Tourism numbers in Venice have been down dramatically since COVID-19 gripped Europe, but the city is already looking ahead to when tourism rebounds and overcrowding once again becomes an issue. To mitigate overtourism, local officials are already devising a plan to curb the number of day visitors.
The plan calls for charging an entry fee to anyone not staying overnight in Venice, to better control the number of people coming in and out of the city each day. The plan was supposed to take effect this summer, but has been delayed a year due to the pandemic. In high season daytrippers would be charged $12, while the low season cost will be $3.50.
In a press conference last week, Venice Mayor Luigi Brugnaro said that the city may also install electronic turnstiles to help enforce the new measure. The fee, however, would only apply to tourists, with residents, workers, and students able to enter for free with a virtual key on their phones.
To ensure entry, tourists would have to book their spots in advance, and scan a ticket at one of the entry points. Although tourism likely won’t return to normal levels for a little while, the city will be prepared once it does.