Venice ACTV Travel Passes
Save money on public transportation in Venice with
a 24-hour to 7-day tourist ticket.
ABOVE: A marinaio, or sailor, tosses
a mooring line from a Line 12 water bus as it arrives on the island of
If you've read our
Venice Vaporetto Fares article,
you know that single waterbus fares for tourists are outrageous: They're
six times the fares paid by local residents and long-term sojourners.
Fortunately, the ACTV--Venice's local transit authority--offers
24-hour or multi-day passes that can reduce the financial pain of riding the city's
vaporetti and motoscafi. The
Venezia Daily Pass and
2-, 3-, and 7-Day
Tickets allow unlimited
travel on ACTV water and land buses. (If you've visited Venice previously, you
may remember these tickets by their old name, "Tourist
Biglietto un giorno
|ACTV Two-Day Ticket
Biglietto due giorni
|ACTV Three-Day Ticket
Biglietto tre giorni
|ACTV Seven-Day Ticket
Biglietto sette giorni
|Three-day Young Person's Travel Card
Biglietto tre giorni giovani
Valid 72 hours after swiping; to buy this card, you'll need a
Rolling Venice Card
for travelers between the ages of 6 and 29, which you can purchase at any
ACTV ticket counter or branch of the Venice Tourist Office for
For visitors between the ages of 14 and 29, a 3-day "Young Person's Travel Card" is available in combination with the
Rolling Venice Card.
It's a good value, especially if you're staying at the
Generator Venice Hostel on Giudecca.
Here's our advice on using ACTV's daily and multi-day
Don't buy more time than you need. Venice
is compact and pedestrian-friendly, so you shouldn't need to ride the
vaporetto very often unless you're visiting outlying islands (such as the
Lido, Murano, Burano, and Torcello) or have limited mobility.
Consolidate your excursions. For example,
if you're planning to visit Murano's glass factories and take a ride up the
Grand Canal, buy a Venezia Daily Pass, make both trips in the same
day, and take a leisurely ride up the Grand Canal on the
No. 1 vaporetto in the evening.
the instructions. When you're riding a water bus, hold the
card close to the white electronic ticket reader at the entrance to the
vaporetto platform until you hear a beep. On land buses, the ticket reader is
usually inside the bus.
(Note: If you see a green ticket reader in a boat
station, ignore it. Green readers are for the convenience of commuters who
want to check fares on their stored-value cards, and they don't validate
Be aware of the card's limitations. ACTV
tourist travel cards are not valid on
ATVO airport buses or
Alilaguna airport boats. However, you
can buy discounted travel on the ACTV
Line 5 "Aerobus" from Marco Polo Airport to the city (or vice versa)
in combination with a daily pass or multi-day travel ticket. See our ACTV
Line 5 "Aerobus" page for details.
If you're a wheelchair user, skip the all-day or
and buy a stack of Disabled Tickets,
which are cheap and let you bring a companion free. Each ticket is good for
75 minutes in one direction (using multiple water buses if needed).
The clock doesn't start ticking until you scan or swipe your
pass, so you can buy the pass before you plan to use it. (The pass is valid
for 24, 48, 72, or 168 hours from
the first scan, depending on how many days you've purchased.) Also,
remember to scan the pass every time you use it.
You can check how much time is left on
your pass by holding it up to the electronic card reader and pressing the "?" button.)
If you'll be staying in
Mestre/Marghera or on the Lido di
Venezia, see our
Venice land bus &
tram fares article for a description of the inexpensive
Mestre Daily Pass. (Among other
services, this electronic smartphone pass includes buses, trams, and
regional trains between the mainland and Venice's historic center.)
ABOVE: You can buy waterbus tickets and passes at the
ACTV's Ferrovia stop in front of
Venezia Santa Lucia Railroad Station.
Other outlets include ticket agencies, newsstands, tobacco shops, etc.
throughout Venice and its suburbs.
VeneziaUnica, a.k.a. the Venice tourist office, offers two
Venezia Unica pass for
tourists, which offers a la carte options such as an ACTV single- or
multi-day tourist ticket, admission to municipal museums, and access to
public toilets. The pricing scheme is Byzantine, and if you're mostly
interested in transportation, we'd recommend just buying an ACTV travel
pass. (See "Which Venice
transportation pass do I need?" before making a decision.)
Venezia Unica pass for frequent users
can be a good value if
you're staying in Venice for a while or plan to visit the city
repeatedly in the
next several years. The stored-value card allows visitors to buy massively-discounted
resident fares, and cardholders also get big discounts on
Alilaguna airport boat fares.
You can avoid ticket lines by using the official AVM Venezia smartphone app
to buy and validate fares and passes. (But read our
AVM Venezia app article before taking the
About the author:
Durant Imboden has
written about Venice, Italy since 1996.
He covered Venice and European travel at About.com for 4-1/2 years before launching
Europe for Visitors (including
Venice for Visitors) with Cheryl
Imboden in 2001.
PC Magazine has called this "the premier visitors'
site for Venice, Italy." Over the years, it has helped more than 30 million
travelers. For more information, see About our site,
our Europe for Visitors
our reader testimonials.