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How to Buy a Gun Online (The Rules)

How to Buy a Gun Online (The Rules)

Steps to Buying a Gun Online

  • Find a local FFL
  • Arrange the Firearm Transfer
  • Complete the Online Firearm Purchase
  • Coordinate the Firearm Transfer
  • Pick up your New Firearm


buy guns online


Buy guns online

Step 1 – Choose An FFL In Your State

The first step to purchasing a gun online is finding a willing FFL in your area!

Trust us, we know that you just got done reading one of our gun reviews and can’t wait to buy your gun online, but it’ll help if you already know where you’re going to have the gun sent (and how much it might cost you).

You need to confirm that the local FFL is willing to accept transfers shipped in to you. Some FFLs don’t like this because they see online gun sales as competition.

However, most FFLs also charge a fee for their time and service. So, they should see it as extra money that they may not have had otherwise, but some don’t.

You can buy the firearm online first, but it’ll help during the checkout process to know where to ship the online firearm purchase.

Step 2 – Arrange The Firearm Transfer

Once you’ve confirmed that the FFL is willing to accept the online firearm for transfer to you and you are ok with the fees, you should arrange the transfer.

This is done by simply letting the FFL know that you plan to purchase a gun online and have it shipped to them. Give them your contact information so that they know how to get a hold of you once the gun comes in.

Often, they’ll give you a copy of their FFL to use. However, sometimes, they will want to give the copy of their FFL directly to the online gun store.

Even better, online gun sales are so common that the online firearm retailer might already have a copy of your local FFL’s license.



Step 3 – Purchase The Gun Online

After you’ve researched the gun you’re looking to purchase online, purchase the firearm and arrange for it to be shipped to the FFL you chose.

We recommend only dealing with reputable online firearm retailers.

Some our favorites are:

  • Brownells
  • EuroOptic
  • Palmetto State Armory


Step 4 – Coordinate The Transfer From The Online Store To The FFL


During the online checkout process, or sometimes shortly after via email, you’ll need to confirm that the store that you bought the gun from has a copy of the FFL to where they’ll be shipping your firearm.

Also, let the local FFL know which gun you purchased and from where so that they know to keep an eye out for it and give you a call once it arrives.

Step 5 – Pick Up Online Firearm Purchase From FFL


The gun that you purchased online arrived at your local gun store!

It’s time to go to the gun store and have it transferred to you. Make sure that you bring a government -issued photo ID with your picture and current address.

If you’d like to learn about some more topics for those new to guns, check out our main guide: Gun 101 – Beginner’s Guide to Firearms


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