Don't Get A Roma Pass

In all my glory of the Vatican I forgot to discuss our decision making process on going in the first place. We expected to get the "Roma Pass" to access all sites within Rome and we assumed the Vatican would be a selling point. Once we noticed it was excluded along with many other attractions we opted not to get one. Heres how we came to that decision and how you can figure out if its a go or a no…

First, you want to create a list of places you would like to see in Rome. This is no calculated, researched list. This is the brainstorm-y type of thing you did in school. You are jotting down the places you have dreamed of seeing, the things you don't even have an official name for i.e. those fountains from "La Dolce Vita" and you are unsure whether the places are even in Rome. Our lists were in Notes on our iPhones - in no way formal and full of suggested spelling and grammar corrections. 

Second, you want to compare your list to your travel companions. From there you want to make those matched attractions a priority, research the odd ones and decide what is best for each others own touring time. We verbally discussed our wants, needs and desires and the only thing missing from my list was her "Spanish Steps" and my "Saint Therese" from hers.

Third, you want to research all places you have decided on and plan travel routes, dining arrangements etc. Google Maps and Wikipedia will become your friend. Oh, this may take hours or even days. We DID NOT do this but things are fairly accessible without thorough planning in Rome including food and transportation. We did have thirsty moments and by all means plan for that by carrying a water bottle at all times.

After you have done ALL of the above you want to go here and see if any of your spots are included in the Roma Pass

So lets pause a bit? Is anything included? Even if it doesn't cover admissions or what you wish to see is free; does it cover travel expenses to and from? Is it worth it just for the lines at the Coliseum? Are these other unknown discounts worth it to you?

If you answered no, no, no and no like we did you probably wanna opt out of the Roma Pass - because it isn't really worth it or is it?

See that website you visited is really vague and no one else is telling the truth about it, at least not in English! Why trust your hard earned Euros to whoever these elusive characters are just to be able to go to a few obscure places or only half way on a train to a place you actually want to go see? 

There really is no valid reason to get a Roma Pass

If you are going to the Vatican and any of its museums including The Sistine Chapel the Roma pass is not supported and they are expecting exact cash for admission to the dome at St.Peter's Basilica. Also there is no line seniority at any venue in Vatican City.

If you are going to the the Coliseum and surrounding museums - the pass will provide expedited line privileges. If this is one of your first or second included attractions it will be free admission but back to those lines. We waited about 20 minutes longer in the pauper line than those with the pass, we were all exposed to high temperatures with zero access to water and once inside there was nothing VIP about being a pass holder. If you are only visiting the Coliseum and never setting foot in other authorized museums you will be paying more for the pass than the actual admission!

Train wise if you read all the small print not all trips are covered - so it would be best to pay full fare for like rides than to find yourself mid-way and having to pay for a regular ticket anyways. Besides the passes only last 48 to 72 hours according to which one you get. I'm certain they know no one is going to pile in the two allotted free attractions, a bunch of discounted ones and transportation to and from in only two to three days. This would be exhausting and you will still wind up using additional money to get into sites or get around the city. The Vatican alone is a full day excursion and none of it is included. So you lose one entire day and no one is missing that for free access to The National Museum of Oriental Art or The Museum of Zoology!?

So yeah…

Absolutely no reason to get a Roma Pass unless you like an expensive challenge - if you're traveling in the summer it is just too damn hot in Italy for challenges! Trust me!

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