Permits & Passes

Boardwalk through the marsh - Matt Poole/USFWS.

Special Use Permits are required for a variety of refuge uses including group visits (e.g., birding tours, school field trips), research, and commercial filming. All permit requests must be made in writing (via email) at least two weeks ahead of the date of the proposed activity. A full description of the permit application process (pdf).

The refuge also issues a variety of very specific permits for such things as berry picking, shell fishing, and nighttime surf fishing. Contact the refuge directly for additional information about these different uses.

Passes:  America the Beautiful - The National Parks and Federal Recreational Lands series of passes may be obtained at the refuge.  The refuge also sells Federal Duck Stamps and an annual pass that can only be used at Parker River NWR ($20).  Before traveling to the refuge to obtain one of these passes, it is advisable to call the refuge to make sure that someone is on duty who can sell and/or issue passes.  That is not always the case.  The Federal passes can also be ordered online here:  

Here is the specific information about entrance fees and permits (with associated costs, if any), for calendar year 2021:


Pedestrians and bicyclists 




Daily Vehicle Pass
Valid for full day of purchase




Parker River NWR Annual Pass
Valid for one year




Federal Duck Stamp
Valid for one year, July 1 to June 30, at all National Wildlife Refuges (


Interagency Annual Pass
Valid at all federal recreation fee areas




Lifetime Senior Pass 
U.S. citizens or residents 62 yrs. or older

$80.00 (lifetime)



Annual Senior Pass
U.S. citizens or residents 62 yrs. or older




Annual Military Pass
Active Duty U.S. Military and dependents

US Military retirees with ID




Veteran and Gold Star Family Member Access     
Present documentation showing your eligibility at entrance station. 




Access Pass
Permanently disabled U.S. citizens or residents

Free (lifetime)



Every Kid Outdoors Pass
U.S. 4th graders or 10 year old homeschool students, valid at all federal recreation fee areas for one year: September 1 to August 31

Free -
Voucher required 



Commercial Buses
Valid for one day




20 passengers or less




21 passengers or more




Please note: Pets are prohibited, even in your vehicle. Passes are non-refundable and non-transferable.