Alcatraz Island is the #1 attraction in San Francisco. Funny, isn’t it, that when the prison was in use, people would do anything to escape it? Today, it is one of the National Park Service’s most popular sites with over 1.4 million tourists visiting the island each year! In the summertime, it can be pretty hard to get tickets, but we’ve got you covered! If you’d like a Day or Night Tour to Alcatraz to be a part of your San Francisco vacation this summer, then let’s discuss the best practices to attain those highly coveted Alcatraz Tickets:
Book your Alcatraz Tickets Months or Weeks in Advance
If you’d like to book directly through the Alcatraz Cruises website, you’ll need to do so well in advance. High season for Alcatraz tickets is from June-August. Tickets can be sold out for weeks or even months prior to departure! In fact, June just started and tickets for the Alcatraz night tour are not available until mid/late-August. And let us tell you, that sunset from Alcatraz is spectacular, and does a phenomenal job of really setting the mood. Lucky for you, we have an allocation of Night Tour tickets, so please do read on 🙂
Find Alcatraz Tickets for Sold Out Days, or Only Several Days in Advance
Incredible Adventures is given an allotment of Alcatraz tickets from the National Park Service each month! We receive both day and night options to accommodate different requests and schedule needs. Two things that are very important to note though:
- We MUST package these Alcatraz tickets with one of our tours. We’re a one-stop shop if you were already planning on visiting Yosemite National Park, Muir Woods, Wine Country, Silicon Valley, etc. We even can package Alcatraz tickets with Hop-On-Hop-Off options or a quick Muir Woods and Sausalito tour if you’re without the flexibility to leave the city for more than a day. Tickets are no more expensive than buying directly through Alcatraz’s website. We’re just here to facilitate a chance to see make it over there!
- Tickets must be arranged through Incredible Adventures at least four days in advance! We have to turn in our “manifest” to the parks service 4 days before departure. Ordering your Alcatraz tickets through Incredible Adventures works best at LEAST a week out, if not earlier.
Already in town and Alcatraz tickets appear to be sold out?
Wait… You want to go tomorrow?! Well, you still have options. They aren’t great, but you do have options!
Rise and Shine! If you are interested in lining up at Pier 33 at 5am on the morning of your desired tour date there is a last-chance option for you. Alcatraz Cruises releases up to 50 tickets the morning of the tour, on a first-come/first-served basis and subject to availability. Everyone in your party must be present to receive a ticket, so gather the troops, get a big commuter mug of coffee, and make a morning out of it. You won’t know what time of day your tour will be until you get it, so make sure you account for that in your day’s plans. All part of the experience, right?
Resellers. The only legit way to get tickets within 4 days of the ferry tour is through Alcatraz Cruises at pier 33. But, just like at a sports arena or a music venue, Fisherman’s Wharf often has ticket scalpers offering last-minute Alcatraz ferry tickets at a high price. You may be thinking, “hmm, that seems a bit sketchy…” – that’s because it can be! Incredible Adventures doesn’t recommend this option. ALWAYS use your best judgment. Trust your sources. There are plenty of scammers out there taking advantage of unsuspecting tourists.
Moral of the story: Plan ahead. We can help. Join Incredible Adventures on a tour to maximize your time in the Bay Area. Explore More. Explore Often. See it all! And follow these tips for your best shot at Alcatraz Tickets.