Do You Need a Gun Permit to Shoot at a Gun Range in Hawaii?

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Hawaii is best known for its beautiful beaches. It is one of the most magnificent holiday destinations globally and is at the top of many people’s bucket lists. Firearm enthusiasts have their fix with state-of-the-art shooting ranges that accommodate shooters of all levels.

Do You Need a Gun Permit to Shoot at a Gun Range in Hawaii?

Yes, you need a gun permit to shoot at a gun range in Hawaii because a license is required for all open carry or concealed carry of handguns. You will also need to complete a ‘permit to acquire firearm’ application to purchase a gun in Hawaii.

Handgun with bullets surrounding it

Permits to Acquire

Acquiring any firearm in Hawaii requires that you get a permit from your county chief of police. But you must be above 21 yrs old and a U.S citizen or permanent resident alien. Your fingerprints and photographs must be taken for a background check.

An affidavit is also necessary to affirm your mental health, lack of alcohol or drug addiction, and criminal background.

You must also authorize your medical history release and give the phone number, contact, and address of your doctor. The doctor must release any information the state may need regarding your health before processing your unit.

Any treatment of drug or alcohol abuse, a drunk driving record, history of mental problems, or a medical cannabis prescription will result in permit denial. The physician must give a letter stating that you are no longer adversely affected.

If you are denied a permit, the county police must notify you in writing and give you the reason for denial. You may then be required to transfer all your ammo and firearms to a certified gun dealer or any other authorized person.

For a successful application, there is a 14-day waiting period for the permit. Permits not picked six days after the 14 days are void. The applicant will have to repeat the process.

Man wearing a gun holster wondering if he needs a gun permit to shoot at a gun range in Hawaii

Firearms Registration

You must register your firearm within five days of acquisition or after bringing it from another state. The guns that need no registration include those that fire loose black powder and deactivated firearms. Also, rifles and shotguns purchased before July 1, 1994 require no registration.

Spouses that meet all the requirements for a permit can jointly register firearms.

Place to Keep and Carry a Firearm

Open or concealed carry of guns without a permit from the county chief is considered a felony, except during circumstances when guns are used as a defense against a threat to life or property.

The only individuals exempted include the law enforcement, the military, and security guards whose jobs require such. You are allowed to keep your firearm at your home, office, place of work (unless prohibited by the employer), or where you lodge.

Other instances where open carry is allowed is when transporting the firearm from a gun range, hunting, gunsmith, police station, gun class, meeting, or a firearms dealer. While transporting, guns must be unloaded and enclosed in a safe case or gun range backpacks, and not easily accessible.

Boxes full of bullets

Prohibited Firearms

Not all firearms are permitted in Hawaii. Firearms that are prohibited for open or concealed carry and therefore cannot be used in a gun range include:

  • Full auto firearms, except for military or law enforcement
  • Select assault rifles, handguns, and shotguns
  • Silencers
  • Explosives
  • Teflon coated ammunition

Restrictions to Possession

Some people are not allowed to own guns in Hawaii. These include:

  • People under a temporary restraining order
  • Convicted felons
  • Indicted persons
  • Persons convicted of domestic violence


Gun laws in Hawaii are quite stringent. If your character is above board, you may apply for a permit, after which you can own a firearm and shoot at a gun range in Hawaii without the fear of legal issues.

James Forrester is a lifelong gun and firearms owner, and an even bigger advocate for gun safety. He created with the purpose of sharing helpful tips and educating others on how to keep guns and weapons safe and secure.