MARQUETTE - With numerous discounts off the cost of meals, motel rooms, excursions, tours and merchandise, the state's Passport Perks program -which affords special discounts to Recreation Passport holders- is providing a great way to save money, while traveling, exploring and enjoying the region.
The state's Recreation Passport may be purchased for $10 when residents renew their license plates. For that fee, vehicle admission is provided to state parks, boat launches, state forest campgrounds and recreation areas for the year.
"The Recreation Passport also includes the Passport Perks discount program, which gives outdoor enthusiasts the incentive to shop at local businesses that have signed on as Perks Providers," said DNR Spokeswoman Debbie Munson Badini in Marquette.
Indian Lake State Park is a popular place for small boats, with anglers enjoying pursuit of a range of game fish species. The state’s $10 Recreation Passport provides vehicle admission to state parks, boat launches, state forest campgrounds and recreation areas for the year. The Recreation Passport also includes the Passport Perks discount program, which gives outdoor enthusiasts the incentive to shop at participating local businesses. (John Pepin photo)
A list of all the discounts is available on-line (www.michigan.gov/passportperks). The statewide list is able to be sorted by county. Recreation Passport holders merely need to show their vehicle registration marked with "Recreation Passport" for to receive the discounts.
The DNR's website also provides information for businesses to add themselves to the list of those offering Passport Perks.
DNR officials said that while Michigan residents are realizing the potential savings the Passport Perks program offers, some 1,000 business owners are discovering the advantages, too.
"Approximately 600,000 Michigan residents are eligible to renew their license plates each month, and many will check 'YES' for the Recreation Passport, making them eligible for Passport Perks savings," said Maia Stephens, recreation programmer for the DNR's Parks and Recreation Division.
Stephens said that by becoming Perks Providers, it's possible for local businesses and retailers to reach more customers who track the discounts on the DNR's website and check the daily discounts featured on the DNR's "Morning Perks" feed on Twitter.
DNR officials said participating Passport Perks businesses and retailers can now be found in nearly every Michigan county throughout the Lower and Upper peninsulas and those numbers are climbing every week.
"With discounts available on many of the items and services they would normally purchase, Recreation Passport holders potentially can save the equivalent of their license plate renewal costs and more," Stephens said.
A Recreation Passport holder can take advantage of Passport Perks discount savings for a full year until his or her next vehicle license plate renewal date.
There is no cost to businesses or retailers that wish to join the program.
John Pepin can be reached at 906-228-2500, ext. 206.