Popular ‘free’ campsite about to start charging

Published: July 13, 2021
Lake Proserpine

The formerly free camping site at Lake Proserpine in Queensland will begin charging people to stay there from next Monday.

Whitsunday Regional Council says the new fees are to cover the costs of ‘24-hour surveillance’ at the popular fishing spot.

From July 19, adults will be charged $8 per night to stay.

According to the Courier-Mail, the fees are primarily to help the council pay for caretakers to manage and supervise the site, which councillors considered necessary after increasing reports of vandalism.

A caretaking team will now attend the campground from 8am to 5pm every day, with all campers advised on check-in of an after-hours contact number. They will be given a token to display on the outside of their vehicles to indicate they have paid for their stay.

The Courier-Mail reports that, if any issues arise at the campsite outside the office hours, the caretakers should be able to attend within three minutes. There will also be nightly security patrols.

The council’s Aviation and Tourism Operator, Craig Turner, said the caretakers and associated camping fees would result in an improved, ‘controlled’ experience for visitors through increased supervision, maintenance, and cleaning.

He said any profits generated through the introduction of fees would be ‘driven back into the facility to improve it’.

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Shane Jarrett
6 months ago

Yes and enforce it

Greg
6 months ago

$8 per adult ? Or $8 per van ? Ether way its very reasonable. Shame tho this is the way it will all go in the future

Brenda
6 months ago

Totally agree, these areas are not maintenance and vandalism free so a fee if $8 a night us very reasonable

Lynne stevens
6 months ago
Reply to  Brenda

Totally agree, caretakers need to be paid, and makes camping safer for all of us

Rob McCully
6 months ago
Reply to  Brenda

I’m with you Brenda, if it maintains and secures these camps from vandals, it’s a small price to pay.

Caron Horton
6 months ago

I’m happy to pay this

Grazza D.
6 months ago

Should be $15 per camp flat rate for 2 people, any extras $6 a head.

Michael Phillips
6 months ago
Reply to  Grazza D.

With three kids that would be $33 per night. Higher that some caravan parks… did you think about overall costs for the experience for families, your suggestion seems excessive.

Christopher Campbell
6 months ago
Reply to  Grazza D.

You are a prize position arnt you

ELizabeth McCartney
6 months ago

$8 per van is very reasonable but it sounds like it’s $8 per person per night ,

Dave
6 months ago

Where’s our freedom why are we paying for everything one day they will bottle and charge that too.

Hary
6 months ago
Reply to  Dave

Things cost money to up keep why should rate payers pay for your hoilday

Henry
6 months ago
Reply to  Hary

The same reason why rate payers accept the extra money we spend in your area without comment

Gil
6 months ago
Reply to  Henry

You are free to move onto the next town to make your purchases but what if you find they also charge for camping? Now what do you do, keep moving?
These shopkeepers and service stations provide a necessary service for both locals and visitors. For heavens sake just support them without conditions.

Yvonne
6 months ago
Reply to  Gil

you are right Gil, just support traders without conditions. they, as most people, are struggling to make a living. WIthout traders, would be a dismal holiday!

Noddy T
6 months ago
Reply to  Dave

You have the freedom not to go there

Bruce davies
6 months ago

good

Sue
6 months ago

I think one flat rate eg $10 per van ,if you stay a week maybe $ 50 for 7nights

Rob McCully
6 months ago

AT $8 per night, I think that is very fair. Would be good if it was $8 per adult and kids free.

Norman Pilcher
6 months ago

Fair enough I reckon. If council claims vandalism &/or theft etc is on the rise, then they are obliged to react, or they get slated. Also there is a cost, borne by council, in maintaining the area.

Ros
6 months ago

$10 per van(2 people) per night is very reasonable & maybe stay 6 nights get the 7th.night free.

Linda
6 months ago

Very reasonable price to pay for such a beautiful spot.

Carol Dobbie
6 months ago

Great place and totally agree on the charge

Peter collins
6 months ago

I think one flat rate of 10 DOLLARS PER VAN OR 50 DOLLARS FOR SEVEN DAYS IS FAIR

Rosalie
6 months ago
Reply to  Peter collins

I like the per person fee as 1 person one pension 2 people 2 pensions.

Yvonne
6 months ago
Reply to  Rosalie

Correct Rosealie, funny why pensioner couple don’t realize this! They would if they only received one pension. Also on the ONE pension we have to pay all their same, fuel, maintanece costs etc to go to same places on our own. most times our partner along with their pension, has died.

Dennis Wood
5 months ago
Reply to  Yvonne

Have to pardon my ignorance, Does a couple get twice the pension of a single? Maybe the suggested cost should be proportionate. Then there is the question of self-funded retirees

Ria Gaal
6 months ago

I think a set fee for 2 people at 15 dollars a night per caravan, 6 dollar for extra person. Sounds reasonable

KEVIN TIMMS
6 months ago

Great spot. We were only in Proserpine recently and stayed at the Showgrounds for $20 that included power, water and amenities. We have been to the lake in times past and we’d be happy to pay the $8 whether it’s for a van or per person. We stayed in Croydon FNQ about six weeks ago at their recreation grounds for $5 for two nights. No power or water but amenities were clean and tidy. The lady at the Information Centre told us that quite often nomads will ask to pay only $2.50 because they’re only staying one night. Bloody hell, if you’re that hard up go home. If the money is going for upkeep of the grounds and amenities then it’s money well spent. We free camp as often as we can to make our dollars go further but we don’t mind paying when we have to. It’s all about choice and sometimes safety as well.

IanDicko
6 months ago
Reply to  KEVIN TIMMS

Some nomads would whinge about anything. If you cant afford to stay at many of these places…just stay home!!

John Burnett
6 months ago
Reply to  KEVIN TIMMS

Thoroughly agree! $16 p/n for security, maintenance and peace of mind is well worth it.. Why should rate payers pay for the upkeep for this place and others like it I’m also tired of hearing about the amount of money we put into the community. Collectively this may be so, but individually the majority of those staying at ‘freebies stay the night and keep going not spending a cent. We like the majority of grey nomads can only travel this great land of ours by sticking to a budget and It boggles the mind about whingers complaining about paying a meezly $16 p/n. It appears that these people cannot afford the traveling grey nomads way of life, so go home!

CLARKE
6 months ago

It says $8 for adults so it will be $16 a couple

Tony
6 months ago

Fair and reasonable, people need to pay their way, not except everywhere to camp is free.

Yvonne
6 months ago
Reply to  Tony

Totally agree! Nothing is or should be free in this day and age!

Dan Harper
6 months ago

Agree 100%, $8 is fair & reasonable. The caretakers, maintenance & Infrastructure all needs to be paid for and this system equates to a safe, peaceful and enjoyable experience for everyone and it will help to keep unwanted riff raff away.

Graeme
6 months ago
Reply to  Dan Harper

We will happily pay a few dollars for a quiet night’s sleep. $8 each is very fair.

beau lyons
6 months ago

the price will increase, you watch? don’t be sucked in by this bullshit

David Elson
6 months ago

Glad they have stipulated $8 per adult.! I get sick of being told the “Charge” is per site! I travel alone and the number of times have had the argument with park staff . Therefore i don’t stay in any park not prepared to charge per person , not per site. If i stay in a park, at site rates i am paying twice the rate a couple are paying.

Bill
6 months ago
Reply to  David Elson

Main costs a park has to pay are wages, rates, and maintenace (plus electricity and water, if supplied). A single person still costs the same for wages and rates and probably electricity. They may cause less maintenance to amenities and use less water. But the difference is not half that of a couple.

Ian Mac
5 months ago
Reply to  David Elson

agree 100%

Gil
6 months ago

‘User pays’ is a fair and reasonable principle. Councils need to at least have costs partially or fully recouped as they have enough pressure on their budgets as it is.

Scott
6 months ago

Why should we pay now when we didn’t have to pay at all, don’t get me wrong happy to pay but if we didn’t pay once before why now but $8 very Happy to pay

Wayne Douglas
6 months ago

I have been to campgrounds where inconsiderate people make noise and cause trouble. I would be happy to pay a fee to have a caretaker close by who looks after the place. It is a shame to have to put structure in place to counter the troublemakers but it is a fact of life these days. Do what ever is required to keep these sorts of places pristine.

Jane Raphael
6 months ago

As a ratepayer of the Whitsundays Council I am happy that caretakers have been introduced and a fee payable. Got so fed up of the area being trashed – beautiful new amenities and still people trashed them and then our rates are used to fix. Hope this will solve the problem and people can continue to enjoy this beautiful area.

Lance Cody
6 months ago

$10 per site is fare and similar to other sites

Graeme
6 months ago

It would be even better if the fee could be ‘gifted’ to a community group who want to look after the site and manage it with local pride. We look for similar overnight stops that are run by a local community group as we travel and we will happily donate the few dollars for a quiet night’s sleep. $8 each is very fair if we can have access to a clean Loo.

Lauren
6 months ago

Sounds fair to me but probably won’t stop the non paying late arrivals who leave early

Bas + Eve
6 months ago

Qld’s debt aiming for $130B….they are chasing us for every cent while Annastacia murders our money on the Tokyo trip.

Ralph
6 months ago

There are plenty of places to camp for free if you are self contained & don’t mind being away from others plus you don’t have to worry about rubbish dumpers, vandals or other noisy campers.

Dan Mckee
6 months ago

$8 for the security of being able to leave your van unhitched and go for day trips is worth it, to me anyway.

Jeannie Simpson
6 months ago

Great place…stayed last year and council had a receipt box at gate for all campers to deposit their receipts on what they had spent in the town.
I know personally for the time I stayed I spent quite an amount of dollars.
$8 sounds pretty reasonable per person considering showground charge around the $20 nightly..

Bill
6 months ago

$8 per night sounds reasonable until you look at it over 12 months. $2900:

Mew
6 months ago

No Problem.

William Frost
6 months ago

Are they contemplating “surveillance” or “caretakers”.
Lots of difference.
You can bet on a cursory drive-by a couple of times a day – let’s see.

Di
6 months ago
Reply to  William Frost

Mentions both in the article

Pauline Kapral
6 months ago

Agree a lot of people get there and think they are there for the duration and dont give a fig about anyone else. Move them on and keep a tight rein. Unfortunately thats the way of the world. If its free use it to bits

John Dermody
6 months ago

Happy to pay for a nice camp that has someone to control unruly behaviour – that ruins “many a campsite”. On-site Caretakers should be included in many of the National Park campgrounds. This is particularly relevant on weekends. Rangers are next to useless in monitoring/observing or generally conversing with campers.

Di
6 months ago

$8.00 per adult per night is more than reasonable.

Mike
6 months ago

If u can’t afford this you shouldn’t be on the road or caravaning

Dennis Wood
5 months ago

Reading this, the first question that came into my mind is Who are the people doing the vandalism, travellers or locals?

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