Venice will start implementing its long-planned fee for day visitors starting in April 2024.
The fee, which was first floated as an idea in 2019 but postponed several times, will initially be in effect for 29 days and cover most weekends from April 25, 2024, to mid-July, Reuters reported. The fee will apply to travelers who visit Venice from 8:30 a.m. to 4 p.m. each day it is in effect.
“It is the first time in the world that you do something like this, you make a city bookable,” Mayor Luigi Brugnaro told the wire service, adding “We want to measure the effect of this trial, we want to measure the effect of this bookability.”
The fee will cost €5 ($5.46) per person and will be imposed on all travelers over 14 years old who visit the famous canal city for the day. Travelers under 14 will still need to register, but are exempt from the cost of the fee.
Tickets to visit the city will be sold through an online platform that should be ready by January, according to The Local Italy. Travelers will then receive a QR code to be checked at specific entry points, Reuters reported.
The fee will not apply to overnight visitors who book a hotel stay since they are already subject to a different tax. Travelers will also not need to pay the fee to visit the area’s smaller islands like Murano, known for its glass, Reuters noted.
Travelers who don’t pay the required fee may be subject to a sanction from €50 ($54.64) to €310 ($338.78).
The fee comes after UNESCO once again spared Venice from its list of world heritage sites in danger in September despite recommendations to add it.
Venice has been in UNESCO’s crosshairs for years and was spared the same fate in 2021. Following that, the city undertook several preservation efforts, including declaring the waterways around Venice a “national monument” and banning large cruise ships from passing through its canals.