Venice Plans to Charge Fee to Enter the City

Venice Plans to Charge Fee to Enter the City

Venice is the Italian city that struggles the most with over-tourism. To balance out the strain that tourism puts on city service, Venice will charge a fee to visit the city for the day.

Tourists do bring money into the city by purchasing meals and souvenirs, but overall, the number of visitors has overwhelmed city services and their buying habits have changed the fabric of the city, forcing many locals to leave in search of more affordable areas to live.

Italy’s official 2019 budget has now authorized the city to collect a fee from visitors, something that the mayor of Venice has long been asking for.

How much the fee to visit Venice will cost, and how it will be collected, remains to be seen. This is all very new and it seems that details will become more clear as actual plans to collect the Venice visitor’s fee come into place.

foggy day on the Venice lagoon

At the moment, there are a few things that seem likely about the cost to visit Venice:

  • The fee to enter Venice will be up to €10. This cost seems likely to be variable and will probably only be this high during peak season. The fee might be lower outside of the summer months.
  • There is already a city tax on visitors who stay overnight in Venice, so this fee is aimed at people entering for the day only. The daily fee seems most likely aimed at cruise ships, which bring a huge number of visitors to the city for a short amount of time. The logic being that these day-trippers strain city services (like trash collection) without ever paying a tax.
  • The fee will probably be added as a surcharge on transportation. Visitors entering Venice will pay more for their buses, cruise ships, and vaporetti. It is still unclear how this fee might be charged for Venice visitors arriving in the airport or by train. The cost is meant to only be applied to day trippers so that it does not duplicate the hotel tax that overnight visitors already pay to stay in Venice. The private companies that sell these tickets will then turn the tax over to the city government.
  • The cost to visit Venice for the day is expected to generate up to €50 million in revenue, which the mayor says will be used to clean the streets, collect garbage, and pay for more services like firefighters.

The move to charge a fee to enter Venice is not unprecedented. Some special villages like Civita di Bagnoregio already have entrance fees, and the Puglia town of Polignano al Mare even added temporary turnstiles to block people from entering the historic center unless they paid €5 to see a Christmas display.

As long as there are no turnstiles – I feel ok about this. Would you pay €10 to visit Venice for the day?

 

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Natalie
Natalie

Natalie is a food and travel writer who has been living in Rome full time since 2010. She is the founder and editor of this blog and prefers all of her days to include coffee, gelato, and wine.

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9 Comments

  1. Jude
    January 6, 2019 / 3:07 am

    Go Venice. Absolutely they should charge a day visitor tax and I would happily pay it, as I have always been happy to pay the bed tax when staying. It is a minimal cost for visitors and should be an amount that not only pays for ongoing maintenance such as rubbish removal, but also helps fund the long term survival of the city.

  2. Jacquelyn Laurenda
    January 7, 2019 / 2:41 am

    I do think this is a good idea, and I’d happily pay it – especially if it thins out the crowds a little by repelling those who are not so happy to pay! Meanwhile, the cruise ship problem really needs to be resolved. In my opinion they’re a menace socially and ecologically, and should be banned, even from Marghera.

  3. Eugene
    January 7, 2019 / 5:07 pm

    Speaking as an American tourist who went to Venice in June 2017, I support this idea to charge a day visitor tax. Hopefully the revenue raised really will be used clean the streets, collect garbage, and pay for more services like firefighters and not “diverted”.

  4. January 10, 2019 / 2:27 pm

    I literally found this post very interesting and it just cast spell on me. I am soon going to visit Italy, thanks for sharing this post.

  5. Gail
    January 12, 2019 / 1:01 am

    All for this but the devil will be in the details of collection & usage. I visit Venice every year, sometimes more than once, and usually for a week or so. I don’t think it will reduce overall numbers but paying for trash pickup, etc. would be a big help for the city. It would be great if it generated enough for more city infrastructure funding like canal maintenance. Maybe even give something back to residents like less costly or free public transport for Venetians.

    I also agree that the large cruise ships should be banned from the lagoon. Having them dock in Marghera would require more dredging which further disturbs the delicate ecology.

  6. Jen B
    January 13, 2019 / 4:14 pm

    Hi! I’m actually visiting Italy in a couple of weeks…I’m thinking of visiting Venice for the day. Is there a fee to enter the city now?

    • Natalie
      Author
      January 13, 2019 / 9:42 pm

      Ciao! It is not implemented yet (and it still unclear how/when that will happen). Enjoy your trip!

      • JG
        March 5, 2019 / 12:07 am

        You should see http://www.veneziaunica.it the official tourism website of the city. They now require a ‘City Pass’ to enter museums and churches. They come in Silver, Gold, and Platinum. The cost starts around 28 Euro for the Silver Pass. If you want to purchase access to public transportation you’re looking at about 60 Euro for the Gold Pass. This is in effect now.

  7. David Zavac
    January 31, 2019 / 8:51 pm

    Wife and I have been to Italy twice now, and skipped Venice both times in part because we didn’t want to add to the over-tourism problems. Seems like an understandable solution to me. Not sure what the answer is with cruise ships long term.

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