The pilgrim's credential and the Testimonium - FAQ

13 Mar 2024

What is the pilgrim's credential and what is it for? 

What is the credential and what is it for? The credential is the "passport" of the pilgrim, the identification document that certifies his passage along the Via Francigena. Those who have it can get discounts in accommodations, bars or restaurants located along the way. Those who are travelling the last 100 kms on foot or 200 kms by bike, they can obtain the Testimonium - the official certification of the pilgrimage - by showing the stamped credential.

Is it mandatory? If yes, where can I purchase it?

Credential is not mandatory, but it is strongly recommended for reasons explained above. You can buy the official credential of the European Association of Vie Francigene on the website page or directly along the route at purchasing points indicated here.

How much is it?

Credential is 8€, but if you purchase it online you will have to add the shipping cost that goes from 2 € to 8 €, depending on the type you choose. If you are about to leave, we definitely recommend the courier, otherwise you can order it by ordinary mail, but consider it can take 7 to 30 days to arrive. 

Where can I get the stamp on the credential?

Many accommodations, restaurants, tourist offices and parishes located along the route possess the stamps. Whenever you reach a stage, do not forget to request the stamp and put the date beside it as evidence that you have passed through that place on that day. This will be essential to receive the Testimonium once in Rome

Does the credential have an expiration date?

The credential does not expire, that is the reason why it can be used to walk the path at different times. Keep it and complete the journey according to your time preferences.

Is a credential enough to complete the Italian Via Francigena, from Gran San Bernardo to Rome?

A credential contains 64 stamping boxes; this means one is enough to complete the 45 stages of the italian route.

Is there any discount for those who use public transport to move along the route?

The official credential issued by the European Association of Vie Francigene allows you to take advantage of a reduced rate (10% discount) on the Trenitalia and Trenord regional train tickets. You can find more information here:

Online ticket purchase instructions - Trenitalia

Online ticket purchase instructions - Trenord

What is the Testimonium?

The Testimonium is the official document issued by St. Peter's Basilica that certifies the completed pilgrimage (it corresponds to the Compostela that pilgrims receive at the end of the walk to Santiago).

When is it released? Where?

The Testimonium is issued to pilgrims who demonstrate they have travelled the last 100kms on foot, or the last 200kms by bicycle, by presenting the stamped credential. The parchment can be picked up only at Basilica of Saint Peter's.

To receive the testimonium, simply go to the Reception Point at the Basilica and show the staff on duty your pilgrim credential. To access the pilgrims’ reception point, you may use a facilitated access route, called “Percorso Preghiera” (Prayer Route), which can be found on the right hand side of the the Basilica indicated by special yellow signs.

After the security check by the Italian Police, following the route indicated by the signs, the reception point will be located inside the cloakroom of the Basilica after the stained glass window.

At the reception point, besides receiving the Testimonium, pilgrims can fill out a questionnaire about their journey for statistical purposes, deposit their backpacks, use the restrooms and access both St. Peter’s Basilica and the Sacred Vatican Grottoes (opening time: 9:00 am, closing time: 5:45 pm).

The reception point is open from 7:30 am to 6:30 pm every day. On Wednesdays (if there is a Papal Audience in the Square) from 1:00 pm to 6:30. In addition, a Pilgrim’s Mass is celebrated every day at 6:00 pm at the Altar of the Cathedra.

For communications and reservations, please contact the appropriate office:

Tel: +39 06 6982 (switchboard) and ask for extension 82137
Cellphone: +39 366 5775511

Chiara Martelli Written by Chiara

Wanderlust Nominee Best Specialist Tour Operator 2023
Nominee Best Specialist Tour Operator 2023
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