Venice's primary public transportation is the vaporetto (water bus). The ACTV operates vaporetti (water buses) on routes throughout the city. Departures are quite frequent; during the day, for example, Line 1 from Piazzale Roma along the Grand Canal to the Lido, departs every 10 minutes. The trip from Ferrovia to San Marco takes about 35 minutes. Most other lines depart frequently as well, at least every 20 minutes. During times of heavy traffic, ACTV sometimes puts on extra vaporetti, so that departures are even more frequent. Beginning at about 11:30 pm there's limited, but fairly frequent, night service. Although most landings are well marked, the system takes some getting used to; check before boarding to make sure the boat is going in your desired direction.
There are seats reserved for pregnant, elderly, and disabled passengers, and other passengers are expected to surrender such seats if requested.
Individual tickets are €7 and are good for 60 minutes one way. Considerable savings are possible if you buy a pass: €18 for 12 hours, €20 for 24 hours, €35 for 72 hours, and €50 for a week of unlimited travel. Travelers ages 14–29 can opt for the €4 Rolling Venice card (available from the HelloVenezia booth at principal vaporetto stops), which allows 72 hours of travel for €18. A ticket to take the vaporetto one stop across the Grand Canal is €4. Tickets are available at the airport, from tobacco shops, and from machines or booths at some, but not all, vaporetto stops. Tickets are checked frequently, and fines for using the vaporetto without a ticket are substantial.
ACTV. The ACTV operates the land and water bus service in Venice. A single tourist ticket valid for 60 minutes costs €7.50, but there are also one-, two-, and three-day tickets plus a one-week ticket available, which represent considerable savings if you plan to move frequently around the city by public transportation. Water buses run 24 hours in Venice, because there are parts of the city that are accessible only by water. Service is quite frequent during the day. Routes and schedules are available on the ACTV website, or at individual vaporetto stations. Tickets are available at main vaporetto stops, at tobacconists, and at some newspaper kiosks. The tickets are valid on both the vaporetti in Venice and on the bus lines to Mestre and on the Lido. Controls are frequent and fines for traveling without a valid ticket are steep. If you plan an extended stay in Venice, or plan to make several trips, and have a local address (not a hotel or B&B), you can apply for a Carta Venezia (€50) valid for several years, which will give you substantially reduced rates on public transportation. 041/2424; www.actv.it.