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How to Get Your Free National Park Pass for People with Disabilities

Posted by on June 18, 2013 - 31 Comments

Did you come here from google?  Take a moment to read this and explore the rest of!

The Access Pass gives people with disabilities lifetime free entry to any of the over 2,000 Federal park and recreation sites.

Glacier National Park. Photo by eleephotography

Glacier National Park. Photo by eleephotography

Whether you’re a nature enthusiast or looking for a place to exercise, the Access Pass is a great way to enjoy America the beautiful. Use it at over 2,000 Federal recreation sites across America, including National Forest lands, National Wildlife Refuges and National Parks. Bring your friends while at it, because the Access Pass also grants up to three other adults (where per-person fees are usually charged), or anyone else traveling with you in a non-commercial vehicle (where per-vehicle fees are usually charged), free entry.

How to Get an Access Pass

  • Visit any federal recreation site that charges a fee.Be sure to bring your ID that proves you are a U.S. Citizen or permanent resident, and documentation from a licensed physician, a Federal agency, or a State agency, that shows you have a permanent disability. The pass is free and there are no processing fees.To be safe, call ahead of time to make sure they have passes available.  Note that showing a State motor vehicle department disability sticker, or a hang tag is not acceptable proof of a permanent disability.


  • Apply through the Mail. Complete this application form for the Access Pass and mail it along with photocopy proof that you are a U.S. Citizen or permanent resident, and documentation of your disability. Note that applying through the mail will cost you a $10 processing fee.

Where to get an Access Pass

Look at this .pdf list of federal recreation sites where Access Passes should be available, listed by state. The 9 Illinois listings may be found on page 10.

Additional Perks of an Access Pass

On top of granting free entry, some sites also offer Access Pass holders a discount on expanded fees, such as camping, swimming, boat launching and guided tours.


Want more information? Visit the Access Pass FAQ page.
Have you used the Access Pass? How did you enjoy your experience at the park? Share your experience below.
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Daniel M. Cyr says:
Jul 15, 2013

I am 60 yrs old and disabled with a c-spine fusion and shoulder surgery and torn miniscus in both knees and three stents. do i qualify for a pass to all parks . either free or at a reduced rate. thanks. i can walk but not always easy.

daily mortgage rates says:
Oct 12, 2013

Hello it’s me, I am also visiting this website on a regular basis, this web page is
really pleasant and the users are in fact sharing good thoughts.

Your mode of telling the whole thijg in this
post is truly good, all be able to without difficulty understand
it, Thanks a lot.

Diane White says:
Oct 18, 2013

My husband has a Pace maker/defibillator, would that qualify for an access pass?

ralph kessler says:
Feb 24, 2014

Last year at Denali , i purchased a life pass to the park service facilities. Well I am returning and cant seem to get my hahds on my pass do I have any recourse.

Philister Sidigu says:
Feb 25, 2014

Hi Ralph,

Please contact the Denali National Park office directly. Here’s the office number: 907-683-9532

Randall Woolwine says:
Apr 12, 2014

Now that I’m old and disabled, daughter has grown up and has her own kids, it’s time for me to travel back and forth across the country. The best part is the ex asked for a divorce 15 years ago, soI don’t have to drag a nagging ole woman around with me to ruin the trip.

Tamara DiDonato says:
Jul 06, 2014

I cannot retrieve the application for disability. Can you send me another link?

michael stinnett says:
Jun 24, 2016

Ive lost my lifetime vetrans park do i get another.thnks

Charles V Ford says:
Jun 24, 2016

A week ago I lost my Senior pass in California while visiting Yosemite. How can I replace it?

Robert Spencer says:
Jul 14, 2016

I have a senior citizen lifetime pass. Is this still valid?

Patrick Gorman says:
Jul 18, 2016

68 yrs old, disabled vet. Could you mail me an application to get a pass? Either E-Mail it to me or send to home:
4109 Lakeshore rd.
Hamburg, NY 14075

Tamara Moyer says:
Jul 26, 2016

Does anyone know if t1 diabetes is considered a disability in order to get an America the beautiful access pass

Marlin Evans says:
Aug 25, 2016

I once had a national disability access pass, but I misplaced it many years ago. I had polio 66 years ago in September of 1950 and have used a wheelchair every day since. Do you have records that go back 40 or 50 years ago?

Joyce Barrett says:
Aug 25, 2016

I have a knee replacement. Does that qualify me for a pass ?

Frances says:
Aug 28, 2016

Do you accept the Senior Pass for national Parks?

Stewart Bogart says:
Aug 29, 2016

I’m a viet nam vet. I have a VA service connected disability card, is this good to get a lifetime pass. can I go to any national park to get this pass, or do I have to fill out a app. and mail it in.

data domain says:
Sep 01, 2016

I am 70 years old,was on disability until I turned I think 65,then they put me on social security.not sure if they still have me as disabled.but do now also have COPD. Planning a trip to Mount Rushmore at the end of Sept. What do I need for
The free pass? Email address is my husband.and he is also disabled but not going on trip. Thanking you in advance for info.

Charles Hess says:
Sep 10, 2016

I got a senior pass about 35 plus years ago, I cannot find it can, I or how do I get a replacement.

Maxine Furedy says:
Nov 19, 2016

I’m 75 .diabetic with bad knees.
My husband is 83 with cancer.
Is there a way to buy a golden lifetime pass that is good at all parks.
Was at the Wright brothers memorial park and they asked if we wanted one. .At the time we should have got it
.They said 10 may be more now.How do we get one?

Diane Clifford says:
Nov 19, 2016

Hello, everyone!I’m so glad I found this site! I’m 70 years old now,paralyzed left arm and leg fro m a stroke in 2009.l’ m very anxious to get out in the woods again.I’m so happy to find out about the freewheel.THAT could change my whole life. My spouse and I drooled over Ken Burns’ s film Our National Parks:America’s Best idea, recently on public Tv.
. Our plan is to revisit them all. I can’t use my left arm and must depend on being pushed. My spouse is truly a gift from God, this device could. ease his trouble very much. I enjoyed all your stories and remarks. I want to come back here soon. Thanks for a warm space.

Robert Bologna says:
Jan 12, 2017

I received a free pass while visiting the bad lands and other national parks on a trip to South Dakota ..I have been handicapped for 21 yrs . my wallet was stolen withal my I D including my Nat Parks pass how do I get a replacement? .

fern henderson says:
Jul 15, 2017

I had a national pass and park pass but I lost my wallet that my pass was in. I am 65 years old and I am disable and I had my back fused so am able to walk but not for a long ways. I was wondering how I am able to get another free pass again?

Victoria says:
Aug 15, 2017

I applied two times for an Access Pass through the mail. My checks were never cashed and when I called no one knew anything about my application or could locate it.

Helen King says:
Aug 22, 2017

How do I receive national parks pass I am disabled 8 going on 9 years

Christy says:
Nov 28, 2017

I’m not seeing the “Access Pass” on the site. I see the Annual pass. Is the free pass for individuals with disabilities no longer annoffered thing?

Marble Mountain Ranch says:
Mar 16, 2018

Thank you for posting this very precious info, this post is very beneficial for our nature enthusiasts whos having difficulties because of their disabilities. Great article.

Vivian E Stewart says:
Apr 18, 2018

Happy to find out about the National Parks senior pass. Thanks

Jessie Magbee says:
Jul 14, 2018

I received a pass in 2001 at the Grand Canyon Park. Carried it in purse until I finally lost it, I was disabled in wheelchair then and still am. Would I be able to get a copy or just go buy one?

Rhonda Alexander says:
Jan 30, 2019

I can’t find my senior disabled national park pass. I have the number can I get a replacement with the number? Please let me know. Thank you

Travel tips and ideas says:
Mar 25, 2021

Many thanks for this post. I have shared it on my Twitter account.
Hopefully, a number of my friends and family will pay
you a visit …. not personally 🙂

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