If you are planning to visit one of the 131 national parks in the U.S. this fall, you will be among the last people to enjoy the low admission fees. The National Park Service has given permission to the parks to raise their entrance fees starting in 2015.
In Yosemite National Park, the price per person could increase as much as 50 percent and even triple in Olympic National Park. For the first time in about 9 years the cost of the parks experience is going up.
The idea behind increasing the entrance fees to the national parks is to make the U.S. national parks ready for the National Parks Service’s 100th anniversary in 2016. The increased profits are to address the growing need for funds and resources to improve infrastructure, facilities and visitor services in the parks. According to April Slayton, the spokesperson of the National Park service, the improvements will help attract new visitors to the national parks.
Starting in January, each park is allowed by the National Park Service to charge a maximum entrance fee and to change the fee if they choose to. For instance Crater Lake National Park is allowed to increase its entrance fee per person from five dollars to twelve dollars and the Hawaii Volcanoes National Park is allowed to increase its entrance fee from 25 dollars to 50 dollars. But, it is up to each park to decide if they want to change their entrance fees. And in order to do so the concerned authorities of each national park has to conduct community outreach programs like town hall meetings and email comment campaigns, before the prices can be increased.