Passes, Tags, and Fees

The First State features a surprising variety of natural areas. Treat yourself to a day at a state park and enjoy beautiful ocean beaches, inland ponds, forests, rolling hills, or piedmont streams. While you are having fun, you are also helping to preserve the best of Delaware's natural heritage. The fees you pay stay within the parks to play an important role in protecting open space and wildlife, support recreational activities and nature education, and provide visitor assistance and safety.



Passes and Tags


Annual Passes

Annual Pass Fees

Delaware Registered Vehicle Out-of-state Registered Vehicle
Annual Pass $35 $70
Senior Pass
62 years of age and over. The senior adult must be present in the vehicle when entering the park.
$18 $35
Senior Lifetime Pass
Delaware residents who are 65 years of age and over. The senior adult must be present in the vehicle when entering the park. Replacement fee is $10 -- restrictions apply.
$65 N/A
Delaware Military Pass $17.50 N/A
Military Vehicle Pass N/A $35
Operation Iraqi Freedom or Operation Enduring Freedom Veteran Pass $0
Assistance Program Pass $10 N/A
Replacement Fee for Annual Passes
(restrictions apply)
$5 $5

Your annual pass sticker allows your vehicle and its occupants unlimited year-round entry to 14 state parks without having to stop to pay the daily entrance fees!

Annual passes are available


Annual passes can also be purchased:

Each year, annual passes go on sale on Black Friday (the Friday after Thanksgiving Day), and on the first Monday after Thanksgiving at any park office or at the central office in Dover. Annual passes are also available for purchase at Delaware Seashore State Park's Indian River Life-Saving Station, and from May 1 through Labor Day weekend at the Indian River Marina.

Passes for the next year always go on sale at the end of November; prior to that, we only sell passes for the current year. Your annual pass is only valid during the year printed on the pass, so if you buy a 2018 pass in October 2018, it will expire two months later, on December 31, 2018.

Your pass is not valid until you remove its protective cover and apply it by affixing the entire adhesive surface to the outside lower corner on the driver’s side of the windshield, ensuring the pass is entirely affixed to the surface. If your pass isn't properly glued to the windshield with its own adhesive, it can be confiscated and will not be replaced.

Also, your annual pass is not transferable; in other words, you can only use it one vehicle, and cannot transfer it from one vehicle to another.

Delaware State Parks charge a daily entrance fee during 9 months of the year, from March 1 to November 30, but once your annual pass is properly affixed to your vehicle, you can visit as many times as you want all year long without paying the entrance fee!

Your annual pass is valid for free entry to all Delaware State Park properties that charge a vehicle entry fee. Exceptions are the Brandywine Zoo at Wilmington State Parks and the ferry to Fort Delaware State Park. At Fenwick State Line Beach, the annual pass grants free entry, but a parking fee is charged.

Some of our parks are extremely popular, particularly during the summer or when a special event is held. When our parking areas are filled to capacity, entrance is not guaranteed. We especially recommend that, on summer weekends, you arrive early in the day or late in the afternoon to be assured of entry to our beach parks.

If your vehicle is sold or in an accident and you need a replacement pass, peel off all or a portion of your annual pass and bring it to a park office for your new pass. There is a $5 administrative fee for this service.

Vehicle registration is not necessary to purchase most passes.

America the Beautiful Access Pass

America the Beautiful Access passes are issued by the Department of the Interior. Passes are available to citizens or permanent residents of the United States who have been medically determined to be blind or permanently disabled and, as a result, are eligible to receive benefits under federal law. Delaware residents who hold an America the Beautiful Access Pass will be exempted from seasonal or daily entrance fees to Delaware State Parks.

The policy for family camping, effective January 1, 2003 for all campgrounds is as follows: Delaware Residents with an America the Beautiful Access Pass will receive a 20% discount from normal camping rates. Passport holders who are not Delaware residents will receive a 10% discount.

In Delaware, the America the Beautiful Access Pass can be obtained at Alapocas Run, Bellevue, Killens Pond, and Cape Henlopen State Parks, as well as at Bombay Hook and Prime Hook National Wildlife Refuges.

Purchase an Annual Pass

Annual Pass Assistance Program

The Division of Parks and Recreation and the Department of Health and Social Services have teamed up to create opportunities for every person and family in Delaware to enjoy their state parks. A park entrance fee is charged daily from March 1 through November 30. If you currently receive assistance from a State Service Center, you may be eligible to purchase one annual state park pass for $10. This pass, which is placed on your vehicle’s windshield, allows the vehicle and up to six occupants unlimited entry to the parks during the fee season.*

Those receiving any of the following types of assistance are eligible for this program:

  • Public Assistance
  • General Assistance
  • Medicaid
  • Supplemental Social Security Income
  • SNAP (Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program)
  • WIC
  • Child Care Assistance Program

Bring your completed, signed application, vehicle registration and driver's license to any state park office. Call  (302) 739-9220, or visit any state park office for more information about this special program.

*Entry fees for the Brandywine Zoo, Fort Delaware State Park and State Line Beach are not included in this program.

Beach Driving

Because driving on the beach can cause serious damage to vegetation and wildlife and contributes to shore erosion, Delaware State Parks limits vehicles on the beach to designated surf fishing areas only, for the sole purpose of actively engaging in fishing. To use these areas, you must have a valid surf fishing vehicle permit and be actively engaged in surf fishing at all times while on the beach. To keep our beaches clean and safe for wildlife and park visitors, other recreational beach driving is not allowed.

Corporate and Group Pass

Military Passes

We offer three different types of annual pass discounts: the Delaware Military Pass, the Out-of-State Military Vehicle Pass, and the Veterans of Southwest Asia Military Pass.

Delaware Military Passes are sold only at park offices and at the offices of the Department of Natural Resources and Environmental Control at 89 King’s Highway in Dover. The Operation Iraqi Freedom/Operation Enduring Freedom pass is issued only at our 89 King's Highway location, by our Office of Business Services. Discounted military passes are not available for online purchase or at retail locations.

The Delaware legislature’s House Bill 235, amended by Senate Amendment No. 1, created the Delaware Military Pass. It was signed into law July 5, 2012 and is found in Title 7 §4701(a)(5)(E). This legislation authorizes the Delaware Division of Parks and Recreation to reduce the cost of an annual pass by 50% for military members who are permanent residents of the State of Delaware.

You may purchase a Delaware Military Pass if you are:

  1. a permanent resident of the state of Delaware and
  2. one of the following:
  • An active-duty military member serving honorably in the Armed Forces of the United States or in the Delaware National Guard
  • A veteran who was honorably discharged
  • A military retiree who served honorably for 20 or more years

When you come in to purchase your pass, you will need to present documents that confirm your military status, your Delaware residency, and your ownership of the vehicle on which you will affix your pass.

To confirm your military status, bring:

  • Your Military ID if you are an active duty military member or a military retiree, or
  • Your DD214 discharge paper if you are a veteran

To confirm your Delaware residency, bring:

  • Your Delaware driver’s license

To confirm ownership of the vehicle on which you will place your pass, bring:

  • The official vehicle registration document for the vehicle on which you intend to place your pass. This vehicle must be registered in Delaware in your name.

Family members are not eligible to purchase the pass. The law stipulates that only military personnel, retirees and veterans may purchase the Delaware Military Pass.

You may purchase one Delaware Military Pass for each vehicle you own, provided the vehicle is registered in the state of Delaware in your name, and the address on the Delaware vehicle registration is the same as on your driver’s license.

If you are on active duty in Delaware but your vehicle registration or driver’s license is from another state, you’re not eligible for the Delaware Military Pass. However, you are eligible for an out-of-state Military Vehicle Pass. At half the cost of the civilian out-of-state vehicle pass, it represents substantial savings for military personnel stationed here.

In 2007, the Delaware Legislature authorized the Delaware Division of Parks and Recreation to offer a free pass to veterans of Operation Iraqi Freedom or Operation Enduring Freedom. To qualify, you must be a resident of the state of Delaware and have served honorably for 90 or more consecutive days on active duty in the armed forces of the United States, including service as member of the Delaware National Guard, in military actions in Southwest Asia associated with Operation Iraqi Freedom or Operation Enduring Freedom. This pass is available for the first 12 months following the date the resident was honorably discharged or removed from active status. This pass is issued only at our 89 King's Highway location in Dover, by our Office of Business Services. For more information, download the application form.

Surf Fishing Fee Information

The purchase of a surf fishing permit enables individuals to drive onto the beach for a great day of fishing. You will receive a license plate and a decal. The decal also enables the vehicle to gain entrance into the other state parks charging a daily entrance fee. Permits are in effect from January 1 through December 31. Participants should acquaint themselves with the special regulations for this sport.

Surf Fishing Vehicle Permit Rates

Resident Non-Resident
Registered Vehicle $80 per year $160 per year
Senior age 62 and over $70 per year $140 per year
Delaware Firefighter/EMT --
Contact the president of your fire company or the Delaware Volunteer Firefighters Association for information and an application form.
$0
Replacement Permit
(restrictions apply)
$10

Annual Pass + Surf Tag Retailers

Annual pass stickers allow your vehicle and its occupants to enter most state parks without paying the daily entrance fees (except for the Brandywine Zoo, Fenwick State Line Beach and Fort Delaware State Park). Annual passes are not transferable; vehicle registration is not necessary to purchase a pass.

Purchase your Annual Pass or Surf Tag at one of these Retailers

New Castle County

  • Cabela's
     (302) 266-2300
    1100 Christiana Mall #1410, Newark, DE 19702
    Annual Passes and Surf-Fishing Vehicle Permits
  • Eastern Marine
     (302) 737-6603
    931 S Chapel Street, Newark, DE 19713
    Annual Passes and Surf-Fishing Vehicle Permits

Kent County

  • Carlisle’s Marine, Inc.
    (302) 389-0100
    49 Artisan Drive, Smyrna, DE. 19977
    Annual Passes and Surf-Fishing Vehicle Permits
  • Military personnel only:
    Dover Air Force Base Outdoor Recreation
    (302) 677-5553
    475 Chevron Avenue
    Dover AFB , DE 19902
    Annual Passes and Surf-Fishing Vehicle Permits

Sussex County

  • Sam’s Fishing & Tackle
    (302) 424-0197
    14260 Teatown Road, Greenwood, DE. 19950
    Annual Passes and Surf-Fishing Vehicle Permits
  • That Place
    (302) 934-9260
    30618 Millsboro Highway
    Millsboro, DE 19966
    Annual Passes and Surf-Fishing Vehicle Permits
  • Bethany-Fenwick Area Chamber of Commerce
    (302) 539-2100
    36913 Coastal Highway
    Fenwick Island, DE 19944


Daily Park Entry Fees


Daily Entry Fee

A park entrance fee is charged daily from March 1 to November 30. This fee allows your vehicle and its passengers to enter any Delaware State Park on the date of purchase, except for Fort Delaware, Fenwick State Line Beach and the Brandywine Zoo. Once in the park, visitors may enjoy such activities as swimming, birdwatching, hiking, picnicking, or simply relaxing.

Note: Vehicles designed to carry 16 passengers or more will be charged the bus fee.

Daily Entry Fees

Delaware Registered Vehicle Out-of-State Registered Vehicle
Inland Parks $4 per day $8 per day
Ocean Parks $5 per day $10 per day
Delaware Firefighter/EMT --
Contact the president of your fire company or the Delaware Volunteer Firefighters Association for information and an application form.
$0
Replacement Permit
(restrictions apply)
$10

About Beach Driving

Purchase an Annual Pass

Daily Pass Booklet

Each pass grants the passengers in the vehicle one day's admission to the park. The pass cannot be used for vehicles designed to carry 16 or more passengers.

Daily pass booklets may be purchased at any park office; online sales are not available.

Daily Pass Booklet

Delaware Registered Vehicle Out-of-State Registered Vehicle
Inland Parks* $20 (6 passes) $20 (3 passes)
Ocean Parks** $25 (6 passes) $25 (3 passes)

*Inland Parks: Bellevue, Brandywine Creek, Fenwick Island, Fox Point, Holts Landing, Killens Pond, Lums Pond, Trap Pond, White Clay Creek State Parks

**Ocean Parks: Cape Henlopen and Delaware Seashore State Parks, Beach Plum Island, Indian River Marina

About Beach Driving

Purchase an Annual Pass

Bus Entry Fees

Vehicles designed to carry 16 to 30 passengers will pay a daily entrance fee of $17 if registered in the state of Delaware, and $34 if registered out-of-state. Vehicles designed to carry more than 30 passengers will pay a daily entrance fee of $34 with in-state registration, and $68 with out-of-state registration. School groups, kindergarten through 12th grade, visiting the parks through the end of the school year (by June 15), will be exempt from the daily entrance fee. To qualify, school groups are required to notify the park they intend to visit no later than five working days prior to their visit, or they may be charged the bus fee.

Bus Entry Fees

Delaware Registered Vehicle Out-of-State Registered Vehicle
16 to 30 Passengers $17 $34
30 or More Passengers $34 $68
School Groups (K-12) during school year (through June 15) Exempt* Exempt*

* To qualify, school groups are required to notify the park they intend to visit no later than five working days prior to their visit, or they may be charged the bus fee.

Purchase an Annual Pass



Miscellaneous Charges


Other Fees

Recreation Fees

RV Dump Fee $10
Recreational Equipment Bag $25, with $50 deposit or license

Recreational Equipment Bag:

Horseshoe, volleyball, and softball equipment is available for a fee of $25 at Bellevue, Brandywine Creek, Fox Point, Lums Pond, Trap Pond and Killens Pond State Parks. Individuals renting equipment must be a least 18 years of age, present a valid driver's license as proof, and may leave either the driver's license or $50 as a deposit.

Special Use Permits

Administrative Fee* $100
Administrative Staff $50 after 1st hour
Enforcement Staff $65
Maintenance Staff $25
Part-Time Staff $15
Equipment Fee $50 per hour plus labor
Rentals (Contracted Equipment) At cost plus 10%

*Fee is based on complexity of event and number of participants.