HONOLULU (KHON2) — Honolulu’s online camping reservation system is set to change at 9 a.m. on Tuesday, Sept. 26.

The changes are meant to streamline web-based services offered by the City and to provide better support to those using them.

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This has been a collaboration between the departments of Parks & Recreation (DPR) and Information Technology (DIT) and has sought to replace the outdated system that was being used by DPR.

“We’re looking forward to park users getting to experience this new online interface, connecting campers with the outdoors,” said DPR Director Laura H. Thielen. “Once they are used to the new system, they’ll see how much smoother and easier it is to get a permit using PROS. Not to mention the digital layout is much more user-friendly.”

PROS is the Parks & Recreation Online System that was created to make it easier to navigate DPR’s services.

“This system also improves DPR staff’s ability to manage the campsites and enables our capable DIT counterparts to provide better maintenance on the software,” added Thielen. “The goal is to provide a streamlined experience with less disruptions, particularly when booking during busy camping periods.”

This new in-house system is maintained and operated by DIT and will save the City money as it provides more sustainable and reliable support for those using it.

According to DPR, in the 2022 Fiscal Year [July 2022 – June 2023], the City paid approximately $6,000 for the old system’s subscription and would have been charged an additional $86,000 if they chose to upgrade the old system with that contracted vendor.

DPR wants to remind those who are seeking a permit will need to use their HNL.info account information to log-in and submit their permit request.

Things you will need to know about the new system include:

  • DPR recommends that you set-up your hnl.info account in advance of making a camping reservation as the old system, and its log-ins, will no longer be valid.
  • Online registration must also be completed within a specific time frame due to high demand.
  • The hnl.info platform also includes a credit card service fee. It is slightly increasing the cost of permitting three-day and five-day campsites.
    • Campsite permits cost $10 per day, with a $2 administrative fee and the 2.35% credit card service fee.
    • With the additional service fee, the cost for a three-day camping permit is $32.75 with a five-day camping permit costing $53.22.
  • The amount of camping days and the amount paid per campsite is not adjustable.
  • Campers are not obligated to utilize the entire camping period, but the fees will remain the same regardless of use. 
  • Camping permits are non-transferable and non-refundable, unless campgrounds are closed by DPR officials.  
  • For more information about which campsites offer three or five-day camping periods, please consult DPR’s Frequently Asked Questions document.

Other camping procedures and rules remain unchanged, including but not limited to:

  • Reservations open at 5 p.m. Friday for camping periods two weeks in advance. Online reservations close at 11:59 p.m. (HST) the Thursday immediately before the camping period. For in-person reservations, those can be made up to 4 p.m. the Friday of the camping period.
  • In-person reservations are still available at the DPR Permits Office, on the 1st floor of the Fasi Municipal Building, for those without computer/internet access or a valid credit card.
  • The ability to add vehicle information to camping permits after a permit is paid.
  • Other camping rules, such as:
    • Only ten people and three vehicles allowed per campsite
    • No permitted camping Wednesday afternoons through Friday morning

Many online users already have an hnl.info log-in, as they are used to connect with and stay informed regarding a variety of City and County of Honolulu services, including existing PROS registration, which currently serves numerous DPR facilities and activities, including

  • Summer Fun Program.
  • Seasonal park & garden activities.
  • Hanauma Bay Nature Preserve.
  • Koko Head Shooting Complex.
  • Schedules for park gymnasiums, skate parks/rinks and pools.

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DPR said that it maintains 218 campsites at 17 campgrounds around O‘ahu and that in 2022, DPR issued 8,776 camping permits.