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Oregon state parks will charge out-of-state visitors 25% more for RV campsites

(Update: Adding video, comments from Oregon State Parks spokesman, Tumalo park visitor)

TUMALO, Ore. (KTVZ) --Visitors from out of state who rent an RV campsite at an Oregon state park soon will have to pay 25% more than an Oregon resident renting the same campsite.

Oregonians currently pay a licensing fee to register recreational vehicles with the DMV. Those fees help maintain Oregon state parks.

Chris Havel, Oregon State Parks spokesman, said Friday adding the surcharge to out-of-state visitors who come with recreational vehicles and stay at campsites is meant to have them help contribute to maintaining state parks as well.

State park attendance has steadily increased in the past few years.

"In the last five years, from 2014 to 2019, we were breaking records every single year," said Havel.

He said the surcharge will help maintain the features that attract people to state park campsites.

"We provide power, water, and sewer connections in a site because we know that's what people want from an Oregon state park experience," Havel said.

Debbie Byes, a Colorado resident camping at Tumalo State Park Friday afternoon, said she often visits Oregon. She said she always has a pleasant experience when visiting and understands why the surcharge is needed.

"I fully support it. We get to come here and enjoy the beauty of Oregon, and if that costs a little more and helps in any way for the outdoor community, we're more than happy to pay that," Byes said.

The Oregon Parks and Recreation Department has formed a committee to discuss and finalize the RV campsite changes, under the terms of Oregon Senate Bill 794, adopted by lawmakers earlier this year.

Guidelines for the changes are expected to be announced next month and to take effect in early 2022.

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Leslie Cano

Leslie Cano is a multimedia journalist for NewsChannel 21. Learn more about Leslie here.



  1. Too bad none of you people will know the difference. Acting like you’re gonna go to a state park next season and say, “Gosh, look what all this visitor RV tax money has done to improve our parks.” Also, the out of state “visitors” will 100% ruin more of the state than their tax money can pay back. That is a fact.

    1. Oh, like all them dorks that go to my fav BLM shootin’ place and leave couches and washin’ machines and all their brass/shells laying all over the place are so much better than some mythical ‘visitor’ from out of state ruining beautiful Oregon. No. And pick up your damn brass.

      1. I actually pick up my brass…except for .22s. And I have a love/hate relationship with shotgunners. The empty plastic shotshells are everywhere, but they make great targets.

      2. It would be great if everyone had a personal rule to take out more than they take in. I make it a habit to pick up brass before I shoot, then pick up at least as much as I shoot after.

  2. They always say the funds will do this and the funds will do that to bad we never see anything from all those funds it’s just another way for the state to tax and take. And they think people believe what they say. What a joke.

  3. This is wrong. We don’t need surcharges to put barriers between people from one state or another. Having worked at The Cove one Summer, part of it in the toll booth, I can guarantee that visitors will make life unpleasant for staff. All this to add a few thousand dollars (information missing from the article) to the Park’s multi-million dollar budget.

  4. Ban out of state hunters! Since there is no parking at Costco due to the out of state rejects have a tow company immediately tow any California plate car or truck with a 500$ fine.

  5. Then give “Locals” with ID a 25% discount. It worked well in Hawaii when my husband was in the military. Just showed local ID and you got discount at most restaurants, etc.

  6. Good for them. 20 years ago, when I bought my little trailer, I could camp at any of our parks easily. It was great. Now, unless you’re looking at LEAST 6 months in advance, you can’t get a space to save your life. It’s pretty crazy trying to book a spot. You can’t even drive to a first come first serve campground after work on a Friday. It will be full and you won’t get in. Camping in Central Oregon isn’t what it used to be.

  7. Use the surcharge to build a wall to keep non-Oregonians out of Oregon. Out of staters are a threat to our way of life, just like those “not from around here” Oregon Trail wagon train migrants that wrecked Oregon in the first place.

  8. 25% almost seems reasonable.. , but does it take into account the difference between Oregon State license/Use taxes and property taxes, etc…?

    It wouldn’t be too cool to make out of State campers pay for Oregon/local obligations… We don’t want to be double taxed, do we?

    …most States have had a non-resident fee; on outdoor activities for a long time, such as: hunting and fishing.. This type of fee structure, I can get on board with!

    Welcome to the pay to play, Public Lands, expense funding.. and to think that oil/gas used to pay.. for the maintenance, taxes, and fees…

  9. Actually we do need a surcharge. And I am sorry, also a slow down of out of state visitors by the large numbers that we are having. It is consuming alot of resources that we were unprepared for. We personally have been unable to camp for two years…in a campground. We’ve been unable to find available RV sites. We’ve been unable to find a motel on weekends or in an emergency in Oregon.

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