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Money and Shopping in Italy


Money and Shopping in Italy

Italy has the euro (EUR, ?) as its currency. Therewith, Italy belongs to the 23 European countries that use the common European money. These 23 countries are: Austria, Belgium, Cyprus, Estonia, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, Ireland, Italy, Luxembourg, Malta, the Netherlands, Portugal, Slovakia, Slovenia and Spain (official euro members which are all European Union member states) as well as Andorra, Kosovo, Monaco, Montenegro, San Marino and Vatican which use it without having a say in eurozone affairs and without being European Union members. These countries together have a population of 327 million. One euro is divided into 100 cents. While each official euro member (as well as Monaco, San Marino and Vatican) issues its own coins with a unique obverse, the reverse as well as all bills look the same throughout the eurozone. Nonetheless, every coin is legal tender in any of the eurozone countries. Italy is quite an expensive country. It has many luxury hotels and posh restaurants. It may cost ?40.00 a day if a person self caters, stays in hostel, avoids drinking and doesn't visit too many museums. However, staying in a comfortable hotel, eating out regularly and visiting lots of museums and galleries, may cost at least ?150-200 a day. Hiring a car may double expenses, so one should visit with sufficient funds. All the bills include the service charges, so tipping is not necessary, although it is widely customary in restaurants to leave a Euro or two (NOT 10% like in other countries - don't spoil it). Tipping taxi drivers is not necessary, but a hotel porter may expect a little something. And unless otherwise stated, prices are inclusive of IVA sales tax (same as VAT), which is 20% for most goods, and 10% in restaurants and hotels. On some products, such as books, IVA is 4%. If you're a non-EU resident, you are entitled to a VAT refund on purchases of goods that will be exported out of the European Union. Shops offering this scheme have a Tax Free sticker outside. Be sure to ask for your tax-free voucher before leaving the store. These goods have to be unused when you pass the customs checkpoint upon leaving the EU. If you plan to travel through countryside or rural regions you probably should not rely on your credit cards, as in many small towns they're accepted only by a small number of shops and restaurants. Remember that in Italy (even during the winter months) it remains very common for shops, offices and banks to close for up to 3 hours during the afternoon (often between 12.30 and 15.30). Banks, especially, have short hours with most only being open to the public for about 4 hours in the morning and barely 1 hour in the afternoon.

The Most Frequently Asked Travel Questions about Italy


Where To Stay & Best Hotels in Italy - updated Jul 2024

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Italy Travel Guide from Wikitravel. Many thanks to all Wikitravel contributors. Text is available under Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 3.0, images are available under various licenses, see each image for details.

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