The Ontario government is making it easier and more affordable for families to spend time in provincial parks.
The province announced that it’s reducing the price of seasonal day-use vehicle permits by up to 36% and increasing the number of day-use vehicle permits that can be borrowed from public libraries.
“Getting outdoors and spending time in nature can have a profound positive impact on our health and well-being, and this has become even more evident during COVID-19,” said Jeff Yurek, Minister of the Environment, Conservation and Parks, in a release.
“Cost should not be a barrier to enjoying these important benefits, which is why we are helping to make Ontario Parks more affordable and accessible to all.”
The new, lower-priced Ontario Parks seasonal day-use vehicle permits, which are available online now, drop the price of the 2021 annual permit from $155 to $99. The permit covers visits from January 1 to December 31, 2021.
The 2021 summer permit, which is valid from April 1 to November 30, 2021, will now cost $75 instead of $111, as will the 2020-21 winter permit that covers visits from December 1, 2020, until March 31, 2021.
The 2021-22 winter permit will be reduced to $60. It covers December 1, 2021, to March 31, 2022.
The Ontario Parks Library Day-Use Vehicle Permit Lending Program, which is already available for free at some branches, will be expanded to more libraries across the province.
The program allows library users to borrow a day-use vehicle permit, which includes free entry to Ontario Parks and coupons for a discount on a future permit.
The province also announced a new commercial day-use vehicle permit for tourism businesses, including hotels and resorts, to lend their guests.
“Ontario is committed to protecting natural areas, supporting conservation efforts, and promoting the importance of healthy, natural spaces for future generations to use and enjoy,” the release says.