Price of National Parks senior pass increasing eight-fold
July 10, 2017
• Will go from $10 to $80
• A few weeks remain to get it at the lower price
One of the great bargains for seniors in the Central Valley, who live within a few hours of some of the nation’s most popular national parks such as Yosemite and Sequoia, is going to cost more — eight times more.
The price for the “America the Beautiful – National Parks and Federal Recreational Lands Senior Pass” will increase from $10 to $80. The change will take effect August 28.
Pass holders are given lifetime access to more than 2,000 sites and parks. The fee increase will help pay for maintenance projects at national parks and federal recreational lands nationwide.
The Senior Pass has cost $10 since 1994. Until August 28, U.S. citizens and permanent residents who are 62 years or older can purchase the lifetime Senior Pass for $10. Previously purchased lifetime Golden Age or Senior Passes will be honored for the lifetime of the pass holder.
The Senior Pass can be used at sites managed by the National Park Service, U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, the Bureau of Land Management, the Bureau of Reclamation, the U.S. Forest Service, and the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers.
The pass can be purchased for $10 before August 28 at a national park or other Federal recreation area that charges an entrance or day use fee. The pass can also be obtained by mail or on line, for $10 before August 28 but there will be an additional $10 charge for processing, for a total of $20. Due to expected high order volume, there could be delays with online and mail order processing of up to several months.
The legislation increasing the cost also introduces a new annual Senior Pass that can be purchased for $20. Seniors who purchase annual Senior Passes for four years can trade them in for a lifetime Senior Pass at no additional charge.
The Senior Pass covers all entrance fees and day use fees and may provide senior discounts for things such as tours or campsites. The pass also waives the entrance fee for travelling companions. At per-vehicle fee sites, the pass admits the pass holder and all passengers in a noncommercial vehicle. At a per-person fee site, the pass admits the pass holder and three other adults. Children under 16 are always admitted free.