6 Travel Mistakes to avoid in Italy!
Hello fellow budget hunters,
The other night I had an amazing pizza in Bristol and I started reminiscing about our trip to Italy last summer. We were in Italy for 3 weeks and it was quite the adventure.
While we were in Italy we made a few mistakes and I would like to share some of our crazy mistakes so you can avoid them. Most of Europe is very similar in behaviour and often you don’t need to look up how to behave or what you need to do. So I thought we would be fine in Italy, but we made many different mistakes so learn from us!
1. Drinking coffee sitting down –
This is a little bit strange for me, but Italian coffee etiquette is very complex. If you sit down in a cafe, you will pay twice if not more for your coffee than if you stand at the bar. In one cafe in Rome, it was 25 cents for an espresso standing up and 1 euro sitting down.
Also don’t order cappuccino past 10am, or people will stare. I couldn’t care less about people staring, for some reason (probably my weird dancing) I always stand out everywhere we go so I don’t mind and will enjoy my cappuccino.
Another important note is don’t order a ‘latte’ and expect to get a coffee. My boyfriend learnt this the hard way! He got a nice glass of warm milk! If you want a coffee, order a Caffe latte instead just to be safe!
2.You can rely on public transport to get around Rome –
I knew there was a metro system in Rome and just assumed we could get around. This was after I learnt that everything wasn’t as close together. I had expected Rome’s attractions to be like London, most things within a square mile and some of it is. However, I found the metro had two lines (in July 2017) and they only cross once. I understand that nobody wants to dig trains underneath buildings that have existed for 2000 years, but just take your walking shoes and expect to walk miles!
3. That there will be free wi-fi everywhere –
This is crucial if you work online or need WiFi (for us it wasn’t essential on this trip). Unlike America and most of Europe, there isn’t a lot of WiFi around in Italy. Most places we ever connected was just at our Airbnb locations, or the marina clubhouse in Venice. (We stayed on a boat, my boyfriend still hasn’t forgiven me for that!)
4. You have your train ticket and can get on a train –
Sounds logical right? In Italy you have to validate your ticket before you board your train. I was warned about this by my friend before I left, as she was almost fined for this. You have to stamp your ticket on these little box machines on the platforms and then travel. The same goes with bus tickets across Italy and in my experience Romania/Bulgaria. I think it is common in other countries, but just remember to stamp your ticket before travel!
5. You can eat early –
This goes for most of Europe. People won’t eat until 8 or 9pm at the earliest. Restaurants geared towards tourists will be open, but authentic local food is generally hard to find at 7pm.
6. Wearing shorts while sight-seeing –
Many churches have rules about what you can and can’t wear to be respectful. I wrote a whole post on how people were disrespectful in churches as I was frustrated. I found the easiest thing is to carry a scarf and cover your shoulders and knees. The churches in Italy are not to be missed, most are insanely decorated and I’ve never seen so much gold! Don’t miss out on seeing them because you’re not wearing the right length clothes!
So there it is… My mistakes to avoid in Italy. Always confirm your ticket, wear respectful clothes, don’t expect free WiFi, eat late, bring your walking shoes and learn Italy’s coffee etiquette!
I hope you enjoyed this post!
Until next time,
The Great Ambini
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