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The Ultimate Guide to Mario Kart Tour: Is it Really Free to Play?

Hey friend! If you‘re considering playing Mario Kart Tour, you probably have one big question – is it really free to play? As a fellow gaming enthusiast, I‘ve got the inside scoop for you.

The short answer is: Yes, Mario Kart Tour is free to download and play, but there are optional in-app purchases available.

Keep reading and I‘ll give you all the details on what you can access for free in Mario Kart Tour and what requires real money. My goal is to help you decide if Mario Kart Tour is worth playing as a free player or if you‘ll need to spend money to fully enjoy it. Let‘s start our engines!

What‘s Free in Mario Kart Tour

Here‘s an overview of all the major parts of Mario Kart Tour you can enjoy without spending anything:

Game Modes

  • Cup Races – The core Mario Kart racing through various cups against AI opponents. This is totally free and where you‘ll spend most of your time.
  • Multiplayer – Online races against real people. A great free addition for competitive play.
  • Challenges – Specific objectives like using a certain character or glider. Earn prizes for completing.
  • Gifts – Receive free login bonus gifts each day.
  • Tours – Time limited events with themed courses and special characters. Tours rotate every two weeks.


As you play Mario Kart Tour, you can unlock additional drivers, karts, and gliders without having to pay anything. Here are some ways:

  • Earning in-game coins through races to spend in the shop.
  • Leveling up and earning free gifts through the tiered system.
  • Completing challenges and tour gifts.
  • Receiving daily login bonuses.
  • Using base game drivers like Mario, Peach, Yoshi, and Donkey Kong.

So you‘ll be able to expand your roster over time as a free player!


You can customize your driver and kart with different accessories, paint jobs, etc that don‘t require real money purchases. Add some flair!

What Requires Real Money?

While Mario Kart Tour offers a lot for free, there are some parts of the game locked behind real money payments, including:

  • Gold Pass Subscription – $4.99 per month for 200cc races and exclusive gold challenges and gifts.
  • Special Spotlight Drivers – Need real money Rubies to access signature characters like Musician Mario and Pauline.
  • High-End Karts/Gliders – The rarest karts and gliders cost Rubies.
  • Ruby Packs – Bundles with Rubies, coins, etc. only purchasable with real money.

So you‘ll need to pay up if you want the very best vehicles, maximum racing speed with 200cc, or access to beloved Mario characters and outfits.

In-Game Currencies

Mario Kart Tour has two currencies – Coins (free) and Rubies (paid):

  • Coins: Earned through racing. Used to buy common karts/gliders or level up existing ones.
  • Rubies: Bought with real money. Used to purchase Gold Pass, Spotlight items, bundles.

Rubies are the premium currency, and can be tough to resist!

Is Mario Kart Tour Generous as a Free Game?

Compared to other popular free mobile games, how generous is Mario Kart Tour with content for non-paying players?

Based on player data, Mario Kart Tour is reasonably generous for a few reasons:

  • No energy system. You can race as much as you want.
  • Multiplayer is fully accessible, not paywalled.
  • You can earn rubies occasionally through gifts/tours.
  • No forced video ads after each race.

However, it is stingy regarding high-end unlocks. Overall, Mario Kart Tour strikes a decent balance, but still nudges you to spend money.

Is Mario Kart Tour Worth Playing for Free?

Given the freemium aspects, is Mario Kart Tour still worth playing as a totally free player?

I think so, IF:

  • You love Mario Kart‘s racing gameplay above all.
  • You don‘t care about collecting every character and kart.
  • You are patient enough to unlock items over time.
  • You can enjoy competing online against other free players.

The core racing experience is intact from past Mario Kart games. And you have access to a good amount of characters and content without paying up. So if the gameplay itself is your top priority, you can still have plenty of fun.

But if you want EVERYTHING the game has to offer, free play will be limiting. As a fellow patient gamer, I say give it a shot!

Tips for Succeeding as a Free Player

If you do decide to stick with playing Mario Kart Tour for free, here are my top tips:

  • Link to your Nintendo account – This saves your progress in the cloud.
  • Learn drift and boost techniques – Master these to dominate races with any character.
  • Complete challenges – This earns you gifts and level ups.
  • Watch free ad videos – Optional ads let you earn extra coins.
  • Focus on leveling up your starting drivers first – This makes them more competitive.
  • Only purchase Daily Selects in the shop – These have the best value for coins.

Set goals like completing all cups on higher difficulties or unlocking specific characters. This will keep you engaged as you work your way up as a free player.

When Does it Make Sense to Spend Money?

Under what circumstances would it be worthwhile to spend real money in Mario Kart Tour? Here are some scenarios where paying can improve the experience:

  • You desperately want access to iconic characters like Musician Mario or Pauline.
  • You are struggling to win in multiplayer without higher tier vehicles.
  • You want to experience the speed of 200cc racing.
  • You love Mario Kart and don‘t mind investing to support it.

Basically, if there‘s a specific part of the game you‘re passionate about that requires Rubies, it may make sense to pay. Just set a reasonable budget for yourself rather than going overboard.

Wrap Up

That sums up my ultimate guide on whether Mario Kart Tour is really free to play! To recap:

  • You can download and play Mario Kart Tour for free.
  • In-app purchases are optional, but provide advantages.
  • Focus on Cups, challenges and multiplayer as a free player.
  • Spending money unlocks premium characters, karts, etc.

Have fun with the freemium nature of Mario Kart Tour! Let me know if you have any other questions. Now get out there and start racing!