Is the Go San Antonio Card worth it? Go San Antonio Card review 2018
Welcome to Texas, the land of big hair, big burgers and big fun. But that's not all Texas is. In this southern state you'll find numerous attractions throughout, some focusing on culture while others on adventure. One southern city that really caters to visitors is San Antonio, home to the famous Riverwalk, among other fantastic attractions.
Because Texas is the land of ‘big', sometimes visitors will find themselves paying big bucks for their sought out attractions and activities. Luckily, that doesn't have to be the case in San Antonio as guests have the opportunity to use the Go San Antonio Card. This card, also know as the San Antonio Explorer Pass, is designed with savings in mind and is supposed to grant each card holder access to popular city attractions at a ‘less than the gate' price. But does it really save you money? We'll find that out and more below.
2018 prices for the Go San Antonio Card
When you purchase your Go San Antonio Card, you'll find that there are two price ranges and within those two prices ranges are price differences depending on age. If you're traveling with a child who is aged 3 to 11, you'll find that each of the two passes available are slightly cheaper for that age group. Children 2 and under generally tend to get into attractions and activities for free, making the need for them to have a pass completely unnecessary. Here are the prices points per pass:
- 3 Choices Adult $92.00, 3 Choices Child $87.00
- 4 Choices Adult $109.00, 4 Choices Child $99.00
- 5 Choices Adult $119.00, 5 Choices Child $109.00
Top sights and attractions included in the Go San Antonio Card
Six Flags Fiesta Texas – $81.08
With over 200 acres in Northern San Antonio, Six Flags Fiesta Texas is a great theme park full of rides suitable for most ages. You'll find bumper cars, go karts, roller coasters and more. In fact, the park itself is separated into 6 different themed areas, making it so that there is something for everyone. Visitors will also find lives shows, dining options and shopping areas.
Texas Hill Country & LBJ Ranch Tour – $109.00
If you like tours, you'll find this 1-day tour a great experience that takes you away from the hustle and bustle of the city and into the Texas Hill Country that Texas is so famous for. On this tour you'll get to see where Lyndon B. Johnson lived when he was a child, you'll get to stop in the musical town of Luckenback and you'll travel through the back roads while learning about the role of the Texas cowboy and the great cattle drives.
San Antonio Zoo – $15.99
Home to over 750 different species found on 50 acres, the San Antonio Zoo is an animal lover's paradise. Here, you'll get the chance to view alligators, giraffes and much more. On-site you'll also find the lovable butterfly garden, a historic train, a carousel and a few rides. This is a great afternoon or morning option that will work great for families with kids of all ages.
Ripley's Believe It or Not! – $23.80
If you're into the weird and unusual, this is the place for you. At Ripley's Believe It or Not, you'll find 18 different themed galleries and over 500 exhibits. Some of the oddities you'll find are two-headed animals, a 19th century vampire killing kit, oversized objects and much, much more. This attraction is geared toward both children and adults, though you may want to warn children that some of the items may be a bit scary before entering. This attraction is a great way to spend a few hours.
Natural Bridge Caverns – Discovery Tour – $22.99
A great natural attraction, the Natural Bridge Caverns provide an underground adventure where you'll walk through cavern formations, some up to 180 feet below ground. While traveling through the caverns, you'll be treated to a guide providing scientific facts as well as some fun ones, a historic lecture and the ability to travel through a half mile section of the largest cavern in San Antonio. Because you will be in the elements, you'll want to make sure you wear comfortable shoes that can handle wet surfaces.
Rio San Antonio Cruise Ticket – $12.00
Easily one of the most popular things to do in San Antonio, for both visitors and locals alike, is the Rio San Antonio Cruise. During this cruise you'll find yourself passing underneath bridges, alongside shops and diners and gathering some picture perfect moments. The cruise itself is only 30 minutes long, making it a great way to start or end your day. It's also kid friendly, making it a good option for families.
San Antonio Museum of Art – $15.00
Housing art from around the globe, the San Antonio Museum of Art is located within a former 19th century brewery. Nowadays, the museum holds over 30,000 objects and artifacts that display 5,000 years of human history. A visit here takes a few hours and is kid friendly.
There are 20 different attractions to choose from, however the ones listed above are considered the most popular and have some of the best reviews.
Is the Go San Antonio Card a good deal?
In order to answer this question, we'll need to take another quick look at what the Go San Antonio Card is and test out a sample itinerary. Firstly, this Go Card allows you three options, to either visit three attractions during a 30 day period, to visit four attractions, or to visit five attractions during that same time period. This means that the 3 Choices pass allows you the chance to visit two regular attractions and one premium attraction. The 5 Choices pass is very similar in that you get to visit four regular attractions and one premium attraction. All in all, there are seventeen regular attractions to choose from and three premium attractions.
Now that we know how many attractions there are, let's take a look at the pricing. Below you'll find a sample 5 Choices adult itinerary with front gate prices. This itinerary will help us to better understand if there is a savings and if that savings is worth it.
- Six Flags Fiesta Texas (premium attraction) $81.08
- Buckhorn Saloon and Museum and Texas Ranger Museum $21.64
- San Antonio Museum of Art $15.00
- Rio San Antonio Cruise Ticket $12.00
- San Antonio Zoo $15.99
As you can see, once all of the gate prices are tallied up, to visit these attractions without the card, you'd be paying $145.71 per adult. With the card you're only paying $119.00 which is a savings of $26.71. Even children will find a savings of $36.71 with the card. These savings could be applied to a meal out or a hotel stay.
In addition to savings, each card holder will also receive a guide detailing both hours of operation and directions to each attraction. There's also a map included, which should help you find your way to each activity.
Are all of the attractions covered with the Go San Antonio Card worth a visit?
In short, yes they are. Each attraction differs from the next, making it so that everyone in your group should be able to find something that interests them. Also, each attraction is tried and true with countless locals and visitors alike visiting them each and every year. These aren't one-off activities that have been thrown into the mix but rather attractions that have proven themselves over and over again to be both fun and educational. Even children will find lots of reasons to smile.
How not to use the Go San Antonio Card
To make sure that you get the most out of your card, there are a few things that you'll want to avoid doing. First, it's important to realize that the once you visit your first attraction, the card is activated. Once the card is activated you have 30 days to visit the remaining attractions. As long as your trip allows it, it's best not to visit all of the attractions at once. If you do, you run the risk of not being able to fully enjoy each one due to self imposed time constraints.
Another thing to keep in mind is the distance between each attraction. Though you don't have to choose which attractions you'll visit until the day of, it's still a good idea to have some sort of plan before starting your day. All of the attractions are in and around San Antonio, but some of them are spaced a good distance apart. In order to avoid a lot of travel time, you'll want to plan your days so that you visit attractions that are relatively close to each other. Remember, each card does come with directions and a map, so make sure to use each as they are tools to make your driving a bit easier. This also goes hand in hand with traffic. San Antonio is a big city, and like the saying goes, everything is bigger in Texas. This phrase is very true when it comes to San Antonio traffic. In order to not get stuck in rush hour traffic, you'll want to plan when you'll get to and leave each activity.
In addition, in order to make sure you get the most for your money, you'll want to try to pick attractions that are priced higher. This will make sure that you get the maximum amount of savings per card.
The bottom line
If you're looking for a way to save a bit of money, then this pass is a great deal. When using this pass however, you'll need to make sure to take care not to poorly plan your day to include lots of travel time as San Antonio is a pretty large city. With that said, you do have 30 days to visit all of your chosen attractions, which is plenty of time to thoroughly enjoy each.
Where do you purchase your Go San Antonio Card
There are two different ways you can receive your purchased pass. The first way is via e-mail. When your pass has been emailed to you, all you have to do is print it out and you're all set! The other way is even easier- through your phone! If you have any type of smartphone, simply chose phone delivery at checkout and your Go San Antonio Card will be sent to your phone right away. Then all you have to do is show your pass on your phone screen at each attraction and you're done!