Venice city pass

Which passes are available for Venice? Is it better to have a city pass or is it recommended to book tickets separately? Do theses passes include public transportation? In the following overview we will compare Venice’s main city passes to help you make the right choice: prices, activities included, validity period, including or excluding public transport, etc…

We will also share our opinion on these Venice city passes to help you find the one that best matches your stay, both in terms of the offer and its cost-effectiveness.

Quick comparison of Venice’s city passes

Before going into further detail, here is a summary of some of the important points that characterize 2 main tourist maps that will help you get around Venice.

The Venice Pass
The Venice Pass

This Venice pass includes the Doge's Palace and other museums in St. Mark's Square, St. Mark's Basilica, along with a gondola ride on the canals. The package contains fast-pass tickets, sent by email. It also gives you a 10% discount on other visits in Venice.

Visits and main activities

  • Doge’s Palace
  • Gondola ride
  • Saint Mark’s Basilica
  • Marciana National Library
  • Archaeological Museum
  • Correr Museum

Price

  • Venice Pass : 94 €
ACTV Venice
Venice’s ACTV Transport Card

This card gives unlimited access to the city' s public transportation network. It covers buses and vaporettos (boats), and as an option, the Regionale Veloce (RV) and Regionale (R) trains, which can be used to connect with Mestre.

Main benefits

  • Access to vaporettos and buses

Price

  • 1 day : 33 €
  • 2 days : 44 €
  • 3 days : 55 €
  • 7 days : 77 €
Venice Discovery Pass
Venice’s Discovery Pass

This pass includes essentials for a successful cultural visit to Venice! Museums, Chorus Pass which gives access to the 15 main churches, unlimited transportation through the ACTV card, and a round trip transfer to Marco-Polo airport.

Main benefits

  • Doge’s Palace
  • Access to vaporetto boats
  • Marciana National Library
  • Chorus Pass
  • Archaeological Museum
  • Correr Museum

Price

  • 24 hours : 92 €
  • 48 hours : 110 €
  • 72 hours : 123 €

Venice Pass: prices, included visits & policy

This Venice city pass is very easy to use because it is exclusively electronic. You can arrange everything from the comfort of your own home, from purchasing to choosing the dates you would like to visit.

Venice Pass pricing

Unlike other passes in other major cities, the pricing system here is very easy to understand. As the pass is a package of tickets and other benefits received in advance, there is only a one-time price it and it only depends on the age of the person using it.

AgePrice
30+94 €
6 - 2982 €
2 - 533 €

How it works

The pass can only be purchased online. You simply select the number of participants, their age range, and the dates and times for the various activities included. You will then receive all the tickets by email.

Doge's Palace in Venice

You will then need to present these tickets on site once in Venice, whether directly through your smartphone or if you prefer, by printing them out in advance.

When you receive your tickets by email, you will also receive a 10% discount code that enables you to benefit from a reduced price on a set of complementary activities to do in Venice (numerous museums, excursions to small islands on the lagoon, La Fenice opera house, etc.). You can also book them online.

Visits and activities included with this city pass

This city pass includes the must-see attractions for a first trip to Venice:

  • Doge's Palace
  • Gondola ride
  • Saint Mark's Basilica
  • The Marciana National Library, in front of the Doge's Palace, which can be visited much like a museum. It houses important manuscripts.
  • The national archaeological museum, which houses collections of ancient sculptures, pottery, coins, etc... from different civilizations (Greek, Egyptian, etc...)
  • Correr Museum
  • Access to an audio guide application of Venice, as well as another that provides insight on the Doge's Palace (POPGuide)
  • 10% discount on other activities in Venice

Validity period

There is no expiry date for this tourist card. As it is an online Venice pass, see it as a set of activities booked in advance. The good thing is that you can spread out your visits as you wish, without having to force yourself to group them all together within the same given time frame.

In addition, you should know that a 10% discount on other bookings is valid beyond the dates you booked for your included attractions. This means that you can take advantage of the Venice city pass for your entire stay.

Where to get your Venice Pass?

This city pass can only be found online, in the form of mobile applications and electronic tickets, so there is nothing you’ll need to pick-up once in Venice.

You will receive all your tickets by email, as well as the links to download the audio-guide applications, right after your purchase. As for the tickets, you will only have to present them once you get there, and the same applies for the mobile apps that can be used anywhere and anytime.

Venice Transport Pass: rates & policy

This pass is intended only for public transportation. Venice is actually very large, and between getting to the other islands on the lagoon (especially Murano and Burano), and the lengthy journeys back and forth, or even getting to and from the city of Mestre, you will be needing to use public transportation on a regular basis.

Canal in Venice

This Actv card gives you access to the city’s transportation network. Here is what it includes.

Venice Actv transport card pricing

The price structure is easy to understand. It only depends on the number of days you need it. Of course, the longer you plan to use the card, the more it costs. But on the other hand, the price decreases as the number of days increases.

The good news for families with young children is that transportation is free for children under 6 years old. You do not need to buy a card for them.

Age1 day2 days3 days7 days
7+33 €44 €55 €77 €
0 - 6freefreefreefree

How it works

The Venice transport pass is a traditional type of card. Once you have it, you can use it to travel free of charge on all public transportation services covered by the card (vaporetto boats, buses in Venice, and suburban trains if you choose that option).

Considering a one-way ticket for a vaporetto boat ticket (7,50 €), and the distances to travel in Venice, this card quickly pays for itself. For example:

  • You will have to walk about 3 km from the train and bus stations to St. Mark’s Square, and even more to get to the Castello district, on the east side of the main island.
  • You will need to take a boat to get to the islands of Murano, Burano, and Lido

Modes of transportation included with the Actv card

Here is a list of modes of transport covered by the Venice pass:

  • Access to the vaporetto
  • Access to the Venetian ACTV bus network (transfer to the airport is not covered).
  • Access to R and RV trains around Venice, if this option is chosen at the time of purchase.

Please note: it does not cover transportation to Venice airports (Marco Polo and Treviso), either by bus or by boat (Alilaguna line).

How long is it valid?

This card is valid for the number of days (or rather hours) you choose when you buy it. Time is deducted starting the moment you use it for the first time (the first time you get on a vaporetto, train or bus).

The validity period is counted in hours. This means that if you activate a 2-day pass on Monday at 2pm, it can be used until Wednesday at 1:59pm. This is very practical because there is no need to check if it is cost-effective if you activate it at the end of the day.

Where to get a Venice transport card?

Since it is a printed card, it must be picked up in Venice. The most convenient pick-up points are the « Actv » kiosks found in most vaporetto stations. They can be recognized by the words « Actv » and « Biglietteria ». Simply go to one of these terminals and follow the instructions. You will then just have to scan the QR-code sent to you by email after your purchase to get your pass directly at the machine.

Gondolas on a canal in Venice

Another alternative is to go directly to the Actv office in Piazzale Roma. It is located right next to the bus station and about 500 meters from the Santa Lucia train station. It is open every day from 7am to 7:30pm.

Venice Discovery Pass

This city pass gives you the opportunity to enjoy the rich culture that Venice has to offer, combining access to public transportation with the Actv card detailed above.

Discovery pass pricing

The price depends on 2 factors: the user’s age and the duration of validity, i.e. 24, 48, or 72 hours.

Age24 hours48 hours72 hours
30 - 6492 €110 €123 €
11 - 2984 €97 €110 €
6 - 1068 €81 €94 €
0 - 5freefreefree

How it works

You should consider the Venice pass as a package of several passes, each with its own special features. For example:

  • a ticket for the Doge’s Palace that grants access to other museums in the area
  • an Actv transport card, which provides free and unlimited use of vaporetto boats, ACTV buses, and some trains
  • the Chorus Pass, which grants access to a number of churches, namely the most famous ones.

As mentioned above, the transportation card pays for itself in no time since you’ll need to take a boat to get to some of the islands on the lagoon, yet also to travel long distances.

What is included in the Venice city pass

It covers everything you need for a trip to Venice oriented towards cultural visits, with access to transportation as well. As you can see, no gondola rides provided!

Here is a list of what the pass includes:

  • Doge's Palace
  • Access to vaporetto boats
  • The Marciana National Library, in front of the Doge's Palace, which can be visited much like a museum. It houses important manuscripts.
  • Chorus Pass
  • The national archaeological museum, which houses collections of ancient sculptures, pottery, coins, etc... from different civilizations (Greek, Egyptian, etc...)
  • Correr Museum
  • Marco-Polo airport transfer (round trip), via the "Alilaguna" boat
  • Free access to an audio guide application of Venice

A major advantage compared to the Actv card alone: it also covers transfers to and from the Marco Polo airport! This service is available by boat, via the « Alilaguna » line.

How long is it valid?

This is actually the same coverage as the Actv card, i.e. the number of consecutive hours of unlimited access to public transport. This can be determined at the time of purchase. It is either 24, 48 or 72 hours.

The card’s validity starts being counted the moment you use it for the first time.

Venice lagoon

For the rest:

  • the Chorus Pass is valid for one year, so there is no real limitation there
  • Other tickets dates are to be decided at the time of purchase. These are fast-pass (no line) tickets.

Where to get this city pass?

As it is a package, it can be picked up in installments. But don’t worry, it’s simple and non-binding!

  • The Actv card can be purchased in Venice at the « Actv » kiosks located at most vaporetto stations. We have given more details on this subject earlier in this guide.
  • The Chorus Pass card can be used when you visit a church, by showing the QR-Code obtained at the time of purchase.

As for the other tickets, you will receive everything by email. You will only have to show them when you get there. You will also get the link to download the audio-guide app included in this pass and accessible anywhere and anytime.

Which must-see attractions are included in Venice City Passes?

Depending on which one you choose, you can enjoy either all or only part of the main activities in Venice, from monuments to museums, transportation to gondolas. Here is a summary of the city’s must-sees along with the city passes that include them.

Doge's palace in Venice

Doge's Palace

Located on St. Mark's Square, the Doge's Palace is the historic residence of the Doge of Venice. The tour consists of exploring various rooms such as the apartments, a weapons room, etc... But also the prison, as well as the famous Bridge of Sighs that you can walk across. This monument is by far one of the most frequented places in the city, and having a ticket in advance with a city pass or a regular ticket is a must.

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The Venice PassVenice Discovery Pass

Correr Museum

The Correr Museum

Located on St. Mark's Square, this art museum is one of the most prominent in Venice. It houses many works, including Venetian paintings, sculptures, but also period furniture.

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The Venice PassVenice Discovery Pass

Saint Mark's basilica in Venice

Saint Marc's Basilica

This basilica is one of the beauties of the square that bears the same name. Once inside, you can admire its dome and numerous golden mosaics. Entrance to the building is free but some parts are not free of charge such as the Saint Mark's museum (known for its sculptures of the horses of Saint Mark) and the Pala D'Oro (altarpiece in precious stones), or access to the terrace. The terrace offers a magnificent view of the entire square.

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The Venice Pass

Gondola ride in Venice

Gondola boat ride through the canals

Apart from cultural visits, a gondola ride is a must-do activity when visiting Venice. The concept is to embark on a gondola and navigate along the Grand Canal and other small canals to see the city from a different angle. This activity is extremely popular despite the price.

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The Venice Pass

Vaporetto in Venice

Taking a vaporetto boat

Taking a vaporetto is not necessarily an activity to be done in itself, but it is somewhat atypical and very much representative of Venice. It is the system of boats that cross the Grand Canal and connect it to the lagoon's main islands. It is the most common mode of transportation in Venice, and you will inevitably use it at one point during your stay.

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ACTV VeniceVenice Discovery Pass

Santa Maria del Giglio Church in Venice

Chorus Pass

This card gives you access to Venice's 15 main churches. The entrance to these churches is not free of charge. Among them: the church of Santa Maria del Giglio, known for its works by Rubens and Tintoretto, the Gesuati church with its 3 beautiful ceiling frescoes, and the Santa Maria del Giglio church.

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Venice Discovery Pass

Conclusion: which Venice Pass is best for my trip?

Before buying one or several city passes for Venice, it’s important to know beforehand if the visits and activities correspond with your interests. Here below is some advice and our opinion for helping you choose which tourist card to buy when visiting Venice.

For easily enjoying cultural visits

If you plan on visiting Venice mainly for its general atmosphere and cultural attractions (main museums and churches), the Discovery Pass will suit you best.

It is the most comprehensive. It does not include a gondola ride, but if you want to do it, you can book this activity on your own.

In addition to sightseeing, the Discovery Pass gives you access to public transportation, which enables you to move around at your leisure, especially over long distances and to different islands located on the lagoon.

Venice Discovery Pass
Venice Discovery Pass

The Venice Pass: for combining museums and gondolas!

Are you going to spend a few days in Venice but just want to stick to the main attractions and take nice little strolls around the city to discover it on your own?

If that’ s the case, the Venice Pass is the most relevant. You’ll be able to enjoy the must-see monuments: the Doge’s Palace (and surrounding museums), the fee-based attractions inside St. Mark’s Basilica, a gondola ride, and the mobile apps to discover Venice on your own.

And if you want to do an extra activity (or more), you can always take advantage of the pass’s 10% discount.

The Venice Pass
The Venice Pass

For transportation only: the Actv card

To get around Venice without worrying about the price of fares and saving yourself the hassle of buying them at the ticket booths, this transportation pass will come in handy. For a city the size of Venice, that requires long distances when traveling to and from the main island, a vaporetto boat is clearly a must.

Since this Venice pass is solely for transportation, you can combine it with a « Venice Digital Pass ».

ACTV Venice
Venice Transport Pass: Actv