Is the Rome & Vatican Card a good deal? We review value and prices here

RomeParliamentThe Rome & Vatican Card is one of the more confusing city passes that we’ve reviewed here, but it’s also among the most useful and best values for most visitors to Rome. Unlike many of the city passes that include “free” admission to 30 or 40 obscure museums along with the 4 or 5 that most people care about, the Rome Pass pretty much covers exactly what most people want to see, and little else.

In other words, this 3-day pass covers nearly all of the things that first-time Rome visitors will actually see and do, without charging more for things that you probably won’t do. However, what makes it a bit confusing is that several of the things it covers are “Fast-Track Entries” that allow you to skip the (usually) very long ticket queues. Two of these attractions are actually free if you don’t mind standing in the long queue, watching so many other people admitted before you.

Is the Rome & Vatican Card worth it? (short version)

AncientRomeRome and the Vatican have several extremely popular attractions such as the Vatican Museum (including the Sistine Chapel), St. Peter’s Basilica, and the Coliseum, all of which have some of Europe’s longest ticket queues, especially in warmer months. The hop-on, hop-off bus tours here are also extremely popular and highly recommended. If you want to do all of these things in the shortest time possible then this pass will save you time and money.

This is a really good deal for visitors to Rome who have two or three sightseeing days and who want to see the famous attractions in an efficient way. But if you have more time than that then you can save some money by standing in the queues and skipping the audio tours. If you are coming in winter, the ticket queues are usually fairly short anyway.

What’s included with the Rome & Vatican Pass

The Rome Pass and OMNIA Card will be a bit confusing for most people so I’ll explain exactly what you get here so you can decide if it’s a good value for your own trip.

Officially you get the following 4 items:

  1. OMNIA Vatican and Rome card for Vatican City sights & tours as well as the hop-on-hop-off bus tour
  2. Roma Pass for over 30 historic attractions, plus a travelcard for Rome’s public transport network
  3. A detailed guidebook
  4. Map of the city

But in reality, the OMNIA Vatican and Rome card and the Roma Pass give you what is listed below:

Rome hop-on, hop-off bus tour – 3 days validity (€32)

RomeBusTourThese tours are excellent and highly recommended since you’ll discover that Rome is absolutely filled with amazing architecture and statues. This bus tour is the fastest and easiest way to see it all in a short time, especially from the open upper deck. You can do a one-day version of this for around €20 if you choose not to get the Rome Pass, but it’s nice to be able to use it for all three days.

Vatican Museum and Sistine Chapel (€29)

VaticanMuseumThe Vatican Museum is huge, amazing, and known for VERY long ticket queues. You enter and then it’s a one-way walk all the way through, with the Sistine Chapel near the end, so it’s part of the same attraction. Admission to the Vatican Museum is €16 if you don’t mind standing in the queue. The OMNIA Card includes admission PLUS Fast Track Entry AND an audio guide, so it’s a €29 value. The audio guide is highly recommended unless you have a human tour guide because otherwise you really don’t know what you are looking at.

St. Peter’s Basilica – Fast Track Entry plus audio guide (€15)

StPetersWhen you leave the Vatican Museum you’ll be in front of St. Peter’s Basilica, which is the largest cathedral in Rome and a must-see. The basilica is technically free to enter, but the queues here are usually VERY long as well. The OMNIA Card gives you Fast-Track (instant) entry AND and audio guide. Again, the audio guide is highly recommended if you don’t have a human guide because this place is huge and filled with things that aren’t otherwise explained.

St John in the Lateran and the Cloister – Fast Track Entry (€10)

Back in Rome, close to the main train station, you’ll find this cathedral that is officially the seat of the pope. It’s ornate, popular, and very important for those interested in Roman Catholicism.

And ANY TWO of the attractions below

  • The Coliseum, Roman Forum & Palatine Hill – Fast-Track Entry (€12)
  • Castel St. Angelo (€10.50)
  • Borghese Gallery (€14)
  • Capitoline Museums (€15)
  • Museum of Rome (€7)

Obviously you are going to visit the Coliseum and the Roman Forum (and Palatine Hill as well), so it’s really just one of the others. The Borghese Gallery is the most popular of them and definitely worth a look.

PLUS a 3-Day unlimited public transport pass (€18)

The Rome subway is very handy, especially for quickly getting to the Vatican. Since the Roma Pass comes with a 3-day unlimited transport pass, you’ll be able to move quickly around the city, even at night.

Prices of the 2016 Rome & Vatican Card

  • 3-Day Adult Rome & Vatican Card (ages 10+): €108
  • 3-Day Child Rome & Vatican Card (ages 6-9): €75

Where to buy the OMNIA Rome and Vatican Pass

>>>Buy the Rome and Vatican Pass at the lowest available price at this link

The Rome and Vatican Card is only available online so you can’t buy it at any of the attractions once you get to Rome.

Top attractions that are included in the OMNIA card

  • Rome 3-day hop-on, hop-off bus tour (€32)
  • Sistine Chapel & Vatican Museums (incl. Fast Track Entry & audio guide) (€29)
  • St. Peter’s Basilica (incl. Fast Track Entry & audio guide) (€15)
  • St. John in the Lateran (€10)
  • 3-Day unlimited public transport pass (€18)

And any 2 of the attractions below

  • The Coliseum, Roman Forum & Palatine Hill (€12)
  • Castel St. Angelo (€10.50)
  • Borghese Gallery (€14)
  • Capitoline Museums (€15)
  • Museum of Rome (€7)

Top attractions that AREN’T included in the OMNIA card

National Gallery of Modern Art (€8)

However, the Rome & Vatican Card only include 2 of those 5 attractions listed above, so the other 3 are NOT included. Realistically, almost everyone wants to visit the Coliseum/Roman Forum/Palatine Hill, and the Borghese, with the others being less popular.

Is the Rome and Vatican Pass a good deal?

ColiseumLet’s do the math here and see how it stacks up. If you do everything included with the pass, assuming that you visit the Coliseum/Forum/Palatine Hill and the Borghese Gallery, the total comes to €130. If you skip one of the attractions then the value is closer to €120, which is still a good deal for a package that only costs €108 or even less if you get a discount.

On one hand this is a very good deal for most visitors in Rome for the first time and who want to see the main sights within 2 to 3 days. Even if this package weren’t available you’d probably end up doing pretty much all of these things and paying full price.

RomanForumOn the other hand, several of the included attractions here are actually Fast-Track Entries (skip the ticket queue) and audio guides. So if you have plenty of time to stand in the long ticket queues, and if you are more interested in just seeing the inside of these places rather than actually understanding what you are looking at, then you can save money by not buying the card.

Who should buy the Rome and Vatican Card

  • First-time Rome visitors who want to see the top sights in limited time
  • Visitors who prefer to pay a bit more to avoid the very-long ticket queues
  • Visitors who want to know what they are seeing without hiring a human guide

Who should NOT buy the Rome and Vatican Card

  • Visitors who prefer to save money and don’t mind waiting in long ticket queues
  • Rome visitors on very-low “backpacker” budgets
  • Visitors who will be spending 5 or more days in Rome who don’t want to rush their sightseeing

Where to buy and collect the OMNIA Rome and Vatican Pass

>>>Buy the Rome and Vatican Pass at the lowest available price at this link

The Rome and Vatican Card is only available online so you can’t buy it at any of the attractions once you get to Rome.

Once you buy online you will pick the pass up at one of 3 collection points. Two of the collection points are in the Vatican and the other is near the main train station, which is where the bus tour leaves from and also St John in the Lateran cathedral.




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