VICTOR, IDAHO — CityPASS®, the first American company to bundle discounted, prepaid admission to a destination’s top attractions into one easy-to-use ticket, is celebrating its 25th anniversary and more than two decades of happy travelers.
Since launching in Seattle and San Francisco in 1997, CityPASS has expanded to 13 additional North American destinations, most recently San Diego in 2021; sold more than 24 million CityPASS tickets to travelers seeking to maximize their vacation experiences (and their budgets); and adeptly integrated new technology, including a full transition to mobile tickets, which are currently available in eight languages.
CityPASS is the brainchild of co-founders Mike Morey and Mike Gallagher, business partners who spent much of their respective careers working at, with or around attractions. Their vision was specific: handpick the very best attractions in major North American destinations and then discount admission to those attractions by up to 50 percent. It was something no one else had done in the United States, and it was a risk. But Gallagher and Morey believed in their goal of making travel easier, more affordable, and vastly more enjoyable. And, based on more than 76,000 customer reviews, that vision has succeeded. Across its 15 partner destinations, CityPASS tickets average a 4.6-star rating (out of a possible 5 stars).
“Much of that rating is due to our core value of making our customers and attraction partners our top priority,” said CityPASS President and CEO Megan Allen. “COVID really tested us, but we stuck to those core principles. When travel shut down in 2020, we made the commitment to return the full retail value of any unused tickets to customers who requested refunds. In the spring of 2020 alone, CityPASS issued $6 million in refunds to some 50,000 travelers whose trips were disrupted by COVID.
“Mike and Mike designed the CityPASS concept around taking the stress and hassle out of planning a vacation. When the pandemic came along, it introduced an unprecedented level of anxiety and uncertainty for travelers. We knew that refunding our customers—eliminating their worries about losing the money they had invested in CityPASS tickets—was the right thing to do.”
During the pandemic, in an effort to protect both their guests and staff members, many CityPASS attraction partners implemented capacity restrictions. They did this by requiring advance reservations, which allowed them to better manage occupancy and guest flow.
CityPASS spent a great deal of staff time and expertise partnering with the attractions to ensure that customers were aware of any advance reservation requirements and, whenever possible, had the ability to secure those advance reservation times in a new section within the CityPASS website. Thanks to the company’s tech team, CityPASS buyers can now purchase their tickets and manage their advance reservations from one place for a streamlined experience.
The very first CityPASS ticket was sold in Seattle on June 11, 1997. Today, CityPASS offers curated, discounted admission to the top attractions in 15 North American destinations: Atlanta, Boston, Chicago, Dallas, Denver, Houston, New York City, Orlando, Philadelphia, San Diego, San Francisco, Seattle, Southern California, Tampa Bay, and Toronto. The company is still owned by the Gallagher and Morey families.
“The longevity and popularity of CityPASS tickets rely heavily on the appeal of our partner destinations and attractions,” explained Allen. “We collaborate with many of North America’s most iconic sites, from the Empire State Building to the Space Needle to the Disney parks and Universal Studios. It has never been more gratifying to see our customers connecting with loved ones, creating new experiences, and making lasting memories. And none of this would be possible without our extraordinary attraction partners.
“I’m extremely proud of our past and, in particular, how we navigated the challenging travel environment these past two years. I’m optimistic and excited to see where the future takes us.”
About CityPASS: For 25 years, CityPASS tickets have been premier products for travelers who want to visit a destination’s top attractions while enjoying significant savings. Based on more than 76,000 customer reviews, the tickets have an average customer rating of 4.6 stars (out of a possible 5). CityPASS tickets are currently available in 15 North American destinations: Atlanta, Boston, Chicago, Dallas, Denver, Houston, New York City, Orlando, Philadelphia, San Diego, San Francisco, Seattle, Southern California, Tampa Bay and Toronto. Since 1997, more than 24 million CityPASS tickets have been sold. For more information, visit CityPASS.com.
Prices and programs subject to change. CityPASS® and City Pass® are registered trademarks of City Pass, Inc., and the exclusive property of City Pass, Inc.