Examining fisheries derived income and inequality from regional trade integration is a fundamental step in improving fishing community’s economic benefit. However, detailed analysis remains poorly understood. This study was carried out in three fishing communities and one border post in mainland Tanzania to address this gap. Key actors and their roles within the value chain were identified. Differences in seasonal income were tested and examined how cross border fish trade (CBFT) contributes to income inequalities among actors in marine small pelagic fishery locally known as dagaa. Findings showed that 12 marine dagaa actors are involved in value-addition activities that link production to consumption. Fishers earned the lowest average seasonal income, and a significant difference in income was found in the four seasons among actors. Further, it was found that processors and traders earned above the Tanzanian minimum wage per month for fishing and marine activities, suggesting that regional trade integration benefits actors through CBFT. However, the study observed that traders had higher income inequality than processors and fishers, attributed to the bias in financial power, market bargaining power, access to the market information and social network relationship towards traders. Such findings provide important insights for designing effective policies that balance the fair distribution of income derived from CBFT to generate positive livelihood implications.