National Park Senior Citizen Pass

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What Are The Benefits Of A National Park Senior Lifetime Pass

national park senior pass

Once you reach a certain age, you may be considered a senior citizen. For seniors in the United States who love the outdoors, a National Park Lifetime Pass provides access to over 2,000 federal recreation sites. Instead of having to pay pricey day use fees or entrance fees, youll be able to use this pass to gain access for free!

The owner of the pass will also receive other benefits including a discount on Expanded Amenity Fees including camping, swimming, boat launching, and guided tours that can otherwise add to your expenses. However, the amount of the discount is determined on a case-to-case basis, so its best to check with the recreation site before visiting.

What Are The Discount Guidelines

The pass program is managed by six Federal agencies that operate under different regulations and have different fees. Therefore, the discount program for the Senior Pass is not handled in the same way on all Federal recreation lands.

In general discounts are honored as follows

  • Individual Campsites: The discount only applies to the fee for the campsite physically occupied by the pass owner, not to any additional campsite occupied by members of the pass owner’s party.
  • Campsites with Utility Hookups: If utility fees are charged separately, there is no discount. The discount may apply if the utility fee is combined with the campsite fee.
  • Group Campsites and Facilities: : There is no discount for group campsites and other group facilities that charge a flat fee. If the group campsite has a per person fee rate, only the pass owner receives a discount others using the site pay the full fee.
  • Guided Tours: The pass offers discounts on some guided tours. Only the pass owner receives a discount if one is offered.
  • Transportation Systems:

Where Can I Use My Senior Pass

Please contact a site directly if you have a question about pass acceptance and fees.

The Forest Service, the National Park Service, Fish and Wildlife Service, Bureau of Land Management, USACE, and Bureau of Reclamation honor the Senior Pass at sites where Entrance or Standard Amenity Fee are charged.

In addition, the Tennessee Valley Authority may honor the Senior Pass for entrance or camping discounts.

  • Bureau of Land Management
  • Bureau of Reclamation
  • US Army Corps of Engineers

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Is There A National Parks Pass For Veterans

Unfortunately, there is not currently a special national parks pass for veterans.

However, there is a special pass for current US military members and their dependents in the Army, Navy, Air Force, Marines, and Coast Guard, as well as most members of the US Reserves and National Guard.

In order to obtain that pass, proper military ID is required . You can read more about the national parks pas for military members here.

Where Can You Use The Senior Card

Senior citizens can get a lifetime National Parks pass for only $10 ...

The card can be used in over 2000 recreation sites that are managed by 6 federal agencies.

  • National Park Service
  • US Forest Service
  • US Army Corps of Engineers

The next option is to order your pass online at the USGC website at: where you can also download a paper form to submit.

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Whats Included In The National Parks Senior Pass

Both the Annual and Lifetime Senior Pass allow access to over 2,000 national parks, national monuments, national wildlife refuges, and national forests and grasslands. Many of these sites will include their own visitor centers, where you can spend an afternoon browsing interesting artifacts and educational materials.

FYI: Most national parks contain visitor centers where, in addition to brochures and exhibits, you can find naturalists and park rangers who can help you plan your drive or excursion through nature.

Additionally, both passes include the added bonus of a 50 percent discount on some amenity fees, such as camping or guided tours. At Yosemite National Park, for example, senior pass holders may reserve a campsite for as low as $15 dollars .

These discounts vary by location, so be sure to ask at the entrance gate or visitor center if your pass discount applies when making purchases and reservations.

Additional Benefits Of The Senior Pass

At many sites, the lifetime Senior Pass provides the pass owner a discount on expanded amenity fees . Annual passes do not cover these amenities. Inquire at the places you plan to visit.

The pass program is managed by six federal agencies that operate under different regulations and have different fees. Therefore, the discount program for the Senior Pass is not handled the same way on all federal recreation lands. The best advice is always to inquire locally.

In general, discounts are honored as follows:

  • Individual campsites: The discount only applies to the fee for the campsite physically occupied by the pass owner, not to any additional campsites occupied by the pass owner’s party members.
  • Campsites with utility hookups: There is no discount if utility fees are charged separately. The discount may apply if the utility fee is combined with the campsite fee.
  • Group campsites and facilities : There is no discount for group campsites and other group facilities that charge a flat fee. If the group campsite has a per-person fee rate, only the pass owner receives a discount others using the site pay the full cost.
  • Guided tours: The pass offers discounts on some guided tours. Only the pass owner receives a discount if one is provided.
  • Transportation systems: Inquire locally.
  • Concessionaire fees: Inquire locally.
  • Special use permit fees: Inquire locally.

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Provincial And Territorial Parks

National Parks are different from Provincial Parks and Territorial Parks. These are also protected areas, but they are administrated by the individual governments of provinces and territories. There are many more Provincial and Territorial Parks than there are National Parks.

British Columbia, for example, has over 600 Provincial Parks. In some provinces, entry to Provincial Parks is free . In other provinces, there is a daily fee much like National Parks .

Where To Use The Senior Pass

Seniors line up to buy lifetime national park passes before price hike

The Bureau of Land Management, Bureau of Reclamation, Fish and Wildlife Service, Forest Service, National Park Service, and U.S. Army Corps of Engineers honor the Senior Pass at sites where entrance or standard amenity fees are charged.

In addition, the Tennessee Valley Authority may honor the Senior Pass. Visitors are always encouraged to contact the site they plan to visit and inquire about pass acceptance before visiting.

Also Check: National Park Senior Pass Purchase

Where To Find National Parks

The easiest way is to find a national park online and this also will provide you with all the information you need.

The national park service has a website where you can find all the information you need at .

However, if you are looking for a park that is not too far away you can also Google the term national park near me and this will provide you with a list of parks that are near where you are located.

I found a video that claims that they have the 25 best national parks. Remember that this is their opinion and maybe I or you have a different opinion.

Eddie Vandam

Eddie Vandam realized when he was getting older that it was hard to find information about products for seniors and decided to share his experiences here on the website to help others. Read more.

Why Visit A National Park

What can you do at a national park? Well, theyre not just for young, energetic hikers who tent camp and backpack. National lands cater to people of all experience levels who want to enjoy the great outdoors. Listen to a scheduled ranger talk, do a self-guided walking or driving tour, attend a star-gazing event, fish, hike, bike, and of course see wildlife in their natural habitats. National parks have restrooms and bookstores as well as welcome centers where you can get maps and ranger information.

The top 10 national parks according to annual visits are regularly published by National Geographic, but aside from the big-names like Yellowstone, Great Smoky Mountains, and Yosemite, here are two of my favorites

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Get Your Free Parks Canada Pass

You can order your pass from the Parks Canada website. Its easy. Theyll even ship it to you, anywhere in the world, for free.

I learned about this offer back in early December and requested one at the time figuring there was at least a decent chance wed get a trip to Canada in 2017. I didnt receive my confirmation email until just before Christmas. Evidently there was so much demand that the Parks Canada server crashed. Oops.

But supposedly my pass is on the way.

What Is The National Park Senior Pass

National parks senior passes a hot seller

By: Author The Drivin’& Vibin’ Team

Home » What is the National Park Senior Pass?

Theres so much natural beauty and magnificence across the country, but nowhere is it more evident than throughout our National Parks.

The United States has 63 National Parks, each featuring grandeur unique to the region.

One extraordinary gift to this countrys senior citizens is the National Park Senior Pass, which makes exploring the countrys natural wonders affordable to Americas elders.

Lets dive in to the details!

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Final Word On The National Parks Senior Pass

Its good to remember that access to the majority of National Park Service sites remains freeonly 118 of 417 National Park Service sites have an entrance fee.

So in many instances fees are not an issue.

However, if you think youll be visiting some of the popular sites like Yellowstone National Park or Yosemite National Park, then I think its a good idea to look into the lifetime pass since youll end up saving money in the long-run.

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The America the Beautiful pass for seniors will also save you the trouble of going into the ranger station or store to get a permit for National Forest dispersed camping just display your card on the dash in lieu of the permit.

As we said, the America the Beautiful senior pass used to be called the Golden Age Pass. Those older Golden Page passes are still good. They just changed the name.

Now the National Parks Senior Pass is the America the Beautiful Pass.

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The National Parks Senior Pass Has Lots Of Benefits For Campers

There are many other uses more important to RVers and fulltimers who spend more than the usual two or three weeks a year touring our country.

Six federal agencies the Forest Service, the National Park Service, the Fish and Wildlife Service, the Bureau of Land Management, the Bureau of Reclamation and the Bureau of Land Management all honor the America the Beautiful National Parks Senior Pass at sites where entrance or standard amenity fees are charged.

Standard amenity fees is governmentese for day use, swimming, boat launch or campsite fees, which is where the pass comes into its own.

When you check-in at one of the campgrounds, look on the envelope you use to pay your camping fee at National Forest and BLM campgrounds.

On the bottom line, theres a place for your pass number and a 50% discount on the overnight camping fee. Army Corps of Engineers campsites also honor this 50% discount for senior pass cardholders.

Even the Tennessee Valley Authority will give you 50% off of the campsite fees. The TVA offers hundreds of campsites among its six dam reservoir campgrounds in the Southeast, available from March 15 to November 15. The length of stay is limited to 21 days during the high season and 30 days in the off-season .

What Other Types Of Passes Do National Parks Offer

Seniors Flocking To Buy $10 National Park Passes Before Big Price Hike

Aside from the standard America the Beautiful and national park Seniors Pass, there are also passes for military members, citizens with permanent disabilities, and individuals who have volunteered 250 service hours with participating federal agencies.

There is an additional pass only available to US 4th grade students. This pass is available for all students, including home school and free-choice learners. Youll need to complete some paperwork and take it to a federal recreation site to get the pass.

Keep in Mind:If youre into geological wonders and hiking, then youll love this National Park!

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How To Get The National Parks Senior Pass

If you think youll be visiting national parks for years to come and youre age 62 or older, I highly suggest that you look into getting the National Parks Senior Pass.

But how exactly do you get this pass and how much does it cost to purchase?

Ill explain everything you need to know about this pass and show you how to order your senior pass today.

Ill also talk about the senior pass benefits that could save you a lot of money and get you into a long list of park locations.

National Park Fees In Canada

To visit most of Canadas National Parks, Reserves, Marine Conservation Areas and National Historic Sites, there is usually an admission fee.

For the Parks, Reserves and Conservation Areas this is a daily admission fee which means visitors have to pay the admission charge for every day they spend within park boundaries.

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Cost Of A Senior Pass

There are two different types of senior pass membership. One is a lifetime membership and the other is an annual membership. The costs for each are:

  • $80 for a lifetime senior pass
  • $20 for an annual senior pass

The lifetime membership can be used for the remainder of your life with no renewal necessary. It also is not affected by any price changes that might occur, unlike the yearly pass. While the price doesnt change often, it recently jumped to $80 for a lifetime membership in 2017. To protect against these changes, purchasing a lifetime pass is a better investment for most seniors.

In addition to the cost above, there is a $10 cost for any passes purchased online or by mail. The only way to avoid this fee is to purchase your National Park pass in person at a National Park location.

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Senior citizens get $10 lifetime pass for National Parks  for now ...

To be honest with you, we hate paying for camping. There are so many free campsites in America .

You should give it a try!

As a matter of fact, these free campsites are yours. Every time you pay federal taxes, youre contributing to these lands.

Become a FREE CAMPING INSIDER and join the 100,000 campers that love to score the best site!

Well send you the 50 Best Free Campsites in the USA . Access the list by submitting your email below:

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Obtaining A Senior Pass

The pass can be obtained in person at most federally operated recreation areas, online, or through the mail using the application form. There is a one-time processing charge and proof of age must be supplied.

Learn more about the national park service and locate parks and recreation areas throughout the country.

What Is A National Park Senior Pass

A National Park Senior Pass is a lifetime pass allowing Americans age 62 and older admittance to all National Parks for a single fee.

Once a senior has purchased the pass, he or she will never have to pay an admittance fee to any covered site again.

Pro Tip: A National Park Pass is one of the many items on our list of 101 RV & Camping Gift Ideas.

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How To Get A National Parks Senior Pass

Its the most valuable card in your wallet. Its your National Parks Senior Pass and it is literally your passport to hundreds of unique locations around the United States. Your America the Beautiful National Parks and Recreational Lands Senior Pass provides first-class outdoor opportunities, whether youre a day tripper or avid camper or hiker. Across Americas national parks, there are picnic spots and ranger talks, walking paths and hiking trails, scenic drives and wilderness adventures. Everyone will find a place for their comfort level and interest on our national lands.

What Other Fees Are There


The daily admission fee to Canadas National Parks does not include:

  • Any kind of camping, whether in the front country or backcountry
  • Firewood at campgrounds
  • Campsite reservations
  • Access to hot springs pools managed by Parks Canada, such as Radium Hot Springs
  • Guided tours and hikes not included in park admission

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How Old Do I Have To Be

You must be 62 or older to qualify for a Senior Pass. You must be a U.S. citizen or permanent resident.

  • Lost passes are not eligible for replacement they must be repurchased.
  • Proof of age and U.S. citizenship is required at purchase.
  • You must have your pass with you to receive discounts and fee-free entry.
  • Some private concessionaires run campgrounds or tours and may not provide discounts for Senior Pass holders. Always call ahead to explore your options.
  • Always have an ID with you when using your pass to verify you are the pass owner.
  • What Is The American The Beautiful Pass

    The National Park Service offers a pass known as the American the Beautiful Pass. This is an annual pass that gives you access to more than 2,000 federal recreation sites.

    The pass covers entrance, standard amenity fees and day use fees for a driver and all passengers in a personal vehicle at per vehicle fee areas .

    Each pass will cover the entrance fees and standard amenity fees at:

    • Lands managed by the Bureau of Land Management
    • Lands managed by the Bureau of Reclamation
    • Lands managed by the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers.

    The cost for this annual pass is $80 but there are several different versions. You can find out much more about the annual pass here.

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