Don't miss out! Join the thousands of people who subscribe to our once-daily email or our free miles and points Facebook group with all the best travel news. Points With a Crew has partnered with CardRatings for our coverage of credit card products. Points With a Crew and CardRatings may receive a commission from card issuers.

I saw at CNN that the National Park Service is looking at doubling the entrance fees at 17 different National Parks.  It is billed as a way to “improve facilities, infrastructure, and visitor services, with an emphasis on deferred maintenance projects”.

The proposal would set up a 5 month peak entrance period entrance where entrance fees would be doubled. The entrance fee during this peak period would be $70 per vehicle, $50 per motorcycle, and $30 per person.  The cost of the annual parks pass would remain $80. Entrance fees are not charged to visitors under 16 years of age or holders of Senior, Military, Access, Volunteer, or Every Kid in a Park (EKIP) passes.

National Parks that would be affected

Here is a list of the 17 National Parks that would be affected by this change are some of the most popular parks out there

  • From May 1-September 30
    • Arches National Park
    • Bryce Canyon National Park
    • Canyonlands National Park
    • Denali National Park
    • Glacier National Park
    • Grand Canyon National Park
    • Grand Teton National Park
    • Olympic National Park
    • Sequoia & Kings Canyon National Park
    • Yellowstone National Park
    • Yosemite National Park
    • Zion National Park
  • June 1-October 31
    • Acadia National Park
    • Mount Rainier National Park
    • Rocky Mountain National Park
    • Shenandoah National Park
  • January 1-May 31
    • Joshua Tree National Park

The park is encouraging those affected to comment on their website – https://parkplanning.nps.gov/proposedpeakseasonfeerates

[3 tips and tricks to visit Hoover Dam for free]

The “no entrance fee” National Park scam

The Park Service is quick to point out that “the majority of national parks will remain free to enter; only 118 of 417 park sites charge an entrance fee”, but that downplays the fact that many of these “free” parks come with other fees.  For example, when my family went to Mt. Rushmore, entrance to the park is free but that’s only if you want to walk a mile or two uphill to visit.  If you want to park in the parking lot – oh well that’s $8 / car and not covered by the Every Kid in a Park or Senior discounts.

This, on the other hand, IS Mt. Rushmore

My favorite part of the CNN article was a comment from the president of the National Parks Conservation Association, who said “The solution to our parks’ repair needs cannot and should not be largely shouldered by its visitors.”

Umm… what?  Shouldn’t that be EXACTLY who pays for it?

Anyways just a headsup if your upcoming plans contain a visit to any of these 17 National Parks


Points With a Crew has partnered with CardRatings for our coverage of credit card products. Points With a Crew and CardRatings may receive a commission from card issuers. Other links on this page may also pay me a commission - as always, thanks for your support if you use them
BoardingArea

Sign up for our once-daily email with the latest tips and tricks on how to travel for free / cheap. 

You have Successfully Subscribed!