Welcome to Italy!
Welcome to ITALY! Benvenuti!The EIS Project is delighted to tell you all there is to know when moving to ITALY. Read more below on the basic facts that you should know about ITALY, the emergency numbers you should know about and use in case of an emergency, the VISA, BANKING, HOUSING, INSURANCE, PHONE PLAN applications processes, documentation and tips for faster and cheaper procedures... And a lot more! Also, do not miss out on becoming a local by learning the language! We hope to be of assistance to render your stay free of hiccups and as lovely as possible.
What should you know before moving to ITALY? In general, there are some basics pieces of knowledge which you should familiarize yourself with before even planning your trip; these go as follows: the capital city, the currency, facts and figures about the population and the most important…. The time zone! So so so many times did I get this wrong over the years! Be careful of the time!
- Unification: 1861
- Capital city: Rome
- Area: 301,338 km2, 116,347 mi2
- Population: 60.6 million
- Official language: Italian
- Currency: Euro (€)
- Time Zone: Central European Time (CET)
- Drive on the: Right
If you get in a pickle, we advise you not to panic, but let’s be honest; you will be panicking!
So, refer to this page whenever you need it to find the contact details for various emergency services.
Emergency services Numbers
Dial tel. 112 to call the police, report a fire, or call for an ambulance anywhere in Italy (anywhere in Europe, actually).
You can also still dial the Italian national numbers:
112 – Carabinieri (national military police)
113 – National civil police (also ambulance and fire)
115 – Fire department
116 – Roadside assistance from A.C.I. (like AAA; expect to pay for any service)
117 – Finance police (if you’ve been cheated)
118 – Medical emergencies
1515 – Forest fires
What to say…
It’s wise to remember that these may vary slightly according to each city you may be in, so before anything, here is what you should say……
[Your Current location…] do not worry if you are lost; describe roughly your location and the city you are in.
[What is the situation…]
[The people that are with you…]
And Breathe….. the people on the other side of the phone are experts; they will direct you to the next steps you will need to take depending on the situation. 😲
How to apply for a visa in Italy?
- You don’t need a visa if you come from:
– European Union
– European Economic Area (EEA)
– Swiss Citizens
Applications for the student visa should be made with the Italian embassy in the applicant’s home country.
The Visa Type D is required for a long-stay study program in any Italian University.
Applying for a student visa in Italy has a non-refundable fee of €50.
Normally it takes 3 to 4 weeks before your application receives a response. In case of incomplete or imprecise documentation, the process may take up to 12 weeks. Make sure to apply for your visa at least three months before your arrival date in Italy.
- Documents required:
– Entry visa application form: http://vistoperitalia.esteri.it/Moduli/it/Formulario Visto Nazionale.pdf
– Two recent passport-size photographs
– Travel document valid for at least three months after visa
– Proof of enrollment / pre-enrollment in a university course
– Proof of accommodation in Italy
– Proof of financial support (at least € 448.07 per month for the academic year, total: 5824.91€ per year)
– Adequate private insurance coverage for medical treatment/hospitalization
– Proof of availability of financial means needed for repatriation
– Proof of adequate knowledge of Italian or English (depending on program language)
If minor: expatriation consent
You can find the FORM A (Modello A) at this website link (in Italian):
At the Post Office you will receive a receipt that certifies your residence permit request.
Once the registration procedure is completed, applicants must submit a request for a residence permit for “Study – University” at the police headquarters (Questura) in the city where they intend to stay.
To check if your residence permit is ready for you to collect check the Police website or the Immigration portal.
In addition to the notice displayed by this system on the status of your application, you’ll be informed via SMS about the day, time and place where you can collect your residence permit.
Keep in mind that all official documents, if not in the required language for the application, must be translated by a sworn, official translator who works with the embassy. They will be able to provide details regarding this.
- What you can/cannot do:
International students with a valid permit of stay are allowed to work for a maximum of 20 hours per week, and 1,040 hours per year.
In order to obtain a residence permit renewal, they must pass the exams yearly.
- Residence permit:
If you are a non-EU citizen, once in Italy you must apply for a residence permit in the city where you’ll be living within 8 working days after your arrival. You can apply at the post office of your city of residence in Italy.
At the post office you will be provided with a kit containing the application form:
Check the examples: https://www.portaleimmigrazione.it/Download_Italiano.aspx
In addition to the application, submit the following documents:
- Copy of your passport with visa and personal data page
- Copy of health insurance policy: health insurance bought abroad must be validated by the Italian Embassy in your country (if not already in English). You can also buy health insurance upon your arrival in Italy.
- University Letter of acceptance
You also need:
- For Bachelor of Science (Laurea) students: FORM A (Modello A) filled in at the Embassy or self-certification of enrollment
- For Master of Science (Laurea Magistrale) students: copy of the admission letter or FORM A (Modello A) filled in at the Embassy or self-certification of enrollment
Who to contact:
More information on residence permits and on offices authorized to provide them may be obtained at police headquarters(Questura), on the toll-free number 803.160 or by consulting the website www.portaleimmigrazione.it
Make sure you do not try to get your long stay visa through a certified agency, it should be directly through the respective government authority (embassy, consulate, etc.), double check, always!
Do not procrastinate, get done as soon as you arrive in the country.
…this is an Italian tax ID, and you need it for everything in Italy, most importantly you need it for a long term flat rental (unless you have a super shady landlord, red flag). You need to gather the necessary documents: the codice fiscale form (in English) is found here, a photocopy of the passport page with your beautiful photo, and your passport. Head to your local IVA office and stand in line for 87 years. The good news is you get it on the spot! This is for both EU and non-EU people
Permesso di Soggiorno:
…if you’re non-EU, get ready to spend more money! You need a residency permit, because the visa, moving, and tuition expenses just weren’t enough. You need quite a few documents for this one, it’s very similar to the documents you needed to submit for your visa: Marca da bollo (this is a fancy stamp that costs €16, don’t stick it on the envelope until the post office worker tells your where, and it can be purchased at any tobacco shop), copy of all the pages of your passport (yes, really), copy of a financial statement (the most recent one you used for your visa application will suffice), copy of health insurance (if it’s private American insurance all I have to say is good luck), copy of your Certificate of Enrollment with the Stamp (you should’ve received this at the consulate or in the mail upon receiving your passport back with your visa), modulo 1 filled in with black pen (this is the actual residency permit application, more information can be found here), bollettino postale (it is a small sheet of paper, about the size of a postcard that comes with the application). These are the fees you pay AT the post office, to avoid any issues, have the exact amount of cash on hand: Permesso di Soggiorno request: €30,00, and €70,46 (bollettino postale). That brings the entire process to the price of: €116.46. Add €15 to that number and get yourself a nice bottle of strong wine, you’ll need it after being in the post office for that long.
How to open a bank account in Italy?
Should you even open one?
If you are a European citizen, you won’t need an extra bank account for Italy. You still might want to open one, due to ATM withdrawal fees that might be applied by the bank in your home country. Cash is still widely used in Italy, and sometimes you have to pay a minimum of 10 to 15€ to be able to pay by card, so you will be spending quite a lot of time at the ATM.
ATM fees at banks other than your own can rise up to 5 euros. Because of that, you should maybe consider opening an account at an Italian bank.
The well known and most common banks in Italy are:
– Intesa San Paolo
– Monte dei Paschi di Siena
– BNL (Banco Nazionale del Lavoro)
– Poste Italiane
You can also rely on international banks active in Italy, as:
– Deutsche Bank
– Credit Agricole
Expats are allowed to open a bank account in Italy regardless of their citizenship.
Non-resident accounts (conto corrente non residenti) are popular with expats since they usually pay interest and are not subject to local interest taxes. The best way for expats to open a non-resident account is to go to a bank in person with their passport and codice fiscale (tax code). Applicants will have to provide personal information and fill out application forms. These are normally in Italian, so it may be a good idea to bring a fluent friend along.
Different banks will have different procedures, and some will be more familiar with working with foreign clientele than others. As a result, expats are advised to compare the packages and requirements on offer at different banks.
– ID, such as a passport
– A valid Italian address
– Your codice fiscale (tax number)
– Proof of employment (or proof that you’re studying, if you’re a student)
ATMs and credit cards:
ATMs in Italy are known to locals as bancomat. They are widely available in cities and towns, and expats will be able to choose their preferred language at the beginning of the transaction.
Cash is king in Italy, so in many places if your bill doesn’t exceed 10€ you won’t be able to pay by card.
Larger stores usually accept debit and credit cards in Italy. This can often be confirmed by credit card logos displayed on windows in the shop. The most common card companies in Italy are CartaSi, Visa and MasterCard. Diners Club and American Express are also available.
Expats should be aware that international accounts often have hefty transaction fees.
How to apply for insurance in Italy? What insurance do I need in Italy?
Public health insurance for expats:
– EU nationals can use their European Health Insurance Card (EHIC) to access public healthcare services in Italy for free.
– non-EU expats can formally register for the SSN (Servizio Sanitario Nazionale) in addition to their private health Insurance, which is mandatory.
– expats who have their residence status finalized and have an Italian id (carta d’identità) are able to apply for an Italian health insurance card (tessera sanitaria)
To get an Italian health insurance card, go to the nearest local health authority (Azienda Sanità Locale) and apply for it.
– residence permit
– tax number
– official identification
– proof of employment
After registering, applicants have to choose a doctor. They are then issued with their Italian health insurance card, which must be presented in order to receive care under the SSN. These cards must be renewed every year.
If expats don’t qualify for public healthcare under the SSN or EHIC, they must have private health insurance.
Private Health insurance for expat students :
Here are some easy and cheap options for students to get private health insurance coverage in Italy during your studies:
Public healthcare info
The national health service in Italy, Servizio Sanitario Nazionale (SSN), provides citizens and residents with free or low-cost healthcare that includes access to general practitioners (GPs), treatment at public hospitals, subsidized medicines, lab services, ambulance services and certain specialist care.
Regarding healthcare in terms of quality, Italy ranks # 2 on the World Health Organization’s list of top countries for quality health care services (the U.S. hold the 37th rank).
Although the SSN is a socialized system, regional governments are in charge of managing it on a provincial level, with the result that the standard of treatment isn’t uniform throughout the country (public hospitals in Italy’s northern regions are known to offer higher standards of care than those in the south).
Private healthcare info
Private healthcare in Italy is championed by doctors that are well-trained and on a par with the finest in the world. There are a number of impressive specialist facilities in the large urban centers, and university hospitals are also highly reputable. Although public healthcare in Italy is free for expat residents, most foreigners still opt to utilise private healthcare. Private procedures vary in cost, and the Ministry of Health sets a minimum charge for all operations in this sector.
For this reason, private healthcare can be expensive and health insurance is a must. Private healthcare allows expats to avoid the queues and complications of the public system, and also makes provision for more comforts and personal choice when it comes to doctors and facilities. For these reasons, there are also many Italians who opt to use the private system if they can afford to.
How to apply for a phone subscription in Italy?
What are the phone operators in Italy?
If you have a European plan, your sim card will work in Italy on free roaming as of the latest EU law. Italian plans are generally cheap and easy to get, so it’s recommended that you obtain one. You can get either a prepaid (prepagato) SIM card, or a subscription monthly plan.
The most common and reliable providers are:
– TIM (www.tim.it)
– Wind (www.wind.it)
– Vodafone (www.vodafone.it)
– Tre (www.tre.it)
– Iliad (https://www.iliad.it/)
Iliad is the newest one and cheapest, still offering a good service with huge amounts of GB, minutes and sms. All SIM cards must be registered in Italy, so make sure you have a passport or ID card with you when you buy one. You can easily top up your prepaid Italian SIM, in case you choose that, either from the app of your provider, by connecting your credit card, or with a recharge card (ricarica). Available from most tobacconists (you communicate your phone number and the amount you’d like to charge on your sim card), pay in loco and you’ll receive the recharge immediately on your phone.
List of Documents
How to be well prepared?
- Prepare the mandatory documents for renting your flat
- Prepare the optional documents (that will probably makes the difference between you and the others)
- Refuse to give certain confidential information
- Be assured that your folder stand out from the crowd
- Quickly find a guarantor
Mandatory documents to rent a flat
- Photocopy of your Passport or ID (ID only if European)
- Three last payslips (if you are an employee) or two last reports (if you are self-employed), in case you are a student, you should supply proof of income of your parent or guardian.
- Proof of no rental debts or contact of previous landloard
- Insurance for house damages (ex. fire)
- Proof of address (EDF receipt, housing tax notice, etc.).
Please note: If someone stands surety for you, they will be asked to provide the same documents.
The rental file can also be enriched with optional documents
Have you prepared some documents, although optional, but which are requested so often that it is best to have them prepared in advance? Here they are :
- Latest tax notice (or that of the guarantor).
- Residence permit.
- Photocopy of the guarantor’s identity document.
- Employer certificate – or that of the guarantor -.
- Photocopy of the property tax (or local taxes if the guarantor owns his home).
- Rent receipts from the previous rental.
The owner cannot ask you for documents that are too confidential
Please note: Pursuant to the laws of July 6, 1989 and January 17, 2002, the owner is not entitled to require certain documents such as:
- Portrait photo, VITALE card.
- Photocopy of bank account.
- Certificate of proper maintenance of the bank account.
- Certificate of lack of credit, automatic debit authorization.
- Marriage contract or certificate of cohabitation.
- Personal medical record.
- Extract from the criminal record.
Platforms to search on:
- https://www.uniplaces.com/accommodation/turin http://www.studyintorino.it/information/accomodation/
- Dove vivo
Do you often face the issue of having too much luggage? Is the cost of moving this bundle too large via normal ways? Then see these couriers… ofcourse you may have your preferred way of doing things so consider this as a simple insider on how to better structure your budget when shipping your luggage from or to your home country!
- INTMOVERS is highly recommended and quite cheap
- EUROSENDER is another option and works well especially for very large suitcases
- MY BAGGAGE is specifically for student luggages and you can even gain discounts on referral use
LEARNING THE LANGUAGE?
Excited about moving abroad? Then the first step is learning slang… Anywhere you go will have a particular language the locals refer to…. In Italy for instance its italian but also the dialects, there is a sea of possibility! My only advice is that you seek to learn a few words in the dialect where you will be staying… It will simplify your life!
Here below you can check out some of the language schools and online learning options we recommend you…!
Learning Italian online
Scuola Leonardo https://www.romeing.it/study-italian-rome-leonardo-da-vinci/
Kappa Language School https://www.romeing.it/kappa-language-school-rome/
Duolingo App https://www.duolingo.com/course/it/en/Learn-Italian
Learning Italian face to face
ELLCI School https://www.ellci.net
PREPLY Book a tutor https://preply.com/en/online/italian-tutors?campaignid=10738234731&network=g&adgroupid=119159421511&keyword=%2Bitalian%20%2Bschool&matchtype=b&creative=501871747425&adposition=&targetid=kwd-30310241391&placement=&loc_physical_ms=1008940&device=c&creative=501871747425&gclid=Cj0KCQjwh_eFBhDZARIsALHjIKdbkNGjlMTK9fASDliD5-SA6I6KbGW-onkAEQFbkclYJ6tz1lLaA7saAuvdEALw_wcB
You can also check out this site for more ideas: https://www.romeing.it/category/features/italian-language-schools-rome/