First established on Veterans Day last year, the National Park Service offers Military, Veterans, and Gold Star Families free entrance to over 2,000 federal recreation areas, including national parks, wildlife refuges, and forests. The Interagency Military Pass Program’s purpose is to thank America’s veterans and the military for their support of our country and to encourage them to explore recreational opportunities on public lands and waters.
Participating agencies include the National Park Service, Bureau of Land Management, Bureau of Reclamation, US Fish and Wildlife Service, US Forest Service, and the US Army Corps of Engineers.
To gain free entrance to a national park, veterans can present either their Department of Defense Identification Card (non-expired CAC Card), Veteran Health Identification Card (VHIC), Veteran ID Card, or a Veterans designation on a state-issued U.S. driver’s license or identification card. Gold Star Families can show they are eligible by downloading and printing a voucher prior to their visit. This can be presented to park staff, exchanged for an annual Interagency Military Pass, or placed on the vehicle dashboard at unstaffed sites.
The waiver covers entrance fees at national parks and national wildlife refuges as well as standard amenity costs. For additional information on the free access program, visit the National Park Service’s website.