States that Non-Residents Pay More To Camp in State Parks - Page 3 - Fiberglass RV
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Old 05-02-2021, 08:13 PM   #41
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TN has always given me a senior discount on non-premium sites, just like for residents. We live in GA.
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Old 05-03-2021, 09:13 AM   #42
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The thread seems a bit unclear about what costs are we talking about 1. Park admission 2. Campsite or 3. Both. We ran into a situation at Wisconsin’s Devil’s Lake park where we were admitted free because we have the national parks senior pass and that park received federal money. We still had to pay for the campsite. My pet peeve is toll roads that are part of the interstate. I’m from Minnesota, we have no tolls but contribute to the 90% federal funds to build the interstate. I think 90% of the toll charges should go back to Washington.
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Old 05-03-2021, 10:33 AM   #43
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TN has always given me a senior discount on non-premium sites, just like for residents. We live in GA.
The same with us and we aren't even American! What bugs me is places like South Dakota where we bought a yearly pass in 2019 since we had planned a number of nights at parks there. On our very last camping day enroute home I had the choice of a MN state park (also had a MN yearly pass) or nearby a SD one. Decided on the SD park but nobody at the gate you have to phone in for a site, and they had the nerve to charge the reservation fee. I wasn't reserving I was already in the nearly empty park and had chosen a site! It ended up being $32 for the one short stay, much more in our dollars. It was early October and I know that had we been in IA we'd have paid $11 for a site with power and could register at the gate with drop box. And no park pass required in IA.

We haven't camped in a lot of state parks but for the price and amenities much prefer COE parks.
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Old 05-04-2021, 12:50 PM   #44
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Palisades State Park. The camping fee was listed at I think $28 but when I got there I also had to pay an entrance fee and a non-resident fee plus tax. I don't recall if the non-resident fee was for park entrance or camping but the total came to over $40. I'm not complaining so much about the cost but the extra fees weren't apparent to me until I checked in. It is a very nice campground.
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Old 05-04-2021, 03:58 PM   #45
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Originally Posted by tua View Post
This issue keeps coming up so the following is a list of states (if you know of others, please add them below), that charge non-residents extra fees at state campgrounds:

Arkansas
Connecticut
Florida (50% senior discount to Florida residents only)
Maine
Michigan (Non-resident fee is charged on the required Recreation Passport (annual or daily option) and towed motor vehicle pass (if using the towed vehicle)
Montana
New York
Tennessee (All state residents get a discount, non-residents pay full price, except seniors)
Washington
Wisconsin
Wyoming
When my children were growing up (in Florida) we camped and we paid the exact same thing as non-residents. I’m not sure I would call giving senior residents a discount as meaning that Florida charges more for non-residents. I camp in Florida very little now as the older I get the more the heat and humidity of Florida’s summers bothers me. The prime camping season in Florida is during the winter months. I would be happy to forego my so-called senior discount if I could actually use the State Parks without having to compete with all the non-resident snowbirds to reserve campsites. Even before COVID campers came into existence, I could not always get a campsite in the State Parks my taxes support. And many snowbirds rotate from one park to another (15 day limit) all winter long because State Parks are less expensive and shall I say, those to whom I refer are too “frugal” to book a seasonal site. State Parks were never intended to be the winter residence of non-residents, or in the northern parts, for Sunbirds. So IMO, if non-residents have to pay more, so what? That’s the price of going where you want to go. Two sides to every story. There is no free lunch. Perhaps some cheese with that whine. I fail to see it as an “issue” if residents and non-residents pay different rates.
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Old 05-04-2021, 06:36 PM   #46
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When my children were growing up (in Florida) we camped and we paid the exact same thing as non-residents. I’m not sure I would call giving senior residents a discount as meaning that Florida charges more for non-residents. I camp in Florida very little now as the older I get the more the heat and humidity of Florida’s summers bothers me. The prime camping season in Florida is during the winter months. I would be happy to forego my so-called senior discount if I could actually use the State Parks without having to compete with all the non-resident snowbirds to reserve campsites. Even before COVID campers came into existence, I could not always get a campsite in the State Parks my taxes support. And many snowbirds rotate from one park to another (15 day limit) all winter long because State Parks are less expensive and shall I say, those to whom I refer are too “frugal” to book a seasonal site. State Parks were never intended to be the winter residence of non-residents, or in the northern parts, for Sunbirds. So IMO, if non-residents have to pay more, so what? That’s the price of going where you want to go. Two sides to every story. There is no free lunch. Perhaps some cheese with that whine. I fail to see it as an “issue” if residents and non-residents pay different rates.
I suggest that paying well over $500 dollars for a stay at a Florida State Park is probably more than a "fair share" for the use of the facilities. Also Floridians benefit from the thousands of dollars spent by each tourist which supports both the economy and the government of Florida.
As a result, the residents of Florida benefit from much improved prosperity and much lower taxes.
Now, I don't mind paying the cost of my stay for a few weeks each year on a state park campsite, which I had to reserve and pay for eleven months before arrival. Any Florida resident can use the same reservation system and get the site of his choice.


A bit of a non-resident premium is certainly tolerable, whether fair or not, but when it becomes punitive it hurts the state , its residents, and the guest tourist as well.


The people of Florida have always been friendly toward us and welcomed both our presence and our business.
If I felt resentment at our presence I would not return with the Scamp group year after year.


BTW, I have several snowbird friends who winter in Florida every year for a few months in private RV parks, while we only come for a few weeks as tourists. In every single case they pay a LOT less than we pay at the state parks.
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Old 05-04-2021, 06:45 PM   #47
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I don't mind paying a bit extra in other states andcprovinces. I get it. We don't pay taxes there. It's ok.
If I were that worried, I'd just stay home.
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Old 05-04-2021, 07:27 PM   #48
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The most obvious solution to this dilemma is to camp in your home state
Florida’s economy and taxes are based on tourism so complaining about the out of state tourists seems rather counter productive
I plan on doing my part to open up campsites by staying home in the Winter and drinking lots of Florida orange juice.
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Old 05-04-2021, 08:54 PM   #49
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The most obvious solution to this dilemma is to camp in your home state
Florida’s economy and taxes are based on tourism so complaining about the out of state tourists seems rather counter productive
I plan on doing my part to open up campsites by staying home in the Winter and drinking lots of Florida orange juice.
Excuse me. I wasn’t complaining about tourists or snowbirds. I was complaining about people who complain about states which charge more to non-residents than residents, which Florida does not. It merely gives its senior residents a break.

And in reference to a comment from another person quoting me, I get no benefit from what he spends when he comes to Florida any more than he benefits when I spend money in his state, which he refers to derogatorily. And I do affirm I do not believe this thread deals with a non-issue rather than an “issue.” Furthermore, while tourist dollars may result in lower taxes in Florida than in other states, lower taxes mean fewer services. And all those tourist dollars do not mean the cost of living for Floridians is less than other locations. Florida has the highest car insurance rates in the nation. I, with no accidents or violations pay over $2,000 per year on two vehicles. And I just paid my annual property insurance premium, over $4,200 for the year. Hurricanes. Kindly tell me which of the 50 states does not, to some degree, obtain revenue from tourism. Am I complaining about it? No, because I choose to live hear but some comments have been made by people who were offended by my comments and consequently responded with their own comments that indicated they were clueless. And yes, if I WANT to camp in NY, Wisconsin, or Illinois State Parks and I get charged more as a non-resident, then so be it because it is a non-issue. And I’m not impressed if someone thinks that spending hundreds of dollars coming to Florida means they are benevolent and doing me or my fellow residents a favor. They are most likely spending that money because they do not want to shovel snow or slip on ice and fall on their butts.
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Old 05-05-2021, 09:01 AM   #50
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Excuse me. I wasn’t complaining about tourists or snowbirds. I was complaining about people who complain about states which charge more to non-residents than residents, which Florida does not. It merely gives its senior residents a break.

And in reference to a comment from another person quoting me, I get no benefit from what he spends when he comes to Florida any more than he benefits when I spend money in his state, which he refers to derogatorily. And I do affirm I do not believe this thread deals with a non-issue rather than an “issue.” Furthermore, while tourist dollars may result in lower taxes in Florida than in other states, lower taxes mean fewer services. And all those tourist dollars do not mean the cost of living for Floridians is less than other locations. Florida has the highest car insurance rates in the nation. I, with no accidents or violations pay over $2,000 per year on two vehicles. And I just paid my annual property insurance premium, over $4,200 for the year. Hurricanes. Kindly tell me which of the 50 states does not, to some degree, obtain revenue from tourism. Am I complaining about it? No, because I choose to live hear but some comments have been made by people who were offended by my comments and consequently responded with their own comments that indicated they were clueless. And yes, if I WANT to camp in NY, Wisconsin, or Illinois State Parks and I get charged more as a non-resident, then so be it because it is a non-issue. And I’m not impressed if someone thinks that spending hundreds of dollars coming to Florida means they are benevolent and doing me or my fellow residents a favor. They are most likely spending that money because they do not want to shovel snow or slip on ice and fall on their butts.
Not a matter of benevolence, just a matter of fact that a tourist economy brings prosperity and services that would not otherwise be there.
Of course the tourist economy has its aggravations as does any industry.
Tourism has been as much a part Florida's economy as oranges since before either of us has been around.


I'm a believer in state's rights and independence to an appropriate degree,
but I am also an American, living in one country with the right to travel to and between its various components.
You are of course welcome to come to Illinois and camp at the same rate as the residents. If you wish to see more than corn and beans, stay south of Effingham!


Traveling with a travel trailer can actually be cheaper than staying home in some cases, many of my trips cost less per day (including utilities) than the real estate taxes alone (per day) on my moderate house.


So... Its not the idea of travel costs that bothers me, but rather whether I feel welcomed by the people I visit, and whether they can see that tourism can be mutually beneficial.
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Old 05-05-2021, 09:40 AM   #51
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A number of years ago I stayed at Kiptopeke State Park on the northern end of the Chesapeake Bay Bridge Tunnel. The $20/ night site fee was reasonable but I found the $5 registration fee, the $5 out of state fee and the $5 dog fee were a little excessive. Since then I've avoided camping at any Virginia State parks. Lots of other options.

Over in Maine they charge $10 more for out of state guests. Everyone pays the 9% lodging tax to stay in there own trailer or tent. New Hampshire legislators tried doing the same. The response quickly convinced them it wasn't a good idea.

In Vermont the base rate is $19. If you can see the pond through the trees add $2 for a "prime" site. Out of state add $2 more. Bring your dog, that's another dollar. Shower $.75 for 5 minutes. No senior discounts on campsites.
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Old 05-05-2021, 11:38 AM   #52
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Not a matter of benevolence, just a matter of fact that a tourist economy brings prosperity and services that would not otherwise be there.
Of course the tourist economy has its aggravations as does any industry.
Tourism has been as much a part Florida's economy as oranges since before either of us has been around.


I'm a believer in state's rights and independence to an appropriate degree,
but I am also an American, living in one country with the right to travel to and between its various components.
You are of course welcome to come to Illinois and camp at the same rate as the residents. If you wish to see more than corn and beans, stay south of Effingham!


Traveling with a travel trailer can actually be cheaper than staying home in some cases, many of my trips cost less per day (including utilities) than the real estate taxes alone (per day) on my moderate house.


So... Its not the idea of travel costs that bothers me, but rather whether I feel welcomed by the people I visit, and whether they can see that tourism can be mutually beneficial.
Floyd, you know I am always happy to see you and welcome you at Scamp Camp. The first sign you see on any road as you come across the border is “Welcome to Florida.” And yes, some states rely on tourism more than others. Florida has its beaches, fishing, pleasant winter weather, and things like The Mouse which cause tourists to flock here. But that does not mean that I personally benefit because some tourist leaves a small fortune at the businesses in Orlando or those along the beaches. Yes, it is mutually beneficial to the tourists and the business owners they support, but not necessarily to the average Floridian. If they buy goods, yes the state and county’s collect sales taxes. And if they purchase fuel, then gas taxes are collected. But an argument could be made that the added population of winter tourists requires more safety (police/ambulance) services and the added vehicular traffic equals more wear and tear on the roads which offsets any gain in the gas tax, supposed to go toward road construction and maintenance. While some private businesses may make a bundle from tourist dollars, the average resident gets little benefit. Some residents owe their low income jobs to tourists, such as chambermaids, restaurant servers, etc., but they would probably move to other places if their jobs did not exist. Illinois has some tourism, probably not as much as Florida, Hawaii, Michigan, or Maine, but that doesn’t mean the common man in Illinois or any of those states benefits from tourism. But that is capitalism, and I was not railing about economic systems, nor was I suggesting that tourists should stay the hell out of Florida, any more than I would want to be told the same thing by a resident of Illinois. We are in complete agreement on that point.
Once again, what I disagree with is someone stating that any state that charges more for non-residents than it does for residents is an “ISSUE,” with the IMPLICATION THAT IT IS NOT FAIR. I taught science at the high school level for five years and when the kids would whine “That’s not fair,” my standard answer was always “You want fair? The State Fair is in January and the County Fair is in April.”
If campsite rates for residents vs. non-residents is an “issue,” perhaps we need to make a list of which states have higher fuel taxes, a higher sales tax, or added fees for this or that so that all the people who want to make an issue out of any of those things have even more to gripe about.
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Old 05-05-2021, 01:14 PM   #53
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I expect "Senior discount" will fade away soon as the baby boomer bulge gets even larger. And, they have the money.
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Old 05-05-2021, 01:39 PM   #54
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Here's a link to a Time story on why seniors don't deserve a discount.
https://business.time.com/2012/01/20...nior-discount/
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Old 05-05-2021, 02:05 PM   #55
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UPDATE::::States that Non-Residents Pay More to Camp in State Parks

This is a FYI only thread.
(Whether it's fair or not is not the original point of this thread, but being informed is).

If you know of other States that charge non-residents extra fees, please add them below:

Arkansas
Connecticut
Delaware
Florida (50% senior discount to Florida residents only)
Idaho
Maine
Michigan (Non-resident fee is charged on the required Recreation Passport (annual or daily option) and towed motor vehicle pass (if using the towed vehicle)
Montana
New Mexico
New York
Tennessee (All state residents get a discount, non-residents pay full price, except seniors)
Vermont
Virginia
Washington (only on advanced reservations)
Wisconsin
Wyoming
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Old 05-05-2021, 02:13 PM   #56
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Palisades State Park. The camping fee was listed at I think $28 but when I got there I also had to pay an entrance fee and a non-resident fee plus tax. I don't recall if the non-resident fee was for park entrance or camping but the total came to over $40. I'm not complaining so much about the cost but the extra fees weren't apparent to me until I checked in. It is a very nice campground.

Bingo!!! Being informed (preferably in advanced what to expect) is the objective here!

Since there are several states with the name "Palisades State Park", which Palisades State Park are you referring to denswaer?
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Old 05-06-2021, 04:29 AM   #57
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They could double rates at Florida state parks and it would still be difficult to get an in-season reservation at the parks in S Florida. Making additional money off of snowbirds is fine, but what I’d really like is a longer booking window for residents.
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