Saskatchewan Provincial Parks Happy with Online Service

May 11, 2012 by · Comments Off on Saskatchewan Provincial Parks Happy with Online Service 

Black dots mark the location of provincial parks in Saskatchewan

The outdoors are coming into the age of technology with an online registry for an escape to the wilderness in Saskatchewan’s provincial parks.

Campers can go online to reserve campsites in the Meadow Lake Provincial Park, the Makwa Provincial Park and any other provincial park in Saskatchewan using the integrate campsite management system, the Meadow Lake Progress reported.

“We’re very happy with the online reservation system,” said Northwest Parks Area Manager Colette Schmalz. “We feel it will serve the camper well in being able to reserve the campsite they want.”

Campers can go to to reserve a site just the right size for their camper or tent, see where on the lake they would be booking a campsite, if they would get power and what is actually available for the time they are hoping to get away.

Schmalz said the online registration is more customer-oriented.

“It gives the camper the opportunity to make their plans based on the sties and time span that’s available,” she said.

Schmalz said the new online process saves the customer and the parks office a lot of work and phone calls.

In the past the parks office has a position designated to making campsite reservations manually. A camper would phone and say what type of campsite they needed and then the clerk would search through the files to find a campsite that met the camper’s specifications and was available at the right time.

Schmalz said there is still someone in the office to handle questions but the job has changed from booking campsites all day to a customer service role.

There have been a few hiccups with the new system, including an overload on the first day.

The server designed to handle a couple thousand requests was bombarded with more than 30,000 requests, which slowed down the response time immensely.

Since then, Schmalz said the program has been running smoothly with less of a demand on the reservations.

There are still some spots left in the Meadow Lake and Makwa Park, but Schmalz said the sites are limited depending on the time a person wants to book a campsite.

At the end of March there were 17,000 confirmed reservations in Saskatchewan.

If the Internet doesn’t sound appealing campsites can still be booked by phoning (855) 737-7275.

Oklahoma State Parks Adding Online Reservations

September 16, 2010 by · Comments Off on Oklahoma State Parks Adding Online Reservations 

Campers who want to reserve a spot at one of Oklahoma’s state parks will have to pay an additional $8 processing fee when a new online campsite reservation system goes live later this year, The Oklahoman, Oklahoma City, reported.

People who make a reservation by phone also will be charged the $8 fee.

The Tourism and Recreation Commission approved a new reservation fee on Wednesday (Sept. 15).

The $8 processing fee is expected to help pay for a new online system and the extra effort of staff who process reservations at the campgrounds. The processing fee for reservations will be split between the parks and a vendor, Oklahoma Interactive — $5 goes to the park and $3 will go to Oklahoma Interactive.

Online reservations for some parks will be available this fall. All state parks will be on an online reservation system by spring, said Kris Marek, director of state parks with the Department of Tourism and Recreation.

“This helps people who might be arriving late on a Friday for a weekend camping trip,” Marek said. “They want to know that when they get there they have a place to sleep.”

Oklahoma currently does not have an online reservation system. People who want to ensure they have a campsite before they get to the park must call ahead to a campground during regular business hours. Most other states offer online campground reservations for visitors, and Marek said the site is expected to make it easier for travelers and park staff.

Visitors can still get a campsite without a reservation if they arrive at the campground and sites are available.

The cost of a tent site at one of Oklahoma’s 48 state parks is $12. RV sites with full electric, water and sewer hookups are $23.

The Department of Tourism and Recreation has a $30,000 contract with Oklahoma Interactive to operate the reservation website.

The site is still being developed, Marek said.