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Need help interpreting Coop Culture website to book Colosseum tickets

Boy oh boy, their website is difficult to interpret.

I want to book a guided tour of the Colosseum and underground in english for me, my wife, and my 4 kids (ages 5, 10, 12, & 14). We'd like to take the tour on Saturday morning, April 11, 2020. My question has two parts:

  • Which tickets do I want to buy for my family?
  • When do the tickets that I want become available for purchase?

WHICH TICKETS SHOULD I GET FOR MY FAMILY?

The following is based on my research. Please correct me where I'm wrong.

  • It looks like I want to book the "FULL EXPERIENCE ENTRANCE + UNDERGROUND ENGLISH TOUR".
  • My wife and I will get "FULL ENTRANCE" tickets (33€ each)
  • My 14 yo will get "FREE TICKET + TOUR (people under 18)" (11€)
  • My 5 and 10 yo will get "FREE TICKET + FREE TOUR (people under 12)" (2€ each)
  • Does my 12 yo qualify for the "people under 12" ticket or will he need to get the "people under 18" ticket?
  • As US citizens, I'll remember to mark our nationality as "Stati Uniti".
  • We will print at home and we will need to stand in line to get our children's "free" tickets.
  • What else should I know?

WHEN DO TICKETS BECOME AVAILABLE TO PURCHASE ONLINE?

According to this page on their site, it looks like it's probably Thursday, February 20 (this Thursday) at 5:30p local time in Rome (11:30a EST--my timezone). Is this correct? If not, what is the correct time/date?

Pre-sale of Full Experience tickets with scheduled entrance time to the Colosseum Arena, both online and through call center.
Thursday 20 FEBRUARY 4:30 p.m.
Pre-sale of Full Experience tickets with scheduled entrance time to the Colosseum Underground, ONLINE ONLY
Thursday 20 FEBRUARY 5:30 p.m.

Thank you in advance for your wisdom and advice!

Posted by
1716 posts

As US citizens, I'll remember to mark our nationality as "Stati Uniti".

My English version of the site mentions the USA in the drop-down menu, not Stati Uniti. You are second on the list, after Italy and before China. Are you sure you are not using the google translated version of the site? This would also explain your difficulties in picking the right tickets for kids.

it looks like it's probably

Why probably? The site says Tuesday 20 and nothing else.

Posted by
11480 posts

John, I'll take a stab at this but honestly, I hate the coopculture website 'cause it IS confusing!

OK, so if you want the guided, full experience tour which includes the underground, this is the page you want:

https://ecm.coopculture.it/index.php?option=com_snapp&view=products&catalogid=4C0930AC-4328-54A9-269F-0167A81F48EB&snappTemplate=template3&lang=en

There are two guided tours in English to choose from, one which includes the underground, and one which includes the underground + third ring, and they are slightly different prices. Whatever you do, do NOT choose the first option at the top of the page titled (and misspelled) "FULL EXPERIENCE Entrance + Undegrounds". Notice that it doesn't have the little grey "Guided Visit" text box in the upper left of that selection? That means it's only a choice for guides or visitors bringing their own guides.

So choosing either of the other tour options for your family, you will book "Full entrance + guided tour" tickets for everyone in your party aged 18 and over. You'll book "Free ticket + tour for your family members ages 12 to 17 (your 12 and 14 year-olds fall into this category), and "Free ticket+ free tour" for the 10 and 5 year-olds. Good thing there aren't more of you as 6 tickets is the maximum you can book for the same visit! :O)

Be sure and bring your children's passports for the kids in case they are checking ages. This is a good rule of thumb for all ticketed attractions.

Yes, it looks like the quarterly release for these tickets is Thursday, 20 FEBRUARY 5:30 p.m. ROME TIME, online sales only. It looks like there's also a second, monthly opportunity on March 5th, although given the number of tickets you need, I'd be online and ready to jump on Feb 20th.

QUARTERLY OPENINGS APRIL – MAY – JUNE 2020:
"Pre-sale of Full Experience tickets with scheduled entrance time to the Colosseum Underground, ONLINE ONLY
Thursday 20 FEBRUARY 5:30 p.m.

MONTHLY OPENINGS:
"Pre-sale of Full Experience tickets with scheduled entrance time to the Colosseum Underground, ONLINE ONLY
5 MARCH at 5:30 pm, in the monthly availability of APRIL"

Hope this helps and please, if anyone sees any errors in the above, please make any necessary corrections!
(edited a typo)

Posted by
11480 posts

You're welcome, John. Good luck with those tickets!

Posted by
46 posts

John, were you able to book your tickets? The site is a bit of a mess, and the hotlink to buy colosseum tickets from the home page doesn't actually work. You have to navigate through a few different pages to find the ticket sales link that actually works.

Bookings for April and beyond actually opened on 17 Feb, but were messed up. That night many time slots appeared totally full; however, when I checked the next morning, many had opened up.

I'll be there on 11 April, too. Just to prevent any problems, I went ahead and booked a discounted ticket for our kid, even though she qualifies for free admission.

I was not given the print at home option. Were you? I assume it was due to purchasing a reduced price ticket, which will require some verification.

Posted by
11480 posts

WHOA!: The coopculture website now has this posted in the "News" column:

CLOSURE OF ARENA, UNDERGROUND AND THIRD LEVEL
Due to the complex setting-up and taking down of the Via Crucis during the Holy Easter, from April 1st until April 12th the access to the arena, the underground and the third level of the Coliseum will be closed to the public.”

They must have JUST posted this as it wasn't there when I answered John's question.
Obviously, bookings for any tours on the coopculture site which include these areas will be unavailable (John, this means the one your were looking at) and I'm certain they're refunding tours already booked.

Oh, and Via Crucis is the "Way of the Cross" procession.

Posted by
46 posts

Argh. That site really frustrates me. I'm at https://www.coopculture.it/en/ - and see no notice of closure in the News column. I don't doubt what you posted, I'm just griping about the site :) and that I probably just wasted my money on Colosseum tickets.

"arena, the underground and the third level" - isn't that pretty much the whole thing? They're still selling tickets for the days in question, fysa.

Posted by
12 posts

Whoa. Thanks, Kathy. Your direct link to the proper tour was so helpful to me. Would you please do that again? I suppose now I'm looking for a guided FULL EXPERIENCE tour in english and/or FULL EXPERIENCE + LEVEL III.

Planning to book in 34 minutes...

Posted by
11480 posts

John, that link is still there in the previous post above.
But if they're closing access to the underground, arena and 3rd ring, the tour we previously discussed will not be available on April 11! No idea what the deal is if they haven't altered the booking calendar to reflect that.

Morar, that closure notice is on this page, righthand column, scroll down to "News", right under the icons for "Services and Accessibility"

https://www.coopculture.it/en/the-colosseum.cfm

Your tickets should still allow you access to the general area and really, I don't think it would be a huge loss to have to miss the other parts. After all, they weren't accessible until not so many years ago, and I do read that not every visitor thought the underground worth the extra $ and messing around for tickets. Anyway, if you've already booked, just hang tight for the moment and see what they tell you? As often as coopculture has been known to make changes, I wouldn't be all that surprised if the decision is revised again!

Posted by
12 posts

Thanks for the support, Kathy.

I ended up getting guided tours of the Colosseum (not the underground) for the date and time we wanted. It's a bummer that they didn't post those blackout dates for the underground earlier...I could have saved a little mental anguish and purchased my tickets earlier. Oh well. It's done.

Thanks again!

Posted by
11480 posts

John, you'll be fine; what you WILL see will be plenty interesting!

I'm surprised myself that this closure was announced so late in the game, and I don't recall them closing quite as much of the thing for as long a time for this event before but c'est la vie. Now I'm just hoping they didn't make a date error or decide shorten the closures dates or something equally annoying.

Posted by
7 posts

Was on-line at 11:30 (5:30 Rome). Site was heavily bogged down. Only tix I can get on days I want are two tix 30 minutes apart (Full Experience-English Tour). Any thoughts? Only underground part is guided?

Posted by
7 posts

Thought about that even though I don't speak Spanish (but my wife does and did not want to translate for me). Like many tix systems, tix get held in queue by people looking, then system times out and releases if they don't buy. I eventually found a pair. After I completed purchase, found another pair on different day that weren't there when I looked. So keep trying, but quickly would be the advice I think.