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General Information

Where can I use my pass?

The passes are valid at more than 2,000 Federal recreation sites where Entrance or Standard Amenity Fee(s) (Day use fees) are charged by the following agencies:

How do I show my pass at a site that doesn't have an entrance station?

At Federal recreation sites that don't have entrance stations you need to display your pass or show proof of pass ownership to compliance officers via one of the two following methods:

HANGTAGS
A pass can either be displayed on your rearview mirror using a free hangtag or on your dashboard with the signature side showing. Remember, the hangtag itself is only a way to display your Pass, and is not valid for entry unless it holds a valid Pass.

DECALS
If you own an open-topped vehicle (jeep, motorcycle, etc.) you may obtain a free decal to attach to your vehicle that will serve as proof of payment at sites that don't have a staffed entrance station.

  • Decals are issued on annual basis, even for owners of lifetime Senior/Access passes
  • Decals are NOT valid for entry at staffed entrance sites - you MUST show your pass
  • Decals must be obtained in person and you must show the following: your Pass, driver's license and vehicle registration. The name on all three documents must match.
  • All sites that issue passes issue free hangtags

National Parks and Federal Recreational Lands Pass or "Interagency" Pass Program?

A suite of annual and lifetime passes that provides U.S. citizens and visitors an affordable and convenient way to access Federal recreation lands. Up to 100% of the Pass program's proceeds are used to improve and enhance visitor recreation services.

What passes and materials are included in the program?

  • Annual Pass ($80.00 - anyone 16 years and older can purchase)
  • Senior-Lifetime Pass ($80.00 - valid for the lifetime of the pass owner; must be 62+ older, U.S. citizen, or a permanent resident)
  • Senior-Annual Pass ($20 - valid for one year from month of purchase; must be 62+ older, U.S. citizen, or a permanent resident)
  • Access Pass (Free- Valid for lifetime of the pass owner; must have medically determined permanent disability, U.S. citizens or permanent resident)
  • Military-Lifetime Pass (Free– valid for lifetime of the pass owner; issued to Gold Star Families and Veterans with valid documentation; review Military-Lifetime Pass section below to see who qualifies and what documentation is required).
  • Military-Annual Pass (Free – valid for one year from month of purchase; issued to current U.S. military and dependents with valid documentation; review Military-Annual Pass section to see who qualifies and what documentation is required).
  • Volunteer Pass (Free – valid for one year from month of issue; earned with 250+ hours of volunteer service in public lands)
  • Hangtags (used as way to display passes at areas without entrance booth staff)
  • Annual Decals (for open-top vehicles to display at areas without entrance booth staff).

 

What are the passes good for?

The passes provide entrance or access to more than 2,000 Federal recreation sites.

The Senior and Access Passes may also provide the pass owner a discount on some Expanded Amenity Fees such as camping. (Please contact a site directly if you have a question about pass acceptance and fees).

 

How can I tell the difference between a Standard Amenity, Expanded Amenity, Special Use Permit, or a Concessionaire (Concessioner) Fee?

Since the pass program is managed by six Federal agencies that operate under different regulations and charge different types of fees, it can be confusing to sort out fees, terminology, and to distinguish between a "Federally-managed facility/activity" versus a "concession-managed facility/activity".

Please see the Definitions section for further details, but more importantly, please contact a site directly if you have a question about pass acceptance and fees.

Can I use a credit card to buy a pass at a Federal recreation site?

Most sites now prefer credit cards, but it is a good idea to have cash with you as backup.

Why aren't passes issued or accepted at all Federal recreation sites?

  • Not all Federal recreation sites charge entrance fees.
  • Not all Federal recreation agencies participate in the program. For example, the Tennessee Valley Authority site does not issue the passes, yet they might honor the Senior and Access Passes for camping discounts. (Inquire locally).
  • Some facilities and activities on Federal recreation lands are managed by private concessionaires. The concessionaires charge for their services as any private company does.

Can gift cards be used to purchase products from the USGS Store?

No. The USGS Store accepts all Credit and Debit cards but gift cards of any kind are not accepted. 

Annual Pass

If I forget to bring my pass to a site and pay the entrance or use fee, can I mail in the receipt and a photocopy of my pass and get a refund?

Refunds are not issued. Pass order confirmation letters, credit card receipts, and hangtags without Passes are not valid for entrance or use.

Can any two people sign an Annual Pass?

Yes. The two pass owners do not have to be related.

What about motorcycle drivers who purchase an Annual Pass?

An Annual Pass permits entrance for two motorcycles IF the two people who sign the pass arrive at the same time on two motorcycles, regardless of the number of people on each motorcycle.

How do I show my pass at a site that doesn't have an entrance station?

At Federal recreation sites that don't have entrance stations you need to display your pass or show proof of pass ownership to compliance officers via one of the two following methods:

HANGTAGS
A pass can either be displayed on your rearview mirror using a free hangtag or on your dashboard with the signature side showing. Remember, the hangtag itself is only a way to display your Pass, and is not valid for entry unless it holds a valid Pass.

DECALS
If you own an open-topped vehicle (jeep, motorcycle, etc.) you may obtain a free decal to attach to your vehicle that will serve as proof of payment at sites that don't have a staffed entrance station.

 

  • Decals are issued on annual basis, even for owners of lifetime Senior/Access passes
  • Decals are NOT valid for entry at staffed entrance sites - you MUST show your pass
  • Decals must be obtained in person and you must show the following: your Pass, driver's license and vehicle registration. The name on all three documents must match.
  • All sites that issue passes issue free hangtags

If I visited a Federal recreation site and paid the entrance or use fee and I have the receipt, can I trade in the receipt and pay the difference to upgrade to an Annual Pass?

Generally, no. When you are making your purchase, you should carefully consider which one of the fee and pass options best suits your needs.

National Parks will ONLY upgrade entrance or use receipts from National Parks to an Annual Pass, and will NOT UPGRADE entrance or use receipts from other land management agencies. Any upgrades must be done IN PERSON AT A NATIONAL PARK, within 7 days of the original entry receipt purchase date.

Currently, the other five land management agencies (USDA FS, BLM, FWS, Reclamation, USACE) do not upgrade day-use entrance receipts to Annual passes.

When does an Annual Pass expire?

Whether you buy the pass for yourself, or as a gift, the Annual Pass is valid for 12 months from the month of purchaseexpiring the last day of that month.

What is NOT covered by the Annual Pass?

The Annual Pass does not cover Expanded Amenity fees such as camping, boat launching, parking, special tours, special permits or ferries.

Also, some facilities and activities on Federal recreation lands (including those mentioned above) are managed by private concessionaires. The concessionaires charge for their services as any private company does and the Pass is not valid for their services.

Can lost or stolen passes be replaced? Is there a way that the serial numbers can be tracked?

No. Due to privacy and logistical considerations, passes cannot be replaced if lost or stolen; a new Pass must be purchased.

If I have more than four people in my car, how many passes do I need?

  • One pass covers the vehicle at sites that charge "per vehicle".
  • At "per person" sites, the applicable fee will be charged for each additional person.

My family is traveling in two vehicles; will one Annual Pass let all of us into the site?

No. Only the vehicle with the pass owner is covered. The second vehicle is subject to an entrance fee, or must have (or buy) a second pass.

Who is admitted with an Annual Pass?

Each Annual Pass admits pass owner/s and passengers in a non-commercial vehicle at per-vehicle fee areas; and pass owner + 3 adults, not to exceed 4 adults, where per-person fees are charged. (Children under 16 are always admitted free).

Note: Photo identification will be requested to verify pass ownership.

I ride my bicycle into a federal recreation site that charges an entry fee. Can my friends come in with me with my pass?

Yes, generally the pass holder and up to 3 other bicyclists can enter for free. Be sure to check with the recreation site you plan to visit before leaving because there can be differences in the way a pass is honored at different sites.

Who qualifies for the Annual Pass?

Anyone 16 years or older may purchase the pass; children under 16 are always admitted free. Each Annual Pass can have up to two "owners".

What is the America the Beautiful - the National Parks and Federal Recreational Lands Pass or "Interagency" Annual Pass?

An $80.00 Annual Pass that provides access to more than 2,000 recreation areas managed by five Federal agencies, with up to 100% of the proceeds being used to improve and enhance visitor recreation services.

Where can I use my Annual Pass?

Please contact a site directly if you have a question about pass acceptance and fees.

The Forest Service, the National Park Service, Fish and Wildlife Service, Bureau of Land Management, Bureau of Reclamation, and US Army Corp of Engineers honor the Annual Pass at sites where Entrance or Standard Amenity Fee(s) (Day use fees) are charged.

Where can I get an Annual Pass?

PLEASE be sure to call a site and verify they are still issuing the passes BEFORE you make a special trip to obtain a pass.

  • Passes may be obtained at hundreds of locations throughout the country, including many Federal recreation sites where they are accepted. See https://www.nps.gov/planyourvisit/pickup-pass-locations.htm for sites that issue the Annual Pass.
  • Annual Passes may also be obtained through USGS (888-275-8747, option 2), or http://store.usgs.gov/pass
  • Passes ordered from USGS ship within 5 business days. Transit time varies, and is dependent upon the service selected:

        • USPS - typically 5-10 business days
        • FedEx Ground - typically 3-5 business days
        • FedEx 2nd day - typically 2 business days
        • FedEx Overnight - typically 1 business day

    If you need your pass within 10 days or less, it is recommended that you either purchase your pass at the first site you visit, or request expedited shipping services for your order.

What should I do if I ordered an Annual Pass through the Internet and it doesn't show up before my trip or arrives damaged?

If your pass does not arrive before your trip starts, or it arrives damaged, you can buy another pass at the first site you visit and return the pass ordered through the Internet for a refund.

If ordered through USGS Internet site (http://store.usgs.gov/pass) please return the unsigned pass to:
USGS, Natural Science Network
DFC, Bldg. 810
Box 25286
Denver, CO 80225
Attn: ATB Pass Return
Phone: 888-275-8747, option 2

If I ordered an Annual Pass through the Internet, and have my order confirmation receipt or my credit card statement/receipt, are they valid for entry?

No. Confirmation letters and credit card statements/receipts are not valid for entry or use.

Does the Annual Pass include any discounts at Cooperating Association bookstores, or at gift shops that are located in the Federal Recreation sites?

No. The Annual Pass does not provide discounts at Cooperating Association bookstores or on-site gift shops.

Is an Annual Pass valid at State Parks or local city/county recreation areas?

No. The Annual Pass is valid at participating Federal recreation sites. Visit http://www.recreation.gov for more information about Federal recreation sites.

Does the Annual Pass provide any discounts on Expanded Amenity or Concessionaire (Concessioner) Fees?

No. The Annual Pass does not cover discounts on any Expanded Amenity or Concessionaire (Concessioner) Fees such as: camping, RV hook-ups, boat launching, backcountry permits, parking at Mount Rushmore, guided cave tours at Wind Cave National Park, or parking at some historic monuments or homes.

Senior Pass

My family is traveling in two vehicles; will one Senior Pass let all of us into the site?

No. Only the vehicle with the pass owner is covered. The second vehicle is subject to an entrance fee, or must have (or buy) a second pass.

How do I show my pass at a site that doesn't have an entrance station?

At Federal recreation sites that don't have entrance stations you need to display your pass or show proof of pass ownership to compliance officers via one of the two following methods:

HANGTAGS
A pass can either be displayed on your rearview mirror using a free hangtag or on your dashboard with the signature side showing. Remember, the hangtag itself is only a way to display your Pass, and is not valid for entry unless it holds a valid Pass.

DECALS
If you own an open-topped vehicle (jeep, motorcycle, etc.) you may obtain a free decal to attach to your vehicle that will serve as proof of payment at sites that don't have a staffed entrance station.

  • Decals are issued on annual basis, even for owners of lifetime Senior/Access passes
  • Decals are NOT valid for entry at staffed entrance sites - you MUST show your pass
  • Decals must be obtained in person and you must show the following: your Pass, driver's license and vehicle registration. The name on all three documents must match.
  • All sites that issue passes issue free hangtags

 

Who is admitted with a Senior Pass?

The Senior Pass admits pass owner/s and passengers in a non-commercial vehicle at per-vehicle fee areas and pass owner + 3 adults, not to exceed 4 adults, where per-person fees are charged. (Children under 16 are always admitted free.)
Note: Photo identification will be requested to verify pass ownership.

What if I forgot to bring my Senior Pass?

You can either buy another Senior Pass with proper documentation, or pay the applicable Entrance or Standard Amenity Fee(s) (Day Use Fees).

Can I use my Senior Pass at state parks or local city/county recreation sites?

No. The Senior Pass is valid only at participating Federal recreation sites. Visit http://www.recreation.gov for information about Federal recreation sites.

What about motorcycle drivers who purchase a Senior Pass?

A Senior Pass permits entrance for one motorcycle.

If I have more than four people in my car, how many passes do I need?

  • One pass covers the vehicle at sites that charge "per vehicle". 
  • At "per person"; sites, the applicable fee will be charged for each additional person.

What if my Senior Pass is lost, stolen or damaged?

  • If lost or stolen, you'll need to buy another one. 
  • If damaged, it can be replaced as long as a portion of the pass is identifiable and you show proper identification.

If my spouse was the pass owner and s/he passes away, does the Senior Pass automatically transfer to me?

No. The Senior Pass is not transferable.

Where can I use my Senior Pass?

Please contact a site directly if you have a question about pass acceptance and fees.

The Forest Service, the National Park Service, Fish and Wildlife Service, Bureau of Land Management, USACE, and Bureau of Reclamation honor the Senior Pass at sites where Entrance or Standard Amenity Fee(s) (Day use fees) are charged.

In addition, the Tennessee Valley Authority may honor the Senior Pass for entrance or camping discounts.

Where can I get a Senior Pass?

You can buy a Senior Pass in person from a participating Federal recreation site or office. See Site Locations that issue the Senior Pass.
You can buy a Senior Pass using the USGS online store. Applicants must upload proof of residency and age. This may be done by photographing your document and uploading it to the order. You will need to provide a credit card payment of $90.00 for the lifetime pass, or $30 for the Annual Senior pass (The price of the pass with an additional $10.00 document processing fee). Once the documentation is verified and payment is received, a pass, with the pass owner’s name pre-printed on it, will be issued to the applicant. If you cannot order a Senior pass online, you can submit a Paper Application by mail to the USGS using the paper application and enclosing the same documents and $10 fee

Online Senior Pass applications are processed and shipped within 5 business days from the day they arrive at USGS. Transit time varies, and is dependent upon the service selected:

    • USPS - typically 5-10 business days
    • FedEx Ground - typically 3-5 business days
    • FedEx 2nd day - typically 2 business days
    • FedEx Overnight - typically 1 business day

If you need your pass within 4 weeks or less,  it is recommended that you either obtain your pass at the first site you visit, or request expedited shipping services for your order.

What is the Senior Pass?

The $80.00 lifetime and $20 Annual Senior Passes provide admittance to more than 2,000 recreation sites managed by six Federal agencies, with up to 100% of the proceeds being used to improve and enhance visitor recreation services.

At many sites the Senior Pass provides the pass owner a discount on Expanded Amenity Fees (such as camping, swimming, boat launching, and guided tours).

When can the Annual Senior Pass be exchanged for a Lifetime Senior Pass?

Save your passes, even if they are expired! The physical cards for the Senior-Annual Passes may be exchanged in person at any time for a Senior-Lifetime Pass at the following exchange rates:

1 Senior-Annual Pass plus $60 for Senior Lifetime Pass

2 Senior-Annual Passes plus $40 for Senior Lifetime Pass

3 Senior-Annual Passes plus $20 for Senior Lifetime Pass

4 Senior-Annual Passes plus $0 for Senior Lifetime Pass

Are Golden Age Passports still valid?

Yes, Golden Age Passports are valid for a lifetime.

Where can the Annual Senior Pass be exchanged for a Lifetime Senior Pass?

For all agencies participating in the Federal Lands Pass program, any site that distributes the Senior Pass are able to support the exchange of the Senior Annual Pass for a Senior Lifetime Pass. Sites that issue passes

Who qualifies for the Senior Pass?

U.S. citizens or permanent residents who are 62 years or older. (You must have turned 62 before you can buy the pass).

NOTE: Owning property or paying taxes in the U.S. does not automatically qualify you for a Senior Pass. You must be a permanent U.S. resident, or a U.S. citizen with identification such as U.S. Driver's License, Green Card or U.S. Passport.

Will I be redirected away from the USGS Store website during the age verification process?

No. The USGS Store will never send you to an external site during the age verification process. You will recieve a confirmation email from the USGS Store containing information about your eligibility status. 

Does the USGS Store retain my personal information such as age or other personal details?

No. Only order information is retained by the USGS Store. Please reference the DOI Privacy Policy for more information. 

What if I did not receive a confirmation email?

Check your junk or spam email folder. If you still do not find a confirmation email please contact USGS Customer Sevice at 1-888-275-8747.

Why do I need my age and details verified?

To verify eligibility. The Senior Annual Pass and Senior Lifetime Pass are for U.S. citizens or permanent residents age 62 or older. 

How are my age and details verified?

The USGS uses proprietary databases to match your details and age to available public records. 

What are the discount guidelines?

The pass program is managed by six Federal agencies that operate under different regulations and have different fees. Therefore, the discount program for the Senior Pass is not handled in the same way on all Federal recreation lands.

In general discounts are honored as follows

  • Individual Campsites: The discount only applies to the fee for the campsite physically occupied by the pass owner, not to any additional campsite(s) occupied by members of the pass owner's party.
  • Campsites with Utility Hookups: If utility fees are charged separately, there is no discount. The discount may apply if the utility fee is combined (seamless) with the campsite fee.
  • Group Campsites and Facilities: (including, but not limited to, group facilities, picnic areas or pavilions): There is no discount for group campsites and other group facilities that charge a flat fee. If the group campsite has a per person fee rate, only the pass owner receives a discount; others using the site pay the full fee.
  • Guided Tours: The pass offers discounts on some guided tours. Only the pass owner receives a discount if one is offered.
  • Transportation Systems: (Inquire Locally)
  • Concessionaire Fees: (Inquire Locally)
  • Special Use Permit Fees: (Inquire Locally)

 

 

Does my Senior Pass provide any discounts at Cooperating Association bookstores or gift shops that are located in the Federal Recreation sites?

No. The Senior Pass does not cover discounts in on-site bookstores or gift stores.

Does the Senior Pass include any discounts at Federal Recreation sites?

At many sites the Senior Pass provides the pass owner a discount on Expanded Amenity Fees (such as camping, swimming, boat launching, and guided tours).

Access Pass

What if my Access Pass is lost, stolen or damaged?

  • If lost or stolen, you'll need to apply for another one.
  • If damaged, it can be replaced as long as a portion of the pass is identifiable and you show proper identification.

How do I show my pass at a site that doesn't have an entrance station?

At Federal recreation sites that don't have entrance stations you need to display your pass or show proof of pass ownership to compliance officers via one of the two following methods:

HANGTAGS
A pass can either be displayed on your rearview mirror using a free hangtag or on your dashboard with the signature side showing. Remember, the hangtag itself is only a way to display your Pass, and is not valid for entry unless it holds a valid Pass.

DECALS
If you own an open-topped vehicle (jeep, motorcycle, etc.) you may obtain a free decal to attach to your vehicle that will serve as proof of payment at sites that don't have a staffed entrance station.

  • Decals are issued on annual basis, even for owners of lifetime Senior/Access passes
  • Decals are NOT valid for entry at staffed entrance sites - you MUST show your pass
  • Decals must be obtained in person and you must show the following: your Pass, driver's license and vehicle registration. The name on all three documents must match.
  • All sites that issue passes issue free hangtags

My family is traveling in two cars; will one Access Pass let all of us into the site?

No. Only the vehicle with the pass owner is covered. The second vehicle is subject to an entrance fee, or must have (or buy) a second pass.

What about motorcycle drivers who have an Access Pass?

An Access Pass permits entrance for one motorcycle.

Can I use my Access Pass at state parks or local city/county recreation sites?

No. The Access Pass is valid only at participating Federal recreation sites. Visit http://www.recreation.gov for information about Federal recreation sites.

Who is admitted with an Access Pass?

The Access Pass admits pass owner/s and passengers in a non-commercial vehicle at per-vehicle fee areas and pass owner + 3 adults, not to exceed 4 adults, where per-person fees are charged. (Children under 16 are always admitted free.) 
Note: Photo identification will be requested to verify pass ownership.

What if I forgot to bring my Access Pass?

You will be required to pay the applicable Entrance or Standard Amenity Fee(s).

If I have more than four people in my car, how many passes do I need?

  • One pass covers the vehicle at sites that charge "per vehicle".
  • At "per person" sites, the applicable fee will be charged for each additional person.

What are the discount guidelines?

The pass program is managed by five Federal agencies that operate under different regulations and have different fees. Therefore, the discount program for the Access Pass is not handled in the same way on all Federal recreation lands.

In general discounts are honored as follows:

  • Individual Campsites: The discount only applies to the fee for the campsite physically occupied by the pass owner, not to any additional campsite(s) occupied by members of the pass owner's party.
  • Campsites with Utility Hookups: If utility fees are charged separately, there is no discount. The discount may apply if the utility fee is combined (seamless) with the campsite fee.
  • Group Campsites and Facilities (including, but not limited to, group facilities, picnic areas or pavilions): There is no discount for group campsites and other group facilities that charge a flat fee. If the group campsite has a per person fee rate, only the pass owner receives a discount; others using the site pay the full fee.
  • Guided Tours: The pass offers discounts on some guided tours. Only the pass owner receives a discount if one is offered.
  • Transportation Systems: (Inquire Locally)
  • Concessionaire Fees: (Inquire Locally)
  • Special Use Permit Fees: (Inquire Locally)

Does my Access Pass provide any discounts at Cooperating Association bookstores or gift shops that are located in the Federal Recreation sites?

No. The Access Pass does not cover discounts in on-site bookstores or gift stores.

In addition to free entry, does the Access Pass include any discounts at Federal Recreation sites?

At many sites the Access Pass provides the pass owner a discount on Expanded Amenity Fees (such as camping, swimming, boat launching, and guided tours).

What is the Access Pass?

A free, lifetime pass - available to U.S. citizens or permanent residents of the United States that have been medically determined to have a permanent disability (does not have to be a 100% disability) that provides admittance to more than 2,000 recreation sites managed by five Federal agencies.

At many sites the Access Pass provides the pass owner a discount on Expanded Amenity Fees (such as camping, swimming, boat launching, and guided tours).

See Access Pass Benefits section.

Are Golden Access Passports still valid?

Golden Age Passports are valid for a lifetime however, if they physically wear out you will need to obtain a replacement Access Pass with proper identification.

Can my permanently disabled child get an Access Pass?

Yes. There is not an age requirement for this pass.

How do I prove I'm permanently disabled?

Some examples of acceptable documentation include:

  • Statement by a licensed physician   (Statement must include: that the individual has a PERMANENT disability, that it limits one or more aspects of their daily life, and the nature of those limitations.) ;
  • Document issued by Federal agency such as the Veteran's Administration, Social Security Disability Income, or Supplemental Security Income;
  • Document issued by a State agency such as a vocational rehabilitation agency.

Some examples of documentation that is accepted and not accepted:

 

Example:

Image

ACCEPTED
Notice of Award (SSDI)

 

Example:

Image

ACCEPTED
Summary of Benefits (VA)

 

Example:

Image

ACCEPTED
Award Letter (VA)
** Letter must denominate any disability percentage **

Example:

Image

NOT ACCEPTED
Notice of Benefit Increase (SSDI)

 

Example:

Image

NOT ACCEPTED
Handicap Placard/Application

 

Who qualifies for the Access Pass?

The Access Pass may be issued to U.S. citizens or permanent residents of any age that have been medically determined to have a permanent disability (does not have to be a 100% disability) that severely limits one or more major life activities.

permanent disability is a permanent physical, mental, or sensory impairment that substantially limits one or more major life activities, such as caring for oneself, performing manual tasks, walking, seeing, hearing, speaking, breathing, learning, and working.

If I am partially disabled do I qualify for the Access Pass?

The disability requirements for the Access Pass are not based on percentage of disability. To qualify for the Pass the disability must be permanent and limit one or more major life activities.

Where can I use my Access Pass?

Please contact a site directly if you have a question about pass acceptance and fees.

The Forest Service, the National Park Service, Fish and Wildlife Service, Bureau of Land Management, USACE, and Bureau of Reclamation honor the Access Pass at sites where Entrance or Standard Amenity Fees (Day use fees) are charged.

In addition, the Tennessee Valley Authority may honor the Access Pass for entrance or camping discounts.

Where can I get an Access Pass?

You can obtain an Access Pass on store.usgs.gov/access-pass by uploading an ID and documentation of permanent disability and paying the processing fee of $10. Please upload identification that indicates that you are a citizen or permanent resident, such as a driver’s license, passport, green card, or birth certificate. The ID needs to be in the name of the person obtaining the pass, not a parent in the case of a child.

You can also obtain an Access Pass in person, with proper documentation, from a participating Federal recreation site or office. See https://www.nps.gov/planyourvisit/pickup-pass-locations.htm for sites that issue the Access Pass.

Access Passes may be obtained via mail order from USGS. Mail-order applicants for the Access Pass must submit a completed paper application, proof of residency and documentation of permanent disability (does not have to be 100% disability), and pay the document processing fee of $10 to obtain a pass through the mail. Once the application package is received, the documentation will be verified and a pass, with the pass owner's name pre-printed on it, will be issued to the applicant.

Access Pass applications are usually processed and shipped within 5 business days from the day they arrive at USGS. Transit time varies, and is dependent upon the service selected:

    • USPS - typically 5-10 business days
    • FedEx Ground - typically 3-5 business days
    • FedEx 2nd day - typically 2 business days
    • FedEx Overnight - typically 1 business day

Military Passes

Overview of the Interagency Military-Annual Pass

  • $10 processing fee on USGS Store, Free in person at sites that issue passes
  • Available to Current US Military and Dependents. Documentation is required.
  • Obtained in person at Federal recreation sites that charge entrance or standard amenity fees. Federal Recreation Sites
  • Covers entrance to U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, National Park Service sites, and covers Standard Amenity Fees at Forest Service, Bureau of Land Management, Bureau of Reclamation sites, and U.S. Army Corps of Engineers sites.
  • Admits the pass owners and any accompanying passengers in a private non-commercial vehicle at per vehicle fee areas, or the pass owner and up to additional 3 adults (16 and over) at sites that charge per person.
  • If purchased from the USGS Store, your name will be printed on your pass

If I purchased an $80 Annual Pass earlier in the year can I return the pass and get a refund?

Refunds will not be issued.

What documentation is required for the Military-Annual Pass?

1. Current Military and Dependents:

  • Current members of the U.S. Army, Air Force, Navy, Marines, Coast Guard, Space Force and National Guard with valid DoD CAC card 
  • Dependents of current U.S. military members with valid DD Form 1173 
  • U.S. Military Cadets with a valid CAC card
  • U.S. Active Reservists (Do not need to be deployed) with a valid CAC card

2. The following individuals/groups DO NOT  Qualify for the annual interagency Military Annual Pass: 

• Foreign military members (Including those stationed in the U S and have a CAC card) 
• National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) employees 
• Public Health Service (PHS) members 
• Inactive U S Reservists 
• Civilian military contractors 
• Civilian military employees 

Can dependents of National Guard and the Reserve members acquire a pass?

Dependents of deployed military members with DoD Form 1173 may obtain a pass.

Are there any other benefits for military?

  • In addition to the Interagency Annual-Military Pass for current military and dependents, there is now a Military-Lifetime Pass for Gold Star Families and Veterans.
  • If you are a U.S. citizen or permanent resident age 62 or older you qualify for a Senior-Annual or Senior-Lifetime Pass. Review the Senior Pass section above for additional details.
  • If you are a U.S. citizen or permanent resident and have a medically determined permenant disability you may qualify for a free Access Pass. Review the Access Pass section for additional details. The Access Pass and both the Senior-Annual and Senior-Lifetime Pass are the only passes that may provide a discount on some expanded amenity fees such as camping.

Overview of the Interagency Military-Lifetime Pass

  • $10 processing fee on USGS Store, Free in person at sites that issue passes.
  • Available to Gold Star Families and Veterans . See section below for specific documentation required.
  • Obtained in person at Federal recreation sites that charge entrance or standard amenity fees.
  • Covers entrance fees at U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service and National Park Service sites and covers Standard Amenity Fees at Forest Service, Bureau of Land Management, Bureau of Reclamation sites, and U.S. Army Corps of Engineers sites.
  • Admits the pass owner and any accompanying passengers in a private, non-commercial vehicle at per vehicle fee areas, or the pass owner and up to additional 3 adults (16 and over) at sites that charge per person.
  • If purchased from the USGS Store, your name will be printed on your pass.

What is the difference between the Interagency Military-Annual and Military-Lifetime Pass?

The Interagency Military Pass has been part of the America the Beautiful – The National Parks and Federal Recreational Lands Pass Series since 2012. On December 27, 2021, President Biden signed into law S. 1605 “The National Defense Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 2022” (NDAA). Section 641 of the NDAA makes Gold Star families and veterans eligible for lifetime passes to federal recreational lands. The Interagency Military-Lifetime Pass can be issued to Gold Star families and U.S. military veterans. The Military-Annual Pass can be issued to current U.S. military and dependents.

Who qualifies for the Interagency Military-Lifetime Pass and what documentation is required?

1. Gold Star Families

  • Gold Star Families are next of kin of a member of the United States Armed Forces who lost his or her life in a “qualifying situation,” such as a war, an international terrorist attack, or a military operation outside of the United States while serving with the United States Armed Forces, as explained in Department of Defense Instruction 1348.36
  • Gold Star Family members must self-certify by applying for a Military-Lifetime Pass online at https://store.usgs.gov/MilitaryPass or downloading and printing a special voucher to either present to the ranger, exchange for a Military Pass in person, or place on the vehicle dashboard at unstaffed sites. Gold Star Vouchers may be downloaded from https://www.nps.gov/customcf/goldstar/voucher.htm

2. Veterans

  • Individuals who served in the U.S. Armed Forces, including the National Guard and Reserves, and are able to present one of the following valid non-expired forms of identification when entering or using federal lands:

1) Department of Defense Identification Card (CAC Card, DD Form 2, DD Form 2765)

2) Veteran Health Identification Card (VHIC)

3) Veteran ID Card

4) Veterans designation on a state-issued U.S.driver’s license or identification card

  • When acquiring a pass in person, the actual IDs listed above must be presented. As of September 2022, the VA only provides a digital version of the #3 Veteran ID Card. When acquiring a pass online, photocopies or digital images are accepted. Form DD-214 is not accepted.

Are passes available to disabled veterans or other people with disabilities?

Yes. The Interagency Access Pass is a lifetime pass that is free for any US citizen or permanent resident who has a medically determined permanent disability, including veterans. Review the Access Pass section for additional details.

What if I have a current Interagency Military-Annual Pass or other type of Interagency Pass?

  • If you have a Military-Annual Pass, Access Pass, or one of the other Interagency Passes, you can simply use that pass for free access. All passes are non-transferable.
  • If you have recently purchased an Interagency Annual or Senior Pass, unfortunately no refunds are permitted.

4th Grade Pass

General

  • Free
  • Available to U.S. 4th Graders (including home-schooled and free-choice learners 10 years of age). Educators can also be involved! Learn more at the Every Kid Outdoors website.
  • The pass is valid for the duration of the 4th grade school year through the following summer (September - August).
  • Must have a paper voucher printed from the Every Kid Outdoors website to obtain the Annual 4th Grade Pass. Digital versions of the voucher (such as smart phones or tablets) will not be accepted.
  • Covers entrance to U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service and National Park Service sites that charge Entrance Fees, and Standard Amenity Fees at Forest Service, Bureau of Land Management, Bureau of Reclamation and US Army Corps of Engineers sites.
  • Admits the pass owner 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.
  • Non-transferable

My 4th Grader and the family ride our bikes into a Federal recreation site that charges an entry fee. Are we all covered under the Annual 4th Grade Pass?

Yes, generally the pass owner and up to 3 other bicyclists can enter for free. Be sure to check with the recreation site you plan to visit before leaving because there can be differences in the way a pass is honored at different sites.

Can lost or stolen passes be replaced? Is there a way that the serial numbers can be tracked?

No. Due to privacy and logistical considerations, passes cannot be replaced if lost or stolen; a new voucher or pass must be accessed by going to the Every Kid Outdoors website and completing the activities to obtain a new paper voucher.

If I purchased an $80 Annual Pass earlier in the year can I return the pass and get a refund?

Refunds will not be issued for passes purchased before the free passes became available.

How do I get my pass?

Once your 4th grader has completed their web based activity on the Every Kid Outdoors website, they will be awarded their voucher package for printing. Once your 4th grader arrives at the participating Federal recreation site they may exchange their Every Kid Outdoors voucher for the Annual 4th grade Pass. A list of sites that issue passes is available. Please contact the Federal land you will be visiting in advance to ensure that they have the pass available.

 

What is NOT covered by the Pass?

The Pass does not cover Expanded Amenity fees such as camping, boat launching, parking, special tours, special permits or ferries.
Also, some facilities and activities on Federal recreation lands (including those mentioned above) are managed by private concessionaires. The concessionaires charge for their services as any private company does and the Pass is not valid for their services.

Where can my 4th Grader use their pass?

Please contact a site directly if you have a question about pass acceptance and fees. The Forest Service, the National Park Service, Fish and Wildlife Service, Bureau of Land Management, and Bureau of Reclamation honor the 4th Grade Pass at sites where Entrance or Standard Amenity Fee(s) are charged

 

Can I loan my 4th Grader’s pass to a friend or to use on my own?

No. The pass owner must be present when the pass is used and it is not transferrable.

What are the benefits for the 4th Grade Pass?

The pass allows free admission at sites that charge Entrance or Standard Amenity fees (Day use fees) for one full year (September through August of the student’s 4th grade year).

  • Allows pass owner and accompanying passengers in a single, private, non-commercial vehicle to enter federally operated recreation sites across the country where per vehicle fees are charged.
  • Covers the pass owner and three (3) accompanying adults age 16 and older at sites where per person fees are charged. No entry fee charged for children 15 and under.

The pass does not cover or provide a discount on expanded amenity fees such as camping, boat launch or interpretive fees.

How do I show my pass at a site that doesn't have an entrance station?

At unstaffed Federal recreation sites you may need to display your pass or show proof of pass ownership to compliance officers via one of the two following methods:

  • HANGTAGS
    A pass can either be displayed on your rearview mirror using a free hangtag or on your dashboard with the signature side showing. Remember, the hangtag itself is only a way to display your Pass, and is not valid for entry unless it holds a valid Pass.
  • Every Kid Outdoors Voucher
    A valid Every Kid Outdoors Park voucher can be displayed on the dashboard of the vehicle with the bar code showing if it hasn’t been exchanged for the Annual 4th Grade Pass.

If I forget to bring my pass to a site and pay the Entrance or Standard Amenity fee, can I mail in the receipt and a photocopy of my pass and get a refund?

Sorry, refunds are not issued.

If I have more than four people in my car, how many passes do I need?

One pass covers the vehicle at sites that charge "per vehicle." At "per person" sites, the applicable fee will be charged for each additional adult.

Who qualifies for the 4th Grade Pass?

Only U.S. 4th grade students (including home-schooled and free-choice learners 10 years of age) with a printed voucher from the Every Kid Outdoors website. Students may not receive a pass without a valid voucher.

My family is traveling in two vehicles; will one pass let all of us into the site?

No. Only the vehicle with the pass owner is covered. The second vehicle is subject to an Entrance fee or Standard Amenity fee (Day use fee), or must have (or purchase) a second pass.

Volunteer Pass

When does a Volunteer Pass expire?

The Volunteer Pass is valid for 12 months from the month of issuanceexpiring the last day of that month.

How do I show my pass at a site that doesn't have an entrance station?

At Federal recreation sites that don't have entrance stations you need to display your pass or show proof of pass ownership to compliance officers via one of the two following methods:

HANGTAGS
A pass can either be displayed on your rearview mirror using a free hangtag or on your dashboard with the signature side showing. Remember, the hangtag itself is only a way to display your Pass, and is not valid for entry unless it holds a valid Pass.

DECALS
If you own an open-topped vehicle (jeep, motorcycle, etc.) you may obtain a free decal to attach to your vehicle that will serve as proof of payment at sites that don't have a staffed entrance station.

  • Decals are issued on annual basis, even for owners of lifetime Senior/Access passes
  • Decals are NOT valid for entry at staffed entrance sites - you MUST show your pass
  • Decals must be obtained in person and you must show the following: your Pass, driver's license and vehicle registration. The name on all three documents must match.
  • All sites that issue passes issue free hangtags

 

Who is admitted with a Volunteer Pass?

Each Annual Pass admits pass owner/s and passengers in a non-commercial vehicle at per-vehicle fee areas; and pass owner + 3 adults, not to exceed 4 adults, where per-person fees are charged. (Children under 16 are always admitted free).
Note: Photo identification will be requested to verify pass ownership.

What is NOT covered by the Volunteer Pass?

The Volunteer Pass does not cover Expanded Amenity fees such as camping, boat launching, parking, special tours, special permits or ferries.

Also, some facilities and activities on Federal recreation lands (including those mentioned above) are managed by private concessionaires. The concessionaires charge for their services as any private company does and the Pass is not valid for their services.

If I have more than four people in my car, how many passes do I need?

  • One pass covers the vehicle at sites that charge "per vehicle".
  • At "per person" sites, the applicable fee will be charged for each additional person.

What if I have a motorcycle?

A Volunteer Pass permits entrance for one motorcycle.

My family is traveling in two vehicles; will one Volunteer Pass let all of us into the site?

No. Only the vehicle with the pass owner is covered. The second vehicle is subject to an entrance fee, or must have (or buy) a second pass.

Does the Volunteer Pass include any discounts at Cooperating Association bookstores, or at gift shops that are located in the Federal Recreation sites?

No. The Volunteer Pass does not provide discounts at Cooperating Association bookstores or on-site gift shops.

Does the Volunteer Pass provide any discounts on Expanded Amenity or Concessionaire (Concessioner) Fees?

No. The Volunteer Pass does not cover discounts on any Expanded Amenity or Concessionaire (Concessioner) Fees such as: camping, RV hook-ups, boat launching, backcountry permits, parking at Mount Rushmore, guided cave tours at Wind Cave National Park, or parking at some historic monuments or homes.

 

How will volunteer hours be recorded and tracked?

Work with your local Federal recreation site supervisor or Volunteer Coordinator/Manager to track your hours. Whatever format you use to track your time, be sure to keep copies for your records.

What type of volunteer activities/projects count towards my 250 Volunteer Pass hours?

All activities that have been pre-approved by the Volunteer Coordinator count toward the required 250 hours. Remember to get your record of volunteer hours signed by applicable Volunteer Coordinator(s).

Are campground hosts eligible to receive a Volunteer Pass?

Yes. Campground hosts are eligible to receive a Volunteer Pass once they have completed 250 hours of service.

Do I have to accrue the 250 hours in one year?

No. There is no specific timeframe in which volunteer hours must be accrued. Hours can be accrued over one, or several, calendar years.

Who will issue the Volunteer Pass?

The Federal Volunteer Coordinator/Manager who authorizes that a volunteer has accrued 250 hours.

What happens when a volunteer reaches the 250 hours?

Once the 250 hour requirement is reached, a pass is issued, and the volunteer's "pass hours"; are reset to zero and the count begins again.

If a person volunteers more than 250 hours in one year, do they receive additional passes?

No. If a volunteer works more than the 250 hours a year they still earn only one pass per year.

Who qualifies for the Volunteer Pass?

The Volunteer Pass will be issued free of charge to volunteers who accrue 250 volunteer hours.

Can I accrue hours on lands managed by more than one Federal agency, or am I only able to accrue them by volunteering with one agency?

You can accrue 250 hours by volunteering on Federal recreation lands managed by one or all of five agencies - NPS, BLM, USDA FS, FWS, and Reclamation. For example, you can volunteer 100 hours for each of the five agencies and earn a pass.

Where can I find out about volunteer opportunities on Federal recreation lands?

Which agencies participate in the Volunteer Pass program?

Volunteer hours may be accrued on lands managed by the following:

What is the Volunteer Pass?

A "Volunteer Pass" is an Annual Pass awarded to those individuals who volunteer 250 hours at one or more recreation sites managed by five Federal agencies as a way to say "thank you!"

Definitions

What do some of the terms used on the USGS Store mean?

Concessionaire / Concessioner: An individual or a private company that is under permit or contract to operate a business on Federal land (i.e., campground, parking lot, ice cream stand, boat launch).

Domicile: A person may have more than one house or live in multiple locations, but has only one domicile. A domicile is a permanent residence - the place where a person returns to even though s/he may temporarily reside elsewhere.

Entrance Fee: Fee charged to access lands managed by National Park Service or Fish and Wildlife Service.

Standard Amenity Fee: Fee charged for use of Bureau of Land Management, USDA Forest Service, and Reclamation sites that have a combination of basic amenities - picnic tables, trash receptacles, toilets, developed parking, interpretive signing, and security.

Expanded Amenity Fee: Fee charged for "the extras" that aren't basic entrance or standard amenity fees. Examples include: camp grounds, boat launches, and guided tours.

Special Recreation Permit Fee: Fee charged for special facilities and services such as rock climbing permits, commercial and vending use, off-road vehicle use, competitive and special events, organized group activities, and individual or group use of special areas.

Non-Commercial Vehicle: Passenger car, van, pick-up truck, converted school bus, recreational vehicle, etc., used to enter a Federal recreation site for non-commercial purposes.

Validation: Pass expiration date punched and pass signed by pass owner(s).

Pass Owner: Person or two person(s) whose signatures are on the back of the Pass.