Venice postpones tourism tax amidst Covid-19 pandemic’ impact on visitor numbers

(Image: iStockphoto)

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Venice is delaying the introduction of its tourism tax until 2022 following the effects of the coronavirus pandemic on its tourism numbers.

The city will now be introducing a tourism tax from the 1st January 2022. It was originally due to launch in 2019 but has been delayed twice already, once due to the logistics of implementing a tax, and again earlier this year when the pandemic first broke.

The new tourism tax would see tourists charged up to €10 for visiting the city, particularly those visiting on a cruise holiday or just for a day trip.

The city's problem with day trippers is that the brevity of the trip means they don't contribute to the industry in terms of hotels and restaurants, but they do contribute to factors such as overtourism and crowding, neither of which are popular with locals.

Go on a gondola ride in Venice
(Image: Getty Images/iStockphoto)

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Tourists who are staying overnight in Venice would be exempt from the levy.

The idea is that the money generated by the tourism tax would be poured back into the city.

According to Italian newspaper The Local, Michele Zuin, the city councillor for budget issues said in a statement that the decision was made as a 'big gesture to help encourage the return of tourists'.

Venice is usually packed with visitors on its bustling piazzas or taking gondola rides down its iconic canals. However, the pandemic has seen tourism numbers drastically drop due to ongoing travel restrictions.

(Image: Photolibrary RM)

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At the time of writing, the FCDO currently advises Brits against travel to Italy. Meanwhile, the country requires visiting Brits to provide proof of a negative Covid-19 test taken within 72 hours before travel. (You can find out more in the FCDO Italy travel advice.)

The silver lining for those who are missing Italy is that you'll be able to get a taste of its world-famous cuisine in the UK next year when a 40,000 sq m Italian food hall opens in London complete with its own winery and cookery school.

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