[Reminder] Canadian Parks Waive Entry Fee in 2017

Photo: Moraine Lake, Banff National Park © Thrifty Traveler

 

As we covered earlier this year, the Canadian government will be waiving entry fees at the more than 40 national parks around the country in 2017. The free offer celebrates Canada’s 150th birthday.

Entrance fees brought in a significant $59 million in 2014, according to CBC. A year’s pass for a family up to seven people usually costs $136. Although the government will lose out on quite a bit of cash, I bet increased tourism will make up for it. This deal can easily save your family $50 – $100 for a weekend trip.

 

Where to Stay?

Last summer, Mrs. TT and I flew into Calgary, Alberta and visited Banff and Jasper National Parks. Our top places to stay on points are the Fairmont Banff Springs, Fairmont Lake Louise, and Fairmont Jasper. We had two free nights from the Fairmont credit card and used one at the Fairmont Banff Springs and another at the Fairmont Jasper. We were able to apply a suite upgrade from the credit card as well at one of the properties. Some of the other great perks of the card are $50 in dinner vouchers, and $100 in breakfast vouchers, which can be used during your stay, or at any Fairmont property without a reservation. If you are traveling as a couple, I’d recommend both applying for the Fairmont card so you would have four nights, and over $300 in vouchers. Look for a full review of the Fairmont credit card later this week.

 

Bottom Line

You can’t beat free! Also do you have any idea how nice Canadians are? When we landed in Calgary we had no less than five people welcome us to Canada. Even our customs guy was friendly. He asked what our plans were and I said some hiking in Banff. He told me the best hiking tip he had was to put one foot in front of the other. His delivery was spot on with a smile on his face. We’re hoping to head back to Canada later this year and take advantage of this great deal.

 

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