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citiBank About Italy

Looking to travel to Italy? Get all the information you need to have a safe, enjoyable andunforgettable trip while there, courtesy of GoBear Malaysia. We’ll present you with things you need to keep it mind before and during your time there, especially the need to get travel insurance for Italy.

About historic Italy

Benvenuto! Italy is located on the Italian Peninsula, also known as the ‘boot’ of Europe, because of its shape. Italy is the birthplace of the Roman Empire, one of the most long-lasting and successful empires of the world, and one whose legacy is felt even today.

Italy has a Mediterranean climate, and observes Central European Time (UTC+1) along with daylight savings.

It’s a very safe place, but because of its relatively high cost of services, most Malaysian travel insurance policies include Italy in Area 2 (usually the second price band). Check your specific plan to make sure you’re covered if you decide to go. The currency for most countries within the EU is the Euro (EUR), and Italy is no different.

Italian languages

Aside from bordering regions, Italian is the official language of Italy; however, English is widely spoken here, as is French and German in the bordering regions with the respective countries. As a

member of the EU, all EU citizens are given the freedom to live and work in Italy, so you will find significant groups of people who speak other European languages. Language-wise, you should not have too many difficulties in contacting the emergency services concierge provided by your travel insurance in Italy.

Italian food

When people think of Italian food, pizza and pasta are usually what come to mind. However, Italy is home to so much more. From salami to pastrami, espresso to gelato, Italy’s specialities have made their way across the world. Italian food is very flavourful, relying on a mix of both fresh and preserved ingredients. Olive oil is a significant part of Italian cooking as well. Muslim travellers are well-advised to check that any particular dish is halal (or at least pork-free) while on your Italy travels.

Wines have been part of the Italian diet since before Roman times, and Italian cuisines still emphasise wines heavily. Whether at the most upscale ristorante or any casual trattoria, you are sure to have a generous selection of wines to choose from.

Food safety standards are generally quite high here, but just in case, GoBear Malaysia recommends travel insurance for Italy.

What to buy in Italy

Italy is home to many, many famous brands – most of them well-known for their ‘upmarket’ positioning. Right at the top, of course, are the supercar brands Ferrari, Lamborghini, Maserati and Bugatti; Alfa Romeo and Fiat are also Italian car brands. But for the shopaholics amongst us, why not pick something up from Giorgio Armani, or Benetton, or Dolce & Gabbana, or Bulgari? Sports aficionados can probably find something they like at Diadora, and if you decide to forget the big names, who knows what bargains you could pick up? Inquire about VAT refunds in-store; you might be eligible depending on how much you spent and when you’re leaving.

GoBear Malaysia recommends checking whether your credit card covers lost or stolen purchases while overseas, or you can buy travel insurance for your Italy shopping spree.

Things to do when in Italy

When in Rome, do as the Romans do… literally. Much of Rome’s cobbled streets date back to the Roman Empire, and you can still see well-preserved Roman buildings as you walk along them. Buy a ticket to see the Colosseum. Visit the Vatican City and marvel at the architectural wonders of St. Peter’s Basilica. Take a trip down to Venice and see the city’s glassblowers practice their ancient craft, or hire a gondola and have a romantic trip down its canals. Then move on down to Pisa and take a selfie in front of its Leaning Tower. There is no shortage of things to do in Italy. Just make sure that your travel insurance for Italy covers you for all the things you intend to do.

Italy travel advisory & checklist

Have a hassle-free trip! International travel, even to Italy, has its own set of issues that you should prepare for, so that you can properly enjoy your holiday overseas. . Aside from travel insurance for Italy, GoBear Malaysia recommends you consider the following:

Passport & requirements for Italy

Make sure your passport has at least 6 months’ validity after the dates you intend to go; you may not be allowed to travel if your passport is too close to expiry. As a member of the EU, Italy allows Malaysian passport holders visa-free entry for tourists. In the event that your passport or other travel documents are lost or stolen, make sure you know the emergency contact details for your travel insurance concierge in Italy, so that you can be assisted as quickly as possible.

Electricity & water in Italy

Italy typically uses the Type C power socket. This means that you will need a universal travel adapter. However, its 230V/50Hz electrical systems are close enough to Malaysia’s that you can otherwise simply plug in your electrical items. If you have many items to plug in, just bring a Malaysian extension board and plug that into the travel adapter.

The tap water here is generally safe to drink, although GoBear Malaysia recommends boiling the water if you have a sensitive stomach. Italy also has a large number of bottled water brands, so why not try some of them out as well?

Italy’s telecommunications Internet coverage 

The telecommunications network in Italy covers most of the country. Mobile phones bought in Malaysia should work seamlessly with Italian pre-paid SIMs, but do check the specific frequencies your phone uses against the ones your preferred Italian telco supports. Wi-Fi is widely available everywhere you go, as is 4G LTE. The emergency number is 112 from fixed lines and mobile phones alike.

Healthcare & medical facilities in Italy

Italian medical facilities are world-class (but also very expensive, so GoBear Malaysia highly recommends travel insurance for Italy), with medical facilities available throughout most of the country.

Italy’s credit card facilities

International credit card networks that are present in Italy include Visa, MasterCard, and American Express (to a smaller degree). UnionPay is also available (accepted by ~100,000 merchants), and can be used in many major Italian bank ATMs. Credit cards are accepted by the larger retailer and food outlets, but smaller establishments may prefer cash instead.

Ready to start planning your Indian travels? Stay safe and protected while overseas! Try out GoBear Malaysia’s travel insurance comparison services for a quick, comprehensive and easy-to- use look atall the insurers and the travel insurance policies they offer for Italy.

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