Big Game Hunt Apps On-line

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It’s been talked about for years – being able to apply for Arizona’s big game hunts using your computer. It’s happened. It’s here.

You can submit your cyber-hunt permit application starting April 24 for the 2002-2003 big game hunting seasons. At least initially, it will even save you money out of pocket.

Just go to the Arizona Game and Fish Department’s Internet Home Page at www.azgfd.com and follow the instructions. It’s simple. And your up-front cost will be less. For each application, you will be charged a $5 application fee and will only be charged the hunt-permit tag fee once you are successfully drawn.

That’s right. You won’t have to put the whole amount of the tag up front like you do when manually applying for the hunt. Just think – no more having to wait for a Game and Fish refund check to buy your wife or husband that new fishing rod, or whatever.

And if you don’t have a computer, just team up with a buddy who does. Game and Fish, working through Systems Consultants in Nevada, has even made it easy for “buddy” applications.

If that isn’t enough, Game and Fish will also notify you via e-mail on whether or not you have been drawn. That means no more waiting for an open phone line once the drawing is complete and the incoming calls saturate the Game and Fish phone system. You can even get your hunting or fishing license (or better yet, a combination license) online.

Deputy Director Steve Ferrell said the department has been working toward this goal for many years. “This is a major milestone for the department, and its customers. It will make the big game application process more customer-friendly, save applicants time and money, significantly reduce the application rejection rate and even lower our costs,” he said.

When Utah started accepting big game applications via the Internet, 40 percent of the applicants in the first year chose to use the service. In the second year, 60 percent of the applicants chose the Internet option.

Information Branch Chief Joe Janisch explained that rejection rates will be reduced significantly because the computer won’t let anyone fill out an application incorrectly. “If you don’t fill out the field correctly, it won’t accept the application. So the more people who use this system, the more the overall rejection rate will decrease.”

And Janisch has a goal. “Our goal is to see the Game and Fish parking lots across the state almost empty on deadline day. Cyber-apps are the way to go.”