Ciao Bella! How to Plan Your Dream Trip to Italy

Ready to stop dreaming of Italy and finally visit Italy? Planning makes perfect! From packing to sightseeing, here's everything you need on your trip to Italy.

Americans are some of the most active international travelers in the world. In 2017, they spent more than $135 billion on overseas travel. That's an increase of 9 percent from 2016.

Mexico is the most popular international destination, which makes sense based on proximity. But European destinations also have a lot to offer.

In fact, a trip to Italy is one of the best options regardless of if you're traveling alone, as a couple, or with your family. The hardest part is figuring out where to go in Italy.

Dust off your passport and keep reading for a few tips that will make traveling to Italy a true dream vacation.

Figure Out Your Focus

People who visit Italy often think they can check off every single item on their list. That's a rookie mistake. You would need a months-long visit to truly see everything, so prioritize what's most important.

For some people, that's going to mean eating as much authentic Italian food as you can handle. If so, you should book hotels based on the restaurants in the area. Don't forget to make time for aperitivo, aka a pre-dinner meal designed for socializing.

Many other tourists visit Italy because of its religious significance. Vatican City is technically its own city-state, albeit a very small one. It exists as an enclave within the city of Rome.

The Sistine Chapel and St. Peter's Basilica are must-see attractions. But wait times can be long, especially during the busy summer season. Reserve one of these beautiful tours ahead of time if you want to see the best of Vatican City.

Research the Culture

You know what you want to focus on. Now make sure that you understand the basics of Italian culture before getting on that plane.

You will look like a tourist when you travel to Italy. There's no getting around that to some degree. But there's a big difference between looking like a tourist and looking like an ignorant American.

For instance, you shouldn't ask for spaghetti and meatballs at an Italian restaurant. They're considered separate courses. Real Italian food looks a lot different than the stuff you'll find at American chain restaurants.

Learning some basic Italian phrases can also make a big difference. No, you won't need to speak fluent Italian, especially not in more touristy sections of the country. But making a little effort can go a long way.

"Ciao" means both goodbye and hello. To thank someone, say "Grazie."

Sure, you won't sound like a local. But that's OK.

Also, don't order soda when you're eating dinner. Beer, wine, and water are the standard beverages for adults. Americans love to guzzle soda with their dinners, but it's frowned upon in Italy.

What if you want a cocktail? Most Italian restaurants only serve beer and wine, so you may have to wait until you get back home for that martini.

Planning Your Trip to Italy

For most people, Italy travel is a once-in-a-lifetime experience. If you do things right, your trip to Italy will be one you remember fondly for years and decades to come.

If Italy travel is out of your budget right now, that's OK. Our blog has plenty of other travel tips to keep you occupied while you save up money. Bookmark our site now to ensure you don't miss any travel-related updates.
 
 
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