How Much Does It Cost To Camp In Illinois?

Campground prices can vary widely between state parks and private RV-focused campgrounds making it hard to understand how much the cost to camp in Illinois will run you. You don’t want your campsite given away for failing to plan for all of the expenses! We’ve done extensive research on our inventory of over 300 campsites (and growing!) to understand the campsite fees that you’ll encounter so you can plan your next trip!

How much does it cost to Camp in Illinois?

Depending on the campground type you are reserving, your daily cost will range between $15 and $30. The Illinois State Parks are the cheapest option at $8 per night for car campers while private campgrounds start closer to $20-$25 with added amenities like Wifi.

Factors affecting the cost to camp in Illinois

Amenities

Usually denoted by the campground classes AA through D, campsites can offer electricity, shower access, and show if a campsite has vehicular access. These campground classifications are used by the State Parks in Illinois and other state and national parks across the country to help you understand what you are getting and are frequently used to determine daily prices (like the IL DNR does).

Cost to Camp in Illinois State Parks

Classification

Ameneties

Best Suited Equipment

Daily Price

AA

Showers, Electric, & Sewer

RVs, Campers, Tents

$25 - $35

A

Shower & Electric

RVs, Campers, Tents

$20 - $30

B/E

Electric

Campers, Tents

$18 - $20

B/S

Showers

Campers, Tents

$10 - $12

C

None

Tents

$8

D

No Vehicle Access

Tents, Backpacking

$6

Private campgrounds will also usually change their price either by the type of campsite or the specific equipment you’ll be bringing (more on that later). Private campgrounds are more likely to use a more straightforward naming system than the nebulous AA, B/E, Etc. used by the Department of Natural Resources.

Timing

Holiday Weekends Can Increase the Cost to Camp in Illinois State Parks

In Illinois, the state parks have slightly higher pricing for their premium campsites (AA & A-Class) over holiday weekends for the Fourth of July, Memorial Day, and Labor Day. Expect to pay $10 extra per day for these weekends.

Private and local county operators may have variable pricing based on the larger seasons so double-check their website or the reservation information to be certain. For example, Chicago’s Cook County Forest Preserves have fees that are $15 per night higher in the summer than during the winter.

Equipment

how much does it cost to camp in illinois

Most campgrounds charge different prices for RVs than they do for just tent campers if they aren’t charging you by the campsite type. If you are just driving in and pitching your tent – you likely won’t need to worry about additional fees either way. Tent camping is the cheapest option for sure!

Residency (For Public Campgrounds)

Blackwell Forest Preserve
Blackwell Forest Preserve – $20 for residents but $30 for non-residents

For some county forest preserves, there are higher fees for non-residents than residents. For example, at Cook County’s Bullfrog Lake, fees are $10 higher for non-county residents. While this shouldn’t impact you at private campgrounds or state parks, keep this in mind when looking through fees and planning your budget!

The Cost To Camp in Illinois

Without further ado – using our extensive research in Illinois Campgrounds across the state, we have found the average cost to expect at each campground type:

Campground OperatorAverage Price RangeNote(s)
Illinois State DNR$8 – $20Taken from tent and tent + electricity site prices
City/Park District$15 – $20
Federal (Army Bases, Federal Land, etc.)$17 – $20
Private (KOA, Good Sam, etc.)$25 – $35
County Forest Preserves$20 – $42The wide price range is primarily driven by the average $10 price increase non-residents
Illinois Average Daily Campsite Cost$15 – $30

Cost to Camp in Illinois Infographic

Illinois Campground Types and Rates

Ready to go camping? Use our County Guides to find your next outdoor adventure!

Robbie
Co-Founder | Editor at Midwest Camping | Website | See related work

Robbie is a Co-Founder and editor at Midwest Camping. Robbie has backpacked over two hundred miles of the Appalachian trail, visited seventeen national parks, and camped regularly for the last two decades.

Leave a Comment

Newsletter Signup

Subscribe to our weekly newsletter and never miss the latest in campground reviews, new gear, and more.