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how do the two companies compare?

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dnc is more downhome, xanterra is more corporate. people who are younger usually do well in xanterra, older people love dnc. foreigners are present in both.

xanterra has about 10 times the employees, and runs the big stuff, while dnc manages the gas stations and some gift shops.

the food is WAY better in dnc, and you sit around a table with your fellow employees. i have been to one of these dinners and it's pleasant. xanterra is cafeteria style, and it may be hard to find a place to sit at times. food is not much to speak of either.

not familiar with the dorms in dnc, but i hear they are decent. xanterra is the same, but much louder because of the amount of people around.

as for the work... xanterra is much more fast paced so i think the day would fly by, but dnc is a little slower paced even when it's busy, which would drive me nuts. i like to work when i'm at work.
Just wanted to point out that if you're talking about Yellowstone, DNC does not manage the gas stations, YPSS does. But in other parks DNC might manage gas stations.

DNC does not have dorms we have 2 and 3 bedroom apts.And we run the only grocery store in the park.. And are very busy year round...


Hey Carol, I worked for DNC in 2010 @ the Upper Store in Old Faithful. Just wanted to say I stayed in a Dorm. I had a great summer there :)

Carol works in the store @ GCSR, with DNC

I've worked for Xanterra at Crater Lake National Park for 5 summers and each summer has been different, with both good and bad components. Yes, Xanterra IS a big company and you have to be a self advocate sometimes. I feel it is important to remember that you are hired to do a job and not expect the Employer to meet all your personal needs. My advice is to ALWAYS have your own transportation (if you are at a location that has roads) so you can get away from paradise for a while, if needed, to maintain your sanity and independence.
I work for DNC in Yosemite and it feels pretty corporate too. Also all of the "older people" that I have presented this question to HATE DNC. They don't like feeling like a number and, if they have been here long enough, they miss the days of the Curry Company. DNC manages everything here but the gas stations. If you are lucky you can get decent housing, but they started putting 6 people to a room here. I don't recommend the food here. It tastes ok, but the oil that they cook EVERYTHING in, Vegaline, is REALLY unhealthy. My friend ate the food here and weighed 250+ pounds, he stopped eating the food here and now weights 150 pounds...I'm just saying...Perhaps DNC is different in Yosemite than it is everywhere else. Perhaps DNC just doesn't care anymore because they lost their contract to Disney.
Well into my first season with DNC @ Yellowstone. What you really need to consider when choosing which company to work for is "what type of work do I want to do?" DNC operates all of the Yellowstone General Stores throughout the if you work for DNC you will more than likely be working in a retail establishment that sells things (gifts, apparel, groceries, camping gear, fishing tackle, etc.). If you work for Xanterra you may work in a much wider variety of jobs involving hotels, boats, horses, or many other guest services.

Regarding food .... the food in my DNC employee dining room has been EXCELLENT. I have definitely gained weight since being here because they keep tempting us with such great dishes and deserts. Breakfast is "cooked to order" for each individual employee...fantastic!! I doubt if all EDR's are this good....I just lucked out.

Regarding housing....the dorms at DNC are rustic...which is a nice way of saying they are run down and in desperate need of upgrading. Since most buildings will become NPS property eventually no one expects DNC to sink money into improving employee housing. DNC is renovating some stores so they can sell more and more stuff to visitors.

DNC is extremely corporate and procedures driven. The homey approach left when Hamilton Stores lost the contract. DNC philosophy is to pay minimum wages, and quickly replace people if they decide to quit mid-season due to the extremely poor compensation. Bonus pay is mileage paid if you must drive to your store each day either. They run a very TIGHT ship. If your main goal is to make a lot of money, go get a real career in a big city....don't work in a National Park!
An important thing to know about DNC is their use of split shifts. On early shift you will be reporting for work around 7am, will work until 6pm, with a mid day break (12pm-3pm). On late shift you will report to work at 11:45am and work until 9:45pm, with a mid day break (3pm-6pm). Shifts usually alternate from week to week. Basically DNC will tie you up for the entire work day with very little time for outside activities before or after work. Many Xanterra jobs involve a straight 8 hour day with a short lunch break, so you can plan outside activities either before or after work. With DNC you will do most of your "playing" strictly on your days off.
Thanks for the info. I am applying, when the time comes, for next summer and I like to hear all the different opinions and tips.

I know this is an old thread, but does DNC make a habit out of split shifts multiple times a week, or is it a once a week thing?

everyday is a split shift in most departments.


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