The Roma Pass was once a little-known trick of sophisticated travelers, but it has now become a must-have for anyone visiting Rome for the first time, especially during peak season. It saves you time and money, and makes it easy to use Rome’s public transportation. The Roma Pass costs 34 euro at the time of writing. The price includes, most importantly, free admittance to any two of Rome’s major sites and museums, discounts on all subsequent sites, and a three-day pass for Rome’s public transportation system, including buses, trams, and most Metro trains.
The Roma Pass is sold in a number of different locations, including all participating tourist sites and museums, and all tourist offices. I like to buy mine upon arriving in Rome at the tourist office in Rome’s main train station, Roma Termini. This allows me to immediately take advantage of the public transportation tickets. Further, the lines at the train station’s tourist office are usually shorter than those at popular sites and museums. To activate your public transportation ticket, fill out the back of the ticket with your name and the date. To get maximum usage, make sure you don’t fill out the ticket until you are ready to use the public transportation system.
Perhaps the most important aspect of the Roma Pass is that it allows you to skip the line into the Coliseum. The line to get into the Coliseum is often very long and the wait can take over an hour if you do not have the Roma Pass. The Ministry of Cultural Heritage has added a turnstile into the monument that is completely reserved for Roma Pass holders. It’s hard not to feel like a V.I.P. as you slip inside. If you do plan on visiting the Coliseum, make sure to visit it using one of your two free admittances: After visiting two sites for free, the Roma Pass offers discounts on all further sites, however you must stand in the usual ticketing line in order to claim them, negating the V.I.P. turnstile. Admittance to The Forum and Palatine Hill is included admittance to the Coliseum (15.50€).
The other major sites covered by the Roma Pass are the Galleria Borghese (reservation required), Baths of Diocletian (6.50€), Castle Sant’Angelo (5.00€), Capitoline Museum (6.50€), and the National Gallery of Modern and Contemporary Art (10.00€). Other discounts are offered for theater events, art openings, sight-seeing tours, dance performances, etc. Visit this site for a full listing.
One final incentive for getting the Roma Pass is that it provides holders with access to the 24-hour Medical Call Center of Travel Health MET. The call center provides information on public and private medical services and lists of location-specific and symptom-specific care facilities. It also provides emergency and specialty services “after explicit request.” This benefit of the Roma Pass provides good medical information, but the 24-hour Medical Call Center is not responsible for any costs of emergency services and should not be confused with traveler’s insurance or traveler’s medical insurance.
Additional Tips for Rome:
- Rome has so much history and culture, we highly recommend to join tours in Rome, at least for the main attractions, and then add a day or two where you just meander the city to soak up the atmosphere and explore on your own.
- If you visit in summer and during high tourist season, skip the line tickets are a must. Otherwise, you spend hours standing in the heat of the day and waste a lot of time.
- Remember to book your hotel in Rome ahead of time, so you can get a good deal and the location you want. Take a look at our guide to the various Rome neighborhoods.