Can You Conceal Carry in Walmart? An Updated Guide for 2024

walmart exterior storefront

Navigating the policies of businesses regarding firearms can be challenging, especially for those who choose to carry concealed weapons.

With recent changes in some stores’ policies, you may be wondering about Walmart’s stance on concealed carry in their stores.

Walmart has made adjustments to its policies in recent years, but it is important to understand their specific rules.

The retail giant allows licensed customers to carry concealed firearms in their stores.

While they have requested customers to no longer openly carry guns, they have not changed their longstanding policy towards concealed carry.

As you continue reading this article, you will find further information on Walmart’s policies, along with the effect these rules have on you as a customer.

Walmart’s Firearm Policy

As a responsible gun owner, it’s crucial to adhere to Walmart’s firearm policy.

While you may want to shop with a concealed carry firearm, you should know that Walmart has specific policies in place you should be aware of.

First, Walmart requests that customers do not openly carry firearms in their stores or Sam’s Clubs in states where open carry is permitted.

Though this rule applies to open carry, it doesn’t explicitly mention concealed carry.

While each Walmart location can implement specific rules or signage to regulate firearms, you should take extra care and follow all local and state laws.

In addition to their open-carry policies, Walmart announced in 2019 that they would stop selling handguns and certain ammunition that are used in short-barreled rifles and military-style weapons.

These changes came in response to the tragic shootings that took place in Walmart stores.

State Laws Governing Concealed Carry

Different states have varying laws regarding concealed carry permits, so it is crucial to understand the regulations in your area.

Some states have “constitutional carry” where there is no permit required to carry a concealed firearm as long as the person is not legally prohibited from possessing a firearm.

Other states have “shall issue” policies, which means permits are issued based on specific requirements set by the state.

Familiarize yourself with the state-by-state concealed carry permit laws to ensure you are following the correct procedures.

When planning to carry a concealed firearm, certain locations may have their own restrictions or policies, like Walmart.

Additionally, some state laws impose restrictions on the type of weapon you are allowed to carry and specific locations where carrying a concealed weapon is prohibited.

For example, in California, gun laws require a minimum of eight hours of training on concealed carry laws, and permits may include restrictions on where, how, and what type of weapon the holder should carry.

Understanding these laws will help you remain a responsible and law-abiding concealed carry holder.

Permitted and Prohibited Areas in Walmart

Parking Lot Rules

You are allowed to carry a concealed firearm in the parking lot of a Walmart, as long as you follow local and state laws.

Keep in mind that concealed carry permit holders must abide by those laws and regulations when carrying concealed weapons.

Store Locations

Walmart has changed its gun policy and now requests customers not to openly carry firearms inside the store.

However, Walmart has not completely banned concealed carry inside their locations.

Some states require businesses to post specific signage if they prohibit or restrict the carrying of firearms on their premises.

Make sure to look for signs at your local Walmart store that may indicate their concealed carry policy.


Walmart’s policy prohibiting open carry does not apply to law enforcement officers, who are still welcome to bring their firearms to the store.

If you are a law enforcement officer, ensure that you carry your badge or other identification to avoid confusion.

Understanding Open Carry Vs. Concealed Carry

When it comes to carrying firearms, it’s essential to understand the difference between open carry and concealed carry.

Open carry refers to carrying a firearm in a visible manner, while concealed carry means carrying a firearm in a hidden way, typically using a holster or clothing.

In the United States, the legality of open carry and concealed carry varies from state to state.

Some states permit open carry without a specific license or permit, while others heavily regulate or even prohibit it entirely.

On the other hand, 33 states and Washington, D.C., allow people to carry a concealed firearm if they have a state permit as of 2021.

As a responsible gun owner, keep yourself informed about state and local laws as well as store policies when it comes to carrying firearms.

Responsibilities of Concealed Carry Holders

walmart interior

Respecting Private Property Rights

As a responsible concealed carry holder, it is essential for you to respect the private property rights of individuals and businesses, including Walmart.

Additionally, if a business has a posted sign prohibiting firearms on their premises, you should respect the decision and refrain from carrying your concealed weapon within their property.

Failure to comply with property owners’ rights may lead to legal consequences or trespassing charges.

Awareness of State Regulations

Being aware of your state’s regulations is vital when carrying a concealed weapon.

Each state has its own rules and restrictions regarding concealed carry, and it is your responsibility to familiarize yourself with them.

Make sure to check your state’s requirements for permits, handgun registration, and any other specific provisions, such as restrictions on carrying in certain locations or establishments.

Remember that it is crucial to stay up-to-date with the local and state regulations, as they may change over time.

In order to exercise your right to carry concealed responsibly, always be mindful of the authorities’ stipulations as you go about your daily activities, and respect the property rights and preferences of others regarding firearms.

By doing so, you’ll contribute to promoting a safe and respectful environment for everyone.

Consequences of Violating Policies

As a customer, if you choose to violate Walmart’s concealed carry policy by openly carrying firearms in their stores, you could face several consequences.

One possible outcome of violating this policy is that store employees might approach you and request you to leave the premises.

By disregarding their no open carry policy, you would be seen as trespassing on their property, and they have the right to ask you to leave.

In addition to being asked to leave, there is a possibility that your actions might result in law enforcement becoming involved.

Though the situation might not escalate to this level in all circumstances, it is important to note that businesses have the right to involve the police when patrons do not follow their policies.

Another consequence could be damage to your reputation or social standing within the community.

With today’s social media-driven world, your actions may be recorded and shared online, potentially leading to negative attention and backlash from others.

Ultimately, it is crucial to remember and respect the policies established by businesses like Walmart when it comes to concealed carry.

Violating these policies can lead to uncomfortable situations and even legal consequences, so it is in your best interest to adhere to their guidelines for a safe and positive shopping experience.

Alternatives to Carrying in Walmart

One option is to secure your firearm in your vehicle before entering the store.

Many gun owners invest in specialized car safes or lockboxes designed to protect their firearms from theft and unauthorized access.

These devices provide a secure and legal way to store your concealed carry weapon when going into places with restrictions.

Another alternative is to plan your shopping trips so that you visit Walmart when accompanied by someone you trust.

By having a friend or family member with you, you can maintain a sense of security and mutual protection without carrying your concealed weapon inside the store.

Lastly, you can consider patronizing businesses that have more accommodating concealed carry policies.

However, be sure to familiarize yourself with the specific policies of each establishment, as they may vary in their approach to concealed carry.

Remember, it’s crucial to stay informed, respect the policies of the businesses you visit, and prioritize the safety of yourself and others.

Keeping these alternatives in mind will help you maintain your self-defense posture while adhering to Walmart’s gun restrictions.

Frequently Asked Questions

Are there specific states that prohibit concealed carry in Walmart?

Each state has its own laws and regulations regarding concealed carry. Walmart generally follows the laws of the state it operates in. However, it is your responsibility to familiarize yourself with and abide by your state’s laws before carrying a concealed weapon in any Walmart store.

Does Walmart have a company-wide policy on concealed carry?

Walmart does not have a company-wide policy regarding concealed carry. They generally follow the state laws where the store is located, so it is essential to be aware of the laws in your jurisdiction. You can carry in a concealed manner in some states, while others may have more restrictive policies.

Is open carry allowed in Walmart stores?

Walmart has adopted a “no open carry” policy in its stores. They request customers to refrain from openly carrying firearms, even in states where open carry is legal. This decision was made to promote a safe and comfortable shopping environment for all customers.

What are the legal requirements to concealed carry in various states?

Each state has its own laws and requirements for concealed carry, including permits, training, and background checks. You must adhere to your state’s laws and regulations regarding concealed carry before carrying a concealed weapon in any location.

Are there signs posted in Walmart stores regarding concealed carry?

Some Walmart stores may have signs posted to communicate their policy on firearms, but this is not a company-wide requirement. It is your responsibility to understand your state’s laws regarding concealed carry and act accordingly.

How does Walmart’s concealed carry policy differ between states?

Walmart’s concealed carry policy varies based on the state laws where the store is located. In some states, customers are allowed to carry concealed firearms, while in others, they may not. It is essential to understand and comply with your state’s laws and any posted store signage before carrying a concealed weapon in Walmart.

Cody Martin

With over 18 years of federal law enforcement, training, and physical security experience, Cody focuses his time nowadays on both consulting and training. He regularly advises individuals, groups, multinational corporations, schools, houses of worship, and NGOs on security threats while conducting customized training as needed.

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