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flag Italy Italy: Travelling

In this page: Entry Requirements | Organizing Your Trip | Visiting | Living Conditions | Eating | Paying | Speaking | Useful Resources


Entry Requirements

Passport and Visa Service
For further information, consult the Italian Ministry of Foreign Affairs website
Diplomatic Representations
To find out where the Italian Embassies and Consulates are in your country, consult the Ministry of Foreign Affairs website.
IATA Travel Center

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Organizing Your Trip

Means of Transport Recommended in Town

The metro is not extensive, even in large cities. Taxis are expensive but there are a lot of them on the streets. If the light is green, they are free; if it is red, they are taken. Not all drivers speak English; have the address you are going to written down in Italian on a piece of paper.
Maps of Urban Networks
Rome metro map
Bus and metro lines in Rome

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Transportation From Airport to City Centre:






Car Rental
Roma - Ciampino (CIA) 15 km / 10 miles EUR 40 / 25-40 min EUR 8 / 40 min EUR 1 Available
Roma - Urbe (LIRU) 6 km / 4 miles Available - EUR 4.65, EUR 8.8 + RER ticket / 40 min -
Milano - Malpensa (MXP) 43 km / 27 miles EUR 70-90 / 45-60 min EUR 5 / 50 min EUR 11 / 30-40 min. Available
Napoli - Capodichino (NAP) 6 km / 4 miles EUR 20 / 20-35 min EUR 18 / 20-25 min - Available

Means of Transport Recommended in the Rest of the Country

The train remains the easiest means of transport for travelling around the country. The tariffs per kilometer are more reasonably priced than in most European countries. The large cities are linked with each other: Turin-Milan-Venice, Milan-Bologna-Bari, Rome-Genoa-Turin, and Rome-Naples-Palermo. Apart from the "Pendolini' and "Euro star", trains do not always keep to the timetable.
Rail Companies
Italian railway company

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Name Type Domestic Flights International Flights
Alitalia(AZ) Major Yes Yes
Air One Low Cost Yes Yes
Alpi Eagles Low Cost Yes Yes
Blu-express Low Cost Yes Yes
Meridiana Low Cost Yes Yes
eVOLAvia Low Cost Yes No

You Can Consult the List of Airlines Banned Within the EU. Look Also at the rating of the United States Federal Aviation Administration (FAA).

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Traveling By Yourself

Most of the road network is good. However, the lanes are very narrow and the curves very sharp on some motorways (Salerno-Reggio di Calabria for example) and this can make them dangerous when driving at excessive speed.
Road Maps
Maps of Italian motorways
Find an Itinerary

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Different Forms of Tourism

Italy is famous worldwide for its many tourist sites.
A great number of the most well-known and visited historical monuments are in Rome, among them: the Coliseum, the Trevi Fountain and the Vatican.
Other cities have many visitors, such as, for example, Venice and its famous canals, Florence and its Uffizi gallery, Pisa and its Tower.
In Italy, you can walk around very typical historical centers such as those of Rome, Naples or Florence and you can also visit the towns of Tuscany and Umbria. The Reggia de Caserta (Palace of Caserta), the Villa d'Este, Villa Adriana, the Necropolises of the Etruscans are also very well known.
Night life in Italy caters for all tastes: Opera and theater, as well as many bars, discotheques and night clubs.
The places of natural beauty popular with tourists include the Aeolian islands, the island of Asinara, the Maddalena archipelago and the Strait of Bonifacio, the Cascades of the Marmore, the vineyards of Langhe, Monferrato and Valtellina. Mount Etna in Sicily is one of the biggest volcanoes in the world.
The heart of Italian religion is the Vatican and Rome with its churches and basilicas.
Italy has numerous spas, some of which were already famous in Antiquity. The biggest and best equipped spa and therapeutic resorts in Italy are Abano Terme and Montegrotto Terme (Veneto), Acqui Terme (Piedmont), Chianciano and Montecatini Terme (Tuscany), Fiuggi (Lazio), Porretta Terme and Salsomaggiore Terme (Emilia-Romagna), Sciacca (Sicily) and Sirmione (Lombardy).
Italy has countless beautiful beaches: in all the islands, Liguria, Tuscany, Puglia and Sicily.
Winter Sports
The Alps make up Italy's northern border and the Apennine chain runs the whole length of the country: that is enough to highlight its vocation as a mountain holiday destination, ideal in winter for those who love snow and winter sports. For further information, consult the Skiinfo website.
Outdoor Activities
In Italy golf is played quite a lot. Other available outdoor activities are climbing, sailing and trekking.
Many Italian products are recognized all over the world for their class and high quality; some are made by craftsmen, at attractive prices. Florence, Milan and Rome are the fashion centers. Some places are known for their products: Como (Lombardy) for silk, Prato (Tuscany) for textiles, Empoli (Tuscany) for the production of bottles and glasses in green glass, Deruta (Umbria) and Faenza (Emilia-Romagna) for pottery, Carrara (Tuscany) for marble, Torre Annunziata (Campania) and Alghero (Sardinia) for coral crafts, Cremona (Lombardy) for violins, Castelfidardo (Marche) for accordions, guitars and organs, Valenza (Piedmont) for goldsmiths, Vietri sul Mare (Campania) for ceramic tiles and Ravenna (Emilia-Romagna) for mosaics.
Tourism Organizations
ENIT, National Tourist Office

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Living Conditions

Health and Safety

Health Precautions
There is no compulsory vaccination. Water is of good quality in Italy. However, it is advisable to use bottled water in the Naples area.
International Hospitals
International Hospital Salvator Mundi
The Milan Clinic
For Further Information on Sanitary Conditions
The World Health Organization web pages devoted to Italy.
Visit the Ministry of Health website.
For Further Information on Safety Conditions
The advice of the Canadian Ministry of Foreign Affairs
The Current Travel Warnings of the US State Department

Emergency Numbers

Police 113
Ambulance 118
Firemen 115
European Assistance 803803
Fire prevention 1515

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Time Difference and Climate

Time and Time Difference
It is %T:%M %A In Rome, Milan (GMT+1 in winter, GMT+2 in summer)
Summer Time Period
Summer time from March to October.

Map of the Time Zone

Time zone

Type of Climate
Mountain climate in the North, continental on the plains and Mediterranean in the coastal regions. On average, temperatures vary between 11°C and 19°C.
For Further Information
Italian Meteorological website

Average Annual Temperatures and Rainfall



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Food Specialties
Italian cuisine enjoys great international renown and is well-known for its use of olive oil and for its pasta.

Antipasti : this is the traditional hors-d'oeuvre, vegetables marinated in olive oil (artichokes, aubergines, mushrooms, olives, peppers, dried tomatoes, etc.).

Typical dishes: marinated aubergines, aubergines Parmigiana (Melanzane alla parmigiana : aubergines baked with Parmesan and mozzarella), asparagus with Parmigiano Reggiano, broccoli alla romana, scalopina alla milanese (veal escalops), pizza, risotto alla milanese (risotto is served as a starter but it can become a main dish. It is a round-grained rice flavored with saffron).

Pasta: Lasagne, spaghetti, ravioli...

Desserts : Tiramisu, Zabaione (Zabaglione) and Italian ice-creams.

There is a wide variety of cheeses in Italy such as gorgonzola, Parmesan, mozzarella, mascarpone, ricotta and many others.
Italian wines are well-known abroad. They are named according to region of origin and type of grape.

The most famous is Chianti from Tuscany. In the Rome region, the greatest wines are Frascati and Albano. In the Valle d'Aosta it is Barolo; Valpolicella in the Veneto; Pinot Bianco and Pinot Grigio (white wines); Cabernet and Pinot Nero (red wines) in Friuli-Venezia; and Chianti, Nobile di Montepulciano and Brunello in Tuscany.

The most well-known aperitifs are Campari and PunteMes ; among the liqueurs there are Amaretto, Limoncello, Grappa and Strega.

Italians enjoy drinking a coffee or a cappuccino in a bar, usually in a hurry. Young people like going to bars in the afternoon for a tea or an aperitif. You can find plenty of bars, wine bars, pubs, etc. ready to serve aperitifs from 6pm until dinner time.

Dietary Restrictions
There are no dietary restrictions in the country.

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Domestic Currency
ISO Code
To Obtain Domestic Currency
There are no ATMs, but small bureaux with a sign "change". They are in all the large towns, but they are not so common in small villages, so make sure you have enough cash on you.
Possible Means of Payment
You can pay in cash or with a credit card: Diners Club, MasterCard and Visa. Checks are also taken but they must be in Euros, pounds Sterling or American dollars.

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Official Language
Italian is the official language. There are some regions with linguistic minority groups: Alto Adige (German) and Aoste (French)
Other Languages Spoken
You should note that the use of dialects persists in this country. Albanian is spoken by approximately 80,000 people in the South and 50,000 people in the rest of the country. 20,000 residents in the North East of Sardinia speak Gallurese. In addition, the Sardinian language is also spoken in Sardinia by approximately 1.2 million people.
Business Language
More and more people have some knowledge of English. For initial contact, it is advisable to correspond in Italian. This could speed up communication and avoid misunderstandings. In any case, most firms are able to communicate in English.
Getting Some Knowledge
Use the travlangwebsite
Free Translation Tools
The Evta website : To do on-line translations

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Useful Resources

To Find an Accommodation
See the National association of hotels website (Federalberghi)
Rentals in Italy
Look at the "Azienda Autonoma Soggiorno e turismo" website in the place where you want to go.
The Italian youth hostel association website.
To Find an Apartment
Casa click
Internet immobiliare

To Find a Job (in Italian)
Job on line
Agenzie Interinali

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Last Updates: November 2014