Is there an entry fee to enter the Saint Peter’s Basilica in the Vatican?

If you’re visiting the Vatican, or Rome in general, you likely have St Peter’s Basilica on your itinerary. As such, you may be worried that it could be a pricey endeavor, given its fame and importance. Is there a fee for entering St Peter’s Basilica? Do you have to buy tickets? Let’s go over that today.


Entry fee for St Peter’s Basilica


The matter is thankfully simple with an unfortunate catch – entry to St Peter’s Basilica is free. It is. And yes, there’s a small ‘but’. The entry is free but there’s always a massive queue of people waiting to enter the Basilica, especially in high season and during Christmas. Consequently, waiting in line to enter the basilica can take up a couple of hours. If you value your mental health a bit more, there’s an alternative solution which is a lot less free but does get you there right away.


How to skip the line in St Peter’s Basilica?


There are two options. The first is to purchase a skip-the-line tour of St Peter’s Basilica. It used to be the case that there was an under €20 audio-guide with an option to skip the queue, though this seems to be currently unavailable. Still, you can find skip-the-line tours for about 30 quid or so, which also include the dome. It’s pricey, but that’s one way of doing it. 

The second option is the Vatican Museum tour.


Vatican Museums & Sistine Chapel & St Peter’s Basilica tour


You can also opt for tours of the Vatican Museum & the Sistine Chapel which sometimes include the St Peter’s Basilica. These tours cost a tiny bit more, at around €38 currently, but they do offer a lot in the process. You can find one here. Make sure that you’re visiting with the tour on a day St Peter’s Basilica is open for tours, meaning on mornings and not on Wednesdays. 



There’s no cost for entry to St Peter’s Basilica and it’s unlikely that’s going to change anytime soon. Still, the queues can get so massive in the high season that it is basically a paid attraction. We’d heavily recommend that, if you want to pay a visit to the St Peter’s Basilica, you do so in the low season. That way you may find a queue that will only take about 15 minutes and not several hours.


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