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Constitutional Carry’s Impact on CCW Classes

Has Constitutional Carry made it tougher for gun instructors in the U.S.? Are concealed carry businesses tanking? We find out!

    Currently, within the U.S., 21 states passed Constitutional Carry into law.

    That means you can now walk around in public with a handgun on your person without ever needing to register for a concealed carry license.

    Womens Concealed Carry IWB

    While that opens doors for those that wish to carry, what does this mean for firearms instructors? Could this lead to small businesses going out of business?

    We at Pew Pew Tactical were curious, so we contacted instructors around the nation to see what impact Constitutional Carry has on them.

    CCW USA 2021
    Concealed carry permits in the U.S. (Photo: WikiCommons)

    Keep reading to see what we discovered.

    Confused about license to carry vs constitutional carry? Check out the Brownells Daily Defense video below.

    Table of Contents


    Home on the Range: Montana

    Constitutional Carry recently passed in February 2021 in the state of Montana. If anybody saw a recent change in the amount of business they’d received, it would be here.

    So, Pew Pew Tactical reached out to former Navy SEAL Chris Forrest, owner and operator of TACTIC.

    Tactic Long Range 1
    TACTIC offers a host of other classes that helps draw business. (Photo: TACTIC)

    While Forrest said that, yes, there’d been a decline in the people taking his concealed carry class since Constitutional Carry passed, other classes picked up the slack.

    In fact, he’d witnessed a massive surge in interest, with a 300% increase within the past year.

    That said, he didn’t believe that was all due to Constitutional Carry — instead, pointing to the social climate over the past 17 months.

    2020 Dumpster Fire
    Am I right?

    He also noted that his clientele changed rather significantly, with a large influx of Silicon Valley types. But that, he attributes to the large number of people migrating to Montana from other states.

    Though Forrest’s business would make it through, he pointed out that there are concerns with people choosing to forgo the concealed carry class.

    In particular, he admitted there would be people out there unfamiliar with firearm laws within Montana – laws they would have learned about in the class.

    Staccato C Concealed Carry
    Concealed carry in the AIWB position.

    Furthermore, he noted concrete advantages to still getting a concealed carry license despite living in a Constitutional Carry state.

    For starters, that CCL still grants you reciprocity with other states.

    Just being a citizen of a Constitutional Carry state did not. So, if you want to travel and carry a firearm on your person outside of Montana, you would still need that license.

    Forrest also pointed out that in Montana, your CCL is your FFL background check.

    The Land of Brisket: Texas

    KR Training has one of the best track records of any gun range throughout Texas. Karl Rehn, a firearms instructor of over 30 years, said only concealed carry permit instructors who don’t teach anything else need to worry.

    In contrast, the organizations that have instructors trained well enough to offer more than just those classes aren’t worried one bit, he says.

    KR Training
    (Photo: KR Training)

    Rehn added that Constitutional Carry would particularly benefit people living in high-crime, low-income areas.

    In such neighborhoods, many cannot afford the time or money to take a CCL class. Constitutional Carry would allow them to carry a weapon to protect themselves.

    And Rehn did think that more people will start carrying as well.

    Instructor Training in Utah

    Level 1 Firearms is a nationwide business that focuses on training firearms instructors.

    However, they teach a wide range of other courses, such as Defensive Pistol, AR-15 Home Defense, and, yes, Concealed Carry License classes.

    CCW Range Practice
    CCW Range Practice

    Due to their nationwide availability, Level 1 had data on a wide range of states.

    After Constitutional Carry was passed in Idaho, Nicki Streb noted that the training site saw a 75% drop in classes within the first six months, with similar results in Arizona.

    However, 2020 was the catalyst that offset any damage due to Constitutional Carry, with business quadrupling.

    2020 starter pack.

    Streb said many people bought firearms and therefore want classes – even if they’re not legally required to take them. In other words, people just want instruction.

    This influx of customers has meant a change in Level 1’s current customer base, though. Many customers are complete first-timers – as in, never held a firearm before.

    Streb said she anticipates this current boom in business to peter out, but in the meantime, they’re doing everything they can to get people trained.

    The Grand Canyon State: Arizona

    Constitutional Carry was passed into law in Arizona in 2019, but that hasn’t put a damper on Arizona Tactical Adventures’ business.  

    Predominantly teaching self-defense classes, Arizona Tactical Adventures Mike Simpson said that despite Constitutional Carry, he’d seen a significant increase in business.

    AZ Tactical Adventures
    (Photo: AZ Tactical Adventures)

    He explained that since people are now allowed to carry a firearm out and about with minimal restriction, they want to get realistic training.

    The events of 2020 led to an even further increase in business for him. Booming gun sales seemingly go hand-in-hand with gun courses.

    Simpson, too pointed out that his clientele had changed. Before 2020, he mainly worked with the “tactical hillbilly” crowd. Now his classes are full of doctors, businessmen, women, etc.


    While Constitutional Carry means the public doesn’t have to take a class to carry, businesses that experienced a drop haven’t been hurting lately by any stretch of the imagination.

    Training is necessary to be a responsible good guy.

    Provided businesses don’t rely solely on concealed carry permit classes, Constitutional Carry won’t negatively impact many gun training sites.  

    What are your thoughts about Constitutional Carry? Let us know what you think below. What about online gun classes? Are those booming? Check out our peek into Online Gun Classes to find out.  

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    9 Leave a Reply

    • Commenter Avatar
      Wallace Dunn

      As of 2022, it's now 25 states...

      June 23, 2022 6:57 am
    • Commenter Avatar

      Here in Arizona, since Constitutional Carry, many of the bad to marginal instructors have had to find other work while the better ones have seen more business than they could handle. It's human nature: Tell me I HAVE to do something and I'll avoid it however possible, make it my choice to be responsible and I likely will.
      And that's 25 Constitutional Carry States, half of the country.

      June 21, 2022 10:45 am
    • Commenter Avatar

      Unless the state you live in use to require taking a concealed carry class before being granted a permit, this sounds more like a class branding issue. Change the class descriptions from "concealed carry" class to "carry fundamentals".

      June 21, 2022 8:43 am
    • Commenter Avatar

      Legally Armed in Detroit Will Train Up to 4,000 Women in Armed Self Defense on August 21 & 22

      August 16, 2021 7:05 am
    • Commenter Avatar
      William Huckette

      Just handing out firearms to any idiot is a stupid idea! I grew up with guns, took classes my whole life, and was happy to take the required class to get my concealed carry license. Who in their right minds thinks that untrained mouth-breathers with anger issue should have concealed weapons on them in our society? This makes nobody safer.

      August 15, 2021 8:46 pm
      • Commenter Avatar
        Wallace Dunn

        So you're okay with "trained" mouth-breathers? Everyone has anger issues, how we deal with them is what matters.

        June 25, 2022 7:04 am
    • Commenter Avatar

      We have a gun store here that offers six hours of basic free instruction to anyone who buys a gun from them. The basic free course covers basics of safety, handling, laws (we are a constitutional carry state but there are laws and its not the wild west like gun control advocates make it out to be), holsters and storage and carry, hands on operation and cleaning, and then finally pulling the trigger and punching holes in paper with a free box of ammo (subject to availability).

      A follow on course is available for $100.00 for three six-hour days of instruction at an outdoor range area. It covers the outlined basics from the free basic course and a lot more of the fundamentals, marksmanship skills, and self/home defense engagement skills, and a chunk of range time. Its a little more defensive tactical in nature but no one crawls though the mud or trains for apocalypse urban warfare. It also teaches some handy hand-to-hand skills, and some weapon retention skills, for those times when the bad guy gets too close before you know it For $50.00 more, if you want a concealed permit, after you complete the follow on course the gun store has a state certified instructor (who is one of the store owners) will take you through the permit course as well in a separate 8 hour instruction block (8 hours because the state mandates 8 hours for permits), and if you have not had their follow on course the permit course will still cost you $150.00 so most people who want a permit take the follow on course first. You can pay just for the follow on course and skip the basic free course. Each new handgun purchase gets two hours of free indoor range time (a one time thing, applicable to one gun only). (if you have not purchased your gun from the store the price for the follow on course is $150.00, permit course is still $50.00)

      Its not a bad deal, its very popular here locally.

      We are a constitutional carry state, anyone can carry (concealed or open) and posses a firearm without permit if they can legally posses a firearm. Rifles and shotguns can't be carried concealed. Mostly the permits are for reciprocity purposes with other states.

      August 12, 2021 4:39 pm
    • Commenter Avatar
      Practical Misser

      I’ve only been shooting three years , but took my first class the day after I bought my 1st pistol . Being proficient takes a lot of instruction and a lot of practice and is a perishable skill. I’ve been surprised that the majority of gun owners I meet have no interest in being proficient or getting training. I take 2-3 classes a year and started doing USPSA. There are a lot of military, police and defense shooters who do competition to develop skills. As a CCW holder , it seems a basic responsibility to be get the training I need to use my weapon under stress while moving to insure my safety and everyone else’s . Kind of mind boggling that folk have no interest. I’ve had several new gun owner friends complain about their marksmanship. When I give them a link to a 30 day dry fire routine or point them to a class they say that’s too much work. Why even buy a gun then?

      August 12, 2021 6:00 am
    • Commenter Avatar

      I am good with constitutional carry, but one positive from having licenses is that it’s sometimes the only training of any kind most people get.

      August 11, 2021 5:26 pm
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