Covering the Vatican
thing’s missing. Do not be surprised or alarmed if your pass isn’t ready on your
first trip to the press office. Patience will be rewarded.
TV crews and still photographers
go through a similar process via
the Pontifical Council for Social Communications rather than the Vatican
In the press accreditation section of the Vatican’s Web site( www.vatican. va/news_services/press/accred/index_en.htm ), cl
ick on Audiovisual Permits
and fill out the online form. Note that each person requesting accreditation
must complete the form.
Then fax (39-06-6988-5373) or e-mail a formal written request from the
TV organization or photo agency along with the name(s) and title(s) of the
people requiring accreditation, and a photocopy of each person’s passport.
Once in Rome, go to the main office of the council at Via della Conciliazione
n. 5, a few blocks down fromSt. Peter’s Square. Bring photocopies of all the docu-
ments requested, and be sure to have your passport on hand for identification.
The council’s office publishes regulations for audiovisual coverage at the
Vatican and rules of conduct at papal ceremonies. Links can be found atwww. vatican.va/roman_curia/pontifical_councils/pccs/av-pccs/Accreditamento_ AV_en.htm . Re
ad these before applying for accreditation to make sure you can
comply, and take them with you as a reference.
Keep your press pass visible at all times when covering events. The press
office will provide a clear plastic sleeve to wear on a lanyard around your
neck. Note that the pass will get you into events, but it won’t get you past the
gates behind St. Peter’s unless you have an appointment.
The Press Office (
Conveniently located on Via della Conciliazione, the street leading to St.
Peter’s, and just outside the square itself, the office provides wi-fi, electrical
outlets, phones, copies of daily press releases and other documents, and a (not
always very quiet) place to work. If your laptop somehow didn’t survive the
trip, there are five first-come, first-served computers, all with Internet access
and connection to a printer. The press office is also where most of the major
press conferences are held. TV crews and still photographers should check
in with the Pontifical Council for Social Communications ahead of any press
conference to determine who gets a spot, since audiovisual hookups are at a
premium. Official Vatican photos and television footage will be made available
in any event. For those filing radio reports, the press office has fairly sound-
proof phone booths.