How Dude Ranches Work

Dude Ranch Packages

When booking your dude ranch vacation, you should ask about special or discounted rates. If you're traveling during the slow season and have flexible travel plans, you might be able to snag a deal. Like any vacation, be sure to book your stay in advance. Remember that some dude ranches are very small and may become fully booked quickly.

To optimize your dude ranch experience, you can take advantage of different types of packages designed to accommodate specific groups of people. For example, if you want to spend a fun-filled weekend with the girls, you can look for a girls getaway package. These types of group packages often include private cabins, massages, yoga, cocktail hours, champagne brunches and evening entertainment like country dances and karaoke parties. Many dude ranches also feature family packages and offer programs especially designed for children. Although some have programs staffed by professionals, others offer unsupervised activities that children can participate in with friends, parents and family members. You can even host events like family reunions at dude ranches.

Dude ranch rates are all-inclusive. In fact, since their inception in the 1880s, rates have included room, meals and activities. Rates generally range from $1,200 to $2,000 per person per week. Riding programs are included at almost all ranches. Extra fees might be charged for riding lessons, alcoholic beverages, airport transportation, river rafting, pack trips and cattle drives. However, you should be able to plan a full day of activities without accruing any extra fees. Gratuity is usually added to your final bill and distributed to all employees.

On the next page, we'll learn about what your itinerary might be like at a typical dude ranch.