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Thread: Traveling to Italy any thoughts?

  1. #1
    Master
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    Traveling to Italy any thoughts?

    Will be travelling to Italy in a couple of weeks to see my son he is currently deployed and he will be taking a weeks leave to meet us and is nearby. We've been told to be careful travelling on the trains only ride 1st or 2nd class and very curious about wearing watches as well. Seems there are a lot of pick pockets and scammers there according to people we know. Will be going to Florence, Rome and Venice so appreciate any thoughts in advance thank you.

  2. #2
    Master Franco's Avatar
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    There is nothing other than 1st or 2nd class. In general I would not be flashing around too much cash or jewelry, like you wouldn't in New York or London.

    I woud advice to plan in advance so you can book first class on Italo trains (one of the two companies) which are cheaper than Frecciarossa if booked in advance - and first class is quite cheap, compared to UK.

    And book Hotels in all town which would allow you to walk in the center of Florence, Rome or Venice.

    Can give you more advice about food and things in Florence which is (was) my hometown.
    Last edited by Franco; 21st November 2023 at 04:41.

  3. #3
    Master senwar's Avatar
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    Been to Italy many times and to the cities you mention.

    Other than Naples, never felt any issues in Italy and even Naples was nowhere near as bad as we were led to believe (loved the place).

    Just be the same as you are/would be at home. Vigilant, aware etc.

  4. #4
    Master
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    Same advice as any other European city..

    Dress down / dark and try not to look like a tourist

    Politely decline / shake head at anyone that walks your way for any reason whatsoever or tries to make conversation. Youíll get a lot of this in Rome. Decline all free gifts, such as bracelets

    Leave valuables at home

  5. #5
    Master village's Avatar
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    Exactly as the quote below. Iíve been to Italy a lot and itís a fantastic place with very friendly people. Iíve never felt threatened or uncomfortable whether it be travelling with the family when the kids were little or afterwards.
    Act sensibly and all will be wellÖthat said donít be afraid to go off the beaten track!


    Quote Originally Posted by senwar View Post
    Been to Italy many times and to the cities you mention.

    Other than Naples, never felt any issues in Italy and even Naples was nowhere near as bad as we were led to believe (loved the place).

    Just be the same as you are/would be at home. Vigilant, aware etc.

  6. #6
    Been to Nothern Italy many times, never ever thought of leaving my watch home, I think it is very safe there. Rome - been once and it was like any big city - avoid crowds, blend in, don't allow anyone to offer or sell you on street, just say firm no and that usually is enough.

  7. #7
    If you tavel on the trains (very good and affordable in my experience) be sure to validate your ticket at the machine on the platform (it stamps it a bit like a ticket inspector does) as without that you will be fined on the train.

  8. #8
    No issues in Italy.

    Just be sensible as you would in any city. Donít be flash, donít make yourself a target, be aware of your surroundings.

    We were in Florence and Pisa this year and no issues (apart from the heat) or hassle at all walking around in the day or night.

    I can recommend a great family owned hotel which was excellent and reasonable if you would like!

  9. #9
    Master Andyp1973's Avatar
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    We were in Florence, Bologna, Pisa, Parma and Modena in June.

    Travelled around on the train network the whole trip without any issues. Put our network to shame.

    Behaved as if we were in London in the bigger cities.

    A lot of people asking the time or for directions in Florence. Especially around the Cathedral and major museum entrances.

    Just be sensible.


    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk

  10. #10
    Craftsman
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    Sound advice on the thread. I would add, don't come out of a train station, head down, looking at your phone or a map, wait until you have moved away. Don't eat near tourist places, make the effort to find somewhere locals go. Book ahead if you want to visit the more popular sights, ie. museums, Vatican museum etc. When my mum visited she really enjoyed one of the bus tours around Rome sights.

  11. #11
    Master Reeny's Avatar
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    If someone goes out of their way to help you at the Florence railway station ticket machine - they are only there to ask for money.

    We had a local say he could help us out - even though the "Union Jack" button would have change the machine to English language easy enough.
    We were too polite to refuse, and the sting came at the end.
    He only wanted a few Euro's - so lesson learnt.

    It only happened once.

  12. #12
    We go to Amalfi most years and went to Rome this year, never had a problem, probably safer than London

  13. #13
    Grand Master ryanb741's Avatar
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    Worth noting also that Italy has a high percentage of WIS compared to the UK. It isn't uncommon to see a waiter wearing a Royal Oak, you'll see lots of locals wearing luxury watches and the watch shopping and diversity of watches on offer is superb. Same applies if you are into fountain pens btw.

    Also (and I'm sure this will come as no surprise) the food is bonkers good. Really fantastic use of regionally available produce.

  14. #14
    Master
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    Handbags should be worn across the body to prevent snatching. Many Italian bags have a steel cable running through the strap because cutting the strap and running with the bag has been a problem in Italy for decades.

  15. #15
    Master Franco's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Reeny View Post
    If someone goes out of their way to help you at the Florence railway station ticket machine - they are only there to ask for money.

    We had a local say he could help us out - even though the "Union Jack" button would have change the machine to English language easy enough.
    We were too polite to refuse, and the sting came at the end.
    He only wanted a few Euro's - so lesson learnt.

    It only happened once.
    That is true, there are some characters who hang around Florence SMN station looking for targets.

    There are also Police patrolling to keep these out of the station. But now they have installed gates of access to the platforms, And things may have changed. And you can comfortably validate your ticket yourself after those.

    An alternative is to travelo from the Campo di Marte station, where trains to Rome stop. This is much less busy and easy to navigate.

    Some companies have apps that allow you to validate a QR code online, within 4 hrs of travel.
    Last edited by Franco; 23rd November 2023 at 18:12.

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