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Old 20-07-19, 12:09   #1
DragonSlayer
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Default Tourists fined for making coffee

I saw it on the news last night that two German tourists were fined 950 euro for making themselves a coffee on the steps of the famous Rialto bridge in Venice and asked to leave the city.

The two backpackers had made themselves comfortable at the foot of the world-famous landmark and got out their portable coffee making equipment when they were spotted by a passer by and reported to the police.

Using a newly passed law, police officers fined them 950 euro for unseemly behaviour and asked them to leave Venice.

The law also bans picnicking at certain spots, bathing in fountains and not wearing a shirt in public places, often with draconian fines for the offenders.

The city's mayor Luigi Bragnaro is quoted as saying from now on we will also communicate the identities of people who have been asked to leave to the embassies and consulates of their home country.

The new law passed in May sets out rules for decency, cleanliness and safety in the city, which has a population of just over 55,000 but is invaded every year by 30 million visitors and is increasingly feeling the detrimental effects of mass tourism.

I have a few things to say about this.

1 950 euro is too excessive a fine just for making coffee, the punishment should be much less severe for such a minor offence, if it were up to me making coffee would not be an offence.

2 If they tried to fine me I'd say your fine and leave without paying it.

3 Making coffee is not unseemly behaviour.

4 Venice must be a city of curtain twitchers, neighbors probably spy on their neighbors and tourists so they can be reported for doing something and probably be rewarded for reporting someone, they are also probably a city of Ned Flanders wannabes going through TV shows to check for possible inappropriate content so they can make a fuss about it, like Ned did in one episode of The Simpsons.

5 I don't see what communicating the identities of the people to the embassies and consulates of their home country will achieve unless the authorities in Venice hope that the coffee makers will be sent to prison in their home country, I can imagine the conversation between two prisoners about the coffee makers, see those two over there, they're psychos who made coffee on holiday, prisoner number 2 who is a serial killer I'm going to stay away from them.

6 If they don't want to be besieged by 30 million visitors a year just build a wall around the city and let in small groups of tourists at a time, in the meantime they can set up armed patrols to catch people making their own coffee, maybe build a few towers and put snipers in the towers, deploy drones equipped with weapons and send anyone caught making their own coffee to Guantanamo Bay for trial.

7 There must be a lack of money in Venice for any essential things that need to be done so they decide to fine tourists for little things like making coffee, it obviously hasn't occurred to the authorities in Venice that they would make more money if they were more welcoming to tourists and didn't fine them for stupid things like making coffee, most places rely on tourism to make money, fining people for little things will only scare away the tourists.
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Old 20-07-19, 12:54   #2
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We visited Venice a month ago.

I agree, 950 euros is ridiculous, but having been there and seen how crowded (overrun?) Venice is, I can see where they have to control the situation.

Venice is a city where everything is literally boated in and boated out. You take your life in your hands if you get up early to walk because the deliveries are made by hand carts and they will run you over on the narrow streets. Same with trash collection.

Making coffee may not be "unseemly" but neither is it something you should do on a heavily trafficked bridge like the Rialto. That's a stupid place to make coffee.

Also, backpackers making their own coffee are not exactly tourists that are bringing revenue to the city. Tourists who buy coffee are. *shrugs* I'm not trying to shame backpackers, but you can buy coffee in Italy everywhere for one euro, maybe two. Stopping on the busiest bridge in town to make your own is a dumb idea.
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Old 20-07-19, 13:15   #3
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I think it's silly and the fine is certainly excessive, they could have just moved the couple on, but then Dennis' Mom makes a good point.

Of all the places in Venice you could have stopped to make a coffee... there? I swear this Mercury Retrograde is messing with people, there's so many silly/crazy things we've been seeing lately I can't.

Unfortunately in the age of mass tourism, some very tourist-y places are just not places you can stop, enjoy a coffee and (ironically I know) spend loads of time take in the views.

It's sad that we've got to this point, where tourism is almost defeating the point of itself in such places, but that's what you get when you visit very busy places in peak tourist season now. There's areas of London that are getting like that. Get in, take your photos, move on. If you don't want it to be so rammed, I suggest saving up to travel during off-peak times of the year, when you'd have more of a luxury to go at your own pace and be more leisurely with it with less crowds of people.

I also don't think expecting tourists to remain appropriately dressed (within reason) is a bad thing, especially in certain settings where a degree of modesty is expected for the locals. If you go into a Roman Catholic church in a Mediterranean country, trust me the locals do not want to see you there half-naked dressed like you're heading straight to the beach after, male or female, because they don't dress like that for church.
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Old 20-07-19, 13:21   #4
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I’m guessing they made the fine that high on purpose; together with all the media coverage, I’m sure many tourists will think twice about making coffee in Venice in the future.

Ultimately the problem is that Venice doesn’t scale. Given how overcrowded it is, they either have to make sure that everyone follows the rules to the letter, or they’d have to limit admission and start charging fees for visitors. The latter would obviously be better for the city and for those who do still visit, but it would also make this cultural landmark inaccessible to folks just because they don’t have the money. Not sure what the best solution is.
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Old 20-07-19, 15:23   #5
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Funnily enough, they paid just as much as sitting at a bar and buying coffee/something to drink there.

Not even kidding here, it occurred multiple times in the past that tourists were royally screwed over and faced with a sky-high bill to pay (we're talking hundres of euros) for something extremely cheap like coffee or bottles of water just because they were sitting in a famous landmark like Piazza San Marco.

**** that, this is absolutely unacceptable. Imagine being so disgustingly vile to the point of taking advantage of people that literally feed you and your family since all Venice relies upon is tourism. I will never condone this kind of behaviour, ever. If anything, it should be illegal instead of being endorsed and normalized by city itself.

So yeah, people who are smart enough or not rich enough to afford paying hundres of euros for a coffee or a sandwich to eat found other ways, and rightly so. Sadly, the city government found other ways too. This is not a good look, at all, especially when it's not the first time people who were visiting the city have been treated poorly.

Quote:
Originally Posted by DragonSlayer View Post
4 Venice must be a city of curtain twitchers, neighbors probably spy on their neighbors and tourists so they can be reported for doing something and probably be rewarded for reporting someone, they are also probably a city of Ned Flanders wannabes going through TV shows to check for possible inappropriate content so they can make a fuss about it, like Ned did in one episode of The Simpsons.
You just described the entirety of Italy, to be honest. People seem unable to mind their own business no matter what, it's just commonplace to constantly gossip and report what other people do in many cases, particularly among older people, but it's a type of mindset that's kind of ingrained in the country's culture so it has spread far and wide.

I mean, it's positive when it actually serves a purpose, like exposing people that engage in criminal activity. Calling the cops on a couple of tourists making coffee though just proves that you're a dick with no compassion.

Quote:
7 There must be a lack of money in Venice for any essential things that need to be done so they decide to fine tourists for little things like making coffee, it obviously hasn't occurred to the authorities in Venice that they would make more money if they were more welcoming to tourists and didn't fine them for stupid things like making coffee, most places rely on tourism to make money, fining people for little things will only scare away the tourists.
Agreed. Except, I doubt Venice would ever run out of tourists no matter how bad the city treats them. It's just too much of a pivotal tourist attraction for people to suddenly erase it from their bucket list, and Venice's government is well aware of that. The exact reason why they let bar owners resort to these sort of tactics like charging extemely high prices for cheap stuff with no repercussion, or why the city government itself imposed a tax to enter the city using the "overcrowded" excuse. They do not care, they have nothing to lose, only to gain.

Venice is just an entitled clique of rich people seriously convinced that tourists are nothing but a nuisance, so this shouldn't be surprising at all.
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Old 20-07-19, 15:42   #6
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If you call the cops on a couple of people making coffee in a public space that does not belong to you, you seriously need to go get laid and piss off worrying about what other people do when it doesn't affect you one bit.
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Old 20-07-19, 16:19   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Dennis's Mom View Post
We visited Venice a month ago.

I agree, 950 euros is ridiculous, but having been there and seen how crowded (overrun?) Venice is, I can see where they have to control the situation.

Venice is a city where everything is literally boated in and boated out. You take your life in your hands if you get up early to walk because the deliveries are made by hand carts and they will run you over on the narrow streets. Same with trash collection.

Making coffee may not be "unseemly" but neither is it something you should do on a heavily trafficked bridge like the Rialto. That's a stupid place to make coffee.

Also, backpackers making their own coffee are not exactly tourists that are bringing revenue to the city. Tourists who buy coffee are. *shrugs* I'm not trying to shame backpackers, but you can buy coffee in Italy everywhere for one euro, maybe two. Stopping on the busiest bridge in town to make your own is a dumb idea.
Such a law could and most likely will end up hurting tourism to Venice, for example the part of the law that bans picnicking in certain locations unless they put up signs similar to keep off the grass signs that say you can't have a picnic here, then a tourist would have no way of knowing where they can and can't have a picnic.

They probably won't put up signs on purpose just so they can fine people for having illegal picnics, once word gets out about this law it'll only put people off going to Venice which will hurt tourism once that happens the law will most likely be scrapped once local businesses stop making money.

The Venice authorities will most likely deliberately not inform tourists of the law just so they can fine them for everything, if someone were for example to drink water from an unnaproved source they could be fined for that with different fines for different offences.

If Venice intends to keep going the way it's going with this law it'll soon become known as the rip off capital off the world.

I think Lara Croft should avoid Venice in the future, she would definitely be fined for speeding in her speedboat.
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Old 21-07-19, 21:28   #8
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Lol I read about this earlier today on the news sites, just so frakin' random

I think they should have been given a very firm warning first, but idk how the situation played out, only that the woman was apparently fined less, 350 euro? than her male companion who got fined 600, which seems strange and unfair, but that's probably not what the two are worried about now
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Old 22-07-19, 01:02   #9
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Alot of tourist leaves alot of crap behind, littering, chewing gum and so on

So they fined them.

Make Italy great again!
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Old 23-07-19, 00:12   #10
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actually nvm.
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