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Gondola Rides in Venice ?

Can somebody give me info .......people have told me not to do it ..But I said since I am going I am going to ..I never know if I'll ever be back again. When is the best time to take a trip and what are the prices ? Are you by yourself as a couple or are you with others ?

Posted by
2023 posts

Definitely do the gondola ride. It is expensive but you need to do it once. You see many of the back sides of buildings and palaces. We went at dusk and really enjoyed our ride. However, we waited until our last night in Venice and it was raining lightly. We did not try to negotiate price since the gondolier was getting rained on. Our gondolier gave us the history of various buildings and sang also.

Posted by
689 posts

I'd suggest to stop at the various Gondola stands and negotiate. We've never done a ride as it feels like a Disneyland ride to us... We find it much more fun to watch them, run to various bridges and watch as they come around a corner or out from under the bridge.

The last time we priced it - the rides were running at 90E for the two of us - for a shared ride.

But if it something you really want to do... DO IT!!! I've learned that lesson. Do it now as you may never get the the chance again.

Posted by
6898 posts

Riding the gondola in Venice is about as close to a tourist scam as you will get. But, it's something you have to do at least once and they seem to know it. My wife and I decided that Venice was not Venice without the gondola ride. It was expensive, not much to it but we will never regret it.

The fare last summer was 100Euro for up to 5-6 people. It's a shared cost. 2 people - 100 Euro. 5 people - 100Euro. We found others who wanted to ride to share the 100Euro. With 5 in the boat, the cost was 20Euro each. Not bad. They would not negotiate even though they weren't busy. The trip will last about 40 minutes down a few quiet back canals and that's it. They say that the price may be lower in the daytime but we did this about 7:30pm as it was getting dark and the canal lights were on.

Posted by
7737 posts

If your highest priority is doing a gondola ride for the least amount possible, the trick is to look for another couple or two to share the ride with. (The cost is per ride, not per person.) I seem to recall that most gondolas can handle up to 6 passengers.

And you're not likely to find a gondolier who will negotiate down the price. They pay a fortune for the boat and the license in order to have a complete monopoly and be set for life financially. Any gondolier who drops his price would probably be thrown in the canal by his fellow gondoliers.

Posted by
166 posts

Your going to Venice, you need to take a ride in a gondola. The last time I was in Venice I was not feeling up to par so I skipped the gondola ride, now I'm sorry. I'm going back in April and it is on top of my to do list. Just like last June we were in Egypt to see the pyramids and we rode the camels, how often do you get to ride a camel? Just like everything in Italy you can negotiate.


Posted by
6898 posts

No you really can't negotiate. I'm in complete agreement with Michael. When we were there, dozens of gondolas were not in use and the gondoliers were just standing around. When trying to negotiate, they switch to Italian, talk among themselves and laugh. They KNOW you will ride somebody's gondola. They'll just wait you out.

You might find a smaller private area where you can quietly negotiate with a gondolier but in the larger areas, they won't do it.

Posted by
3313 posts

You've got to do it. And you should do it as a couple.

Just don't do what I did and watch the trip through a video camera. My wife still won't let me forget that.

Posted by
850 posts

The price in May 2007 for a night Gondola ride was 100 Euro. No negotiation. Like Susan we rode the last night in Venice and went down the side canals and a short stretch on the Grand Canal. We did not want to share the ride consequently no shared cost but that was one of our splurge items in our travel budget. Our Gondolier brought out points of interest as we floated along. It is not something I would do again (my wife would though, so I guess I would have to) but I am glad I did it while there. Better to have done it than come home and then regret not doing it.