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Old 09-30-2014, 07:01 PM   #21
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Virtuaally all the state parks use pay reservation systems.
Norm " I recently made reservations for 3 different state / federal parks for next March and paid NO reservation fees. I guess it depends on where you are going and if they want tourism
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Old 09-30-2014, 07:15 PM   #22
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Steve, Do not come West!!

Here in BC Provincial Parks they charge $6 per night for reservations up to a max of $18 for 3 or more days.

Canadian National Parks charge a $11 per site reservation fee on line and if you call them it jumps to $13.50
Oregon State parks charge $8 per site reservation fee.
Washington State Parks charge $6.50 per site reservation fee
California State Parks $8 per site reservation fee
Arizona State Parks $5 per site reservation fee

Note above I have taken from Reservation confirmation emails from the past couple of years so some of those prices could have gone up...
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Old 09-30-2014, 07:20 PM   #23
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What are the 'good' states that still have free reservations, I'll change my route....
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Old 09-30-2014, 07:48 PM   #24
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You'll be OK without reservations at Big Bend UNLESS your visit there corresponds with Spring Break for the college kids (Usually the second week in March but check site availability on recreation.gov to confirm). Its my favorite NP now but wouldn't have been my first choice back in the sixties when I was i an undergrad - "the times they are a'changin".

If you're planning on a visit to Carlsbad Caverns, consider the Dog Canyon campground in Guadalupe Mountain NP or boondocking in neighboring Lincoln NF.

Sounds like a great trip - keep us posted with here with your adventures.
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Old 09-30-2014, 08:15 PM   #25
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We went to Capital Reef NP in Utah in spring of last year and were turned away from their full campground and were directed to BLM land just outside the park. We had the best campsite, ever, for free! Of course, we were ready to boondock by being totally self-sufficient.
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Old 09-30-2014, 08:15 PM   #26
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What are the 'good' states that still have free reservations, I'll change my route....
For Example ;I recently made a reservation for a six night stay at Florala SP in southern Alabama No reservation fee , No up front camping fee. Just the cost of one long distance phone call. I don't want to belabor the point but we have driven all day and then been turned away at several campgrounds due to not having reservations . Trying to find another campgrounds late in the evening ,when tired and in a strange place is a PITA . We use the Reserve America website to check on availability of SP sites , if lots of sites are available we do not make reservations , if the park is almost full we do . I understand not wanting to pay an $8 or $10 reservation fee but in some cases the reservation fee is less than the cost of driving 20 or 30 miles out of my way to find a camp site . IMHO
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Old 09-30-2014, 09:52 PM   #27
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What are the 'good' states that still have free reservations, I'll change my route....
Texas Department of Parks and Wildlife has installed their own online reservation system. I'm pretty sure there's no "additional reservation charge" for making a camping reservation at one of the Texas State Parks. You do have to pay for the first night when you book it, and there's a charge if you cancel, but it's a reasonable amount.

From a recent TxDPW reservation confirmation PDF:
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"There is no administrative charge when a reservation is changed or cancelled before Midnight the same day the reservation is made. Campsites, Cabins, and Facilities Less than $100 per night: If more than 3 days from day of arrival - refund will be given minus a $5 administrative charge per site plus any additional reservation charges. If less than 3 days from day of arrival - customer will lose the first day's payment on each site, plus any additional reservation charges. No refund is given, if no advance notification is received. Group Facilities of $100 or more per day - If more than 60 days from day of arrival - Refund will be given minus a $25 administrative charge per site plus any reservation charges. If less than 60 days from day of arrival - customer will lose the first day's payment on each site, plus any additional reservation charges. No refund is given, if no advance notification is received. There is no administrative charge when a confirmed reservation is extended by calling the Reservation Center. If any dates are dropped while extending a reservation, the customer will be charged the applicable administrative charge. Rates and charges are subject to change at any time. Rates & charges in effect at the time a reservation is made will be honored as long as no changes are made to the reservation. Any changes to the original reservation will result in the recalculating rates and/or charges at the new rate."
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Old 09-30-2014, 11:10 PM   #28
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I'm pretty sure there's no "additional reservation charge" for making a camping reservation at one of the Texas State Parks. You do have to pay for the first night when you book it, and there's a charge if you cancel, but it's a reasonable amount.
There isn't. If you cancel more than 3 days before your reservation you are only charged a $5 fee, which is reasonable. Less than 3 days you lose your "deposit" which is typically one night's fee for the site.

That said, my biggest frustration with texas state parks is that your day use fee is NOT part of your site reservation. At some parks the daily use fees for our family are nearly double the campsite fee... it's getting unreasonable to camp in some places as a result because it can easily approach $35-40 a day for a non-electric tent site, when the site fee is only $15. IMO that is too much.
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Old 10-01-2014, 07:13 AM   #29
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Wisconsin requires a non resident park pass ($35) ,a daily camping fee which varies from park to park ($15 to $19), $5 / day electrical fee and a $2/day surcharge on non resident camping fees plus a $9 non refundable reservation fee if you make reservations . There is a loophole which I recently learned about from a very nice Wisconsin Park Ranger. There are certain Wisconsin State Parks where you can camp overnight (one Night) while traveling without having to purchase a $35 park pass and they have set aside camp sites for this purpose. Devils Lake SP is an example . I had never read about this program in any of the Wisconsin park literature or on any of the websites so it may be one of those things they do not advertise and you need to ask .
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Old 10-01-2014, 07:15 AM   #30
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What are the 'good' states that still have free reservations, I'll change my route....

To the best of my knowledge, Florida, Alabama, & Georgia State Parks do not charge “reservation fees”. Florida & Georgia are on Reserve America, Alabama I just called the Parks directly. We are just starting out on our FGRV escapades staying at State Parks to get our feet wet. As we progress and my boondocking mods (Solar) are completed on the Scamp, I intend to become more adventurous in our accommodations. There is definitely a lot to be said for being flexible, and self-contained!
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Old 10-01-2014, 09:41 AM   #31
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Texas Department of Parks and Wildlife has installed their own online reservation system. I'm pretty sure there's no "additional reservation charge" for making a camping reservation at one of the Texas State Parks. You do have to pay for the first night when you book it, and there's a charge if you cancel, but it's a reasonable amount.

From a recent TxDPW reservation confirmation PDF:

Looks like they may have been charging a reservation fee originally though - From the TOWD: State Park Reservations webpage

" New - There is no longer a $3 administrative fee charged to make a web reservation"

Wish our BC Government would take a clue from that... there $18 reservation charge for 3 nights of camping is just plain and simple over the top!
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Old 10-01-2014, 10:14 AM   #32
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As many have suggested, IMHO anyway, "Reserve and then Cancel" is a bad idea....

As a result, those that want to make use of a facility are denied access, basically "waiting" for someone to make a decision about when and where they want to camp.

I have talked with all to many campers that routinely make overlapping reservations at 2-3 locations, often in two or three different names, and then cancel the unwanted ones at the last minute simply because the penalties are fairly low. To them it seems that their convenience trumps inconvenience to others.



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Old 10-01-2014, 10:37 AM   #33
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I booked most of campsites in advance for our 2014 summer trip. This was my experience relative to booking/transaction/reservation fees:

Alberta Provincial Campgrounds - $12 transaction fee
Montana State Campgrounds - $9 transaction fee
Utah State Park Campgrounds - $8 transaction fee
BC Parks Campgrounds - $6 transaction fee
US National Park Campgrounds - $0 transaction fees
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Old 10-01-2014, 10:40 AM   #34
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Thought perhaps I might be able to find that someone has already put together a website with a list of state park reservation fees but couldn't find one. So this thread may be as good as it gets. LOL

Here are a few other states that charge a reservation fee - info taken from their websites:

Minnesota: A non-refundable reservation fee - $10.00 for call center/$8.50 for web is charged for each reservation.

New York State: $9.00 for campsites reservation fee - non-refundable.

Main: $2 per site, per night for reservations.

Montana: $10 reservation fee, for each site reserved, is non-refundable, non-transferable.

Utah: $8 non-refundable reservation fee is charged for each site reserved.

Colorado: $10 reservation fee will be charged per reservation.

Nebraska: $7 reservation fee

Idaho: $10.00 Reservation fee for individual campsites,

Iowa: $4 per campsite via the Internet or $6 per reservation via call center.

Kentucky:$7.50 Reservation fee for campsites

Ohio: $8.25 reservation fee for campsites
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Old 10-01-2014, 10:45 AM   #35
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I booked most of campsites in advance for our 2014 summer trip. This was my experience relative to booking/transaction/reservation fees:

Alberta Provincial Campgrounds - $12 transaction fee
Montana State Campgrounds - $9 transaction fee
Utah State Park Campgrounds - $8 transaction fee
BC Parks Campgrounds - $6 transaction fee
US National Park Campgrounds - $0 transaction fees
Dave you need to read the BC Parks policy carefully that $6 fee for reservations is PER NIGHT not per reservation!!! Yup hard to believe.... up to a max of $18's though.... When implemented it was a real hot topic here as to why it is so out of line with camping reservation fees in the rest of NA!
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Old 10-01-2014, 12:31 PM   #36
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Dave you need to read the BC Parks policy carefully that $6 fee for reservations is PER NIGHT not per reservation!!! Yup hard to believe.... up to a max of $18's though.... When implemented it was a real hot topic here as to why it is so out of line with camping reservation fees in the rest of NA!
The BC Park sites I have reserved recently were single nights only, so I was not subjected to the "per night" reservation fee. Alberta reservation fees are also very high. These fees have very little validity, and are just another money grab by respective governments.
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Old 10-01-2014, 01:03 PM   #37
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The BC Park sites I have reserved recently were single nights only, so I was not subjected to the "per night" reservation fee.
So you weren't charged the $6 reservation fee???
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Old 10-01-2014, 01:25 PM   #38
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Originally Posted by Carol H View Post
Thought perhaps I might be able to find that someone has already put together a website with a list of state park reservation fees but couldn't find one. So this thread may be as good as it gets. LOL

Here are a few other states that charge a reservation fee - info taken from their websites:

Minnesota: A non-refundable reservation fee - $10.00 for call center/$8.50 for web is charged for each reservation.

New York State: $9.00 for campsites reservation fee - non-refundable.

Main: $2 per site, per night for reservations.

Montana: $10 reservation fee, for each site reserved, is non-refundable, non-transferable.

Utah: $8 non-refundable reservation fee is charged for each site reserved.

Colorado: $10 reservation fee will be charged per reservation.

Nebraska: $7 reservation fee

Idaho: $10.00 Reservation fee for individual campsites,

Iowa: $4 per campsite via the Internet or $6 per reservation via call center.

Kentucky:$7.50 Reservation fee for campsites

Ohio: $8.25 reservation fee for campsites

What are the corresponding per night fees though? If the camping fee is reasonable and these “reservation” fees are just the cost of doing business maybe they are not so bad. Perhaps the State contracts with an outside private vender for the reservation service and this was the fee negotiated? I am not defending it just trying to see where all the fee comes from. Maybe we are all paying it but it is just hidden in the campsite fee? I know I thought Alabama’s fees were a little steep but most of their sites had sewer and cable TV or Wi-Fi that I do not use and did not want to pay for. Florida is cheaper but no TV or sewer so maybe it is all relative. All the more reason to boondock I guess.
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Old 10-01-2014, 01:28 PM   #39
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So you weren't charged the $6 reservation fee???
That is not quite what I meant. Because my stays were single nights, I was charged only the $6 fee. I was not aware that it was $6/night and that if I had booked for 3 nights, the fee would have been $18.
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Old 10-01-2014, 02:46 PM   #40
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If they use Reserve America there is a fee included in the price.
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