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Colosseum tickets - Did we get scammed?

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Hi Experts,


Background:  We did a med tour 4 years ago and are headed back next year for a land tour with some 1st timers and I want to be sure we don't make the same mistake this time around. 


I had booked our tickets for the Colosseum on the official website.  They were the basic ones, not 3rd ring as the website had technical failure and I missed out.  So, our RIL driver drops us off and pointed out the direction to the entrance.  He tells us to figure an hour in order to keep our schedule that I had planned.


We head down the steps where there is a massive line (no surprise) and then a "guide" tells us that even with our pre purchased tickets we will still have to stand in the mile long line to get in but for $20 per person we can join a group and get in without waiting.  Since we only had an hour or so, we opted to cough up the $20 and join the "no waiting" (but in actuality it took another 10 minutes while they rounded up more idiots) line.  As a side note, the guide did give narrative and the tour included time at the forum but we had to break loose in order to get out in an hour.  To this day, I don't know why none of us walked over to the guards and asked, maybe we were all overwhelmed at the sight of the Colosseum.  The funny thing is, we were in Barcelona days earlier and while trying to purchase tickets before leaving our apartment I had a problem (website hung up on the payment page).  We walked over there ticket less (with a 4 hour wait to get in) and while debating what to do, my father in law suggested I talk to a guard who sent me to a booth.  I gave my cc# or reference, not sure anymore and she was able to locate the reservation.  She took my payment and we were in, no 4 hour wait.  So why we didn't do that I just don't know.


So, what is the correct procedure?  Do you need to exchange this ticket/voucher and where you go with your online ticket/voucher?  Would we have been able to get right in?  We will have more time but I would hate to waste it.


Also, me being lazy, how far in advance do the tickets go on sale?  Is it six months?  We were on a cruise back then and RC did not have their "zoom" wifi just yet so hence the reason I missed the 3rd ring. It was a painful experience to try to purchase the tickets while on the ship, I consider myself lucky I got anything.





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Posted (edited)

Since it's after the fact now and it sounds like everything worked out, I'm not sure if you're asking. Did someone try to cheat you or did they help you? From where I sit it sounds like for $20 this guide did an OK job and kept you basically on schedule. Honestly, I spent....I don't know how long in the Forum and didn't even go into the Colosseum—I know—but I truly had no interest in going in to see where people sat to watch people get mauled by lions or gladiators or however it went down. It was enough for me to see the structure from outside. Anyway.....


....Mission accomplished, yes? Then I'd say everything was worth it and for only an extra $20. An extra $100? Maybe not. An extra $50....depends on maybe some other variables. But $20? I think yes, given the fact that it sounds like you may not have had the right ticket.


I don't know what "3rd Ring" is....usually that's at the Opera, or at least it's the place where I have heard it used but ordinarily for the Colosseum/Forum travelers purchase the "Fast Track/Skip the Line" tickets on...and I was on it the other day website....looking for a friend going their first time to Rome....(when I went to the Forum it was free, didn't need a ticket)....there are a few different sites but I was looking at Rometoolkit, but I might use the ilcolosseo.it site I don't know....as long as I got the same thing, same price; Colosseum at a certain time (you wait a few minutes but you get in, no kilometers long queue) and that's that. Kind of like how it goes with Rail tickets (mostly) when you can purchase through a country site, rail europe, or other place but more or less (shop wisely) end up with what you need at more or less (mind currency fluctuations) same price.


So I'd say if you got what you needed at the time, despite maybe not having the right ticket, or....even if you had the right ticket and ended up paying $20 more anyway, it sounded like you really weren't sure and were indeed overwhelmed by the colosseum—yes, it's quite a thing—plus, you're in a very busy place, just got out of your RIL, etc etc, weren't sure if you had the right ticket or whatever....it could have gone crazy but it didn't. I think you did great, got the history, got the Forum and no, not robbed. Maybe someone just saw, or heard, you wonder "do we have skip the line tickets?" and jumped in to help. There are such people in the world. I have had people be good and kind help me on trips and despite all the questions we get here about people expecting or thinking they might get robbed...strangely (or not) there aren't many people coming here to post very often that it happens. Sure it can...but not really as often as is suspected. Otherwise, no one would go.


I'm glad it worked out, you got to see these two wonderful, historic places AND also everything worked out in Barcelona where my friend is now (same one I researched the aforementioned Forum website!) with the prebooked tix. It's tough traveling on spotty wifi....or just making plans on international websites. 


And a good rule of thumb with getting scammed is....you kind of know in an instant. Like, it's either "oh yes, this is money well spent or glad that was an option!" OR "why?' 'no!' 'that was useless!' 'I feel used!' .....see where I'm going? I'm thinking at worst, you're glad it was an option, so then you definitely didn't get scammed. That was a bonafide service. 😉 Everyone gets started somehow.  


(Hopefully things will go well next time but if it's only ever a little something like this or whatever, it'll be ok 🙂 )



Edited by Host Bonjour

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