Opposing National Park Fee Hikes

Opposing National Park Fee Hikes

National park fee hikes could more than double at 17 popular national parks. Here’s why we need to stop that from happening.

Canoeing at Denali National Park (Photo: NPS)

Denali National Park visitors kayak on Wonder Lake with stunning views of the Alaska Range in the background. (Photo: NPS)

This land is your land.

We all own our country’s spectacular national parks — from the majestic geysers of Yellowstone, to the lush forests of Yosemite, the towering mountains of Denali, and the Grand Canyon’s sweeping vistas.

Unfortunately, the Trump administration has just proposed a big new fee hike for entering these and 13 other popular national parks. Worse, we only have until November 23rd to stop them.

National park entrance fees

In the US, you can enter most national parks for free. It’s a benefit you pay for with your tax dollars. In the 1960s, Congress authorized the National Park Service to charge entrance fees at some parks to offset maintenance and operations costs. Nonetheless, roughly three in four of our national parks still charge no entrance fees.

But under the administration’s proposal entry fees at some of America’s most popular national parks could more than double during peak tourism season.1

Supporters of the fee hike argue that it is necessary to address a $1.3 billion backlog in priority maintenance and infrastructure projects at our National Parks. But entry fees should not be the only way we care for amazing places that belong to all of us. And hikes should not be used to offset the 13 percent cut to the National Park Service’s budget that the House of Representatives approved in September.2

Being able to get out and enjoy nature is a vital part of appreciating and protecting America’s natural treasures. Doubling the entry price over such a short period — even as the Congressional funding is cut — is out of step with the idea that we should be encouraging more people to experience these wonders.3

How you can help stop National Park Fee Hikes

Please take a stand against huge fee hikes. The National Park Service is only accepting comments on its fee hike proposal until November 23, so please sign the petition for national parks now.

Sign the Petition for National Parks


1. Park, Madison. “You may have to pay $70 to visit the Grand Canyon and 16 other national parks,” CNN, October 25, 2017.
2. Benen, Steve. “The political oddity of proposed fee hikes at national parks,” MSNBC, October 26, 2017.
3. Grewell, J. Bishop. “Slamming the door on low-income people? The ethics of recreation fees,” Property and Environment Research Center, PERC Report, Spring 2004.