Note on future of small group tours in Rome

We at Real Rome Tours have always based our mission on bringing the very best quality to you, at the lowest possible price.

To achieve this, we asked you what you wanted, and have always delivered on our promises to bring to you what is most important:

  • A quality tour guide, who speaks perfect English and is not only knowledgeable, but also friendly and funny.
  • A skip the line service, so that none of your tour time is wasted.
  • Quality radios, so that you can take photographs and stray from your guide without missing out on his commentary.
  • Small Groups – maximum 13 people – so that you can enjoy the tour and interact with your guide and with others in your group, instead of feeling like part of a herd.

However, the future of small group tours in Rome is now under serious threat.

The powers-that-be in Rome, are unfortunately the same as in any other capitalist country across the world, and are interested only in your money. They do not like small-group companies, as they want tour operators to bring people in large groups of at least 50, in to their museums and other tourist attractions, herd them through, get their money, and get them out.

The latest attack on companies offering small group tours in Rome has come from Coopculture, the company which currently holds the rights for selling and organising the tickets to the Colosseum. From July 1st, if we wish to use the fast-track entrance which is available only to tour operators, we must purchase 14 adult tickets in advance. This applies even if people book a private tour with us – even if it is only for 2 people we have to pay for 14 entrance tickets. Otherwise, we can still purchase our tickets in advance and skip the normal ticket line, but we do not avail of the instant entrance that the group entrance arch unless we pay them over the odds.

Although we are not giving up the fight, this makes it very difficult to maintain the four pillars above, upon which we have based our reputation since 2007. At present, our prices remain at the same levels as 2016, but it will be very difficult to continue to offer group tours at our current prices unless we consistently fill our groups to our self-imposed maximum of 13 people. If our groups are regularly less than this, we will either have to raise prices to pay for the extra, unused tickets, or we will have to purchase the correct number of tickets for our groups and lose the fastest entry to the Colosseum.

For now, we have not made any changes to our group sizes or to our prices, and we remain hopeful that we will reach our full group size of 13 people regularly enough in the summertime so that we can continue to offer you the best quality tour while keeping prices as low as possible.

If you wish to book the Ancient Rome & Colosseum tour and keep the small-group tour a reality, you can do so by clicking on the link below:

Ancient Rome: Lives of the Romans

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