Should You Get A Copenhagen Card

Get A Copenhagen Card.jpg

Should You Get A Copenhagen Card?

There were many things we considered to answer the question … should you get a Copenhagen Card?

We were in Copenhagen for many days and many of the things we wanted to visit were included on the Copenhagen Card. It was also great that the Copenhagen Card covered public transit. This worked for us since our hotel was out of the downtown area. But we would have saved time if we made that decision early and picked up our card when we landed at the airport.

Did we save money? Even if we did not save money, were there other benefits? Check out the post and find out.

Consider A Copenhagen Card In Advance

Take a look at a Copenhagen Card before you leave home. How many days are you visiting? How many days do you want to spend touring? Does it cover the things you want to see and do in Copenhagen? If it makes sense, get a Copenhagen Card and pick it up at the airport.

If you pick up your card at the airport, you won’t need to wander around to get your card. And you will have access to public transit right away. We didn’t do enough homework in advance and didn’t get a Copenhagen Card at the airport. Unfortunately our hotel ran out of the cards we wanted. So it meant we paid for a time consuming train ride to pick up our card at the Central Train Station.

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The Copenhagen Card covered a lot of things to see and do in Copenhagen. It also provided access to a significant number of things outside of the city. The broad public transit network of buses, subways and trains was included for all zones. You can travel quite far on your card.

We were in Copenhagen for 5 days. The first two days were rainy and we used the time to recover from travel and jet lag. So we decided on a 72 hour pass. This gave us access to sites over 72 full hours. Make sure to not start the time on your card until you use it the first time. The 72 hour pass gave us an entrance to each site as well for each of the 3 days the pass was valid. So if we found a favourite site, we could go back another day.

Even though we were quite busy on the 3 days we toured Copenhagen, we still did not see everything that we planned to see. We only stayed inside of Copenhagen and did not make it to several sights outside of Copenhagen that we wanted to visit.

Did we get value from the Copenhagen Card?

We Used the Copenhagen Card A Lot For Public Transit

We stayed at the Crowne Plaza Towers outside of Copenhagen near to the airport. As loyal IHG Rewards members, we accumulated points whenever we travelled. While the hotel was out of town, the station for both the train and the subway was a few minutes walk from the hotel. It was quick and easy to get into Copenhagen. If not inexpensive!

We used the Copenhagen card a lot for public transit. We paid for our first train trip into the city to get our card. But after that we took buses, subways and trains into and around Copenhagen. If we didn’t have the Copenhagen Card we would have needed multi-day transit passes.

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The Copenhagen public transit access included all zones. The routes ran over to Malmo, Sweden close to where we stayed. We could also take the train to the Helsinger station quite north of Copenhagen. From there there was a ferry to Helsingborg in Sweden. There were many sites on the Copenhagen Pass that were quite far out of town but all were accessible by public transit.

The Copenhagen Card Provided Free Entry To A Number Of Sites

There were a large number of sites available for free with the Copenhagen Card. If the weather was bad when you visited, there were lots of choices for indoor spots to visit. If you are interested in museums or art galleries, there were a large number included on the Copenhagen Card.

We had several sites we wanted to visit with the Copenhagen Card in the central area of Copenhagen. We learned about the royal palace history on a tour of the ruins beneath Christiansborg Palace.

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The museum at Amelienborg provided information on the royal family tree and a broad display of royal artifacts.

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Sites - Amalienborg Palace Museum - Get A Copenhagen Card.jpg

A walk up the Round Tower gave us an awesome panoramic view of Copenhagen.

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We toured the inside of the Rosenborg Castle. Each room provided yet one more stunning sight. A trip down to the Treasury got us a glimpse of the treasures and crown jewels. This was something we highly recommended on a visit to Copenhagen.

Sites - Rosenborg Castle Interior - Get A Copenhagen Card.jpg

Sites - Rosenborg Castle Interior.jpg

Sites - Rosenborg Castle Interior - Get A Copenhagen Card.jpg

We Missed Many Things We Planned To Do

We wandered in the Botanical Gardens before we went to the Rosenborg Castle. Staying outside on the grounds, we did not visit inside the Palm House. The cost of this would have been covered by our Copenhagen Card.

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There were several sites that we targeted to visit but just ran out of time. We prioritized seeing the ruins under the Christiansborg Palace but never returned to tour inside the palace. The Aquarium was located close to our hotel out by the airport but was closed one of the days we were in Copenhagen. We thought we might visit on our last morning but didn’t. We also missed climbing the tower of the Church of Our Saviour when the lines were too long.

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A night visit to Tivoli was on our list of things to do. But after a long day touring, we just couldn’t make the trip back into the city for a late night visit. We missed seeing the Planetarium as well. Either more stamina or better planning were needed to see everything that was covered by the Copenhagen Card!

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Canal Tours Were Included On The Copenhagen Card

When we got a Copenhagen Card, we saw there were a number of water tours included. Within the main part of Copenhagen, tours were available from either Canal Tours Copenhagen or the Netto Boats. We enjoyed our tour of the canals of Copenhagen. There was much to see along the route.

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We took canal tours with both of the companies on two separate days. The routes were quite similar but the weather and time of day were different. So we caught a few different views.

Head Out Of Copenhagen

When we got a Copenhagen Card, there were many sites outside of the main city of Copenhagen to enjoy. We wanted to head out of town for the boat tour around the Fredericksborg Castle. This was touted as “Denmark’s most beautiful nautical mile”. We also wanted to head north and tour the Kronberg Castle and the Nautical Museum. The weather was rainy for several of the days on our stay in Copenhagen and we just finally ran out of time.

The train or subway went out of Copenhagen to visit these and many more sites. But we needed to plan for longer transportation times. If we headed north to Helsinger station we could even take a ferry and go to Helsingborg in Sweden.

Should You Get A Copenhagen Card?

We tried city cards before. When we were in London for a few days, we got a London Card. We found that we got our money’s worth with the London Pass.

Here is the summary of costs for the Copenhagen Card:

Copenhagen Card 72 Hour Card Cost 659 DKK (about $140 CND)

Value Received 560 DKK
Missed Value 278.50 DKK (things we easily could have used the card for)

As you can see from this and the detailed analysis below, it did not really make financial sense for us to get a Copenhagen Card for the things we did. If we used it for the things where we easily could have on this trip, we would have more than broken even. If we visited the other things that we wanted to, we would have been far ahead in value. It was easy to see how we could have saved money on a visit to Copenhagen.

But even without a total financial benefit, there was a convenience factor with the Copenhagen Card. Since there was so much available, the card would not have limited us much in visiting almost anything we wanted to see in Copenhagen.

Detailed Look At The Costs

The below table provides a summary of the costs we would have paid without the Copenhagen Card.

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A Few Tips

1) Use The Copenhagen Card For Transportation

If you stay close to the centre of Copenhagen, the Copenhagen Card may not have as much value to you for transportation. You can still use it for transit inside the city and for trains to head to outer locations. Since our train trip from our hotel was so expensive, we got a lot of value in transportation. But we also could have looked at a transit pass.

2) Buying The Copenhagen Card Gets Cheaper For Longer Stays

If you are in Copenhagen for a longer stay, it may make sense to take the 5 day pass. The incremental cost is quite low to go from 3 to 5 days. This was particularly true if we wanted to visit some of the sites outside of Copenhagen or if we wanted to take our time at the sites.

3) Are You Visiting Over A Monday?

If you are in Copenhagen over a Monday, make sure you check on what is closed on Monday. A lot of the indoor sites were not open on Monday.

4) Long Days To Visit All The Sights

Be prepared for long busy days to use your Copenhagen Pass to visit places. You need to transit between spots. Lines were not busy when we visited but that should also be factored into the time to visit a site. It was not clear how many of the sites gave priority entrance with a Copenhagen Pass. Plan for a few sites per day if you really want to do more than just snap pics as you go.

5) Enjoy Several Canal Boat Tours

The canal boat tours were a great thing to do with the Copenhagen Card. We could do one per day for each day of the pass and on two different boat lines. But the tours took an hour and only ran hourly. So plan for 2 hours for each canal boat trip.

6) Use The Copenhagen Card App

Load the Copenhagen Card app on your smart phone. When we gave the app location access, the map helped us navigate to the next spot on our list. We favourited sites and created our tour list. The description for each site was brief but it included a few pictures and public transit information to get to the site. We did not need to be online to get value from using the app as we toured around Copenhagen.

7) Visit More Than Once

For each day covered by the Copenhagen Card, you get one entrance to each site. For for a 72 hour card, we could visit each site three times. This is great if you want to go back and explore more.

8) Line Ups May Not Be Avoided

For the sites we visited, there was no fast pass access with the Copenhagen Card. It was not crowded when we visited Copenhagen, so this was not an issue. But if the city is busy, line up times would need to be factored into selecting the sights to visit and the time to be there. Line ups will slow your travel day!

Things To Consider Before You Get A Copenhagen Card

We hope this helps you to consider a few things before you get a Copenhagen Card. We found it helped us get around and see many things on our visit to Copenhagen! It might have been a bit cheaper to pay for things as we went. But it was easy to see far more than we did and make the card much more valuable.

Did you get a Copenhagen Card? Did it make financial sense for you?

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  1. Wow that’s amazing that Copenhagen Card provided free entry to some of the public sites. I hope we had something similar like that. I usually buy the transport cards at airports and that is something I learned over the years as it saves so much money on public transportation. Thanks for this I will keep in mind about Copenhagen Card when I visit Copenhagen.

  2. Great blog post! Yes, I think it is worth getting a Copenhagen card as you can not only save on local travel fares and entry charges for Museums and Palaces, it is a convenient way to flash your card and get in rather than fumble with your cash or credit card for each place. It also saves you time standing in queues to get entry tickets in various places. Copenhagen is a beautiful city with many attractions for the tourists.:-)

    • We were glad we chose the Copenhagen Card. It certainly propelled us to see more than we might otherwise have done. And having transportation included when we were so far out of the downtown was perfect for us.

  3. I’ve often done the cost comparison and find that it is never worth it to get the card. To get the real value you have to take advantage of all the sites listed, and I just don’t tend to travel that way. But I think it’s a great option for people who do. And certainly it has its advantages of no wait times and the convenience as you mentioned.

    • To get real value, you do have to see a lot of sights. We usually struggle to fit them all in and just wander in a city too. But with transportation in Copenhagen, there was added value for us.

  4. I want to go to Copenhagen and now I know to buy the card at the airport. I am usually a good planner, so this is great information to make me plan my routes and activities in Copenhagen. The app sounds great too and I would want to do the canal tours. Sounds like you may need to go back!

    • There was so much more to see and do in Copenhagen than we expected. With a plan you can really see a lot with the Copenhagen Card. Especially if you use the public transportation and want to see sights out of the city.

  5. Interesting read! I have been to Copenhagen a few times and never got the card for several reasons. We have a European press card that gives us free entrance to some of the museums and sights and we like to walk or cycle. I have bought one of these city cards in other European places and found that I always feel rushed to do more and use the card to the last cent. But I can see that it is also convenient for tourists.

    • I totally understand your point about feeling rushed to see more spots to get value from the card. In this case, it worked out for us especially because we needed the transportation. But it was convenient.

  6. Last time we were in Copenhagen it was just a two day trip. And hence although I had mulled over a Copenhagen Card for the two of us, we decided against it. But looking at the benefits it certainly is a must have for a slightly longer trip. These city cards are great options to save money especially if one is inclined towards visiting museums.

    • We too mull over city cards when we visit for shorter periods of time. IF we want to wander at a slower pace, they usually don’t pay off. But this time it made a lot of sense for 3 of the 5 days we were in Copenhagen.

    • Glad to provide some tips on what worked and didn’t for our use of the Copenhagen Card. And interesting to look back after the visit and see was it actually valuable. Sometimes the convenience outweighs the cost benefit.

  7. Really loved the post on Copenhagen card and it’s usefulness.It’s really convenient to carry such cards when you’re traveling.And loved the beautiful photos of the museum and the canal.

  8. I guess for long-term visits, convenience, and avoidance of fatigue, I’d most probably consider getting one if given the chance to visit. Thanks for the breakdown of the cost as we can weigh the value it gives to us as travelers. Great pro tips!

  9. I’ve been to Copenhagen on business so wasn’t aware you could get this card but can see the benefit of it if trying to get a lot done in a short trip, which is usually my case. I like that the canals were included as I would enjoy that, as well as tivoli. I will consider it next visit.

    • The Copenhagen Card was good for us on a bit longer visit. We were amazed at how much was covered on the card. But we never got to all the spots we wanted. A great reason to go back. And maybe even get the card again.

  10. I liked the way you divided the financials and resented everything. My only concern is to ensure that we get maximum benefit out of the card, we might rush to places. I mean experiencing a place for long might be difficult due to time constraint. But nevertheless it seems like a good option.

  11. The Copenhagen Card is one of the best city cards I know. It’s certainly not cheap, but once you’ve got it, basically everything is for free. You can even travel to other places like Frederiksborg and Louisiana, some of my favorite spots around Copenhagen. I get it every time when visiting Copenhagen. Especially in a city as expensive as Copenhagen, a good bargain is crucial.

  12. I personally purchased the Copenhagen Card and thought it was well worth the money! We were able to do so many things that the ticket offered during our stay!

  13. this is actually really useful! im not going to copenhagen but another city with a similar card system which i’ve just been on the fence about… and you’ve totally inspired me to make a cost analysis to consider factors that didn’t cross my mind before! ❤️?

  14. I was in the Royal Danish capital for a week but without a Copenhagen Card as I lived with my Danish friends. Sometimes it is nice to be a guest on a visit! If I traveled to Copenhagen to visit its many tourist attractions, especially for posts on my travel website, without a doubt, I would buy this card – Scandinavia is high-priced.

  15. I have never been to Copenhagen, but I will definitely check out the Copenhagen card if I go one day:) Thank you for sharing.

    • The Copenhagen Card worked for us before the cruise because we did come in quite early. We had a day to rest and then used the card for 3 days. Hope you get your cruise re-booked.

  16. Thanks for doing all of the hard work in determining the value of the card. Depending on what one plans to do, it looks like the card is valuable if you plan on seeing several sites.

  17. Well, I’d heard that Copenhagen was notorious for being pricy, but the price of that 3 day Copenhagen Pass still shocked me a bit. I’m sure it’s really worth it though if you plan to visit those paid attractions. I do like that you can use it for a boat tour everyday! I think that would be the coolest way to see the city for sure.

  18. I love city cards and I agree with you that if you are visiting the city it’s a good idea to get a Copenhagen card. City cards not only let me save money on local travel fares and but gets me free entry at Museums and Palaces too. On top that, you save time.

  19. I’m so sorry you ended up missing so many of the sites you wanted to see in Copenhagen. It does sound like the card would be useful over longer stretches of time so you can fit in everything you want to do! Hopefully you get to go back and visit to finish everything you didn’t get to 🙂 (even if you don’t get the card next time!)

  20. I havent used a city card like this before, but i guess it’s because i never really looked into them that much, however you seem to get a lot of value out of the copenhagen card – espically if you’re staying for an extended trip

  21. Nothing worse than planning out a whole trip then not being able to do everything! I am so sorry this happened to you. I think the card honestly sounds like a great idea because it allows you to be able to do everything you would like!!!

  22. Really interesting post. It sounds like the card would be useful for folks that want to fit a LOT of things in. If I am honest, we spend so much ambling around slowly, I am not sure if it would be the best value for us. I think I like the idea of taking it easy and spending a lot of time a few places (rather than a little time at loads of sights…)

    • I totally know what you mean about spending time ambling along. We just didn’t let the card drive us faster than we wanted to go. So we did not get as much value as we might have.

  23. Thanks for the breakdown on considering whether or not to get this! I tend to be the variety of person who likes to see a bunch of things/pack everything into the itinerary so this does look like it’d help with that! 😛

  24. I usually do two things as soon as I arrive at the airport of a new country I’m visiting. I pick up a local SIM card and a card like the Copenhagen card that gives you access to public transportation in the city. It’s really cool that it also gives you free access to some tourist sites and the canal boats!

  25. Copenhagen Card is a perfect solution, as this city is pretty expensive. So with this card, it’s possible to save some money with the discounts it offers. It’s great that it also includes a public network of buses, subways, and trains. For sure I will buy it when visiting this city.

  26. this is really amazing and very helpful article about you should get a Copenhagen card. this information is really important for everyone to know about this. thanks for sharing this amazing article about you should get a Copenhagen card.

  27. Thanks for all these great tips, and so good to know that canal rides are also included! I got to Copenhagen with work every now and then and I keep saying I will extend my stay so this is super useful!

  28. This card sounds magic! But, we like to do the math before we left for our vacation. So, I will make sure to do it before leaving for our vacation to Denmark. Just like you suggested. But I like how this card can be used at popular places, as well as the transportations.

    • The biggest downside we find with the city cards is it sort of forces you to run from site to site. Great if you want to get an good overview but not if you want to lazily explore.

  29. This is a really useful breakdown. I’ve been to Copenhagen and it didn’t make sense for us to get one. With the card, you’re more likely to rush seeing everything, especially if you’re only there for a short time.

  30. You say above:
    “Visit More Than Once
    For each day covered by the Copenhagen Card, you get one entrance to each site. For for a 72 hour card, we could visit each site three times. ”

    Did you visit anything more than once? The Copenhagen Card website says “No, you cannot visit the same attraction several times. The cardholder is entitled to one visit per attraction regardless of the card type. I.e., re-visits are not possible.”

    Thank you! Jane

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