Please sign in to post.

'Head of the Line" privileges at museums

Do the tours include priority admission to the larger (and smaller?) museums?

It would be a shame to spend half my vacation on an admission line.

Posted by
6841 posts

Guided Tour groups usually have priority and a time to enter.
At the blockbuster museums, the long lines are usually customers not part of tour groups that need to buy tickets.
Everyone goes through some kind of security check at the entrance which is another line.

Posted by
1038 posts

Plenty of museums now (for example the Uffizi and the Accademia in Florence) have timed-entrance advance tickets available on-line, especially now in pandemic times. Check websites of the museums in which you may be interested, and plan ahead.

Posted by
1104 posts

Most of the tours we took had a skip the line feature which we paid more for for the exact reason you mention, time saver. This was very useful as the Colosseum in Rome, huge lines but a separate entrance for tour groups. Like others mentioned, check to museum website to see if there is a timed entrance. But with things rapidly changing you may need to check back closer to your travel date to make sure everything is the same. We recently purchased tickets for an event with the website specifically stating limited capacity for our dates, that has now changed and the capacity is 3x the amount for our dates, had I known I might not have purchased tickets.

Posted by
5975 posts

I think OP was asking specifically about RSE tours, so bmccarthy97, maybe ask about the specific tour or sights you are looking at, and people will tell you their specific experiences.

Posted by
4697 posts

I've done a couple of RS tours, in Italy and Spain. The only times we spent significant time in lines (maybe 15 minutes at most) were the Vatican and the Alhambra, both extremely crowded sights. The guides seemed to be working hard to minimize line-standing time. At the Alhambra we may have been a little early for our designated entry time, I'm not sure.

The way to spend half your vacation on an admission line would be to go independently without planning ahead, buying a multi-museum pass, buying an advance ticket, or reserving a timed entry. With proper planning, or a well-run tour, you'll pass ahead of all the people who didn't do those things. It's true that everyone has to go through security at many museums and other sights, but in my experience that doesn't take long. When I visited the Capitoline Museum in Rome I hadn't pre-bought a ticket, and I spent at least an hour in a slow-moving line, some if it watching tour guides pick up blocks of tickets for their groups who entered well before I did. (The museum was worth the wait though.)

Posted by
2 posts

Thank you all for the replies. They were packed with the info I was looking for.

Happy Travels!

Posted by
4749 posts

Timed entry tickets thanks to Covid may be here to stay, as it allows places to control the queues.

Nothing hacks locals and other tourists off as much as tour groups (who pay less as they get a group discount) queue jump. Why is your time more valuable than anybody else’s? It isn’t.