Is the Roma Pass worth it for visiting the Colosseum?
You’re visiting Rome and the Colosseum is a must-see on your itinerary. Now it’s time to find out which ticket to buy to get the most out of your visit to the Colosseum. One of the options is to buy the Roma Pass and use your one or two free entries for the skip-the-line Colosseum ticket.
Is the Roma Pass worth it for visiting to the Colosseum in mind? If so, what are the benefits of a Roma Pass Colosseum ticket? Lastly, you’ll need to know where to buy the Roma Pass. This post covers all the bases.
What is a Roma Pass Colosseum ticket?
When planning a visit to the Colosseum, there are various ticket options to consider. One is to book an individual ticket for a specific date and time online, and the other is to buy a Roma Pass.
Depending on whether you buy a 48 or 72-hour pass, one or two entries into some major sights, including the Colosseum, is free with the pass. You must still reserve the date and time of your visit online, but as Roma Pass card holder you’ll get skip-the-line-access on arrival.
Of course, you could also try your luck and attempt to buy a ticket at the Colosseum on the day of your visit. However, entrance with a so-called “open ticket” is only allowed after 14:00. Not a good idea if you’re on a tight time schedule!
What is the Roma Pass and why should I use it?
Before you can answer the question: “Is the Roma Pass worth it for me?” you should learn all the important facts about it.
The Roma Pass is a tourist card introduced by the City of Rome. It makes it easier for visitors to get around the city and see the major historical, cultural and archaeological sites in the limited time they have to explore the eternal city.
ROMA PASS BASICS
Free public transport
Free entry to the first 1 (48 hours) or 2 (72 hours) of more than 45 museums, monuments and archaeological sites
Discounted entry to the other sites on the Roma Pass list
Discounts on other tourist services such as hop-on-hop-off buses and tours
Detailed map of Rome
At the Colosseum, Castel Sant’Angelo and Musei Capitolini you get direct access to the security checkpoint with your Roma Pass, without having to wait in the ticket window line.
Who is the Roma Pass for?
First or second-time visitors to Rome who haven’t visited the Colosseum, Roman Forum, Palatine Hill, Castel Sant’Angelo,
Borghese Gallery (not included anymore), Capitoline Museums, or the Appian Way can especially benefit from the Roma Pass.
The Roma Pass makes it easy to get around with the free transport and detailed map, helping you to experience as much as possible in the few days you have to explore Rome.
If you like to explore a city slowly on foot, the Roma Pass may not be ideal for you. Work out how many times you’ll need to use public transport and add it to the entry fees of the attractions you want to visit. If it comes out less than the price of the Roma Pass, rather buy individual tickets.
Where to buy the Roma Pass?
There are several options for buying the Roma Pass:
- The most convenient, is to buy the Roma Pass online before your visit. This way, you can pay for it in advance and have a better grip on your budget after arriving in Rome. Cards purchased online is easy to collect at any of Rome’s many tourist INFOPOINTS.
- Museums and tourist INFOPOINTS
- ATAC – Subway ticket office
- Trenitalia Ticket Offices and FrecciaClub
The best travel pass for visiting the Roman Colosseum
The Roma Pass is certainly one of the best Rome city passes that includes the Colosseum. But you may have noticed it doesn’t include the Vatican Museums and Sistine Chapel. That’s where the Omnia Card comes in.
The Omnia Card is like a Roma Pass on steroids. In fact, it includes a 72-hour Roma Pass with all its benefits. That means your visit to the Colosseum, Roman Forum, and Palatine Hill is covered.
The best part about the Omnia Card is that it also includes fast-track entrance to the Vatican Museums and Sistine Chapel. Add to that a 3-day ticket for a hop-on-hop-off bus, and your 72 hours of sightseeing in Rome can run like clockwork.
If the Vatican Museums and Sistine Chapel are on your must-see list together with the Colosseum, the Omnia Card is a good alternative Rome city pass. It costs €113 and you can order it online here.
If you visited the Vatican previously but not the Colosseum, then you’ll only need the Roma Pass Colosseum ticket.
Final verdict: Is the Roma pass worth it?
To really answer this question, we should look at a typical 3-day visit to Rome and what you can expect to pay in entrance fees and public transport.
You can easily put aside one day in Rome just for visiting the Vatican Museums, Sistine Chapel and St Peter’s Basilica and Square. But let’s put the Vatican aside for now and look at how you are likely to spend 72 hours in Rome with or without going to the Vatican.
The Colosseum with Roman Forum and Palatine Hill, together with a visit to the Castel Sant'Angelo takes care of your 2nd day in Rome. In fact, these are the attractions most people use the Roma Pass for to get free entry.
How much can you save with the Roma Pass?
The Colosseum tickets cost €12 and entry to the Castel Sant’Angelo is €15. That’s €27 in total.
Now, you must decide whether you’ll be visiting any of the other discounted attractions included in the Roma Pass on your 2nd or/and 3rd day in Rome.
There may still be time to visit the Appian Way after Castel Sant’Angelo. The tickets to most Appian Way attractions, like the Baths of Caracalla, are half-price in combination with the Roma Pass. That can mean another saving of between €2,50 and €5. You can find the full list with discounts here.
Let’s make a cost comparison based on the above scenario:
|Attractions||Individual ticket||With Roma Pass||Savings|
|Colosseum, Roman Forum, Palatine Hill||€12||Free||€12|
|Baths of Caracalla||€8||€4||€4|
Total cost of individual tickets without online reservation fees: €43 €47,50.
The 72-hour Roma Pass costs €38,50. Your benefits with the Roma Pass comes to €36,50. That leaves €2.
With a one-way bus or metro ticket costing €1,50, you are going to get more than €2’s worth of free public transport over 3 days. In that case, it’s already a good idea getting the Roma Pass from a monetary perspective.
Remember, you aren’t saving money only, but a lot of time and hassle by skipping the lines at the attractions and simply hopping on and off public transport without a second thought.
Are the benefits worth the expense?
So, is the Roma Pass worth it for visiting the Colosseum and other popular Roman attractions? Only you can determine that by making your own calculations. Based on what you want to see and do, it certainly can save you some money even if it’s not a fortune.
If you leave the few Euro’s you’re going to save or not save out of the equation, you must ask how much the convenience and ease of use that comes with the Roma Pass is worth to you. Skipping the lines (they can be up to 4 hours long at the Colosseum) can save you a lot of time and frustration, allowing you to enjoy Rome to its fullest.
Don’t forget the very useful and comprehensive map to help guide you around Rome, as well as the booklet with discounts on current exhibits and events.
How to best use the Roma Pass Colosseum ticket?
As you know by now, the Colosseum is part of the Roma Pass network. The Roma Pass Colosseum ticket is valid for two days and allows one entry each to the Colosseum and Roman Forum/Palatine Hill area. This includes ongoing exhibitions, but not entry to the Palatine Museum which is part of the new S.U.P.E.R ticket. The latter is the new ticket for the Archaelogical Park of the Colosseum.
Important to remember
Even if you have a Roma Pass Colosseum ticket, you must still schedule your visit well ahead of your trip to Rome to ensure entry on a specific day and time. You’ll find the details on the official reservation website.
Only 3,000 people at a time are allowed inside the Colosseum. If you don’t schedule your visit well in advance for the busy season from March to October, you may not get an opening during your preferred time slot. Even if you do, you can still find yourself waiting in the security line a little longer than usual on extremely busy days.
If possible, schedule your visit for the earliest available time or for an hour or two before last entry. Most tour groups arrive mid- to late-morning.
The earlier or the later you get to the Colosseum, the shorter the security lines will be and the less crowded it will be inside. Your pictures will be nicer without hordes of strange people in them and you won’t feel rushed.
According to the official reservation website, the reservations are organised gradually and on a quarterly and weekly basis. This is to avoid any kind of early acquisition schemes and to guarantee ticket availability as close as possible to the entrance date.
Therefore, it is possible to book for the next month every first Monday of the month from 09:00. At the same time, a number of openings for the following week can be booked.
More tips for getting the best out of your Roma Pass Colosseum ticket
- Arrive at least 30 minutes ahead of your scheduled entry time. This is to give enough time to go to the bathroom, store bulky belongings, pass through the security check with metal detector, and carry out ticketing arrangements.
- Wear comfortable shoes.
- No glass bottles or containers, alcohol or spray cans are allowed inside the Colosseum.
Highlights to look out for when visiting the Colosseum with your Roma Pass
- Explore the top tier walkways and take in the sheer size of the Colosseum, still the biggest amphitheater in the world after more than 2,000 years. It’s 189 m long, 156 m wide, 48 m high and has a base area of 24,000 m².
- From this vantage point, look down into the network of tunnels underneath the floor of the Colosseum.
- Stop to read and look at the informative exhibitions and displays, especially if you have no audio guide with you.
Don’t miss the chance to walk on the outer edge of the Colosseum and look out through the large window-shaped openings. You’ll be amazed at the great views over the Roman Forum to the west, and you’ll also see the Arch of Constantine behind the Flavian Amphitheatre.
A Roma Pass can take all the stress out of your first visit to the Roman Colosseum. It will also help you get around the Eternal City quickly and efficiently in order to make the most of your time. This way, you can take advantage of all your free entries and discounts to more attractions, tours, and events.
Is the Roma Pass worth it for you? Ultimately only you can decide. Doing your research and knowing where to buy the Roma Pass, even at the last minute, will put your mind at ease about making an informed choice.
Work out your Rome itinerary, make the calculations and buy the Roma Pass if you’re convinced it’s going to save you money and time.