1-800-454-5922 Toll Free

Sign in


General Information

  • General Information

    TELEPHONE
    To dial overseas once in Italy first dial 00 then the country code, then omit the first 0 from the area code and dial the rest of the number. Public phones mostly take cards, which can be bought from bars, tobacconists and newsagents. Very few public phones take coins. Cheaper rates are between 22.00 – 08.00 hrs daily. Saturday afternoon and all day Sundays and Bank holidays.
    International phone cards are available from most Tabacchi shops and some newsagents.
    Calling from a public phone - Lift the receiver and check for the dialling tone (intermittent 2 short pips). Tear off the perforated corner before using the card. Insert coins or phone card on the right hand side of the telephone. The amount of money inserted should now be displayed on the top left hand side of the telephone. Dial the number.

    SECURITY
    Please be aware at all times of pick pockets, especially in larger towns and crowded areas such as markets, stations, etc. Be very wary of persons approaching you asking for money, do not stop, walk firmly and quickly past these people. Leave all valuables ad documents in hotel safe deposit boxes. Only take what you need. Never leave any valuables in cars, even if out of sight.

    LOSSES AND THEFTS
    Should you have anything stolen or lost, it is necessary to complete a police report for insurance purposes. This is called a “denuncia” and can be obtained from the local Carabinieri police station. This must be done within 24 hours.

    BANKS
    Currency and traveller’s cheques can be exchanged at banks and hotels.
    Banks are generally open from 8:20 to 13:20 and one hour in the afternoon (from 15:00 to 16:00 normally but it can vary depending one the bank) but not for currency exchange. Please take your passport with you for all transactions. Always check you have been given the correct amount, and your passport has been returned. Most banks offer cash on a credit card service and have got Cashpoint facilities.
    Please note that credit cards are not widely used in Italy especially for small sums and some hotels do not accept credit cards for payment of extras

    TRAVELLERS CHEQUES - Emergency cancellation numbers
    (Freephone numbers in Italy)
    American Express……………800 864046 (then press 0)
    Citicorp………………………....800 057083
    Thomas Cook………………...800 872050
    Visa…………………………......800 018548

    POSTAGE
    Post offices are open from 8:30 to 13:00 only, except in larger towns where some stay open until 17:00. Stamps (“francobolli”) cost the same for letters and postcards within the EU. Stamps can also be bought from tobacconists (“Tabacchi”) and bars (look for a big black T on the sign outside the shop), usually they can be bought together with postcards.
    The sign for a Post Office in Italy is a yellow circle with the letters PT printed in black.

    ZEBRA CROSSING
    When crossing the road always look both ways and try to always cross on a zebra crossing for your own safety.
    Unfortunately just standing on the zebra crossing will not automatically mean that you have the right of way and so cars will not stop to let you pass as in many countries. However with a little patience and caution eventually someone will let you pass.
    If however there is no zebra crossing where you would like to cross, cross the road very cautiously and NEVER cross by the traffic lights if they are RED – even if there are no cars actually passing. This is for your own safety.

    HEALTH FACILITIES
    Should a doctor be required during you stay please contact the villa owner for assistance. An emergency service is available during weekends and at night by calling 118. Chemists (“Farmacia” –look for a big green illuminated cross) are normally open from Monday to Saturday, they have the same times as the shop opening hours. On Sundays in larger towns they open on a rota basis, in smaller towns there is usually a note on the door with a telephone number for emergencies. Unlike in some countries chemists do not sell perfumes, develop films or provide assistance for wearers of glasses or contact lenses.
    Most medicines are not available over the counter – depending on the medicine, a doctor’s prescription may be required.

    HOSPITALS
    If you are unfortunate enough to have to spend time in the hospital, please remember to bring your insurance form to the hospital with you.
    Hospitals have an Accident and Emergency department (‘Pronto Soccorso’) which functions 24 hours a day.

    SMOKING
    Smoking is not permitted in public places, if you are caught you will be fined.

    WATER
    The water from the tap in Italy is not always pleasant to drink. If you wish you can buy bottled water in your hotel, supermarkets, bars, restaurants and local shops. There are 2 types:
    Sparkling water – ‘Acqua minerale con gas’ or ‘Frizzante’
    Still water – ‘Acqua minerale naturale’ or ‘senza gas’

    MOSQUITOES
    These can be a problem for some people, especially if you have sweet blood, as you are more likely to be a victim! The local chemist can provide you with anti insect bite cream or sprays.

    ELECTRICITY
    Electricity in Italy is 220 Volts.

    CHURCHES & CATHEDRALS
    Most churches and cathedrals around Italy close during the lunch break.
    As a sign of respect, it is generally required when visiting that ladies keep their shoulders covered and refrain from wearing short skirts and shorts. Gentlemen likewise are required to dress respectfully and wear long trousers.

    QUEUES
    Unfortunately Italians do not like to queue and tend to push to the front. Often this can be annoying (especially when it causes you to miss the bus!). So remember “when in Rome do as the Romans do”. 

    TIPPING
    This custom is widely used throughout Italy. At restaurants and bars for example, a tip of 10% is usual and a small tip to taxi drivers, porters and mini – bus drivers is also expected. Please do not use small coins however, as this may be considered an insult!

    PUBLIC HOLIDAYS
    1ST January -- New Years Day (Capodanno)
    6th January Epiphany (La Befana – a kind of witch who brings extra Christmas toys and sweets)
    Easter Sunday
    Easter Monday
    25th April -- Liberation Day
    1st May -- Labour Day
    2nd June -- Festa della Repubblica
    15th August -- Assumption Day (Ferragosto – the biggest bank holiday)
    1st November -- All Saints (Italians visit cemeteries)
    8th December -- Immaculate Conception
    25th December -- Christmas Day (Natale)
    26th December -- Santo Stefano

    On all public holidays shops, banks, museums, etc are all closed. Restaurants and bars are open; it is advisable to reserve a table on these days, as they will be busy.
    Many towns have local feast days, held to honour the town patron saint, on these occasions banks, etc. may be closed, but only in that particular town.

Experience an official tuscany tour with

Smart Pisa Afternoon Half Day

Spend an afternoon enjoying the medieval splendor of Pisa on this guided tour from Florence. You’ll travel by comfortable air-conditioned coach, explore the lavish architecture and art surrounding the Piazza dei Miracoli, and have some free time to shop.

from €56.15

From the grape to the wine: Croce di Febo wine tasting

This small wine estate produces a traditional local wine with limited use of chemical and synthetic products, which is the maximum expression of its vintage and terroir. The winery was planned to offer a safe working environment to the staff, limit CO2 emissions as much as possible and make use of water sparingly, allowing us to carry out a soft vinification of the grapes bringing out all their individual characteristics. With this tour you'll really get in touch with the philososphy of this winery. A walk within the vineyards with the owner Maurizio will explain what a magical place is Montepulciano and the reason why here wine has been produced since the Etruscan times. An itinerary between amphorae and barrels which will be concluded with a tasting of 3 rappresentative wines: Rose BonBon Bio IGT, Rosso di Montepulciano DOC and Vino Nobile DOCG.

from €38.96

Open Voucher Combo: Highlights Of Siena & Local Street Food Walking Tour

Flexibility and Saving: With
Open Voucher combo tours of Local street Food and Highlights of siena you can feel free to decide the best day for you to go. You don’t need reservation, just arrive at the meeting point and join the Tour. And if not used it is Fully Refundable! Enjoy an exciting and informative walking tour of the remarkable city that is
Siena, and discover why it is considered one of the most beautiful and vibrant cities in
Tuscany. See the very best of this ancient and mystical city with the help of an expert tour guide, who will illuminate its hidden gems, legends, and gripping history. A real taste of Siena Food and Wine tradition is what this experience would like to leave to you. A licensed guide will escort you to several typical places to discover the secrets and the curiosities of culinary traditions of this famous town.

from €37.82

Private Cooking Class: Italian-Style Meatballs and Tiramisu

Private Hands-on cooking class featuring personal chef
Theme: the authentic italian Meatballs Taste of Florence!
Specially designed and programmed according to your preferences.
This Course will let you enjoy this unique culinary experience exclusively for you, without other partecipants.
If you like to completely customize your experience this is the class for you.
You will learn how to make many different "polpette", meatballs, spanning traditional and contemporary recipes in according to your preference.
In addition, you will learn how to pair each dish with the perfect sauce.
When you go home, you will be ready to share Italy’s real meatballs with your friends and family.
Breschette, cheeses and home made bread will be a part of your amazing food!
And, of course, after you have made them, you get to eat them.
Enjoy a satisfying meal supplemented with home made bakery or cakes and rich salads and a good wine tasting.

from €145.54
Enquire