choice you can choose a unit on a drop-down menu. For the archery lottery, they list the units and you can choose your choice number in the drop-down menu, similar to ranking the units. You don’t have to rank all six units if you don’t want to. This is one of the quickest and easiest online applications once you get used to it. There is no age limit to apply or obtain points in Vermont, so you can build points for your kids at any age. They don’t have to have hunter safety to build points, but they will need it before they can purchase a license or hunt. This is my last article for this application season, but my team and I are still here if you have any questions on the remaining applications. There are also quite a few state raffles still to go, so let us know if you’d like our help with those. Remember to share your successes with us from your hunts. We love to see and share your photos and stories!