Update on $10 Senior America the Beautiful Park Price Increase

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For months now there have been rumors swirling that one of the best travel deals in the US, the lifetime $10 Senior America the Beautiful Pass available to US citizens and permanent residents ages 62 and older, would be dramatically increasing in price 8x to $80. This $10 lifetime pass is such a deal because admission to our National Parks usually isn’t free, and can be $20 – $30 per vehicle, depending on the park.

 

This pass is especially great since it grants admission to National Parks not only for the pass holder, but also for the rest of the vehicle or party – subject to limits, so be sure check your desired park for full details.

Changes Coming to the $10 Senior America the Beautiful Pass

I first saw news of the coming increase in price from an AARP article, but I haven’t seen any official information from the National Parks Service or similar…until now. The website where you can purchase the Senior America the Beautiful Pass online now displays the following message:

Please note that we do not expect changes to the Senior pass price or program within the next few months. Further information on changes to the Senior pass price and program will be coming soon.

The good news is that the $10 Senior price is still available and is expected to be available for at least a few more months. However, it does seem that there are some changes to the pass are on the horizon, just not in the immediate future.

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My parents have had the $10 Senior America the Beautiful Pass since they first became eligible a few years ago, and have put it to good use multiple times to save on their travels to places like Mesa Verde, Arches, Rocky Mountain National Park, Denali, Bryce, Acadia, and more.

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Save on National Park Visits Without the Senior Pass

If you aren’t eligible for the $10 lifetime pass but want to save on National Park visits, remember that current U.S. military members and dependents from the Army, Navy, Air Force, Marines, Reserve and National Guard members can get a free annual pass. Fourth graders in the United States (including home-schooled and free-choice learners 10 years of age) can get a Every Kid in a Park paper pass that is valid for the 4th grade year and the following summer (September – August). This pass admits the pass owner (4th grader) and any accompanying passengers in a private non-commercial vehicle at a per vehicle fee area, or the pass owner and up to 3 adults at sites that charge per person.

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U.S. citizens or permanent residents with permanent disabilities can get a Free Access Pass. Those who volunteer 250 service hours with federal agencies that participate in the Interagency Pass Program can also get a Volunteer Pass free of charge. The National Parks Service also periodically does free admission days and weekends (including two weekends in April!), so there are ways to visit the National Parks on a tight budget even if you aren’t 62+.

How to Purchase the $10 Senior America the Beautiful Pass

If you are 62+ and want to purchase a Senior America the Beautiful Pass, it is $10 if purchased in person at one of these locationsIf you purchase the pass online or through the mail you effectively pay $20 for the pass since there is a $10 processing fee for those transactions.

Do you have a $10 America the Beautiful Senior Lifetime Pass, or do plan to get one in the coming months before changes can kick in?

Editorial Note: The opinions expressed here are mine and not provided, reviewed, by any bank, card issuer, or other company unless otherwise stated.

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  1. My husband and I used his at Haleakala in Maui to view the sunrise. Keep in mind that they now limit the number of cars entering the park in the morning (some new rule.) It was definitely worth waking up at 2:00 am but we did it on the day after our arrival and are on pacific time so it wasn’t too painful!!

  2. I have the predecessor to this pass, the Golden Age Passport, which should be noted gives free lifetime admission to more than just National Parks; you also get in free to National Monuments and many more Federal locations which charge admission, including Ft.San Juan in Puerto Rico, I discovered. There’s another pass which is not widely known, the Interagency Access Pass, which gives free admission to parks, etc. to the disabled.(see below, or visit wikipedia.org)

    The Interagency Access Pass is a pass issued by the United States federal government at no cost to U.S. citizens or permanent residents who have been medically determined to have a permanent disability. The pass grants the holder free lifetime access to more than 2,000 recreation sites managed by five federal agencies: the Forest Service, the National Park Service, the Fish and Wildlife Service, the Bureau of Land Management, and the Bureau of Reclamation.

  3. We are already sticking all the national debt on the young so we might as well get them to supplement are park passes as well.

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