Prague Card – The Prague Tourist Card

The Prague Card (Now called Cool Pass)

What Does The Prague City Card (Cool Pass) Do?

Basically, for those prepared to do a little planning, it is a money saving way of exploring Prague with free entry to many attractions plus many discounted options. I’ve put TWO options below.

prague card multi attraction pass

What are the Prague City Card Options?

NOTE: I’ve now written a Prague City Card Comparison post to help you understand what’s common between the Cool Pass and the Prague Visitor Pass and what’s unique to each card. This will help you decide which is best for you.

First I’ll describe the Cool Pass method and then I’ll give you the Prague Visitor Pass method. Cool Pass is exactly the same as the old “Prague Card” and has been designed to be paperless i.e. you have this as an app on your phone although you can have the original plastic card if you are prepared to go to one of the tourist offices in the centre. Either way, when you first use the card or app then you have activated the time period which is 1, 2 or 3 days.

First of all you decide if you want the physical version or the app version (most people go for the app). Then you decide on the duration which is 1, 2 or 3 days. That’s pretty much it. If you elected for the physical card version then you’ll be going to a tourist office in Prague to collect that. If you went for the app version then that will be on your phone when you arrive. Either way, the first time you use the card or you scan the app QR code at an attraction then you have activated the validity time period. If the Cool Pass allows free entry then you go straight in. If the Cool Pass allows discounted entry then you pay the difference. Note that this is not a “Skip the Line” offer. You will still have to join any ticket office queues.

How Much Does It Cost and Is It Worth It?

Prices will vary from @50 Euros. The trick here is in the planning. If you plan a route with realistic times to see the most important things for you then you may be able to get away with a single-day ticket but in my experience if you want to include the Castle, Jewish Museum, river cruise and other museums you will need at least 2 days. As the difference in price between the 2-day and the 3-day is only about 10 Euros then I’d just book a 3-day ticket to give you some flexibility.

IMPORTANT NOTE (Validity): The moment you collect the physical card you will be expected to sign it. There is a separate area for the date. You fill in the date of the first day when you intend to use it so then the validity of the card is based on consecutive days, not hours. So be aware that regardless of whether you use the card or the app, your time starts on that first day and not “x” hours from the time you first started to use it (see the tips and tricks below). So to be clear, if you buy a 2-day card and the first time you use the card or scan the app QR code is any time on Monday, then the card is valid until 2359 on Tuesday.

Does The Prague City Card (Cool Pass) Include Public Transport?

After February 1st 2019 the Public Transport part is OPTIONAL i.e. you buy it separately if you want it either from the place that sells the Prague Card or just buy the necessary regular DPP passes to cover your stay. If you are 60 or over then check the Exploring Prague Over 60 post because you can get discounted/free transport.

Another Option – Prague Visitor Pass

There are two main differences between the Cool Pass and the Prague Visitor Pass (often called the “Official” Prague City Card). First is that this INCLUDES PUBLIC TRANSPORT. Secondly it is valid for 2 days, 3 days or 5 days so for people staying longer in the city I think the Prague Visitor Pass is a better option. When you download the Prague Visitor Pass app, each ticket purchased will have it’s own unique QR code. On public transport you show this QR code to a ticket inspector. If you are claiming a student or child discount then have your passport with you to prove the identity and age.

Who would use a Prague City Card?

Prague City Card Primary offers: Most offers are free entry with a few tourist discounts and mostly to Museums, Galleries and main attractions but it is expanding more into “tour” discounts and transfer discounts etc.
Possible user: Primarily somebody on a long weekend trip who wants to visit the major sites/museums/galleries plus special interest sites on a free-entry basis. Somebody who is not bothered about using public transport but, may want it as an option. See the Prague card test lower down the page.

Tips and Tricks For Using Any Prague City Card

  • Start your first day as early in the morning as possible to make full use of the card.
  • Spend time planning your route BEFORE you activate the card. Some attractions open early, others close late so you need to understand what you can fit into any given day. You’ll make savings by visiting a lot of places for a short amount of time. Be realistic about how much time you will want to spend at any given place.
  • Separate “FREE” from “DISCOUNTED” so you know when you will need to pay something extra.
  • Try to avoid using the card on Mondays as that is the day of the week when many museums close.
  • This is not Skip the Line in that you still need to queue for the ticket office at any attraction because, as you’ll find below, your card has to be validated for that attraction.
  • Carry some kind of ID.

How I used my Prague City Card:

This test was a long time ago and prices have changed but the rules are still the same i.e. lots of places and a little time in each. I used the Cool Pass option as I already had a transport pass. I was only interested in the “free-entry” tourist attraction options and that is primarily why I bought this Prague card. I decided on a fairly standard tourist route i.e. a fair selection of Prague’s Top Attractions (Petrin, Prague Castle, Mala Strana, Charles Bridge, Old Town, New Town). I started at Petrin Tower (100kc) and mirror maze (50kc). I walked over to Strahov Monastery and then over to the castle where the card is valid for route B (250kc). I went in St Vitus Cathedral, Old Royal Palace, St Georges Basilica and Golden Lane. I walked back to the front of the castle and over to Sternberg Palace (150kc). I walked down the hill into Mala Strana and to the St Nicholas Church (100kc) then over to the Charles Bridge towers (95kc each). The Prague Card had now paid for itself. I walked to the Old Town Square town hall (250kc) then over to the Stone Bell house (90kc). After lunch I went in the Fine Arts Museum (50kc) and then went up to the National Museum in Wenceslas Square (150kc but, does not include special exhibitions). I only used it for one day and it had paid for itself within 6 hours. I imagine if you sat down and made a plan, that you could see a lot for free in a long weekend. I see no reason to buy the travel pass if you plan your route well.

My Own Guided Tours – Cheaper Than You Think!

prague tour guide jason next to the vltava river
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