It may be March, but the summer camping season is within view with reservations for Banff National Park sites now open on the Parks Canada website.
Some changes to the way bookings are done were put in place for this season, and we’ve got you covered on what you need to know when booking.
As of March 3, you’ll need to create a new account, even if you’ve used the Parks Canada system before.
There are two ways to sign in to the Parks Canada Reservation Service:
- Log in with GCKey
- Use one of the listed sign-in banking partners
If you have an active GCKey or have used any of the sign-in partners in the past, you can continue to use your preferred sign-in method. Otherwise, you can create a new GCKey.
On a location’s launch day, Parks Canada says 30 minutes prior to reservations opening, anyone navigating the reservation website, as well as new users joining the website, will be directed to a waiting page.
At exactly 8 am local time, anyone on that waiting page is randomly assigned a place in a queue. The order is determined randomly and is not based on how long users have been on the website up to that point
Users who arrive after 8 am will be placed at the back of the queue and when users reach their turn, they will be alerted via an on-screen message. At that point, they will have 30 minutes to proceed to the reservation website.
You will need a credit card to complete a reservation, and it will be charged at the moment of your reservation. Any refunds are processed to the original payment card used at the time of the reservation.
A non-refundable reservation fee is charged per reservation in addition to your camping or activity fees. In addition to the reservation, all visitors must possess a valid national park entry pass for the duration of their visit (where applicable).
Parks Canada says in most cases, you can hold up to five bookings in your shopping cart at any given time.
If all the bookings in your shopping cart are for the same park, they can be paid for in a single transaction.
If the bookings are for different parks, they will need to be paid for separately. While you complete each payment, your other bookings will be held temporarily in your shopping cart.
If you are new to camping, Parks Canada also has a handy rundown on what to know before staying the night.