CHANGING FEES TO DRIVE INVESTMENT IN KAKADU AND ULURU

Submitted: Wednesday, Dec 10, 2014 at 11:56
ThreadID: 110379 Views:3046 Replies:10 FollowUps:49
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From 1 April 2016 international and interstate visitors to Kakadu National Park will be asked to
make a greater contribution to the development and upkeep of visitor facilities and
experiences.
There will be a change in approach to fee structures and charges that include differential wet
and dry season rates.
"We’ll be reinvesting the extra revenue directly back into the park, so we can keep rolling out
fresh facilities and experiences, and keep these beautiful landscapes healthy," said the
Director of National Parks, Sally Barnes.
“Currently visitors to Kakadu are heavily subsided. If they don’t make a larger contribution we
could see the park’s World Heritage values and visitor facilities decline. In the long run this
would have a negative impact on the competitiveness of Kakadu National Park as a
destination of choice on the world stage.”
The Kakadu Board of Management and its Tourism Consultative Committee have been
discussing the new approach with tourism operators and industry representatives for over two
years.
"The tourism industry in and around Kakadu wants to make sure the quality of the visitor
experience is world class and recognises this will only come with sensible pricing and
investment,” said Rick Murray, Chair of the Kakadu Tourism Consultative Committee and
Kakadu Board member.
“The Kakadu Tourism Consultative Committee recommended the seasonal approach to the
Board and Parks Australia and congratulates them on making the decision to change the
current approach.
“Even though the new arrangements don’t apply until 1 April 2016 we are communicating the
changes now to give the tourism industry plenty of time to adjust and reflect the new pricing in
their marketing materials.”
Parks Australia is making a $5 million investment in park infrastructure this and next financial
year, with continued investment to follow.
“By the time 2016 rolls around, we’ll have made significant improvements to roads, amenities,
water infrastructure and our signs. There will be a lot happening in this space,” said Ms
Barnes.
“We have big plans for Kakadu, with our new draft management plan setting the explicit goal
of increasing visitation and improving access to sites. We want to upgrade facilities, get
popular attractions open earlier and open up new walks and experiences. That all takes
money, and these fee changes will help us deliver – for visitors and locals alike.”
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Kakadu will remain free for Territorians, all year round.
For interstate and international visitors, Kakadu will introduce a strategic new fee structure,
with lower fees in the wet season to encourage more visitors and higher fees in the dry season
when more attractions are open and free ranger tours are on offer.
From 1 April 2016, a wet season pass to Kakadu will cost $25 per adult, and in the dry season
the cost will be $40. Both passes last for seven days, with the option to renew for another
seven, free of charge, for those who find they want to stay longer.
There will be a 10 per cent discount for all tickets bought online.
Kakadu will offer a new 25 per cent discount for pensioners, seniors, disabled people and their
carers.
In line with many national attractions, Kakadu will introduce fees for children (aged 5-15) at
half the adult rate. A new family pass will be created, at a flat rate for couples with two or more
children ($65 in the wet season, $100 in the dry). It will save families around 15 per cent, with
higher savings for those with more than two children.
“So the Kakadu adult pass can work out to only about $1.70 per day in the wet season. That’s
far less than the price of a coffee. Spending just one day at somewhere like Stonehenge in the
UK will set you back A$26. Serengeti National Park in Africa will cost you around $72 for a
24-hour pass. Machu Picchu in Peru costs a minimum of $51. More locally, a visit to one of
Australia’s zoos can cost anywhere from $60 to around $180 for a family per day. Kakadu
remains a pretty good deal for visitors,” Ms Barnes said.
“By offering lower wet season prices, we hope to entice more visitors in Kakadu’s spectacular
shoulder seasons, offering a longer season for tour operators and a more even flow of
business.”
Uluru-Kata Tjuta National Park will also introduce a few fee changes, as recommended by the
Uluru Board of Management and its Tourism Consultative Committee.
An adult park pass to Uluru will remain unchanged at $25 per head, but fees will be introduced
for children (aged 5-15) at $12.50, half the adult rate.
A new family pass costing $65 will also be introduced. For two adults and two children, this
represents a discount on the purchase of individual tickets of around 15 per cent. This will be
the first change to Uluru’s fees since 2004, 10 years ago.
“Central Australia has seen a resurgence in tourism interest over the last 12 to 18 months and
now is the time to re-invest revenue raised in refreshed and new infrastructure and activities,”
said John King, Chair of the Uluru Tourism Consultative Committee and Board member.
School groups will remain free in both Kakadu and Uluru. Schools will soon be able to book an
education ranger to give a presentation for a small fee – a new education option that will apply
from 1 July 2015.

What will change from 1 April 2016?

NT residents - Kakadu will remain free for Territorians, all year round.
Adults – An adult park pass will be cheaper in the wet season to encourage more visitors, and the cost will be higher in the dry season when more attractions are open and free ranger tours are on offer.
o In the wet season (November to March), an adult pass will cost $25.
o In the dry season (April to October), an adult pass will cost $40.

Online discount - A discount of 10 per cent will be introduced for anyone buying their ticket online.

Pensioner discount - A discount will be introduced for seniors, pensioners, disabled pensioners and their carers. It will offer a saving of around 25 per cent on the price of an adult ticket.
o A pensioner pass will cost $19 in the wet season (November to March) and $30 in the dry season (April to October).

Children - Children 5-15 years will pay half the adult entry fee. This will bring Kakadu into line with most other attractions around Australia. Children four years old and younger will remain free.
o In the wet season (November to March), a child pass will cost $12.50.
o In the dry season (April to October), a child pass will cost $20.

Family pass - A new family pass will be introduced, which provides a discount for larger families.
o A family pass will cost $65 in the wet season (November to March) and $100 in the dry season (April to October).
o It will cover two adults and two or more children. This represents a discount of around 15 per cent, with additional children included at no extra cost.

School groups - Children travelling in school groups will remain free, all year round. New education presentations will be available at a small cost, for groups who would like a ranger-guided activity.

Length of stay - Passes will be valid for seven days (rather than the current 14 days), but can be extended for another seven days at no charge if required. This better reflects the usual length of stay.

Camping - Camping fees will increase slightly (the first increase since 2009).
o Camping fees for adults will increase (per night) from $5 to $6 at unmanaged campgrounds (with drop toilets) and from $10 to $15 at managed campgrounds (hot showers and toilets).
o Children (5-15 years) will pay half the adult price - $3 per night for unmanaged campgrounds and $7.50 per night for managed campgrounds. Children four and under remain free.
o A new family camping rate will be introduced, at $15 for unmanaged campgrounds and $38 for managed campgrounds (per night). This covers two adults and two or more children, offering around a 15 per cent discount.
o Remote campgrounds remain free (no toilet facilities).
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Reply By: Steve in Kakadu - Wednesday, Dec 10, 2014 at 12:15

Wednesday, Dec 10, 2014 at 12:15
I should let people here know, that I am a representive of the Kakadu Tourism Consultative committee and also own a tour company in the park.

I was part of the consultation proses and fully endorse these changes.
AnswerID: 542785

Follow Up By: steved58 - Wednesday, Dec 10, 2014 at 12:44

Wednesday, Dec 10, 2014 at 12:44
It was allready kakadont now its kakadont more ha ha!!!
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Follow Up By: Member - mechpete - Wednesday, Dec 10, 2014 at 14:39

Wednesday, Dec 10, 2014 at 14:39
I think the tour operators should pay a big entry fee ,
an the locals should pay a small fee , not fair on the tourists
mechpete
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Follow Up By: Steve in Kakadu - Wednesday, Dec 10, 2014 at 15:11

Wednesday, Dec 10, 2014 at 15:11
Mechpete I have 3 permits to operate in the park, 2 are Licence that include per person per visit cost to me, I wont disclose the permit/ licence fees per year, but We operators don't get them for nothing plus we have to maintain high levels of accreditation to have those licences that is not cheap either.
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Follow Up By: Peter_n_Margaret - Saturday, Dec 13, 2014 at 10:08

Saturday, Dec 13, 2014 at 10:08
"I wont disclose the permit/ licence fees per year"
Why?
The fee structure should be on the public record.

Cheers,
Peter
OKA196 Motorhome
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Reply By: Pradobob - Wednesday, Dec 10, 2014 at 13:26

Wednesday, Dec 10, 2014 at 13:26
Thanks Steve.
We enjoyed our time in Kakadu immensely when we were there for two weeks in 2011. The price rise won't turn me off as it still represents great value in such a great part of the world.
I can't speak highly enough of the places we saw eg Yellow Waters, Ubirr etc.
Next year when we return, we hope to go on a tour of Arnhem Land. Any recommendations?
Cheers,
Bob
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Follow Up By: Steve in Kakadu - Wednesday, Dec 10, 2014 at 15:36

Wednesday, Dec 10, 2014 at 15:36
Try Lords Safaris they do a great one day tour to Arnhemland.
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Reply By: Member - John - Wednesday, Dec 10, 2014 at 13:38

Wednesday, Dec 10, 2014 at 13:38
Steve, thanks for the heads up. It really is not that much of an increase, quiet cheap actually.

I first visited Kakadu many years ago and before going was told, "Kakadon't", but went to make up my own mind, loved the place and still do. Visited once again just a few months ago...........

The only problem with better facilities is more visitors, which requires better and more facilities which attracts more visitors, good for your business, bad for those that like less crowded places, lol.
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Follow Up By: Steve in Kakadu - Wednesday, Dec 10, 2014 at 19:45

Wednesday, Dec 10, 2014 at 19:45
Hi John in comparison to other parks around the country or for that matter around the world, it is cheap, and much of the feed back I have had today reflects that.
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Follow Up By: Zippo - Thursday, Dec 11, 2014 at 12:57

Thursday, Dec 11, 2014 at 12:57
Steve, I can't agree with that claim. In the USA last year the national parks pass (12 month validity) was $US80-ish for non-US-citizens and about $15 for US cits. That's ALL national parks, and it covers all vehicle occupants with the card-holder.
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Follow Up By: Steve in Kakadu - Thursday, Dec 11, 2014 at 13:13

Thursday, Dec 11, 2014 at 13:13
Hi Zippo, we went to the kroller muller museum in Arnhem Holland in 2010 this museum is in Holland's only national park, it is about a quarter the size of Jabiru we paid $75 euro each, there are many other comparisons and I could go on but I wont.

My point was the new entry fees are not outrages. :-)
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Reply By: Member - John - Wednesday, Dec 10, 2014 at 13:41

Wednesday, Dec 10, 2014 at 13:41
Steve, forgot to add, thank god the booking system hasn't gone the same way as other states National Parks, ie, online only. What a stuff up...........
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Follow Up By: Top End Az - Wednesday, Dec 10, 2014 at 14:42

Wednesday, Dec 10, 2014 at 14:42
Couldn't agree more with that comment. Example; was at the Bungle Bungles last year, and was waiting at the caravan park as the online booking system said all the sites were full and booked. This wasn't what we wanted to hear after driving 800km all day from Broome. Admittedly, I should have done better research.

I eventually called the Ranger and she advised that the park was empty and couldn't understand why no one was in there. So we drove in and had the place to ourselves. I might add she was very helpful but online booking systems are no good, especially when you are on the road with no service and have no idea when you are going to arrive.
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Follow Up By: pop2jocem - Wednesday, Dec 10, 2014 at 15:05

Wednesday, Dec 10, 2014 at 15:05
Yep, I would second that TE Az. A bloody shambles.
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Follow Up By: jdpatrol - Tuesday, Dec 16, 2014 at 23:03

Tuesday, Dec 16, 2014 at 23:03
Spot on, well said.

On line booking systems are ridiculous. Trying to reach a destination, some distance away, through unfamiliar territory, on a certain date, is unsafe and stressful.
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Reply By: Top End Az - Wednesday, Dec 10, 2014 at 14:37

Wednesday, Dec 10, 2014 at 14:37
Thanks Steve for posting the information. I agree that some changes are required. We use the park every year, mainly for camping etc.

I think the price rise is quite reasonable even though I don't pay being a Territorian. I have always thought that more attractions could be opened (if they are there) to take pressure off the main destinations.

I think keeping a few places as 4WD tracks only adds to the experience. Nothing worse IMHO than a 2 lane bitumen road all the way up to a fantastic waterfall, only to have hoards of people running around everywhere as happens in Litchfield.

I don't agree with the "Kakadon't" crowd. There is plenty to see. It's a massive park, you just need to put in the time and effort to get the most out of it.
AnswerID: 542793

Follow Up By: Gronk - Wednesday, Dec 10, 2014 at 15:56

Wednesday, Dec 10, 2014 at 15:56
While I agree that Kakadu is a nice place, I DON'T agree that a Territorian should get in for free !!

So, if I live in Qld, should I be allowed to visit Fraser Island for free ??

Can't see the logic behind that idea??
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Follow Up By: Top End Az - Wednesday, Dec 10, 2014 at 17:02

Wednesday, Dec 10, 2014 at 17:02
Kakadu used to charge locals, then they stopped a few years back no. I don't think any Australian should have to pay entry fees to visit their National Parks. That's what taxes are for. Camping fees are fair enough though. Foreign visitors should pay and this system works in other countries like Thailand for example.

Mind you when I was driving through Queensland in July I did notice you needed a permit for everything with the govt standing there with their hand out. We are lucky our Govt hasn't gone down that path.

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Follow Up By: Gronk - Wednesday, Dec 10, 2014 at 18:15

Wednesday, Dec 10, 2014 at 18:15
I agree re nat parks should all be free, but that isn't going to change..

I don't think we should be charged to camp either ( and I usually don't pay if at all possible ), but that is another story not directly related to this one.

But having one resident of Australia pay and another not, then that is not fair and illogical..
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Follow Up By: Steve in Kakadu - Wednesday, Dec 10, 2014 at 19:38

Wednesday, Dec 10, 2014 at 19:38
Gronk that decision was made by the then Minister for the environment when the reintroduction of the park pass was implemented.
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Follow Up By: Top End Az - Wednesday, Dec 10, 2014 at 20:22

Wednesday, Dec 10, 2014 at 20:22
Hey Gronk. Just my opinion for what it's worth. I agree that change is unlikely.
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Follow Up By: Gronk - Wednesday, Dec 10, 2014 at 21:32

Wednesday, Dec 10, 2014 at 21:32
Ha ha, lucky to get a politician to do anything....let alone change anything ......
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Follow Up By: Echucan Bob - Wednesday, Dec 17, 2014 at 13:05

Wednesday, Dec 17, 2014 at 13:05
I agree that the fee is reasonable, but can't see why Territorians shouldn't pay too. After all it is the taxpayers of Australia who prop up the NT. Imagine the outrage if Canberrans got free access to say, the National Gallery, and everyone else had to pay! On the other, hand we were at Mona in Hobart a few months ago and it was free for Tasmanians. As a private enterprise that isn't paid for by the taxpayer they can give discounts to whom ever they want.

Bob
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Follow Up By: Top End Az - Wednesday, Dec 17, 2014 at 13:17

Wednesday, Dec 17, 2014 at 13:17
I'm not sure why the decision to not charge locals was made. To be honest, when you are out at the park, it seems the vast majority of visitors are from interstate or overseas with very few locals in comparison. Not sure they would be missing out on much revenue.

Also, you have to drive through the park to get to other towns and destinations, so locals who drive through or work in these areas would be paying to enter when they have no intention of using the park. It's a bit different than not charging Canberra folk to see the museum or an art gallery.
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Reply By: pop2jocem - Wednesday, Dec 10, 2014 at 15:03

Wednesday, Dec 10, 2014 at 15:03
We visited Kakadu earlier this year and absolutely loved it. No idea what the "Kakadon't" mob are on about.
Stayed a week at Kakadu CP and another at Cooinda CP. Kakadu CP absolutely one of the nicest we have ever stayed at. Cooinda was ok but could do with a small amount of work.
Next trip we will try to book a tour to Arnhem Land. Got to set foot there during the East Alligator indigenous conducted boat tour. The guide, Neddy I think was his name, was brilliant. Loved his comments regarding a couple of possible "croc menu" types barra fishing, and standing knee deep in the water at Cahills Crossing.
Litchfield was ok but probably wouldn't bother again.
We are considering doing the next trip during the wet. Nothing to do with the cheaper pricing. I would imagine the experience could be quite breathtaking with waterfalls in full voice. Probably will need to take a flight or two as roads could be a bit iffy.

Cheers
Pop
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Follow Up By: Steve in Kakadu - Wednesday, Dec 10, 2014 at 15:37

Wednesday, Dec 10, 2014 at 15:37
That would have been Neville.
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Follow Up By: pop2jocem - Wednesday, Dec 10, 2014 at 16:19

Wednesday, Dec 10, 2014 at 16:19
Could have been. A great big bloke.
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Follow Up By: Steve in Kakadu - Wednesday, Dec 10, 2014 at 19:33

Wednesday, Dec 10, 2014 at 19:33
Yes there is a Neddy, when you weren't sure I thought of Neville who does the Guluyambi cruise.
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Reply By: Motherhen - Wednesday, Dec 10, 2014 at 21:57

Wednesday, Dec 10, 2014 at 21:57
The good news is you have until April 2016 to visit before these fees go up. This is particularly valid of you have children; at present free. Under the new fee structure, a family pass in peak season will be $100, and camping fees for a family at $38 in the campgrounds with toilets, showers and water (no powered sites).

Changes will occur at Uluru-KataTjuta at the same time, with children having to pay half the adult rate.

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Follow Up By: Steve in Kakadu - Thursday, Dec 11, 2014 at 10:12

Thursday, Dec 11, 2014 at 10:12
Hi Motherhen, I would have thought the good news is that they are in the process of doing $ 5 million worth of upgrades now, with an extra $ 2 million to be spent before these fees are implemented.

As a colleague said to me once, people will spend Hundreds of $$$$ to visit Dream world, but won't spend a few dollars to visit the real world. LOL

Dream world tickets. I rest my case. :-)
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Follow Up By: Bigfish - Thursday, Dec 11, 2014 at 11:17

Thursday, Dec 11, 2014 at 11:17
$189 for a 2 year unlimited pass, to go whenever it suits someone, is way better than than anything the kakadu prices offer.
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Follow Up By: Motherhen - Thursday, Dec 11, 2014 at 11:52

Thursday, Dec 11, 2014 at 11:52
Hi Steve

I expect and hope the upgrades will be in keeping with the natural experience of Kakadu, not make it look "touristy".

Last year we watched an excellent documentary series on the ABC about Kakadu and all the preparation that goes into getting it ready for opening to visitors. That alone must be a huge cost.

Considering it costs us a two or three thousand dollars in running costs alone to get to Northern NT, it would be crazy to bypass Kakadu for the sake of a of two or three hundred dollars. It will still be an expensive park to visit.

Agreed on the face of it Bigfish, but that pass would only be of benefit to someone living close by, not someone doing the big lap, and those living close to Kakadu are exempt from entry fees. With so much included, for a family with young children Dreamworld would still be attractive at the price.

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Follow Up By: Steve in Kakadu - Thursday, Dec 11, 2014 at 12:14

Thursday, Dec 11, 2014 at 12:14
Bigfish to me your logic is false economy

Family entry fee for Kakadu 2A up to 6 C $100 for 2 weeks

An interstate family of 4 to visit Kakadu will cost 1 x flights x 4 persons 1 x hotel / camping x 4 persons.

Entry to Dream world for an interstate family of 4 is $ 739.96 plus $179.99 per extra child unlimited entry 2 years.

In order to gain the same value it would need to be 7 1/2 visits, so a family from interstate that is 8 x flights x 4 persons and 8 x hotels x 4 persons.

But if a family of 4 want to visit Dream world once from interstate it would cost 1 flights x 4 persons 1 hotel x 4 persons plus $ 379.98 for 3 days plus $ 89.99 per extra child, that is 279.98 more for 11 days less.

Is that what you were thinking ????

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Follow Up By: Motherhen - Thursday, Dec 11, 2014 at 12:23

Thursday, Dec 11, 2014 at 12:23
I think Steve that what people expect from a private enterprise venture, and a National Park that as Australians they feel ownership of, are two very different things.

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Follow Up By: Steve in Kakadu - Thursday, Dec 11, 2014 at 12:42

Thursday, Dec 11, 2014 at 12:42
This is were it become difficult, Australians do have the right to feel ownership of their national parks however Kakadu is owned properly and legally by the Bininj Mungguy people, it is not crown land. Parks Australia lease the park and have a obligation to keep the park to a certain standard, and therefore charge an entry fee to help pay for this.

Like you I have travelled extensively and I am / have been happy to pay whatever price it may be to visit an attraction I think will interest me, as you say people spend thousands to travel, to miss something as great as Kakadu for a few extra dollars, well in my opinion you may as well have stayed at home luckily not all people are like that. :-)
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Follow Up By: Bigfish - Thursday, Dec 11, 2014 at 13:46

Thursday, Dec 11, 2014 at 13:46
No Steve. Its simple. I can visit Dreamworld as many times as I want in 2 years for $189.00. If I wanted to do the same at Kakadu it would cost a minimum of $1690. This is for 1 adult paying $40 during the dry season for a fortnight and paying $25 per fortnight in the wet season for 2 years.
Simple maths. You can factor in plane flights, trains, boats, cars, 5 star luxury etc. Irrelevant. We are talking about entry fees..
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Follow Up By: Steve in Kakadu - Thursday, Dec 11, 2014 at 13:59

Thursday, Dec 11, 2014 at 13:59
If you realy want to get ridiculous, then figure this out. Accommodation is not irrelevant if I want to visit Dream world every day for 2 years I would need to stay some where, so $40 per night plus meals for a back packers or just buy a house next door $ hundreds of thousands plus meals.

As Motherhen said if you live nearby dream world then $189 is reasonable, but if you live near Kakadu it is free.

how cheap is your ticket to dream world now.
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Follow Up By: pop2jocem - Thursday, Dec 11, 2014 at 14:16

Thursday, Dec 11, 2014 at 14:16
So guys, how DO the oranges compare to the apples?? (;=))

During our recent lap of the block we did a whole bunch of tours, visited places and generally tried to experience as much as you can cram into 6 months. Oz is a bloody big place.
During our trip we traveled the GRR which we spent a bit over 2 weeks doing with side gorge trips etc. Thoroughly enjoyed it but no intention to do again on the next lap.
We did the seaplane flight to the horizontal falls $1500 for 2 for a day with power boat rides and lunch. Not IMHO cheap but once again thoroughly enjoyable. Not on our "to do" list again.
A flight from Drysdale station over the Mitchell Falls, Kings Cascades, and a few other local features $900 or thereabouts for the 2 of us.
Puts 25 bucks each for 2 weeks at Kakadu a bit more into perspective for me anyway.

Cheers
Pop
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Follow Up By: Bigfish - Thursday, Dec 11, 2014 at 14:27

Thursday, Dec 11, 2014 at 14:27
Not ridiculous at all Steve. We are comparing entry fee costs to a business. Having a vested business interest in Kakadu I would expect nothing else than for you to defend whatever fees are charged for entry.
Regardless of where you are in Oz you have to stay somewhere.



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Follow Up By: AlbyNSW - Thursday, Dec 11, 2014 at 14:48

Thursday, Dec 11, 2014 at 14:48
Yep I am with you Pop, naturally no one wants to have to pay for anything but in the scheme of things the park entry fee will be a negligible cost to getting there in the first place and will have little financial impact on your holiday.
I have to pay for a SA annual desert park to cross the Simpson, a total of three or four days use with little to no facilities required to be provided and I am happy with that as once again I spend a couple of grand getting there and back anyway.

On principle I don't like the concept of Territorians getting in for free, they impact on the cost to run the place like everyone else......perhaps I am just dirty that in NSW we do not get exemptions to local parks
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Follow Up By: Steve in Kakadu - Thursday, Dec 11, 2014 at 15:24

Thursday, Dec 11, 2014 at 15:24
As a colleague said to me once, people will spend Hundreds of $$$$ to visit Dream world, but won't spend a few dollars to visit the real world. LOL

Dream world tickets. I rest my case. :-)

This comment was tongue in cheek, although relevant, Bigfish lets just agree to disagree.
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Follow Up By: Bigfish - Thursday, Dec 11, 2014 at 15:34

Thursday, Dec 11, 2014 at 15:34
No worries Steve. Thats what the forums all about. Different views, ideas and information. I enjoy reading all the views. Sometimes they change my mind as new information comes to light.

Cheers
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Reply By: Member - Warrie (NSW) - Thursday, Dec 11, 2014 at 12:27

Thursday, Dec 11, 2014 at 12:27
Hi Steve and all. Plenty of warning for fee increases and as you point out, Kakadu is a lot cheaper than Stonehenge, Serengeti and Machu Picchu. However it may be of interest to many what the Nat Park fee is in the USA. For o/s tourists its US$80 for a year. And how sensible that it covers all 50 states. Oh, if only we Aussies could do the same here. LOL. In fact the pass cover all sorts of National Monuments, historic sites etc - there's about 30 different categories, But the bottom line is that it's excellent value for money even if at todays exchange rate it will cost $100 Aussie dollars. Now yes they do have separate state parks in the $60 to $80 range so in that respect the yanks are like us.
Another point is the opening late in the season of say Jim Jim Falls. Nothing breeds resentment like paying full price for a ticket and then half the attractions aren't open. Think snow ski lifts or broken rides at theme parks. Will Kakadu offer a 20% discount if 20% of its attractions are still closed? IMO more effort could be made in getting things open earlier after the Wet so there's still some water going over waterfalls and the place hasn't turned into a dustbowl which it is by August. Catch the crocs earlier if possible. Get the graders in and run the place more efficiently...... W
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Follow Up By: Steve in Kakadu - Thursday, Dec 11, 2014 at 12:51

Thursday, Dec 11, 2014 at 12:51
Warrie you make a good point, in fact the 4wd section of the road to Jim jim and Twin falls has just been refreshed so parks can start to get the area open earlier, the Gunlom road will be done next year.

There is a complete signage upgrade through out the whole park happening as we speak, and all the major camp ground facilities are being refreshed, this is just some of the work planned before the fees are changed.
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Follow Up By: pop2jocem - Thursday, Dec 11, 2014 at 14:43

Thursday, Dec 11, 2014 at 14:43
Just a thought Warrie. If the possibility of roads being closed because of seasonal fluctuations in weather patterns gives you cause to postpone or bring forward a visit as you feel you would not be getting full value how about ringing the park managers and finding out.
Even main supposedly all weather roads get closed because of flood damage.
Kakadu still has some areas that are relatively untouched by development.
Don't know about others but to us this is part of the attraction. If I wanted the Dreamworld, Disney Land type holiday I would go there.
Hopefully places like Kakadu never succumb to that type of vandalism chasing the almighty dollar.

Cheers
Pop
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Follow Up By: Motherhen - Thursday, Dec 11, 2014 at 14:57

Thursday, Dec 11, 2014 at 14:57
Hi Warrie, that is why for the first time there will be different fees for summer and winter.
Motherhen

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Follow Up By: Member - Warrie (NSW) - Thursday, Dec 11, 2014 at 15:24

Thursday, Dec 11, 2014 at 15:24
Pop, here's the scenario. You are on the big 6 months lap and plan to rock into Kakadu in July/ August and venues are STILL CLOSED. A few years ago a friend went in August and Jim Jim/ Twin was still shut. Luckily when we did it in Aug 05 it was open but the road in was a corrugated shocker. We went back to see it in the Wet in April 06 but got more than we bargained for when TC Monica hit. Couldn't get to Jim Jim but Edith Falls and others were pumping.
Another friend was up there early November this year and just got to see a few things before the big shutdown for the Wet. Just prior Jabiru had had a week of 40 degree temps which is not my cup of tea to be camping in.
People can take flights in Jan/Feb and see the falls in action but I suspect there's not a whole lot open campingwise in those months. I suppose I could get onto their website and check it out to be certain. Maybe Steve could direct us to a suggestions/comments page run by Kakadu management where tourists like us can put in their two bobs worth...... W
Warrie

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Follow Up By: Steve in Kakadu - Thursday, Dec 11, 2014 at 15:41

Thursday, Dec 11, 2014 at 15:41
Hi Warrie JimJim and Twin have not been closed in August in the last 21 years, I know this as I go there daily when it is open.

The latest it has been open was 2006 as we had cyclone monika on the 24 April, this set everything back 2 months as you would expect.

The new fee structure is above and has a dry season/ wet season fee, parks have an online feedback address.

Parksonlinefeedback@environment.gov.au

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Follow Up By: pop2jocem - Thursday, Dec 11, 2014 at 17:06

Thursday, Dec 11, 2014 at 17:06
Warrie, we WERE on our 6 month lap of the block when we called into Kakadu. Guess what, the road into Jim Jim WAS closed.
Sure it was a bit disappointing, but there was so much else to see it was no biggy. Well for us anyway. There will be other times and there is so much else to see and do.
The most disappointing part of that area was the road into and prices of El Questro. Obviously set up for the overseas FIFO tourist with plenty of spare cash. That is one place we definitely won't be bothering with again.
I guess in fairness that is more of a resort type operation and privately owned so a profit is necessary.

Cheers
Pop
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Follow Up By: Steve in Kakadu - Thursday, Dec 11, 2014 at 17:19

Thursday, Dec 11, 2014 at 17:19
Pop what time of the year were you there, and what year?.
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Follow Up By: pop2jocem - Thursday, Dec 11, 2014 at 20:33

Thursday, Dec 11, 2014 at 20:33
This year Steve, from about the last week in July to the first or second week in August. The people at Cooinda CP told us that the Jim Jim falls road was closed for some reason.
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Follow Up By: Steve in Kakadu - Thursday, Dec 11, 2014 at 21:00

Thursday, Dec 11, 2014 at 21:00
Hi Pop
I can assure you that Jim Jim and Twin Falls were open during that time, in fact I was fully booked during this period. I also have every Kakadu Road Report which shows when roads open and close, it's updated and published daily.

Happy to discuss this privately, if you'd like to email me on steve@kakadutours.net.au and we can discuss this privately, because I'd certainly like to get to the bottom of this and address this if needed.
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Follow Up By: pop2jocem - Thursday, Dec 11, 2014 at 22:11

Thursday, Dec 11, 2014 at 22:11
Email sent Steve.
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Follow Up By: Steve in Kakadu - Thursday, Dec 11, 2014 at 23:16

Thursday, Dec 11, 2014 at 23:16
Yeah Pop got it, I will respond tomorrow.
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Reply By: MAVERICK(WA) - Friday, Dec 12, 2014 at 13:55

Friday, Dec 12, 2014 at 13:55
It's not the money that concerns me - Govts everywhere are upping $ on anything and everything. That's the way of the world (just wait for the proposed new CSR charges for 2015).
It's the continued use of the "enhancing the visitor experience" excuse that is used to justify the increase. Just come out and say the $ are needed to balance books but don't spin the rubbish about trying to enhance my experience. A badly corrugated road is preferable to a sealed road and no showers and a long drop are preferable to "full amenities"......and must be cheaper.Rainbow Valley is a great site with what I consider luxurious camping conditions and at the current o/night fee it rates up there in the pretty impressive class. Gregory NP also rates given the facilities and the $ charged. I have spent time at both Kakadu and Uluru and enjoyed my experience - though Kakadu was over 20yrs ago and Uluru is now passed through because it happens to be on the way from home to the NT...and it's years since I've turned right and gone to the rock.
WA Govt is no different in continually wanting to enhance my "remote experience" with the latest attack to be on Peron Peninsula - making nice "managed" camping sites. Just makes places like Rudall River NP that much better.
As for booking online.....just another spin excuse to "manage my experience".
Maybe all this Govt wanting to manage is the reason for the surge in farm and station stays.....I haven't embraced them yet but maybe they offer something else to experience....can't wait for the Govt to get involved with them as well.
So I will just keep to the remote parts of Aust and try and mamage my own experience without the help being offered by the Govt. rgds
Slow down and relax......

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Follow Up By: Peter_n_Margaret - Saturday, Dec 13, 2014 at 10:24

Saturday, Dec 13, 2014 at 10:24
Yep.
The pressure of increasing tourist numbers is a problem for National Parks. The authorities see improving facilities and ever increasing fees as the solution, where reducing facilities and not improving the roads would be more effective.

Cheers,
Peter
OKA196 Motorhome.
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Follow Up By: AlbyNSW - Saturday, Dec 13, 2014 at 11:01

Saturday, Dec 13, 2014 at 11:01
Yep as soon as the copper log camp dividers go in you have lost me.

I go bush to get away from society not be further managed and told which campsite is mine.
Don't mind having to pay the $$ though
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Reply By: Shaker - Tuesday, Dec 16, 2014 at 23:54

Tuesday, Dec 16, 2014 at 23:54
Permits, fees, passes? We aren't visitors, it's our country or has that been forgotten?
Maybe we should start charging them to come & visit our Victorian High Country!

AnswerID: 543067

Follow Up By: Steve in Kakadu - Wednesday, Dec 17, 2014 at 07:50

Wednesday, Dec 17, 2014 at 07:50
As I have said above Shaker, Kakadu is not crown land it is it is leased to Parks Australia.
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