Little Bighorn Going Cash Free – Will Other Parks Follow?
Little Bighorn Battlefield National Monument will soon no longer accept cash as payment for entrance fees. The National Park Service website reported that starting November 1, only electronic forms of payment (credit or debit cards, mobile payment systems like Apple Pay or Google Pay, etc.) will be accepted for entrance and permit fees.
It makes a certain amount of sense. In theory, this will allow park employees to spend less time dealing with cash and more time with other duties.
This got me wondering: Are other national parks or monuments going to start doing the same thing? Or have they already made the transition and no one really noticed?
To answer the question, I started poking around the NPS website. Sadly, I didn't find much concrete information. Yellowstone and Glacier are both extremely popular destinations, so those were the first I checked. Both have instituted online reservation systems for both admission and vehicle access with online payment. Big Hole National Battlefield near Wisdom and the Grant-Kohrs Ranch near Red Lodge don't have entrance fees. Same with Fort Union on the Montana - North Dakota border.
Turning to parks outside of Montana, Theodore Roosevelt National Park in North Dakota does have fees.
In South Dakota, Jewel Cave NP, Wind Cave NP, Badlands NP, and Mount Rushmore all have entrance fees.
To our south, Grand Teton NP, Fort Laramie, and Devil's Tower all have fees as well.
While I failed miserably in answering my original question of whether or not these parks still take cash, I did learn one thing. At the Recreation.gov website, you can reserve spots and pay for your permits and passes well before you hit the road next summer.