discover & work in
Italy has long been a destination for travelers across the globe, whether pilgrims, merchants or tourists and what you need to know before your visit can answer many of the pressing questions you have before a Workation.
The image of fashionable locals, famous artwork, and pristine coastline draws visitors with promise of lavish excursions and relaxing getaways. The diverse landscape gives access to skiing the Alps, lounging on the bright sands of the coastline, sipping wine or enjoying olive oil sustained by the Mediterranean climate.
Most visitors to Italy associate the lush rolling hills of Tuscany and the indigo waters of the Amalfi Coast with the country’s diverse setting but learning more about Italy can give you a better experience and opportunity for self-discovery. It is important to keep destination and time of year in mind when traveling to any country, but you can find more answers to the questions you about Workation before finding the right experience for with our Italy Workation packages.
Italy is very safe to visit.
Horror stories while traveling have become ubiquitous in the travel industry, almost as common as the stories people share about their love affairs with a charming villa in Tuscany or a hidden gem on the Adriatic Coast. All-encompassing generalizations can leave a negative stamp on the growth of the tourism industry across Italy. The country is a safe destination for travelers from around the world but does have instances of petty theft centered on heavy tourist destinations.
Crime rates in the United States rank above those in Italy, however, it is important to protect your personal belongings. Keep your valuables hidden or in a safe place on your body while in large crowds to avoid theft. If using a money belt or travel satchel, use one made to hide under a shirt, jacket, or in the inseam of the pants, as opposed to protruding around your waist.
Pickpockets are notorious in crowded tourist centers like the Colosseum or Piazza di Spagna. Always make sure purses and backpacks are zipped tight before entering a crowd. Hold tight to any loose bags, including backpacks, as persistent thieves may try to cut holes in the bottom of a pack or purse to let the valuables fall out on their own.
If you choose to wear a purse or backpack, or are carrying a bag from a day’s shopping, hold the item to your chest when walking through a popular tourist area.
Visit your doctor to receive any prescription drugs used consistently before departing for your trip. You can attempt to take with you a surplus of your medication as long as you carry the doctor’s perspiration in concurrence with the treatment. Health care is readily available across the country with standards varying by the size of the city and location, with Southern Italy often seen as more disadvantaged.
Explore the ways to travel around Italy and you will find Western-style toilets in accommodations across large cities, small towns, and even in secluded villages. The unique properties of ancient villages hidden in the mountains and structures hundreds of years old can mean the pipes might not be thick enough or new enough to allow for flushing toilet paper. In these instances, a note is often left inside the bathroom, visible to remind you not to flush the paper. A small trash can will also be set beside the toilet as the place to deposit the paper after use.
Drinking the tap water is safe in Italy when traveling on Workation.
It is not necessary to take food or water precautions when traveling, beyond any precautions you would take at home. Ancient springs continue to feed cities and towns across the country, allowing for crisp, clean, and refreshing water springing from Nasoni, free fountains. These water fountains are tested for purity several times a year and are a great way to cool off during the summer.
Whether worried about your gluten free diet or suffering from an autoimmune disorder that affects the way you can digest wheat, Italy is the perfect destination for those who still want to indulge in the delights of Italian cuisine, especially if you are wondering what to eat and where in Italy during your Workation.
The Italian government learned that one percent of its citizens suffer from celiac disease. Regulation has ensured the majority of restaurants across the country have gluten free options, including pizza and pasta. Even when ordering a gluten free option, it is important to confirm the pans, floured surfaces, and doughs were not cross contaminated.
There are gluten free restaurant guides to Italy available, which helps someone otherwise unable to enjoy the more than 600 varieties of pasta in Italy learn about Italian culture through the food.
If you are in an emergency when visiting Italy, call 112.
112 is the single emergency number in Europe available 24/7 regardless of your telecommunications device or network. This emergency contact phone number will direct your call to first responders like paramedics, fire department, or police.
Italy does not have a required list of vaccinations for travelers but recommends visitors receive a certain number of vaccinations before visiting to protect themselves and others.
The westernized culture emphasizes the importance of health facilities, vaccines, and medicines in large cities and villages across the country. The Center for Disease Control, along with the U.S. Department of State, doesn’t require any vaccinations beyond the routine recommendations including:
The suggested vaccines of Hepatitis A and Hepatitis B are meant as precautions, especially if you might come in contact with contaminated food or water while in small towns or rural villages.
You should discuss any vaccination with your doctor based on where you are visiting, your expected activities, and the number of days of your trip. If you do not have a personal doctor, find your nearest travel clinic by visiting Passport Health.
The official currency of Italy is the euro (€).
The Euro was established as an official unit of currency in Italy on January 1, 1999. It replaced the lira as legal tender on February 28, 2002. The move benefitted travelers across the European Union and travelers wishing to explore a variety of countries by not having to exchange different currencies when crossing borders, simplifying travel overall.
ATMs are prevalent across Italy. Restaurants, hotels, and shops in large cities or tourist areas often accept major credit cards. Small shops, hotels, and restaurants located in villages or towns outside of major destinations may only accept cash. Local businesses, from hotels to restaurants, will quote their prices in euros. The exchange rate from dollar to euro can fluctuate daily.
It’s best to exchange money after arriving in Italy.
The easiest and often most economical way to receive euros when in Italy is using an ATM to withdraw money directly from your account. ATMs are accessible in large cities and small villages around the country making money withdrawal much easier with minimal transaction fees depending on your local bank branch.
Money exchange is easy across the country. It can be done at kiosks located in any international airport or the bureau du change prevalent near the tourist areas of major cities. Rates can vary between the kiosks dependent upon the location in town versus the airport. British pounds and American dollars are the easiest currencies to exchange. You can also exchange currency in a bank if you have your passport.
Traveler’s checks are not as readily accepted by businesses in Italy. If an exchange company does accept the traveler’s check, they may charge a large commission. If you feel safer traveling with traveler’s checks, there are American Express offices in Milan, Florence, and Rome, which offer easy and accessible currency exchange when dealing with traveler’s checks.
Italians are not known for tipping. Many members of the service industry enjoy visitors from the US due to the tipping culture, however tipping is not necessary when eating at a cafe, taking a taxi, or enjoying an espresso at a traditional bar. If you do feel the need to tip but are not sure how much to give each time, you can use the following as a rough guide of how and when to tip:
Taxis are optional. Most people round up to the nearest euro if they felt the ride had a measure of quality. Hotel porters often receive up to €5 at high-end hotels. It is okay to give a porter €1 per bag if the bags are heavy. Restaurants usually include gratuity on the check listed as servizio. If the charge is not included it is customary to leave €1 or €2 euro at a pizzeria or up to 10% in a restaurant. If you drink a coffee or espresso at the bar like Italians often do in the morning, leaving small change is the custom. If you take drinks at the table, the bartender appreciates a small gratuity.
You do not need a visa for Italy if traveling from the United States or Canada.
Visa and immigration requirements for Italy are the same as for other members of the European Union. With a US, Canadian, Australian, or New Zealand passport travelers can enter Italy for up to 90 days without any need of a visa. You can travel through the Schengen Zone, which accounts for 26 European countries, as long as you have six month’s validity in your passport and two clean pages for the entry and exit stamps.
Once in Italy, you can enjoy visiting the highest number of Unesco World Heritage Sites in the world during your Italy Workation or spend time experiencing teh differences between Cinque Terre and Amalfi Coast.
The electricity in Italy adheres to the European standards of frequency and voltage, ranging from 220V to 230V with a frequency of 50Hz. Converters for other European countries will therefore work while in Italy. Wall outlets accommodate plugs with two or three round pins. You will not be able to charge your accessories while in Italy without a converter or adapter due to the different plug shape of European sockets, along with the possibility of electrical fire or damage. Voltage can also make a difference when deciding to use an adapter versus a converter.
You should always check the device to ensure it can withstand the difference in voltage. Common dual voltage devices are iPhone chargers, laptops, iPads, and cameras. A stamp on the power label will say if the device is single or double voltage. If the device was sold in North or South America, the voltage will state 110V or 120V AC along with 220V to 230V if the device allows for double voltage. If the device is single voltage (110V or 120V), a converter is recommended to keep the device from damage. Examples of a single electric product are:
Italy, like the rest of Europe, uses the metric system instead of the United States Customary Units (USCS). The alternative measurements used in most countries around the world uses the base unit uses meters, liters, and grams as the base units of distance, volume, and weight:
Most smartphones from North America are compatible with Italy’s infrastructure and work when traveling during a Workation. Many carriers will automatically work with roaming fees and international data plans but you may also be able to purchase a local SIM card if you prefer a European data plan. Other options while traveling include an all-inclusive data plan for a certain price before you leave your home country.
The tendency to consider Rome, Florence, and Venice as a single entity of Italy has many people planning too many activities or tours without allowing themselves time to explore and experience the distinct cultures and local histories that separate the cities, along with their greater regions.
It is important to look beyond seeing Italy as a single, unified destination to understand the epic feuds and captivating sagas between towns and cities dating back centuries and shaping contemporary culture.
The great flood of Florence in the 1960s shaped the way the city protects its artifacts, however, the waters had no effect on Rome. The consistent eruptions of Mount Etna over the millennia continue to shape its nearby Sicilian cities and towns but have no connection to the mountains of Lombardy in the north. Learn more about the differences of Italy’s North, Central, and South before booking your Workation package to enjoy the experience that much more.
Fashion matters in Italy.
It is easy to spot a tourist or backpacker based on the clothes they wear. University students and young professionals linger around the monuments and popular sites of a city after the tourists have gone. Toddlers to seniors wear respectable and chic clothing throughout the year, from stylish jeans and trousers to button-down and polo shirts.
Even the t-shirts are designer. Women wear skirts, trousers, or dresses even in summer. Shorts, sandals, and tank tops for men or women are considered resort attire and beachwear. When dining at a casual to nice restaurant Italians generally wear long sleeves consistent with a smart, casual ambiance, including a light sweater or waterproof jacket in spring or fall. Comfortable, yet fashionable shoes are a must when visiting archeological sites, with Italians not sacrificing fashion for arch support.
Boots in the winter add to the cacophony of footsteps pounding against the cobblestones of the antique cities, but due to their heavy bulk, boots are not necessary when traveling through Italy unless planning on country hikes or skiing.
The churches, and some museums with church paraphernalia and artifacts, require visitors to dress modestly. Signs posted outside of the church doors often detail the clothing not allowed inside, which include:
These rules are for men and women. Southern Italy is often more conservative. Women are expected to wear a shawl or scarf over their shoulders. Although sandals are allowed, men should consider wearing footwear deemed more traditional or respectful.
10-14 days is a great amount of time for your Italy Workation.
One week or 21 days will give you different experiences but 10 to 14 days is enough time to visit the highlights of Italy and still have time to work and relax if it’s your first time or fifth time in the country. Explore a city’s highlights, venture away from the familiar, or extend your Italy Workation beyond the original timeline finding exciting new ways to slow your pace, sample the food, experience the culture, and find rejuvenation.
Campari is Italy’s national drink.
Camparis is a traditional and distinct liqueur infused with herbs and fruit. It can often taste heavily like black liquorice and is famous for its dark red coloring and slightly bitter flavor. It was first invented in 1860, remains a popular mix in cocktails, and is often touted for having health benefits. It is not an alcohol made at home or served to newcomers but does have a very specific flavor and connection to Italy.
While Campari may be the national drink, Italian Coffee Culture is something to be admired and adhered to during your Italy Workation. Whether working in Northern Italy and finding where to visit, exploring the must-see places in Southern Italy, or taking time to enjoy the work-life balance of Central Italy Region, you can find a difference between national heritage and local culture.
Traveling to another country can be an enriching experience that teaches you about other cultures, spectacular history, and fascinating contemporary lifestyle, or it could lead to awkward glances, anxiety, and unfortunate misunderstandings if not adhering to the simple social norms of Italy.
When vising Italy for festivals in January, February, and March, you may notice how the cultural norms can shift, but mainly, it is important to use common sense in terms of what is considered respectful and what might be taken as rude. As a member of the European Union, many of the traditions and cultural conventions of Italy adhere to the standards you might be familiar with if living in an English-speaking, westernized country. However, there are still certain aspects of Italian tradition that might be considered strange or overlooked.
Italians do not walk while eating or drinking. They may stand at the bar or inside a café but will not stroll down the street eating lunch or sipping a drink. Italians stop for their meals, even when in a rush, to enjoy a small pleasure during their busy day. An exception to the rule is for children who are often seen eating while wandering the city at any time of day.
Dinner is eaten later in Italy than what you may be accustomed to back home. Most traditional restaurants in Italy do not open until 7pm, with many Italians not sitting down until 7.30 for 8pm. The best way to keep the hunger pains at bay is to experience aperitivo, a type of Italian happy hour, when small snacks, such as sandwiches, olives, or cheeses, accompany your cocktail.
Do not use your fingers when eating. Use a fork to pick up pieces of fruit and a knife to pick pieces of cheese. This is considered polite and much more sanitary.
It is rude to refuse a glass of wine. Rather, if you do not want anymore or do not wish to imbibe at all, you can leave your glass relatively full. Understanding the etiquette can help you further enjoy the best experiences in Italy you can have during your Workation.
The official language of Italy is Italian.
English is commonly spoken in restaurants, hotels, and attractions such as museums or archeological sites, especially when in popular cities like Rome, Florence, and Venice. Speaking English should not be a problem when staying in larger cities, popular areas, or towns adjacent to famous places. If traveling to small towns or villages is considered off-the-beaten-path, it may be better to learn some key phrases but in these instances, locals often do what they can to communicate, as well.
Find the Answers You Need for Your Italy Workation
An Italy Workation shifts your focus by demonstrating how to experience a better work-life balance that supports your time, interests, and travel goals. Travel on your own or with your family as you discover how to embrace life’s little pleasures in a country famous for turning simple beauty into an artform while workation ensures you have the tools you need to succeed in and out of work. Access exciting cities, witness famous artwork, and explore new and old interests while staying connected to work.
Find more information on where to go and what to do before speaking with us to plan your Italy Workation package. We can support your productivity and maximize your experience by building a greater connection to your inspiration at experiences. Take one step closer to planning your Workation or find more information with our ideas of Best Workation Destinations in Italy.