Yellowstone Fees to Increase – But Not Drastically

For the first time in three years, entrance fees to Yellowstone National Park will increase – but not as much as a previous proposal had suggested.
The National Park Service announced yesterday that Yellowstone will modify its entrance fees beginning June 1st to provide additional funding for infrastructure and maintenance needs that enhance the visitor experience. Park entrance fees this year will be $35 per vehicle or $30 per motorcycle – an increase of $5. An annual park pass will cost $70, $10 more than the last three years. Yellowstone and Grand Teton national parks have not yet determined how this new fee structure will affect the combined parks’ seven-day entrance pass.
The Park Service issued a statement yesterday that says this fee structure addresses many concerns and ideas provided by the public on how to best utilize fee revenue for parks. An earlier plan proposed a weekly fee of $70 per vehicle.
National parks have experienced record breaking visitation, with more than 1.5 billion visitors in the last five years around the country. Yellowstone Superintendent Dan Wenk points out that the combination of aging infrastructure and increased visitation affects park roads, bridges, buildings, campgrounds, water systems, bathrooms, and other facilities, and says visitors benefit when park roads, trails, and boardwalks are maintained and provide access to the park’s treasures.
Entrance fees collected by the National Park Service totaled $199.9 million in Fiscal Year 2016. The NPS estimates that once fully implemented, the new fee structure will increase annual entrance fee revenue by about $60 million.