„And so I sit, poor silly man no wiser now than when I began“. (Faust, J.W. Goethe) Exactly what I was thinking when having a look at different offers and museum passes in Venice. “And what to choose now?“ In the end I found myself stuck to my computer, 5 different tabs opened in my browser window, to confront the different passes (and the price performance ratio). The most important questions that you should have an answer to, before deciding which card to take, are:
How many days am I going to spend in Venice?
How many museums do I want to see?
Is it a once in a lifetime stay or am I going to come back in the next months?
To give you an example: The ticket for Palazzo Ducale costs 16€/person (it’s actually the Ticket I Musei di Piazza San Marco) and includes, as you can see in the infographic, the other museums of Piazza San Marco. It takes you 1/1.5 days to see all of them (depending on your „museum visiting style“: like a missile or gemütlich, just like a tour in the gondola). Means that, in case of a 2 days stay, the purchase of the Venice Card or the Museum Pass has no sense. Only when planning to turn back to Venice in the following 12 months, the acquisition of the Museum Pass is a real bargain, as it gives you the possibility to visit all the Musei Civici in Venice for free (single admission).
The Venice Card (sold at Hellovenezia ticket offices) is, in my opinion, only worth the price in case you try to get all out o fit (as it’s only valid for 7 days and thus can’t be used during another stay). Why? Let’s have a look at the Junior/Adult version: it includes the Museums of Piazza San Marco and the Musei Civici (also included in the Museum Pass for 24€), means that paying only 5€ – 15€ more gives you free access to the 15 churches of the Circuito Chorus (value: 7€-10€), the Fondazione Querini Stampalia (value: 10€) and the Museo Ebraico (value:3€-4€). Not at all bad, right?
One oft he best discount cards is the Rolling Venice Card for „young tourists“ (14-29 years), as it gives you a pretty neat discount on the purchase of the 3-day ACTV ticket (for vaporetti and buses) as it costs you 18€ (UPDATE feb. 2014: 20€) instead of 35€ (see infographic) in addition to other discounts (unfortunately, the folder isn’t online anymore, but you’ll find more info here). Can be purchased at Hellovenezia and Tourist Information Offices (don’t forget your valid identity card!).
My favourite is the MuveFriend Card (not in the infographic): this card guarantees you (and one companion) one year free entrance (as often as you wish) in the Musei Civici and the Museums of Piazza San Marco in addition to exclusive invitations to exposition premiers etc. It’s definitely an offer that’s only interesting for someone who’s/turns back to Venice regularly or lives here. Price: 45€ for tourists, 25€ for students (till 26 years) and residents.
Skip the line: Venice Card, Venezia Unica, Museum Pass, MuveFriends Card, I Musei di Piazza San Marco
By the way: The VeniceConnected card is not existing any more.
Museum Pass: Can be purchased at every Museo Civico or online.
Musei Civici: Museo Correr, Museo Archeologico Nazionale, Sale Monumentali della Biblioteca Nazionale Marciana, Ca’ Pesaro, Ca’ Rezzonico, Museo del Palazzo Mocenigo, Casa di Carlo Goldoni, Museo di Storia Naturale, Museo del Vetro, Museo del Merletto (Palazzo Fortuny/Torre dell’Orologio only included in the MuveFriendCard)