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More changes are on the way for travelers planning a vacation to Venice, Italy.
In addition to the previously announced tourism tax starting later this year, Venice will cap tour groups to 25 people.
Here’s what you need to know about each regulation.
$5 daily tourism tax
Ahead of summer travel, the city will begin charging daytrippers a tourism tax effective this spring, per the Venice city council. The council previously delayed the pilot program to charge non-overnight guests a 5 euro (about $5.35) entry fee on 30 peak travel days, focusing on key spring and summer weekends.
The goal is “to discourage daily tourism in certain periods,” per a statement from the group in September. All-day visitors over age 14 who enter the Old City of the Municipality of Venice can expect to pay this charge on select days, minus a few exemptions.
Note that the 5 euro tourism tax in Venice won’t apply to guests staying in a hotel nor to the city’s many workers, commuters or students.
25-person tour group cap
The aforementioned tax for daytrippers is just one of several tourism-related fees and other measures the city plans to implement to curb the effects of immense tourism.
Also, this year, a new municipal resolution will cap tour groups at 25 people, i.e., half the passengers on a tourist bus, in addition to banning loudspeakers “that may cause confusion and disturbance,” both of which are effective June 1. This measure will also apply to groups in Murano, Burano and Torcello.
“It is a provision that is part of a broader framework of interventions aimed at improving and better managing tourism in Venice, thus guaranteeing a greater balance between the needs of those who live in the city,” Venice tourism councilor Simone Venturini said in a statement on Dec. 30, 2023. “A limit was therefore introduced on the number of participants in tourist groups and the use of amplifiers and parking in narrow streets, bridges or places of passage was prohibited. The number of 25 people was also decided to give homogeneity to what already happens for visits to the city’s civic museums.”
Venice is the latest popular tourist destination to add or bolster tourism-related fees in recent years. From Europe to New Zealand, leaders have grappled with the dual effects of immense tourism spending and those guests’ toll on the environment and infrastructure. These impacts have been particularly potent as travel surged leading up to the pandemic and in the most recent couple of years.
Last summer, UNESCO recommended putting Venice on its list of endangered heritage sites, citing — among other factors — the impacts of tourism, severe weather and climate change.
After being postponed for a few years, the Venice tourism tax for day visitors will finally begin in the spring, along with a 25-person cap for tour groups in the summer.
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