Virginia Carry Info


Open Carry is legal in Virginia in most places with or without a Concealed Handgun Permit (CHP).


Concealed Carry requires, with a few exceptions, a CHP.  (See §18.2-308, Sections B, C, & D for the exceptions.)


However, some restrictions may apply.




Places where carry is prohibited in Virginia

Effective:  July 1, 2020 - June 30, 2021

  • Federal facilities (buildings) (18 USC § 930)
  • Many federal agency lands (various federal regulations)
  • National Forests -- open carry prohibited except where hunting is allowed (4VAC15-40-60)
  • General Assembly Buildings (Joint Rules Committee rule)
  • Virginia Executive Branch offices:  open carry (Executive Order 50 Section VI) and concealed carry (1VAC30-105)
  • Land owned or managed by the Department of Game and Inland Fisheries -- open carry prohibited except where hunting is allowed (4VAC15-40-60)
  • Hog Island Wildlife Management Area (4VAC15-40-120)
  • Buggs Island (4VAC15-40-140)
  • State law (§18.2-287.4) prohibits the carry by a non-CHP holder of a loaded:
    • semi-automatic center-fire rifle or pistol that is
      • equipped with a magazine that will hold more than 20 rounds of centerfire ammunition
      • or designed by the manufacturer to accommodate a silencer
      • or equipped with a folding stock
    • shotgun with a magazine that will hold more than seven rounds

           in the following localities:

    • Cities of:
      • Alexandria
      • Chesapeake
      • Fairfax
      • Falls Church
      • Newport News
      • Norfolk
      • Richmond
      • Virginia Beach
    • Counties of:
      • Arlington
      • Fairfax
      • Henrico
      • Loudoun
      • Prince William
  • Most public colleges & universities have promulgated regulations prohibiting carry in buildings and at events:
  • Courthouses (§18.2-283.1)
  • Detention Facilities (§15.2-915)
  • K-12 school grounds (at all times), preschool grounds (during operating hours), and child day-center grounds (during operating hours).  CHP holders exempted for concealed carry while in a vehicle (§18.2-308.1)
  • K-12 school buses (§18.2-308.1)
  • Property used exclusively for K-12 school-sponsored functions (§18.2-308.1)
  • Air carrier airport terminal buildings (§18.2-287.01)
    • Charlottesville Regional Airport, Charlottesville, VA
    • Dulles International Airport, Chantilly, VA
    • Lynchburg Municipal Airport, Lynchburg, VA
    • Newport News Williamsburg Regional Airport, Newport News, VA
    • Norfolk International Airport, Norfolk, VA
    • Reagan National Airport, Arlington, VA
    • Richmond International Airport, Richmond, VA
    • Roanoke Regional Airport, Roanoke, VA
    • Shenandoah Valley Regional Airport, Staunton, VA
  • Places of worship while a meeting for religious purposes is being held "without good and sufficient reason" (§18.2-283) NOTE: a Virginia Attorney General's opinion stated that carrying a firearm for self-defense qualified as a "good and sufficient reason."
  • Restaurants & clubs -- concealed carry prohibited while consuming alcoholic beverages (§18.2-308.012)
  • Private property when prohibited by owner (§18.2-308.01.C & trespass violation)
  • Local restrictions on carry, possession, transport, and storage of firearms as permitted by state law (§15.2-915).  NOTE: Signs MUST be posted at all entrances to any prohibited locations, or the restrictions are invalid and unenforceable.  This list will be updated periodically:
    • Alexandria (city) - all carry (open and concealed with CHP) prohibited in local government buildings, parks, community and recreation centers, and permitted events and adjoining streets.  Violators will be asked to leave before being charged with a Class 1 misdemeanor.
    • Newport News (city) - open carry is prohibited in local government buildings, parks, community and recreation centers, and permitted events.  Concealed handgun permit holders who are carrying concealed are exempted.  A violation is a civil fine of $500.
    • Richmond (city) - all carry (open and concealed with CHP) prohibited in local government buildings, parks, community and recreation centers.



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