Prague Skip The Line Tips
I’ve been seeing “Prague Skip the Line” ads over the last few years and it’s obviously touting faster entry to places so lets get an understanding of what you should expect from an offer like that. There can be more than a 100% mark-up for that service so just check if you think it’s worth the extra money compared with alternatives that you can easily do for yourself. Here are a few REAL ways of actually reducing or even eliminating your attraction ticket/entry waiting time and saving you some money.
Prague City Cards
Yes it will save you money provided that you plan your route carefully and be realistic about how long you may spend at each attraction. If you are going to use this for the Jewish Museum sites then check further down this page for time saving tips because you still have to get the Jewish admission ticket. I spent some time breaking down the offer of the two most popular Prague City Cards called Cool Pass and Prague Visitor Pass so you can easily see which may suit you on the City Card Comparison post. Avoid using this on Mondays because that is the day when many Museums close.
Prague Castle – Entering the Complex – Save Time on Queues
There are four possible entries to the Castle complex, 1) the Main Front Entry (walking up the hill), 2) the rear Powder Bridge entry (from the No.22 tram stop) and 3) the rear Old Castle Steps entry. Entries 1 and 2 will have the biggest queues but also the most number of security staff. Entry 3 (Old Castle Steps) has less of a queue but fewer security staff so you may end up waiting longer. In peak times expect up to a 30 minute waiting period. Not everyone realises there is a 4th entry during the peak summer season (April to October). If you take tram 22 towards entry 2 above then get off one tram stop earlier at “Kralovsky Letohradek” and cross the road. From here you go through the security entry, walk through the Imperial Gardens and enter the Castle complex just after the Powder Bridge security. This will save you 15-20 minutes in peak season.
Prague Castle – Entering Historic Buildings – Advance Purchase
Tip 1: If you are aged 70 or over then do not order tickets in advance because you can get them for FREE when you visit the castle as long as you present your passport as proof of ID.
Tip 2: Tour companies will charge for buying Castle entry tickets in advance to save you some queuing time and if you go to my Prague Castle Tours page you’ll find FOUR ways for skipping the ticket line depending on whether you want to self-guide or be part of a tour.
Tip 3: The official ticket from the Prague Castle website takes you to a company called Ticketportal. You must present a physically printed ticket at the Castle. You can print this at home but if you leave it until you come to Prague then you have to pick up your tickets at a Ticketportal hub and guess what? they do NOT have an office at Prague Castle.
If you want to buy a ticket after you have entered the Castle complex then my advice is to go to the ticket office in the third courtyard almost opposite the entry to the ST Vitus Cathedral entry.
Prague Castle Licenced Guide Tours
To avoid queues to the Castle historic buildings consider doing a guided tour with a Licenced Castle Guide (bookable in advance, see the Prague Castle Tours post for contact info) which can be as short as 60 minutes but you skip any queue for both ST Vitus Cathedral and the Old Royal Palace. The Castle “reservatic” system may show no spaces available but contact them directly especially if you have languages other than English you may get lucky.
Prague Old Town Hall
There’s no queue to go into the Old Town Hall but if you want to go up to the Tower Viewing Gallery (or historic parts of the town hall like the museum) you’ll need to buy a ticket. This usually requires you to go up to the first or third floor ticket offices of the Old Town Hall. People that offer “Prague Skip the Line” here are basically buying your ticket in advance. You can do that on your own. Go to the Advance Ticket Booking Page for the Prague Old Town Hall select the required tickets and you’ll receive the necessary QR codes for entry. Just note that this gets you past the ticket queue but you still may have to queue to get up to the Tower Gallery. TIP: Get there early to be able to book onto an official tour in your language. See the Town Hall Pass below for other discount options.
Prague Town Hall Pass
This offers a discounted way of seeing the Old Town Hall, Gothic Chapel, underground areas and includes TWO visits to the tower gallery so you’ll see the view day and night. It also includes the New Town Tower gallery and the Baroque Chapel. Read more on the Town Hall Pass post.
There is a company here that will sort out entry to several venues. Below you’ll find two separate bundles. One is the Prague Castle, Old Town Hall and Jewish Museum ticket bundle. The other is the Prague Castle, National Museum and Jewish Museum bundle. Basically you buy a voucher online and exchange it at their office close to the Old Town Square at Maiselova 5. TIP: You don’t actually go to the door at Maiselova 5, their office is 2 shops to the left. This will not save you any money but it will save time. Be aware that tickets are valid on the day of collection and the following day so get there early.
The “Prague Skip the Line” offer will be to buy a pre-dated ticket (tickets are valid for 7 days) to be delivered to you on a specified date whilst in Prague or as part of an organised tour. There are various locations for the Jewish Museum in Prague and the location with the biggest queue will be Pinkas Synagogue because it’s also the entry to the Old Jewish Cemetery so people are queuing to BUY tickets. So how to beat this queue? Go to Maisel Synagogue or Jewish info centre (next section) which are only 250 metres away in Maiselova and buy your ticket there. Then when you go to Pinkas Synagogue you’ll walk past any queue, show your ticket to the first security guard, stay to the left of the Pinkas ticket office lane divider and go through the turnstile.
Jewish Museum – Info Centre and Audioguide
Also in Maiselova (Maiselova 15) is the Jewish Information Centre. Again, just like above you can buy regular tickets here and there’s usually not a queue but this time you have the option of the audioguide. It’s more expensive obviously (about CZK200 more). Details at http://www.jewishmuseumprague.com/reserve but note this is just to reserve the audioguide part before collecting that and your tickets at the office so if you don’t want the audio part just turn up on the day. This location also has a cafe/wc (very important as there are not many cafes or rest rooms in the area).
National Museum (Wenceslas Square)
To skip the queue for tickets simply go to the National Museum App page. Download, open and buy whatever tickets you need (remember to buy the Photo permission ticket). Skip the ticket line and scan your QR code via the app to enter. If you don’t want to use the App and there’s a huge queue at the National Museum, cross the road to the modern part of the museum, buy tickets and enter there then use the underground passage to come back into the main building.
Tours run from 9-30am to 5-30pm (can be up to 6pm in peak season) and it’s a 50 minute tour. You can skip the line here by getting an E-Ticket. Just go to the Klementinum website and scroll down to the bottom of the page to see ticket booking details. NOTE that at the time of writing the regular tour price for the Klementinum is CZK300 but the e-ticket is CZK270 so you are saving on queueing time and a little money.
Prague Zoo always has a queue especially in the morning but you can skip this with an e-Ticket. Go to the Zoo e-shop at https://vstupenka.zoopraha.cz/ and buy the required tickets. You’ll receive these as QR codes in an email. When you get to the zoo you’ll go straight to the turnstiles and use the associated QR code reader to get in. Prague Zoo tickets are valid for 6 months from purchase.
Prague Main Train Station
Not a Prague Attraction but if you’ve arrived at Prague Main Train Station and you need a transport pass (24 hours or 72 hours) then you could be looking at a fairly lengthy queue at the DPP booths. If you want to pay by card then the fastest way is to use the machines close to the metro entry stairs (these are either next to or directly opposite the DPP booths) but they only work with either contactless or chip/PIN cards. Otherwise you’ll have to queue but if you’ve got cash then alternatively head over to the North (Severni) side of the station and you’ll find “Tourist Point” which sells passes for cash. Or here’s a guide on How to Use a Touch-Screen Ticket Machine.
Things to Note
1) In general, “Skip the Line” offers means skipping the line for buying the ticket, not for entering the attraction.
2) If it relates to a restaurant then expect it will allow you to go to the front of the queue and wait for the next table but check carefully the Terms and Conditions because it may be date/time limited.
3) Prague Card (Cool Pass) users do NOT get any priority entry.
Hope that helps but if you get caught in a queue in the city please let me know and I’ll update this post if I find a faster way in.