Guided business licences
Jasper National Park
Applications for guided/outfitter business licences are reviewed twice annually. The deadlines for the submission of applications are March 1 and September 1 of each year.
Anyone wishing to operate a guided /outfitter activity in a national park in Canada is required to apply to Parks Canada for a business licence. “Business” is defined as any trade, industry, employment, occupation, activity or special event carried on in a park or on Parks Canada-administered lands or waters outside of a park, for profit, gain, fund raising or commercial promotion, and includes an undertaking carried on in a park by a charitable organization, or by an organization or individual on a non-profit basis.
Guided business licences are generally issued for the following activities:
- hiking tours
- road biking tours
- backpacking tours
- interpretive walks
- guided mountaineering
- guided ski touring
- guided cross-country ski touring
- guided horseback tours
- rafting tours
- angling guides
- scuba diving
- stand-up paddleboard
- all wilderness related tours and guided programs
The following procedure is for new guided/outfitter activity businesses seeking to operate in a national park. It is not applicable if you are seeking a replacement licence. A separate application form is available for this purpose. Please contact your local Parks Canada office for further information on this process. All employees that will be conducting Guided Trips will be required to obtain a Guide Identification Card (see “Guide Identification Application Form Part IV”), and carry this card at all times while guiding. The form and procedure is appended to this document.
A separate application is available if you are seeking licensing as a new business in any other area other than guided/outfitter activities. We ask that you contact your local Parks Canada office to obtain the application form.
1. Application: How to apply for a licence to conduct a guided or outfitter activity in a national park
- Complete the New Guided/Outfitter Activity Business Licence application form in full. Detailed information is necessary for Parks Canada to conduct an accurate evaluation of your application. If sufficient details are not provided, we will be unable to complete a review of your application.
- Submit the completed application form, including all requirements in the documentation checklist.
Completed applications can be sent to:
Guided Business Liaison, Mountain Parks
Realty and Municipal Services
Jasper National Park of Canada
PO Box 10
Jasper, Alberta T0E 1E0
2. Review: Parks Canada review process of a Guided/Outfitter Activity Business Licence application
- Receipt of Application: On receipt of your application, Parks Canada will review your submission for completion. Incomplete applications may be returned to you to provide further information or documentation.
- Summer applications must be submitted prior to September 1. (For the purpose of this application process, summer is defined as April 1 to October 31.)
- Winter applications must be submitted prior to March 1. (For the purpose of this application process, winter is defined as November 1 to March 31.)
- Review/Evaluation: All applications will be evaluated and a recommendation for approval or denial will be forwarded to the Field Unit Superintendent, who makes the final decision based on this recommendation. Applicants will be contacted in the time frames indicated below. This review period recognizes the need for timely review in order to allow businesses to operate in the season following their application.
- Park personnel will review summer applications and will contact proponents by December 1.
- Park personnel will review winter applications and will contact applicants by June 1.
3. Decision: Field Unit Superintendent’s decision
- If the guided/outfitter activity business licence is approved: your business licence will be issued and become valid for the summer or winter season following approval. Any/all conditions imposed on the licence will be clearly defined and appended. The term of the licence cannot exceed one year and will expire on March 31 following the date of issuance.
If, at any time during the term of your licence, the parameters under which you are operating your business change, such as sale or transfer of the business, change in name or location, change to the nature of the business, or additions to the business, you must inform Parks Canada immediately.
- If the guided/outfitter activity business licence is denied: you will be advised, in writing, of the reason(s) for the decision in as timely a manner as possible.
You will be notified of the decision in the manner that you have indicated in Part II of the “New Guided/Outfitter Activity Business Licence Application”.
4. Payment: If the application is approved, applicable fees for a Guided/Outfitter Activity Business Licence
While payment is not required until a determination is made on your application, payment for each activity will be payable prior to issuance of a guided/outfitter activity business licence.
- Guided Business Licence Application Form for the Mountain National Parks (April 2023) (PDF, 1.11 MB)
- Fillable pdf application form for new guided/outfitter activity businesses wanting to operate in a national park.
- Activity Table Template (PDF, 166 KB)
- Fillable pdf of a blank activity table (appendix B).
- Emergency Response Plan Guide (PDF, 367 KB)
- Required information for Emergency Response Plan submission.
- Blank Emergency Response Plan Template (Microsoft Word, 574 KB)
- Areas, Trails and Activities with Restrictions (May 2023) (PDF, 621 KB)
- Custodial groups
- A “custodial group” means a group affiliated with an institution, where at least one person is below the age of majority and that minor is not in the company of his/her parent or legal guardian. Institutional groups include (but are not limited to) school groups, Scout/Guide groups, church groups, cadet groups and community youth groups.
For more information, please visit the custodial groups webpage.
For more information on how to apply for a guided business licence in the Mountain National Parks:
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