There are several ways of getting tickets to Alcatraz if sold out.
Tickets offered directly from Alcatraz Cruises, the official supplier, tend to get sold out months in advance. We’ve come up with a list of all the other companies that offer Alcatraz tickets as part of a package that includes an additional tour or ticket. Make sure to check through this list carefully, since you might find last minute tickets for sale when other places have no availability.
The first place to check is here. This website offers several different tickets and tours and is a good place to look if the official website is sold out. Make sure to be as flexible as possible with your travel dates to maximize your chances for success. Some Alcatraz tickets include a hop on hop off bus, whilst others include a San Francisco City tour or a VIP Segway excursion.
The second place to find tickets is here. This website offers resale Alcatraz tickets for the night tour. Lasting for over 2 hours, you’ll get a boat trip around the island, along with a guided tour of the mainland. This includes visiting the cell house and main prison building as well as a range of other special documentary videos and audio tours. This option tends to have a selection of last minute Alcatraz tickets for sale, although prices can vary enormously. Make sure to check it regularly.
The third place to look for Alcatraz Tickets is here. Operated through Expedia, this is a kind of complete day package. Along with entrance tickets and a cruise to Alcatraz Island, you’ll also get to use the Hop on Hop off San Francisco bus. Explore the city with an unlimited 24-hour use and take advantage of the free walking tours on offer. Audioguides are available in a variety of different languages. Since this is a more expensive way of visiting Alcatraz, it likely to have more availability since it takes longer to get sold out.
The fourth place to check is here. These Alcatraz packages are a good way of getting into the site if you want to visit as part of an extended United States trip. The most popular excursion is a 2-day package that also visits Yosemite, one of the most extraordinary national parks in the world. Another option is to purchase a 3 in 1 pass where you get Alcatraz tickets along with access to Madame Tussauds and the San Francisco Dungeon.
If you’ve tried all of the above options and still see that all Alcatraz tickets are sold out then try the official seller Alcatraz Cruises. We’ve left this option to last since you’ve probably already checked it, but it’s worth a second look, since sometimes there are cancellations. The official website offer a number of different tours, so make sure to check through all of them carefully. This includes a day tour, night tour, and exclusive behind the scenes tour.
On the day:
The only other way of securing tickets when everything online is sold out is to arrive very early in the morning on your day of travel. The official ticket agency does set aside a certain number of tickets each day, which are sold on a first come first serve basis. Whilst the ticket office at Pier 33 opens at 7.30am, you should try and get there much earlier in order to be first in line. Make sure that everyone in your party is waiting in line, since you are only allowed to purchase 1 ticket per person.
Alternative to Alcatraz:
If you are unable to find tickets for sale, then one of the best alternatives is to take a cruise from San Francisco Bay. It’s a great opportunity to sail under the Golden Gate Bridge, and then circle around Alcatraz island. The cruise includes a live narration, with stories about Alcatraz from military base to a notorious prison.