City of Venice to Start Charging Entry Fees for Daytrippers

City of Venice

With its eternally romantic gondolas, glittering canals, quaint bridges, and superb architecture, Venice is certainly a city to be experienced. If you’ve ever been, however, you know how crowded it can get. City officials have long complained about over-tourism and how visitors greatly outnumber locals on busy days. To help protect the UNESCO World Heritage accolade, an entry fee will be introduced for daytrippers.

The Over-Tourism Problem of Venice

During the high season, and especially on busy days, it is said that Venice welcomes more than 100,000 tourists daily. That means that the visitors outnumber locals by more than two to one (there are about 50,000 residents.) There are endless queues to enter the signature Doges Palace, and even the simple walk from the station to the famous St. Mark’s Square is a struggle in itself. Sure, tourism is a great thing, but over-tourism is quite overwhelming.

Overcrowded bridge in Venice

As with everything in life, there too was a tipping point for Venice’s over-tourism problem. It happened over the Easter weekend when, according to police data, a staggering 120,000 tourists flocked to the city in just one day. This created a suffocating atmosphere that prompted Venice’s mayor Luigi Brugnaro to take matters into his own hands.

A New Reservation System for Daytrippers

As a result of the concerningly high number of daytrippers, Venice’s mayor Brugnaro announced a new online reservation system that will only apply to daytrippers. Visitors who are staying the night will be exempt from it.

Starting in June 2022, people will be able to use the online booking system to reserve a visit. Daytrippers will have to pay €3 (~$3.15 on a quiet day) and €10 at peak time (~$10.50) to enter the canal city. This new system will be tested for a period of six months with the idea of making the fee permanent from 2023.