Venice to Charge 5 Euro Entry Fee Starting April 25

Venice to charge 5€ entry fee for visitors starting April 25, aiming to manage tourist influx and balance needs of visitors and residents. The move is being closely watched by other tourist hotspots facing similar challenges.

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Quadri Adejumo
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Venice to Charge 5 Euro Entry Fee Starting April 25

Venice to Charge 5 Euro Entry Fee Starting April 25

Venice will begin charging a 5 euro entry fee for visitors starting on April 25, making it the first city in the world to implement such a measure. The fee will apply on 28 selected dates, and visitors must book and pay for their entry online in advance. Residents, hotel guests, and those working or studying in Venice will be exempt.

The goal of the entry fee is to better manage the arrival of tourists, especially day-trippers, and create a balance between the needs of visitors and the city's residents. Checks will be conducted by 200 stewards and municipal agents at main entry points like the train station and parking lots, rather than using turnstiles.

The mayor of Venice, Luigi Brugnaro, has assured that this is not an attempt to close off the city, but rather a way to protect the historic center and provide better services and security. "We are pioneers, the first city in the world to apply a measure that could be revolutionary," Brugnaro said.

Why this matters: Venice's move to charge an entry fee has sparked a broader debate about the impact of mass tourism on popular destinations and the measures cities can take to control visitor numbers. The initiative is being closely watched by other tourist hotspots facing similar challenges, such as Barcelona, Amsterdam, and Dubrovnik.

The entry fee has sparked mixed reactions. Some residents are hopeful it will reduce the 'tourist siege' they experience, while others are skeptical it will make much difference. Critics argue the measure is too restrictive and infringes on free movement. The city has said they will monitor the initiative closely and make adjustments as needed in the coming months.

Other Italian tourist destinations are also grappling with overtourism. The mayor of Como is considering a similar levy on day trippers, following Venice's example. Some attractions in the Como area, such as Villa del Balbianello, have already limited daily visitor numbers to protect the sites and visitor experience.

Venice's unprecedented experiment with an entry fee will be a trial for managing mass tourism in a world-renowned destination. As Brugnaro stated, "Venice is a living city and it has to stay that way." The coming months will reveal whether the fee strikes the right balance between welcoming visitors and preserving the city's unique character and livability for residents.

Key Takeaways

  • Venice to charge 5 euro entry fee for visitors starting April 25, 2023.
  • Goal is to manage tourist arrivals and balance needs of visitors and residents.
  • Checks will be conducted by stewards and agents, not turnstiles.
  • Other Italian destinations, like Como, considering similar entry fees.
  • Venice's experiment aims to strike balance between tourism and livability.