11 etiquette tips for traveling in Italy

Do’s and Don’ts in Italy

Every country has its own history, culture and proper etiquette. Traveling to a neighboring country or one halfway around the world requires a little knowledge and insight into that countries way of life. Italy is no different!  Making a good impression and building strong relationships are very important to Italians, so impress the people in Italy by learning a little about Italian customs and etiquette. The language, laws and manners are different than you may be used to, so prior to traveling to Italy bear in mind the following Italy travel tips.


  • Do try to speak the language. Italians will appreciate the effort, but probably respond in English as they like to practice
  • Do walk a lot and take in the sights. Wear comfortable shoes, but try to avoid sneakers if you don’t want to stand out as an American tourist
  • Do try to dress stylish
  • Do be mindful that most businesses close around 4 p.m. and most Italians take a two hour lunch break
  • Do expect a 10%-15% service charge to be added to your restaurant bill and do leave a small tip on top of that if the service was good
  • Do tip taxi drivers about one Euro


  • Don’t eat or talk on your phone in museums or churches
  • Don’t show your shoulders, knees or midriff when visiting Italian churches. Some have people monitoring visitor’s attire
  • Don’t forget to make dinner reservations at nice restaurants
  • Don’t give chrysanthemums or roses, unless you know the meaning behind them. Chrysanthemums are for funerals and roses indicate romance.
  • Don’t point with your index finger and pinky finger at the same time.