Venice Introduces Tourist Entrance Tax

Posted in General Travel Travel Insurance, Venice tourist tax, travel insurance to europe, Tourist tax Italy on 3 May 2024

Tourism taxes are nothing new; we encounter them when booking flights, hotels, and various other services. However, they often remain hidden within the overall cost of our experiences. From 5th May, 2024, Venice will pioneer a new approach by becoming the first city in the world to implement a dedicated tourist entry tax.

Why a Venice Tourist Tax?

Venice stands as one of the most sought-after destinations globally, drawing approximately 30 million visitors annually. Its allure lies in the unique romanticism of the Floating City, with its labyrinthine canals and rich historical architecture. For centuries, Venice has captivated hearts and minds, even inspiring the works of Shakespeare, who set two of his plays, "The Merchant of Venice" and "Othello," within its mystical confines.

But Venice has become a victim of its own success. With a population of just 51 thousand, it’s not uncommon for tourists to drastically outnumber the locals, and during peak periods the city’s top attractions often struggle to cope with the volume of visitors, not to mention the wear and tear all those visitors put on the historic venues. The trial tax is an attempt by the city leadership to moderate and control visitor number during key peak days and times.

How Much is the Tourist Tax in Venice and When Will It Apply?

Beginning5th May , tourists will be required to pay a fee of €5 (£4.30) per person per day on specific peak days until14th July. These peak days, carefully selected to manage the influx of visitors, include dates from April to July. The aim is twofold: to reduce the number of short-stay visitors, known as day-trippers, and to encourage travellers to explore Venice during less congested periods.

The dates that fees will apply are as follows:

  • May: 1-5, 11-12, 18-19 and 25-26
  • June 8-9, 15-16, 22-23 and 29-30
  • July 6-7 and 13-14

How Will the Venice City Tourist Tax be Policed?

To enforce the tourist tax, measures have been put in place targeting day-trippers who pass through the city without staying overnight. Travellers falling within this category and travelling between 8.30am and 4pm on any of the designated peak dates, will be subject to the fee. However, exemptions exist for various groups, including overnight guests in the wider Municipality of Venice, individuals on business or short-term study trips, children under 14, and those requiring medical care or with certified disabilities, among others.

To streamline the process, day-trippers must reserve their visit in advance by purchasing tickets online. Once acquired, travellers can download a QR code to their smartphones for easy access. Alternatively, tickets can be purchased via kiosks or designated outlets for those without internet access or smartphones.

City officials will be carrying out random checks for QR codes throughout the city on the specified days, which will show if you have paid the day-tripper tax or if you're exempt. Your Failure to pay could mean you could be fined up to €300 plus an additional €10 to cover the entrance fee.

Could This Happen in Other Tourist Hotspots?

The introduction of the Venice tourist tax sparks a broader debate surrounding its efficacy, coverage, and potential extensions. Over-tourism remains a pressing issue in many regions, and Venice's initiative will be closely monitored as a potential solution.

Ultimately, only time will reveal the full impact of this trial. For now, if you're planning a day trip to Venice during peak times, it’s probably better to just pay €5, which let’s face it is less than the price of a cup of coffee these days, than potentially be faced a hefty fine.

Traveling to Venice This Summer? Don’t Forget to Buy Travel Insurance Cover

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This article is for information and entertainment purposes only. It does not constitute advice in any way. The information provided here is correct at the time of writing however please check the latest policy wording for the latest terms, conditions, and exclusions.

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