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Roadtrips can be an incredible time of bonding or for self-reflecting. Stopping along the way at a favorite or new location may create an even more enjoyable and memorable trip. Both State and National Parks are great stopping spots on a road trip and if you have a disability, you may be able to visit the park(s) for free. 

State Parks

The perks of an accessible parking placard or plate extend beyond close parking spots–when available–and free street parking. In some states, an accessible parking placard can give a person free access to State Parks. 

In Washington State, “[t]he Department of Licensing issues Washington state disability permits and license plates, and holders of these are exempt from needing the Discover Pass on State Parks lands. Holders of these permits and plates will need the Discover Pass to access lands managed by WDFW and DNR.” This means people with disability permits and plates can access Washington Stare Parks for free.

In other states, however, this may not be the case. Go online or call ahead to check out the specific parks’/states’ policies regarding the disability access of the state park(s) in which you may want to visit.

National Parks

Accessible parking placards do not work the same for National Parks. However, do not fret, if you have a disability, National Parks can be free for you to visit, just another way. 

National Parks’ Access Pass allows people with disabilities to access National Parks at no cost. A lifetime Access Pass can be obtained for free in person at any National Park office or purchased online for $10. In both cases, documentation of any permanent disability must be provided to obtain the pass.

Roadtrips can be an incredible time of bonding or for self-reflecting. Stopping along the way at a favorite or new location may create an even more enjoyable and memorable trip. Both State and National Parks are great stopping spots on a road trip and if you have a disability, you may be able to visit the park(s) for free. 

State Parks

The perks of an accessible parking placard or plate extend beyond close parking spots–when available–and free street parking. In some states, an accessible parking placard can give a person free access to State Parks. 

In Washington State, “[t]he Department of Licensing issues Washington state disability permits and license plates, and holders of these are exempt from needing the Discover Pass on State Parks lands. Holders of these permits and plates will need the Discover Pass to access lands managed by WDFW and DNR.” This means people with disability permits and plates can access Washington Stare Parks for free.

In other states, however, this may not be the case. Go online or call ahead to check out the specific parks’/states’ policies regarding the disability access of the state park(s) in which you may want to visit.

National Parks

Accessible parking placards do not work the same for National Parks. However, do not fret, if you have a disability, National Parks can be free for you to visit, just another way. 

National Parks’ Access Pass allows people with disabilities to access National Parks at no cost. A lifetime Access Pass can be obtained for free in person at any National Park office or purchased online for $10. In both cases, documentation of any permanent disability must be provided to obtain the pass.

State and National Parks can be an incredible travel destination or when on a road trip, a great pit-stop along the way. Do your research to know which parks are accessible and also how to access them for free. 

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