Where Do You Put The Registration Sticker On a Kayak? Detailed Guide – 2022

It’s that time of year again when everyone is getting their boats ready to hit the water. But where do you put the registration sticker on a kayak? due to some kayaking policies

This is a question that many people have, and it can be confusing since there are a few different places you could put it. Some people might think it goes on the bottom of the boat, but that’s not actually where it goes!

In this blog post, we’ll discuss the different places you can put the boat registration sticker on your kayak and why each one is used. We’ll also provide tips on how to make sure your sticker is always visible. By the end of this blog post, you’ll know exactly where to put your registration sticker on your kayak! 

Where Do You Put The Registration Sticker On a Kayak?

There are a few places the manufacturer of your kayak might want you to place the registration sticker. In most cases, it’s not mandatory to have a sticker at all – only if you’re required by law to register your kayak.

The easiest way to determine where your boat is going to need a sticker is to look on the end of the kayak. Different places have different meanings.

1. On The Back Of The Kayak, Near The Bottom 

This is usually where you’ll find a sticker on most sit-on-top type kayaks with no storage hatches. 

If your kayak has a closed storage compartment under the hull, this means that you’re going to need to place the registration sticker in one of two places

2. On The Side(s) Of Your Hull, Near The Waterline 

The second option is where you’ll need to place it if your kayak does have a closed storage compartment. Most kayaks that don’t have any hatches will require both sides to be registered for the vessel to be legal.

3. On The Back Of Your Kayak, Near The Top 

Some manufacturers will use this as a sticker location as well as where you would place it if you were required to register your boat. You’ll usually find these stickers on inflatable kayaks and super small sit-in kayaks that don’t offer any storage space.

Why Do You Have to Register Your Kayak? 

Generally speaking, registration stickers are not required for your kayak if you don’t plan on taking it out onto open water. If you’ll be paddling down a river or around a small lake, there should be no need to register the vessel.

If you plan on taking your boat out on a larger river or a big lake, most states will require that any human-powered vessel be registered before it’s allowed to be used – if they’re required to have registration at all.

Registration is usually only required for kayaks if there is going to be another person in the kayak. The general rule of thumb is that if there is another person in the boat, then you’re going to need a registration sticker on your vessel.

In some states, only kayaks with hatches closed by a lid will need to be registered. In other states, all non-motorized vessels are required to have their respective stickers – which means paddleboards, canoes, inflatable kayaks, stand-up paddleboards, and anything else that’s not powered by an engine.

Note: One of the famous stickers that you can use on kayak and kayak paddles is American Vinyl Skull and Paddles Sticker that looks stunning and amazing.

How Can You Make Sure Your Sticker is Visible? 

The following are tips to make sure your registration sticker is always visible on your kayak!

Put The Registration Sticker On a Flat Surface

This is the most important part of making sure your registration sticker stays visible. The safest place to put it is somewhere on top of an existing decal or smooth, featureless area. Inflatable kayaks will often have a patch that can be used as a space for this purpose, but it varies from kayak to kayak.  

Avoid Putting Your Sticker Somewhere That Gets a Lot Of Sun

This is especially important if you’re going to be storing your boat outside and/or in the sun for long periods of time. For example, if your kayak has black plastic handles and you place the registration sticker on top of them, it’s going to be a lot harder to see. You’ll spend more time looking for the sticker, which defeats the purpose of having a visible registration sticker in the first place! 

Use Clear, Wide Stickers

If you’re going to be putting the sticker on a black kayak, it will help if the sticker is wider than normal. The larger area there is to see your sticker, the more likely others are going to notice it when they pass by. A good example of this is boat numbers. These are generally large stickers that can be used on a wide variety of kayak surfaces.

Put It In a Location That’s Easy To See From The Water Level

If you’re ever going to be out on the water with other people, your registration sticker should always be visible from river or lake level. This means putting it along with the outer shell of either side of the kayak – where it’s always going to be visible. If you’re looking from inside your boat, choose a location that’s on the outside of your hull.


Hopefully, this blog post has been helpful in showing you where do you put the registration sticker on a kayak! We recommend putting the registration sticker somewhere on your kayak that will be easy to see from above, below, and from all angles. Be sure to double-check with your local state laws before heading out onto open water.


Can I put the sticker somewhere that’s not flat?

This is approved in some states where you need to register inflatable boats. As long as it’s placed on a smooth, featureless area of your kayak, you should be fine! 

What side of the boat do you put stickers on?

There’s no wrong answer to this question – it’s entirely up to you! Some people prefer to put stickers on the side of the boat that faces the dock so that they’re more visible to other boaters. Others prefer to put them on the opposite side so that they’re more visible to people walking or driving by. Ultimately, it’s up to you where you put your stickers – just make sure they’re placed somewhere that won’t interfere with the boat’s performance.

Do I need my sticker inside or outside the kayak?

In general, it’s best to put the sticker on the outside of your hull. If you’re paddling in a group or with others, your boat number is likely going to be visible from all angles.

Do I need a specific size? 

Nope! As long as you can clearly see the registration number from above, it doesn’t matter what size the sticker is. This means you could either go for a small version or a large one – whatever works best for your kayak and its varnish/paint job.

Where do you put the Ohio watercraft sticker on a kayak?

The Ohio watercraft sticker should be affixed to the kayak in a visible location.

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