iStock
iStock

Canada's National Parks Are Officially Free to Visitors Under 18

iStock
iStock

Canada is home to over 40 national parks, and they all just became a lot more accessible to kids. As HuffPost Canada reports, children can now visit parks around the country for free.

Two years ago, Canada's liberal party promised to eradicate national park fees for visitors under 18 starting in 2018. When that announcement was made, youth entry prices to many national parks were already less than $5.

In 2017, Canada got a preview of what waiving admission fees does for visitor traffic. In honor of the nation's 150th birthday, people of all ages were invited to visit Canada’s national parks, marine conservation areas, and historic sites at no charge for all of 2017. The free pass program boosted attendance across the parks by about 10 percent, with Banff National Park seeing a record number of visitors.

The 2018 federal budget means that perk will remain a permanent fixture for national park visitors ages 17 and under. And though adults still have to pay to enjoy the sites, the full admission price for national parks in Canada is less than $10 on average.

[h/t HuffPost Canada]

nextArticle.image_alt|e
iStock
The Best (and Worst) States for Summer Road Trips
iStock
iStock

As we shared recently, the great American road trip is making a comeback, but some parts of the country are more suitable for hitting the open road than others. If you're interested in taking a road trip this summer but are stuck on figuring out the destination, WalletHub has got you covered: The financial advisory website analyzed factors like road conditions, gas prices, and concentration of activities to give you this map of the best states to explore by car.

Wyoming—home to the iconic road trip destination Yellowstone National Park—ranked No. 1 overall with a total score of 58.75 out of 100. It's followed by North Carolina in the No. 2 slot, Minnesota at No. 3, and Texas at No. 4. Coming in the last four slots are the three smallest states in America—Rhode Island, Delaware, and Connecticut—and Hawaii, a state that's obviously difficult to reach by car.

But you shouldn't only look at the overall score if you're planning a road trip route: Some states that did poorly in one category excelled in others. California for example, came in 12th place overall, and ranked first when it came to activities and 41st in cost. So if you have an unlimited budget and want to fit as many fun stops into your vacation as possible, taking a trip up the West Coast may be the way to go. On the other end of the spectrum, Mississippi is a good place to travel if you're conscious of spending, ranking second in costs, but leaves a lot to be desired in terms of the quality of your trip, coming in 38th place for safety and 44th for activities.

Choosing the stops for your summer road trip is just the first step of the planning process. Once you have that covered, don't forget to pack these essentials.

nextArticle.image_alt|e
iStock
Netherlands Officials Want to Pay Residents to Bike to Work
iStock
iStock

Thinking about relocating to the Netherlands? You might also want to bring a bike. Government officials are looking to compensate residents for helping solve their traffic congestion problem and they want businesses to pay residents to bike to work, as The Independent reports.

Owing to automobile logjams on roadways that keep drivers stuck in their cars and cost the economy billions of euros annually, Dutch deputy infrastructure minister Stientje van Veldhoven recently told media that she's endorsing a program that would pay employees 19 cents for every kilometer (0.6 miles) they bike to work.

That doesn't sound like very much, but perhaps citizens who need to trek several miles each way would appreciate the cumulative boost in their weekly paychecks. For employers, the benefit would be a healthier workforce that might take fewer sick days and reduce parking needs.

Veldhoven says she also plans on designing a program that would assist employers in supplying workers with bicycles. The goal is to have 200,000 people opting for manual transportation over cars. If the program proceeds, it might find a receptive population. The Netherlands is already home to 22.5 million bikes, more than the 17.1 million people living there. In Amsterdam, a quarter of residents bike to work.

There's no timeline for implementing the pay-to-bike plan, but early trial studies indicate that the expense might not have to be a long-term prospect. Study subjects continued to bike to work even after the financial rewards stopped.

[h/t The Independent]

SECTIONS

arrow
LIVE SMARTER