There was a lot of talk this past summer about the price of a senior lifetime America the Beautiful Pass going from $10 to $80. Though it is an 800% increase, this pass is still a great value.
An America the Beautiful Pass grants you access to more than 2,000 federal recreation sites. Each pass covers entrance fees at the following federal agencies:
– Bureau of Land Management
– Bureau of Reclamation
– Fish and Wildlife Service
– USDA Forest Service
– National Park Service
– U.S. Army Corps of Engineers
The pass covers entrance, standard amenity fees, and day use fees for a driver and all passengers in a personal vehicle at per vehicle fee areas (or up to four adults at sites that charge per person). Children age 15 or under are admitted free. Senior passes are available for those 62 years of age and over.
But what about those of us that aren’t yet over 62? How do we get a better deal? Think bakers dozen when you buy your annual America the Beautiful Pass.
While a casual reading of the website implies the pass is valid for one year from the date of issuance, a closer look reveals the Annual Pass is valid for 12 months from the month of purchase, expiring the last day of that month.
Translation: Buy your pass on the first day of the month and it is good until the end of the same month the following year, or a total of 13 months.
My wife and I typically take an extended RV trip in the same month every year. By purchasing the pass at the beginning of the month when we set out, we can gain fee-free access to all of the federal land listed above the year we buy the pass and the same month the following year on our trip.
Additionally, if you have a 4th grader traveling with you, they are eligible for a free America the Beautiful pass as part of the “Every Kid in a Park” program. The pass is valid for the duration of their 4th grade school year through the following summer (September-August).
Click here for more information on pass types.
Enjoying America’s National Parks and other federal lands while saving a buck… just another great adventure in RVing!