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Entry Fees

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Author RobWilson
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#1 | Posted: 25 Oct 2008 20:31 
Entry fees are one my biggest bugbears when it comes to WHSs. When something is added to the list fees often just seem to rocket. Many countries just simply charge an outrageous fee that often discriminates against non-nationals, the Taj Mahal and the Pyramids being prime examples. However, credit where credit is due and that goes to South Korea.
Jongmyo Temple - about $1
Chungdeokgung - regular tour $3, special tours about $5, self tour on Thursdays $15
Bulguksa - $4
Seokguram - $4
Everything else in Gyeongju - about $1 each
Heinsa - $2

Also, Kudos to Oman where Bat and the Al-Falaj's are free. However protection of these sites is woefully inadequate.

Any other good examples of visitors not being ripped off?

Rob

Author Xeres
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#2 | Posted: 26 Oct 2008 06:44 
I would assume that all historic cities are free. they can't just prohibit people from coming in if they don't pay an entry fee, people live there.
I agree completely in the case of Joggins Fossil Cliffs, whose price went up just before becoming a WHS, in anticipation.
i think some of the major sites; machu picchu, taj mahal, yosemite, ect, may have expensive entry fees, but not because of them being a world heritage site

Author meltwaterfalls
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#3 | Posted: 27 Oct 2008 09:40 
I always sing the praises of the Plantin Moretus Museum but they were particularly good.

The entry was 4, but because two minor rooms were out of bounds when we visited they took a euro of the price. The excellent audio guide was also completly free.

Just checked and if you are under 26 the entance fee has now dropped to 1.

Cathedrals are always the ones that get me. In many countries they are free to enter; France, Germany, Belgium, Italy... But in quite a few there are some pretty high entrance fees.

The UK is by far the worst for this 12 (15, $20) to enter Westminster Abbey, 7 (9, $12) for Canterbury. In some when you get in you have to pay extra to get into crypts or museums. It is one of the things I least enjoy when travlling around the UK

Author RobWilson
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#4 | Posted: 31 Oct 2008 00:26 | Edited by: RobWilson 
The UK sites are very expensive, but the UK is a very expensive country and they are very expensive for EVERYBODY, not just tourists. I can handle expensive entry fees, even if I don't like it when I am not being charged 25 times the price simply because I am a tourist.
Look at it this way: Westminster Abbey is $20 to enter. The Taj Mahal (last time I went) was $20 to enter, but was only about 20 cents for a local. If that logic was employed at Westminster Abbey then it'd be charging $200 for the priviledge. The same goes for the Pyramids, Machu Picchu and so many other sites.

Author meltwaterfalls
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#5 | Posted: 3 Nov 2008 09:00 
Just to clarify, it wasn't necessaily that UK sites were very expensive to enter (Many western European sites would be effected by this).

It is more that they charge a lot of money to enter places of worship, it just seems to counter to the spirit of the place.

I know several of them say that they will not charge if you wish to come into pray or contemplate, but when you are confronted by big gates and turnstyles this doesn't seem to be an viable option.

I guess the sustainable funding of sites across the world is a big issue and everywhere has their own method of dealing with it. Some of these sit well with me, whilst others don't

Author Solivagant
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#6 | Posted: 3 Nov 2008 09:52 | Edited by: Solivagant 
It is interesting to consider the differing cultural backgrounds which lead to these different approaches on "entry charges" as between countries. Eg Cathedrals in UK. I am happy to accept that UK cathedrals are not making a "killing" by charging entry and that they actually need every penny they can get (Durham, by the way, doesn't charge!). But cathedrals cost a lot of money to keep in other countries too - so how do they manage without charging entrance fees? Is their basic income greater? If so - why? I know that some European countries (Germany, Austria, Switzerland, Scandinavia) have a "Church Tax" operating on income which might give them a better income than the C of E which, despite being an "established church", receives no monies from the UK government - but this certainly doesn't apply in the southern European "catholic" countries. Perhaps the churches there are better endowed and attended by more genuine "believers" who stump up a bigger part of their own income? Any ideas?

Author meltwaterfalls
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#7 | Posted: 5 Nov 2008 12:53 
I always wondered how other coutries manage to fund Cathedrals (as well as effecient cheap train systems). I was told that in France they essentially have the same status as Museums and are funded accordingly.

I am glad to hear that Durham doesn't charge but suggests a donation. The major museums in London do the same and I much prefer this set up, not just because I can get away without paying.

Having just come back from Spain they seemed to charge a fairly high entry fee for the cathedrals 8 each in Cordoba and Seville.
In Malta as well the St John's Co Cathedral charged c.6 and the cathedral in Mdina was only slighly less. I would guess that in these countries would fit into the southern European Catholic countries, but still the entrance fee is reasonably high.

Author Solivagant
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#8 | Posted: 12 Oct 2014 10:46 | Edited by: Solivagant 
meltwaterfalls:
I always wondered how other countries manage to fund Cathedrals (as well as effecient cheap train systems). I was told that in France they essentially have the same status as Museums and are funded accordingly.


Further to this I note the latest review of Canterbury (by a Brit) comparing (unfavourably!!) the entry cost(s) there with the free entry at Aachen ("Visited Aachen cathedral last Sunday, open and welcoming to all ... and then Canterbury the next day. Judging by the way it is difficult to even walk round the cathedral without parting with a substantial amount of money one may conclude that it is run by a firm of accountants or bankers.") .
The entry fees for Canterbury are 10.50/ 13+ (valid for 12 months). Westminster Abbey is a massive 18.00 (!!), York charges 10.00, Winchester is 7.50 (also for 12mths) whilst Durham is free (Donation requested) and Lincoln allows free visits to the main nave etc. So - a variety of practices.

Not all German Cathedrals are "free to enter" - last year we found that Naumberg charged 6.50 - but, in general, it does seem that charging for visitors to enter the main structure (excluding towers, treasuries, crypts etc) is more likely to be free in Germany than in UK.

A few comparisons from other countries (all for main building only)
France
Notre Dame - Free
Reims - 7.50
Rouen - Free
Strasbourg - Free

Italy
Milan - Free
St Peter's Basilica Vatican - Free

Spain
Burgos - 4.00
Santiago de Compostela - Free

Portugal
Evora - 1.50

Norway
Nidaros Trondheim - 70NOK (8.50)

Denmark
Ribe - Free

The way in which Churches are funded varies significantly across countries of course and this presumably plays a major part in how much money churches have to raise "at the door"
a. "Church Tax". Many European countries operate these. Wiki says that 70% of German church income comes from the tax. In Denmark the government gives the church 13% of its total income from general taxation so even atheists have to pay!!.
b. State Ownershp (and funding) of buildings. As I understand it every church built before 1905 in France is owned by the State
c. Tax relief. In Italy or instance the Church is exempted from property tax.
d. Income - from accumulated wealth, land etc etc which has not been confiscated by the "events of history" as happened in some countries!!
e. Donations - presumably the more "religious" a country the more significant this element

Given all these variations in the income levels of Churches it is I guess hardly surprising that there are variations across countries in the overall level of entry fees!

Author meltwaterfalls
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#9 | Posted: 14 Oct 2014 10:05 
Thanks for that run down. This has become a fairly regular discussion for the meltwaterfallses [sic]. Consensus seems to be that if given the option of free entry to either churches or museums we would always go with museums.

I happily revisit museums over and over again, but chances of having more than one or two visits to a cathedral are few and far between even if they were free.

Author Solivagant
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#10 | Posted: 10 Jun 2016 07:46 | Edited by: Solivagant 
PETRA
Els has already posted the news about the discovery of a "new" monument at Petra but the reporting of this in UK's Daily Telegraph also provided an update on the parlous state of the Tourism Industry in Jordan.

To the extent that entry to Petra has been FREE since 2015
"Since the Syrian civil war began, however, the number of visitors has dropped drastically, so much so that the Jordanian government decided to waive the 40 dinar (£37) visa fee in 2015 in an attempt to reignite tourism."
http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/2016/06/10/hiding-in-plain-sight-massive-monument-dis covered-at-petra-by-mo/

What a change since Els and I visited during 2012!! But see the last review of Petra on this Web site from Dec 2014 - http://www.worldheritagesite.org/sites/site.php?id=326

Jordan currently has a TV campaign running on UK TV to try to attract tourists. A tough sell I fear even though security doesn't seem to have been an issue there so far and, despite its huge number of Syrian refugees (more than 600k), their direct impact on tourists whilst on holiday seems to have been less than that on tourists on the Dodecanese.

Author elsslots
Admin
#11 | Posted: 10 Jun 2016 07:51 
Solivagant:
To the extent that entry to Petra has been FREE since 2015

Are you sure? I read from the article that Jordan has only waved the VISA fee, not the entrance fee.

Author Solivagant
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#12 | Posted: 10 Jun 2016 07:57 | Edited by: Solivagant 
elsslots:
Are you sure? I read from the article that Jordan has only waved the VISA fee, not the entrance fee.

Yes -of course you are correct- And it had only doubled the visa fee as recently as 2014!
http://www.telegraph.co.uk/travel/destinations/middle-east/jordan/articles/Jordans-vi sa-fee-doubled-despite-drop-in-tourist-numbers/

Author meltwaterfalls
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#13 | Posted: 10 Jun 2016 08:59 
I have to keep going back to check those entrance fees are correct for Petra.

I understand the thinking on the one day visitor fee but it is eye watering: 90 JD (£88 €112, $128)
Even the standard entry is out of synch with any other cultural site: 50 JD (£49, €62, $71)

It certainly has put us off the idea in the past, I'm not saying we wouldn't do it, but it has made us reconsider when we contemplated a visit.

Author Solivagant
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#14 | Posted: 12 Jun 2016 13:13 | Edited by: Solivagant 
meltwaterfalls:
I understand the thinking on the one day visitor fee but it is eye watering: 90 JD (£88 €112, $128)
Even the standard entry is out of synch with any other cultural site: 50 JD (£49, €62, $71)
It certainly has put us off the idea in the past, I'm not saying we wouldn't do it, but it has made us reconsider when we contemplated a visit.

I came across this "Jordan Pass" today. Maybe it is well known to others and i dont know all of Jordan's current entry fees but it doesnt sound a bad deal covering Petra and all (except the Baptism site) the other Jordanian WHS and more (inc As-Salt). The visa fee waiver looks however to have been overtaken by the decision referred to above
http://www.jordanpass.jo/Contents/Prices.aspx

Author meltwaterfalls
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#15 | Posted: 13 Jun 2016 05:11 
Solivagant:
I came across this "Jordan Pass" today

Thanks for flagging that up, that certainly is worth knowing about.

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