Commercial Use Authorization For Road Based Interpretive Tours and Other Transportation Services Operating Plan

General Provisions

The CUA for road-based interpretive tour service allows the CUA holder to conduct a vehicle tour, provide shuttle service, and act as a step-on guide, on paved park roads with visits to facilities and services in combination with short walks on boardwalks, and trails less than a ½ mile from roadways including:
  • Old Faithful Geyser Basin
  • Grand Canyon of the Yellowstone (North and South Rims including overlooks)
  • Biscuit Basin
  • Black Sand Basin
  • Norris Geyser Basin
  • Mammoth Hot Springs Terraces
  • West Thumb Geyser Basin
  • Fountain Paint Pots
  • Firehole Lake Drive – limited to vehicles weighing less than 6 tons GVW*
  • Firehole Canyon Drive – passenger van only*
  • Midway Geyser Basin
  • Mud Volcano
  • Blacktail Plateau Drive -- passenger van only *
  • Old Gardiner Road – passenger van only*
  • Old Yellowstone Trail*
  • Virginia Cascades – passenger van only*
  • Lake Butte Overlook – passenger van only

*dependant on road conditions and seasonal closures
  1. Step-on Guide Service is defined as a guide who rides in a visitor’s vehicle or tour bus, as a guide for a sightseeing tour within the park. It is the guide’s responsibility to check the clients’ proof of auto liability insurance before the trip.
  2. Shuttle Service is defined as the point-to-point pick-up and drop-off of passengers in Yellowstone National Park at designated parking areas, pullouts, and developed areas.
  3. Guided activities such as day hiking (on trails greater than ½ mile) backpacking, biking, boating, photography instruction, and/or fishing are not authorized under this permit.
  4. All vehicles, whether owned or non-owned (leased or rented) used by the CUA holder must be in safe operating condition and licensed in accordance with state laws and insured.
  5. A transportation service is limited to vehicles with a maximum capacity of 25 passengers and must originate from gateway communities. Gateway communities include Bozeman, Livingston, Gardiner, Cooke City, Big Sky and West Yellowstone, Montana; Cody, Jackson, Wyoming and Idaho Falls, Idaho. Any vehicle with passenger capacity of 26 or more passengers will need to pay the commercial tour fee.
  6. Guides for transportation services must provide quality and accurate interpretive tours.
  7. The CUA holder shall be responsible for the prompt and appropriate retrieval of clients and equipment in the event of a breakdown or accident.
  8. It is required that one guide on each trip must be currently certified in standard first aid and carry a basic 12-unit first aid kit.
  9. The CUA holder shall obey all traffic laws including park speed limits. All vehicles originally equipped with seat belts must have seat belts. All clients will obey seat belt regulations.
  10. Slow moving vehicles must use roadside turnouts and parking areas to allow free flow of other traffic.
  11. Vehicles shall not be left idling in parking areas or park across multiple parking spaces. Loading zones will not be occupied longer than necessary to load and unload passengers.
  12. Visitor entrance receipts are not transferable. Annual or lifetime passes will be honored for the client and immediate family only.

Last updated: November 23, 2016

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PO Box 168
Yellowstone National Park, WY 82190-0168



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