How To Not Get Ripped Off on a Gondola in Venice

Contrary to popular belief, the price of a Gondola ride in Venice is governed by law. Even more unknown, is the fact that this price is for the boat hire and not per person.

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So How Much is a Gondola Ride?

It’s €80 for 30 minutes in the daytime, and €100 night time rate (after 7pm). What many don’t realise is that this is the cost for the ENTIRE boat, and with space for six people, rounding up your friends could result in the ride being less than €15 each.

Gondolier on the Grand Canal in Venice

Gondolier Venice

How can I avoid getting ripped off?

There’s a number of questions to ask your Gondolier before you go on your merry way.

Is it 80 euros for half an hour?
It is, and there is absolutely no reason the price will change – not even the weather!

Where do you take me from here?
There’s no fixed route the Gondoliers have to take, and you can catch them from all over the city. Be sure to take a map, and ask the Gondolier to specify the route he is going to take.

Do not pay in advance.
It’s better to pay at the end, just in case they try to pull a fast one and cut the ride short or steer off from the route you agreed.

Have the exact money.
If you hand the Gondolier a €100 note for a €80 trip, it’s likely they’ll tell you they won’t have any change. So to avoid a stand off with your Gondolier, be sure to have the exact change ready.

 There’s no need to tip
I mean, its €80 for a 30 minute ride, that’s €160 an hour they’re earning – the price well includes a tip so don’t feel pressured to give one.

What if I’m a Solo Traveller?

If you’re a solo traveller and don’t fancy hollering at some strangers, then there is always the option to book online. I booked this tour through Viator, as it was my first solo trip and I knew it would be a busy time during my visit.

As a result, I paid  €30 which at the time I thought was a fantastic deal – now I realise I basically paid for the price of two people since I joined a family of four in the boat. It’s also worth noting that you will be sharing a boat with others – they’ll load up the boats with 6 people before jetting off.

Gondola Ride, Venice, Italy

Gondola Ride, Venice, Italy

What’s the Budget Option?

So there is a way to ride a Gondola for just €2 – say what! Before you get too excited, a ride in a Traghetto is less than a minute since they’re used to ferry you across the Grand Canal, so it really depends if you’d count that as a tick off your bucket list. But, if you’re really stuck for time or just don’t have the funds – this might be the option for you.

One Last Point

It’s only a gondola if you see these metal areas resembling viking ships, if these are not on the Gondola then it is a training Gondola, and not an official one.

Gondola in Venice

Gondola Ride Venice

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