Is the New Orleans Power Pass 2016 worth it? New Orleans Pass review

BourbonStreetNew Orleans is easily one of the best tourist cities in the United States, and it’s unlike any other city on the planet. Fortunately, hotel and food prices are quite reasonable in this town, but the prices for the popular tours and attractions can seem a bit high. This is where the New Orleans Power Pass comes in.

Depending on your situation, a New Orleans Pass might be the best money you’ll spend in this city because it covers literally everything that most visitors care about. You should definitely do the bus tour, whether you buy the pass or not, because it’s by far the best introduction to this amazing place. Once you’ve factored in the bus tour price you’ll see that it doesn’t take much more to make this pass worthwhile. Still, it’s not for everyone, and we’ll discuss that below.

The New Orleans Power Pass – Is it worth it?

JacksonSquareNOThe New Orleans Power Pass might seem a bit expensive at first, but when you look at the prices of all of the top attractions that are included it’s easy to see that New Orleans isn’t cheap for those who want to sample the best of it in a short time. We’ll go through the numbers below and it should be easy to decide if you’ll save money with the pass.

On one hand, New Orleans is such a wonderful and unique city that you can literally just wander around the French Quarter, the CBD, and the Garden District and you’ll be entertained for hours. Make no mistake, if you don’t do ANY of the tours or attractions included in the Pass, you can still have a very good time. However, this city has some excellent tours and attractions, and if you’ve already spent maybe $500 or $1,000 per person just to get here, it might be worth spending a bit more to be able to see EVERYTHING you came to see.

New Orleans attractions that ARE included in the Power Pass

WWIIMuseumThis isn’t true of many of these city passes (for example, the London Pass doesn’t cover the London Eye, and the Paris Pass doesn’t cover the Eiffel Tower), but the New Orleans Pass literally covers everything, including many high-price tours. Whether you buy the pass or not, you’ll want to do most of these.

New Orleans bus tour – $46

A great way to see New Orleans, the New Orleans bus tour allows you to view the best parts of the city from the comfort of your seat. Some of the included sights are the French Quarter, St. Louis Cathedral, the Botanical Gardens, the French Market, Saint Louis Cemetery and Jackson Square. Available for both adults and children, however a reservation is required.

Ultimate Swamp Adventures – $25

Great for all ages, the Ultimate Swamp Adventures takes you into the historic fishing village of Westwego Louisiana where you’ll hop onto a swamp boat for a ride through the wetlands. During your tour you’ll see cypress trees, moss, alligators, egrets, wild hogs and snapping turtles. You’ll also get to learn more about the natural environment, making this both a fun and educational experience.

Paddlewheeler Creole Queen Cruise – $28

If you’ve ever dreamed of cruising down the Mississippi River, then this is the tour for you. In fact, the Paddlewheeler Creole Queen Cruise allows for a different view of New Orleans as well as the river itself. The ship itself is modern yet designed after the boats of 100 years ago and is 24 feet in diameter. Some of the sights included in this tour are Jean Lafitte National Park, Port of New Orleans, the French Quarter and Chalmette Battlefield. This tour is great for all ages.

Blaine Kern’s Mardi Gras World – $19.95

The creator of the Mardi Gras floats, Blaine Kern is a household name in New Orleans. During this tour, you’ll be guided through the ‘behind the scenes’ action of Mardi Gras and its parades. During this activity you’ll see the Mardi Gras studio, costumes used in the parades and a video detailing the history of Mardi Gras throughout the years. Tours are every 30 minutes and welcome both children and adults.

National WWII Museum – $23

Available for those who have a 3 or 5 day pass, the National WWII Museum is dedicated to teaching those interested more about WWII and America’s involvement throughout the war. In this attraction, you’ll find different exhibits includingUS Freedom, Louisiana Memorial Pavilion and more. You’ll also find personal accounts of the war alongside historic artifacts. This attraction is open to both adults and children though adults may find it more interesting.

San Francisco Plantation House – $15

Noted as one of the more popular attractions based in New Orleans, the San Francisco Plantation House was built in 1845 and served as a plantation. This attraction is a great place to visit if you’re looking to learn more about Louisiana’s sugar and creole culture.  Within the house you’ll find 14 rooms decorated with period furniture, a 1830’s schoolhouse and a 1840’s slave cabin. This attraction will take you about an hour or two and is great for both adults and children.

Cooking Demonstration Class – $28

An adult only cooking class, this attraction is perfect for those seeking to learn how to cook local Louisiana dishes. Cooking classes are held at the New Orleans School of Cooking and offer classes in gumbo, pralines, jambalaya and much more.

French Quarter Phantoms Walking Tour – $22

About 2 hours long, the French Quarter Phantoms Walking Tour is a great way to explore the French Quarter while learning about its past and present. During this tour (there are three in total to choose from) you’ll walk through the oldest African-American neighborhood in the US while learning more about the local music and culture. The three different tours available are best suited for adults.

Cajun Pride Swamp Tour by Boat – $24

Take an adventure through the Manchac Swamp with the Cajun Pride. During this tour you’ll find yourself in the back country and bayou exploring the wetlands while keeping an eye out for the area’s alligators. You’ll also get the chance to learn more about the Cajun town of Frenier, making this a very well rounded tour. Making the tour even better is its friendliness to children. Tours are available throughout the year, but due to the local climate, certain times of the year call for bug spray.

Haunted History Walking Tour – $25

If you love spooky things, you’ll love the Haunted History Walking Tour. In fact, this tour is actually two different ones that you can choose from, the French Quarter Ghosts & Legends Tour or the Cities of the Dead Cemetery History Tour. The French Quarter tour includes learning about the Quarter and its grim history while exploring sites of reported hauntings. The Cities of the Dead tour includes a venture through the #1 cemetery where you’ll walk by some of the famous tombs and graves of perished locals. Both tours are open to adults and children.

There are also 15 other tours and attraction choices, however, those listed above are thought of as the best attractions in and around the city.

(Adult admission prices are shown above)

New Orleans attractions that AREN’T included in the Power Pass

As you can see, the New Orleans Power Pass actually covers pretty much everything that visitors prefer, except for the children’s amusement park mentioned below.

  • Carousel Gardens Amusement Park – $4 (+ $4 per ride)

2016 prices of the New Orleans Power Pass

  • 1-day Adult Power Pass: $84.99
  • 1-day Child Power Pass: $54.99
  • 2-day Adult Power Pass: $119.99
  • 2-day Child Power Pass: $84.99
  • 3-day Adult Power Pass: $159.99
  • 3-day Child Power Pass: $129.99
  • 5-day Adult Power Pass: $199.99
  • 5-day Child Power Pass: $149.99

Where to buy the New Orleans Power Pass

You must by the New Orleans Power Pass online in advance.

Discount for Price of Travel readers

Use this link to get 10% off 2, 3, and 5-day New Orleans Passes with discount code POT10 through Saturday, December 31, 2016

Is the New Orleans Power Pass good value then?

MardiGrasWorldIf you are coming to New Orleans to really get a taste of all the great things this place has to offer, then the Power Pass will be good value for anyone who is motivated and organized. The 2.5-hour bus tour is highly recommended for every visitor, so once you do that and at least 2 or 3 other things, the pass will have paid for itself.

The key to getting value out of the New Orleans Power Pass is to plan ahead and start the day early. If you do that then you’ll get more than your money’s worth with plenty of the day left to spend wandering around, shopping, and dining. However, if you are the type who doesn’t leave their hotel until 11am and doesn’t like to plan their day, then the New Orleans Pass probably won’t pay off. They can offer you free admission to every attraction in the city, but it’s up to you to get out the door fairly early and go from place to place efficiently.

Who the New Orleans Power Pass is good for:

  • First-time visitors to New Orleans who want to hit all the highlights in a short amount of time
  • Visitors who like tours, boat rides, and personal experiences like cooking demonstrations

Who the New Orleans Power Pass is NOT good for:

  • Those on very tight budgets
  • Visitors who prefer not to start fairly early or plan their sightseeing

Conclusion

NOcemeteryThe short answer on whether you should buy the New Orleans Power Pass or not has everything to do with how motivated and organized you are. The pass literally covers everything that 99% of visitors are interested in, including many high-price tours and experiences. So getting good value from the pass is quite easy if you really want to see a lot of New Orleans in a short amount of time.

But again, if you tend to be disorganized or you struggle to get out of your hotel room before midday, then you would probably waste your money with the pass. Some people buy these passes and then don’t start using them until noon, when everything is already crowded, and then they blame the pass because they weren’t able to visit enough things to make it worthwhile. The math works out great as long as you plan your day and start right after breakfast.

Where to buy the New Orleans Power Pass

You must by the New Orleans Power Pass online in advance.

Discount for Price of Travel readers

Use this link to get 10% off 2, 3, and 5-day New Orleans Passes with discount code POT10 through Saturday, December 31, 2016




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