Iowa Concealed Carry Gun Laws

Iowa offers two types of permits and is a shall-issue state. Residents and non-residents may apply for a permit. If you want to carry outside city limits, you’re able to do so without a permit as long as you open carry.

Open and conceal carry within city limits is only permitted if you obtain a Permit to Carry Weapons (PCW).

Iowa CCW Laws and Requirements

Iowa gun laws allow for any adult, 21 years of age or older, to apply for a non-professional permit at their local sheriff’s office. A shall-issue state, you can apply for a Professional permit at the age of 18.

The state’s requirements include:

  • Firearm training course completion
  • Meet Federal Law requirements
  • Have no:
    • Felony convictions
    • Pending charges
    • Outstanding warrants
    • Probable cause that you will use a weapon unlawfully
    • Convictions, in the past three years, of certain aggravated or serious misdemeanors

If you meet these requirements, you’ll be able to apply for your permit.

Fees will be:

  • $50 initial fee
  • $25 renewal
  • $25 for duplicates

When applying, you will need to:

  • Complete your firearms training course (more info below)
  • Provide proof of the course’s completion, along with:
    • Completed application form
    • Driver’s license
    • Required fee

After submitting the form, which can be picked up at the Sheriff’s office or downloaded online, you will have to wait for approval or denial. You will be notified via mail if your permit has been approved.

Processing time is 30 days.

All permits are valid for five years.

Iowa Non-Resident CCW Permit Information

If you’re a non-resident, you can apply for a professional permit at the Department of Public Safety. You will need to be 18 years of age to receive your permit. You will need to meet the same requirements as a resident when applying.

Non-resident permits are limited to persons that are applying for a professional license for work, or non-professional license as a military member or student that was transferred to the state. The only difference between a resident and non-resident permit is that the non-resident permit will have to be submitted to the Commissioner of Public Safety.

Renewal Information

If you want to renew your Iowa concealed carry permit, you will have to do so within 30 days before the permit expires or within 30 days after the permit expires. You will need to provide your driver’s license, the application form and the required fee.

Firearms Training Requirements

All applicants will need to pass a firearms training course which demonstrates the person’s knowledge of firearm safety. The course will have to be taken live or on the web and can include one of the following courses:

  • Handgun safety course approved by the Department of Public Safety
  • Armed Forces of the United States small-arms training
  • NRA safety training course
  • Handgun safety course from a certified instructor
  • Courses from a law enforcement agency
  • Hunter education program, if it included handgun safety training and is approved by the state’s Natural Resource Commission

Which State Permits Does Iowa Honor?

Iowa CCW Reciprocity Map
Image Courtesy of USCCA

Iowa will recognize permits from the following states:


  • Alabama (21 years old or older)
  • Alaska
  • Arizona
  • Arkansas
  • California
  • Colorado
  • Connecticut
  • Delaware (21 years old or older)
  • District of Columbia
  • Florida
  • Georgia
  • Hawaii
  • Idaho
  • Illinois
  • Indiana (21 years old or older)
  • Kansas
  • Kentucky
  • Louisiana


  • Maine (21 years old or older)
  • Maryland
  • Massachusetts
  • Michigan
  • Minnesota
  • Mississippi
  • Missouri (21 years old or older)
  • Montana (21 years old or older)
  • Nebraska
  • Nevada
  • New Hampshire (21 years old or older)
  • New Jersey
  • New Mexico
  • New York
  • New York City
  • North Carolina


  • North Dakota (21 years old or older)
  • Ohio
  • Oklahoma
  • Oregon
  • Pennsylvania
  • Rhode Island
  • South Carolina
  • South Dakota (21 years old or older)
  • Tennessee
  • Texas
  • Utah (21 years old or older)
  • Virginia
  • Washington
  • West Virginia (21 years old or older)
  • Wisconsin
  • Wyoming


Which States Honor Iowa Permits?

Iowa’s permit to carry is honored by the following states so long as the permit holder abides by the respective state’s laws:

  • Alabama
  • Georgia
  • Idaho
  • Indiana
  • Louisiana
  • Montana
  • North Carolina
  • North Dakota
  • Ohio
  • Oklahoma
  • Tennessee
  • Texas
  • Utah
  • Virginia
  • Wisconsin
  • Wyoming

Restricted reciprocity is offered in the following states, which accept resident permits only:

  • Colorado
  • Florida
  • Michigan
  • Nebraska
  • Pennsylvania

All permitless states will accept an Iowa concealed carry permit.


Where Concealed Carry is Permitted In Iowa

Iowa gun laws allow concealed carry in the following:

  • Restaurants (unless posted)
  • Roadside rest areas
  • National parks
  • State parks

Religious establishments are not mentioned in state statutes. You should follow the place of worship’s signage, which may prohibit firearms. Places of worship are private property, so you must adhere to the owner’s rules on carrying firearms.

Where Concealed Carry is Not Permitted In Iowa

Iowa will not allow concealed carry in many areas, including:

  • Vehicles, unless the firearm is unloaded and contained properly
  • Private property where postings restrict firearms
  • Weapon-free zones
  • Private and public schools
  • Public parks
  • Iowa State Fair
  • Casinos
  • School buses
  • Iowa State University
  • Under the influence of drugs or alcoholic beverages

You will need to abide by all federal and state laws that prohibit firearms.