Travel Essentials Italy Italian Holiday Guide

Travel Essentials Italy Italian Holiday Destinations


In early 2002 Italy's traditional currency, the lira, left general circulation and was replaced by the Euro. Currently one Euro (€) is worth around US$1.20 and £1.50. For up to the minute currency conversions, refer to

It should be simple using an ATM card with a four digit pin in most Italian towns and cities. Cards linked through the Cirrus and Plus networks should have no problem connecting to Italian bank networks.

Important telephone numbers

In the case of emergency while in holiday in Italy, call:

For emergency police assistance, ambulance and fire: 113

International operator assistance can be reached by calling 176, and this will cost €0.60.

The British Embassy in Italy can be found in Rome (telephone: 06 422 00001). The UK Consulate is in Florence (055 284 133), and the office of the Consulate General is in Naples (ph: 081 4238 911).


Post Postcards and letters weighing up to 20 grams can be sent to the United States (€0.75), to the UK and Ireland (€0.60), and Australia and New Zealand (€0.75). It can take up to two weeks for a letter to arrive in the UK, and postcards have been known to take even longer.

Post offices in major towns and cities are open from 8:30am to 5 or 6pm, Monday to Friday, and 8:30am to 1pm on Saturday.


The country code for dialling in to Italy is +39. But don't necessarily expect that all Italian phones have touch tone service so you may not be able to access your voice mail.


Visitors to Italy on EU passports require no visa to enter the country. EU citizens have no time restrictions on their stay and can work in Italy with no need for permits. They must, however, register their presence in the country with Italian police if they decide to take up residency, and request a permesso di soggiorno (or permission to remain in the country).

Citizens of other countries such as US, Canada, Australia, New Zealand, and Japan can enter the country without a visa and stay as tourists for up to 90 days.

Tourist offices

Tourist offices are located in most towns and cities throughout Italy, but the standard of assistance you receive in Italian tourist offices can vary.

As well as the official tourist information centre in these towns you can generally get helpful advice from the information stands at train stations and airports. These should be able to give you city maps, basic advice on sights worth seeing as well as the names of some places to stay. These offices are usually open from 8:30am to 12:30 pm and 3pm to 7pm Monday through Friday, and hours are sometimes extended over the summer months.