As befits a city of canals, Venice has a variety of cruising aptitudes. While a trip aboard a traditional Venetian gondola will empty your wallet faster than you can say, “Ciao bello!”, other watercrafts cost much less. Here, how to find the Cheapo ways to float your boat!
For everyday exploring:
A 60-minute or 12-hour tour-
Water buses (vaporetti in Italian) are the cheapest and most traditional mode of transportation in Venice. Locals cruise to and from work and home using the vaporetti’s extensive reach. If you plan on covering a lot of ground and seeing many attractions in a short period of time, consider hopping on this boat. Tickets are relatively cheap. A 60-minute ticket, that allows you to travel on most lines, costs €6.50. A 12-hour card, with unlimited travel, is €14. Visit the ACTV’s web site (Venice’s transportation authority) for more info.
Three days on a discount-
The ACTV offers a number of discounts for carriers of the Venice Card. The ACTV’s Youth Card (for ages 14 to 29), costs €18 and is good for three days of unlimited vaporetti travel. Check out the Venice Card web site for more information.
A Venetian dream on a budget:
We’ve said it before and we’ll say it again: gondolas are as pricey as they are romantic. They’re not so much a means of transportation as an expensive, if lovely, tour of the city’s most charming views. Expect to pay upwards of €80 for a 45-minute ride.
So what’s a Cheapo to do? Step into one of the gondola ferries, or “traghetti,” as they are called in Venice, the bare-bones alternative to the lavish gondola ride. Thankfully, the experience is no less authentic; for a mere €.50, you’ll sail along with the locals in a thin, canoe-shaped boat. Look for the yellow “traghetto” signs that mark docking and sailing off points.