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

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Irresponsible gun handling is not only a threat to self but to the general public as well. Before owning a firearm, ensure you fully understand how to operate it and under what conditions you should use it. Thanks to the gun ranges, you can learn all about firearms with instruction from the industry’s best.

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

Yes, you need a permit to shoot at a gun range in Illinois because you must have a Firearm Owners Identification (FOID) card to be able to possess a firearm or ammo. You must wait for 72 hours after buying a gun to take possession of it. Only then can you shoot at a range near you.

Man holding a gun

Illinois Gun Permit Laws

The Illinois gun permit is only granted to persons over 21 yrs. It is strictly for concealed carry; open carry is completely forbidden in Illinois. Manufacturing, sale, or possession of firearms, assault weapons, and machine guns is also against the law.

The state describes a machine gun as a firearm that discharges more than once with one pull of the trigger. Armor-piercing ammunition is also illegal.

Permit Requirements

Concealed carry permit application requirements include:

  • You must be an Illinois resident unless you are a law enforcement officer or a member of the military.
  • You must not be a convicted felon under federal laws.
  • You must be above 21 years, or over 18 with permission from your parents or guardian.
  • You must not have been a mental patient for the last 5 years.
  • You must not be an addict of any drugs controlled by the state.

Types of Gun Permits in Illinois

Illinois issues state permits to purchase handguns and long guns. There are no permits to open carry or conceal handguns in gun cases. Pistol permits are issued to conceal carry handguns in the state.

The Application Process and Cost of Getting a License

To apply for a concealed carry weapon license, you must go through training process overseen by an approved state tutor. After the training, you can visit the police website to obtain your ID and password. You must provide the following documents:

  • Documents that identify you as an Illinois resident
  • A state police ID and password
  • A FOID card
  • A photograph not older than 30 days
  • A document that gives proof of residency for the last 10 years

Although fingerprints are not necessary for the application process, they help expedite the review process period to 90 days. It is therefore advisable that you provide the fingerprints if you need the concealed carry weapon permit urgently.

All you require is a Transaction Control Number (TNC), which you should keep as it will still be required to complete the pistol permit application.

Men wondering if they need a gun permit to shoot at a gun range in Illinois

It takes 120 days to complete the process without fingerprints and 90 days with fingerprints. After this period has lapsed, you will get a mail notification for the application’s approval or rejection.

A licensed gun owner may begin the renewal process 90 days before expiry. You forfeit the license if you do not renew within that period, and you will have to repeat the application process for another CCW license.

The cost of the permit application is $150 for residents and $300 for non-residents. Renewal is $150 for residents and $300 for non-residents.


It is now clear that it is a long process to acquire a firearm permit to either purchase or possess a firearm in Illinois. Once you are armed with the license and the gun, ensure you make the most out of it by visiting an Illinois gun range near you more often to learn basic firearm training, or hone your shooting skills.

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.