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Most parents know that finding the right activities can make a family vacation. Luckily, that’s where CityPass comes in.
CityPass is a little-known gem that helps families experience a destination’s most popular sights and attractions while saving them time and money. CityPass booklets are available in 12 cities (Atlanta, Boston, Chicago, Dallas, Houston, New York, Philadelphia, San Francisco, Seattle, Los Angeles/Southern California, Tampa Bay, Fla., and Toronto), with admission to top attractions at up to 50 percent off. CityPass bundles prepaid admissions into one booklet, and families can visit as many attractions as they wish.
There is also an option to choose between two popular sights in one city, which is great when everyone doesn’t want to do the same thing. For example, in Boston, the adventurers in the group can choose a Boston Harbor cruise, while family members who aren’t as outdoorsy can go to the Museum of Fine Arts.
Deborah Wakefield, vice president of communications and public relations for CityPass, notes that Atlanta passes in particular are great for families because they include two new attractions: the College Football Hall of Fame and the Center for Civil and Human Rights.
When families travel, there’s always the complication of transportation — and the bigger the family, the more complicated it gets. But CityPass has this challenge covered. For instance, the Philadelphia booklet includes unlimited on/off privileges onboard trolleys and double-decker buses that access 27 stops. Wakefield adds that San Francisco passes include transportation passports with unlimited cable car, bus and streetcar rides for seven days.
CityPass holders also have expedited entry to many sights — and all Chicago attractions have VIP/Fast Pass entry. While families cannot bypass security screening at attractions requiring it, skipping main ticket lines eliminates — or at least reduces — wait times, which is especially nice for families with young kids.
Some experiences are so great, you just have to do them twice. CityPass gets that: New York CityPass includes two visits to the iconic Empire State Building so families can see daytime views, then return to see the city lights at night. Similarly, the Seattle passes include tickets to see the spectacular sights from atop the Space Needle twice within 24 hours — once during the day and once in the evening.
Net rates are available to qualifying travel trade for all CityPass programs, excluding the Southern California CityPass and New York C3. (Note: Disney representatives should be contacted for rates and details on the Southern California CityPass. More information can be found on the CityPass website.) Children’s prices vary depending on destination.
Insider Tips from Tin Bui, communications and public relations coordinator for CityPass- Show CityPass booklets to cashiers at attraction gift shops for discounts on purchases.
- Chicago and Dallas are the only passes with mobile vouchers that can be used instantly.
- Guests can request free welcome messages on Skydeck Chicago’s electronic wall.
- After purchasing Houston’s CityPass, get free timed tickets to tour Johnson Space Center.