The Ontario Money Grab

Ok, I’m going to go on a bit of a rant here about Ontario. Well, not a super harsh rant, cause I’m an extremely kind person. But I gotta say that Ontario really turned us off.

I know I talk about money a lot on this blog and how our family tries to maximize our limited funds. Maybe this annoys you (it annoys my sister 🙂 ) but I feel that it is helpful… and saving money is just our reality. Not only do I like to write about how we can afford to travel, I’m quite proud of it.


Ontario really surprised us with the cost of camping. We had been staying in Provincial and National Parks all across Canada paying anywhere between $12 to $27 per night for really sweet camp spots without hookups. In Lake Louise, one of the most popular tourist destinations in Canada, we paid $32 for camping and had electricity and water hookups. So when we got to Ontario we were shocked to learn that an unserviced site at any Ontario Provincial Park would set us back a minimum of $42 per night (that is for the less popular campgrounds!) We were so shocked by this price gouge that we decided then and there to boycott the Ontario Provincial Parks.

Once we got to Southern Ontario, we were even more turned off by the price gouging to visit waterfalls, beaches, and popular sites. We wanted to stop for five minutes to take in a waterfall….$5 to park! We wanted to go to a beach in the Niagara region… $10 to park and $5 per person. Going to the beach was going to cost our family $30! Needless to say, we turned around.

It really has us upset that land that is supposed to be public and enjoyed by all is being charged for. Isn’t it the purpose of Provincial and Conservations Sites to be natural spots that can be enjoyed by all?

We also had a really hard time finding places to dump our sewer and fill up on water for free. All across Canada, we have found free spots to dump and fill, usually at tourist information centers, rest stops, and Canadian Tires. In Ontario? Nope! You gotta pay for that! How much? About $15. We were desperate once and needed to pay and we actually had to get a barcoded ticket to get into the dumping station at a Provincial Park.

We liked Ontario but charging for things that are free in the rest of Canada stinks.

Mini-rant over.

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1 comment

  1. Katherine Hopkins says:

    As an Ontarian who also feels this way about the price of camping here, what about sending a copy of this blog post to the Provincial Parks. Your comparison of the prices is enlightening and the fact that you can provide that comparison would be a powerful message. Maybe I’ll send them a letter myself because the nightly price of camping in Ontario is equivalent to paying rent on a home which is ridiculous. Katie

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