Updated: June 22, 2020 03:08 PM
Created: June 22, 2020 03:05 PM
The Minnesota Department of Natural Resources (DNR) announced Monday that its reservation window will be shortened this year.
A news release states reservations made for camping and lodging will be reduced to 120 days (four months). Previously, customers could reserve campsites, cabins, yurts, tipis and lodging facilities up to one year in advance.
The DNR says the change will take effect on July 1.
"While the agency originally planned to make the change in the fall of 2020, operational uncertainties with the COVID-19 pandemic and associated changes to cleaning protocols necessitate making the change sooner," the DNR stated in a release.
The policy change is based on customer survey results, data analysis and a desire to improve fairness and equity in the reservation process. DNR surveys indicated that most visitors plan their overnight visits to parks and recreation areas a few months before they go and that many could not plan an entire year in advance.
"State Parks and Recreation Areas belong to all Minnesotans, so everyone should have equitable access to facilities and campgrounds," said DNR Commissioner Sarah Strommen. "As our lives have become busier, it's more difficult for people to plan vacations a whole year in advance. Shortening the reservation window will better accommodate visitors' busy schedules and allow more people to enjoy the most desirable campsites and lodging."
All reservations made before July 1, 2020, will be honored, even if they are for a date beyond the new 120-day reservation window. However, if a customer needs to change a reservation, a rebooking will only be possible within the new 120-day window.
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