Omnia Card to Enhance Rome Tour Experience

Package Promises Quick Access to Museums

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ROME, JULY 18, 2011 ( The city of Rome and the Holy See’s tourism agency are collaborating in an initiative to aid tourists to the Eternal City.

The Omnia card was presented Friday by Rome’s mayor and deputy mayor, and Monsignor Liberio Andreatta, vice president of the Opera Romana Pellegrinaggi, and Monsignor Cesare Atuire, its administrator delegate.

The card will be available soon and will include tickets to Vatican sites as well as the services that already existed with the Roma Pass card (

Essentially, the Omnia card is a package of services for tourists and pilgrims. It is valid for three days after its first use. It includes public transportation as well as visits to the Vatican Museums, the Sistine Chapel, St. Peter’s Basilica and the Vatican Gardens, the Basilica and cloister of St. John Lateran, the Mamertina Prison with a multi-media visit, the Colosseum, the Palatine and the Roman Forum.

Monsignor Atuire explained to ZENIT that tourists and pilgrims will be able to visit the Vatican Gardens aboard an ecological panoramic minibus. At present, possible courses are being tested and an official announcement will be made at the end of July. The tours should begin in the next few months, with audio-guides in five languages for those who have an Omnia card.

The card «will cost €85 ($120) for adults and €50 ($70) for children, [but] in reality it will save half a day of queues and give access to various services and places. It also implies a savings, as tickets purchased individually cost almost €110 ($155),» explained Monsignor Atuire.

Moreover, «every now and then we will feature on the Internet and in pamphlets the different religious and cultural celebrations; hence, it won’t be something static, but will have great dynamism,» he said. «Times can also be chosen, for example, a morning can be spent in the Vatican area, in the Museums, in the Basilica, but also in the Gardens and in Castel Sant’Angelo. In the afternoon, one can go to the Imperial Forums, visit the Mamertina Prison and the Colosseum. One can also go to the center and walk around with an audio-guide, visiting churches and monuments, but also neighborhoods such as Trastevere or the Ghetto.

«The following day, one can go to the area of St. John Lateran, visit the cloister, etc.»

Compared to long queues for the Vatican Museums, the monsignor explained that «we have tickets every hour and at times every half hour.»

During the press conference, Monsignor Andreatta specified that the new card will smooth the transition between tourist sites belonging to the municipality and those belonging to the Vatican — «two different states but in the same city.»

Hence, the Capitoline Museums, the Vatican Museums, the Colosseum and the Vatican Gardens can be visited with the same pass. The card recognizes that the tourists of both sites are the same people, so Omnia «is the fruit of good understanding and shared objectives.»

The Web site of the Omnia card has been active since Friday, Cards can be purchased on the Internet, and within the next few days, at various spots in Italy.

Monsignor Andreatta specified to ZENIT that «those coming for the first time will be able to have a general view of the city, I would say in a complete way. For those coming for the second or third time, we offer readings directed to the cultural, religious, archeological and historic needs and exigencies, to be able to offer itineraries or visits that normally are not made.»

«For example, they will be able to visit some discoveries we’ve made; also the Mamertina Prison, where St. Peter was made prisoner and which we have revitalized today; as well as the inside of the Basilica of St. John Lateran. There are also new catacombs that have never been visited, and excavations in the Basilica of St. Cecilia that are extraordinary,» he specified. In regard to itineraries, he proposed: «A city with a more-than-2,000-year history should be visited more than 2,000 times.»

Solutions for families

During the course of the press conference, Rome’s deputy mayor also mentioned a family-friendly agreement that has been made with hotels and restaurants.

The director-general of the Italian Parents’ Movement (MOIGE), Antonio Affinita, who is taking part in this project, explained that services for families will include discounts and children’s menus. These services are set to begin before Christmas.

The hotels and restaurants that join this initiative will have an identifying sign, and there will be an Internet list of establishments that have joined the network.

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