Should You Purchase a National Park Pass for Your Canyon Hotel Stay?
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Should You Purchase a National Park Pass for Your Canyon Hotel Stay?

Canyon Hotel is the ultimate destination for outdoor lovers. Our resort is located in Kanab, Utah, which is within a few hour’s drive of many of Southern Utah’s most famous destinations. You can spend the night in one of the best hotels Kanab has to offer, and enjoy day trips to destinations like the North Rim of the Grand Canyon and Zion National Park. This means not having to change hotels each night of your stay—saving you time and money, and giving you more time to rest before another day of adventure!

If you plan to take day trips to two or more national parks during your stay in our Canyon Hotel, a national park annual pass could help you save some money. Keep reading to learn more about this pass, and how to decide whether you should buy one during your stay.

What is a National Park Pass?

In the U.S., there are more than 2,000 federal recreation sites. While national parks are the best known, there are also national forests and grasslands, seashores and battlefields, historic sites, monuments, and many, many more varieties of land managed by the government.

Many of these sites have entrance fees. These fees help the National Park Service better manage these fragile natural and historical resources. But if you choose to visit national parks often, these can really add up. There are park-specific annual passes. However, those choosing to visit more than one park each year are better off with an annual pass.

The National Park Service offers several annual pass options:

America the Beautiful Annual Pass

The standard annual pass is called the America the Beautiful Pass. It’s available to everyone, whether they are American residents or not. This means that visitors from other nations can buy one if they plan to visit several parks during a vacation. 

This annual pass costs $80 a year. The pass becomes active the month it is purchased and lasts for 12 months after that. It gains the cardholder, as well as three additional occupants of their vehicle, access to more than 400 sites that have entrance fees. The pass does not include any fees that are for third-party companies, like ferries or bus services that help get you to the historic or natural site. The pass doesn’t cover any other services, like campground fees, facility rentals, etc.

Free Annual Passes

The National Park Service offers three different types of free annual passes. All carry the same benefits as the America the Beautiful Pass, just without the fee.

The first is for all active members of the U.S. military, as well as their dependents. This includes those who are in the reserves or the National Guard. 

The next type of free pass is for anyone with a permanent disability. This pass is called an Access Pass, and it does provide a few additional benefits. Cardholders will get a 50 percent discount on some amenity fees, for things like camping, swimming, boat launching, or interpretive services.

Volunteers who donate at least 250 service hours with federal agencies each year can receive a free pass through the Interagency Pass Program.

Finally, any fourth-grade U.S. students, or home-schooled children who are 10 years of age, are eligible for a free one-year pass. This pass is a part of the Every Kid Outdoors initiative. In order to get it, children and their parents will need to visit the Every Kid Outdoors website to get a paper pass that can then be exchanged for a card at federal recreation sites that charge an entrance fee or day-use fee.

Senior Pass

Any U.S. permanent residents or citizens who are age 62 or older are eligible for a Senior Pass. This pass costs $80 for a lifetime pass or $20 for an annual pass. The pass includes the same benefits as the regular annual pass, as well as a 50 percent discount on some amenity fees, like campground fees, swimming or boat launch passes, etc.

Should You Purchase a National Park Annual Pass for Your Canyon Hotel Stay?

Now that you know what the pass options are, it’s time to decide whether or not you should purchase a pass for your stay in one of the best hotels Kanab has to offer. The answer depends on how many national parks and National Park Service sites you plan to visit during your stay, or in the year following your trip.

There are several National Park Service sites within a day’s drive of our Canyon Hotel. These are the entrance fees charged at these sites:

  • North Rim of Grand Canyon National Park:  $35 per vehicle

  • Zion National Park: $35 per vehicle

  • Capitol Reef National Park: $20 per vehicle

  • Bryce Canyon National Park: $35 per vehicle

  • Pipe Springs National Monument: $10 per person

If you plan to visit three of these destinations during your stay, or if you plan to visit one or two and will visit other National Park Service sites that charge an entrance fee in the next 12 months, a national park annual pass will likely save you money.

Ready to start planning your own Canyons Hotel adventure? Book your next stay today!