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Learning a little about Rome and familiarizing yourself before you travel will help you make the most of your stay without worrying about minor details. Italian is the official and most widely spoken language in Rome. Many Roman citizens do speak English but you will be better received if you at least attempt to communicate in Italian. A few useful words are ciao (hello), grazie (thank you), per favore (please) and mi scusi (excuse me).
Read more on this destination in the AA Key Guide to Rome.
Passports and Visas: British citizens need a passport to enter Italy and it must be valid for at least six months from the date of entry. Visas are not required for stays of up to 90 days. To extend your visit you can apply (only once) at any police station, however, you will need to prove that you can support yourself financially.
Customs: Importing wildlife souvenirs from rare or endangered species in Italy may be illegal or require z special permit, so check current regulations before you buy. The limit on duty free purchases for EU citizens is 3,200 cigarettes, 200 cigars OR 3kg tobacco, 110 litres of beer, 10 litres of spirits, 90 litres of wine (60 may be sparkling) and 20 litres of fortified wine. Non EU citizens are limited to 200 cigarettes, 50 cigars OR 250g tobacco, 1 litre of spirits, 2 litres of wine, 2 litres of sparkling/fortified wine/other liquors, 60ml of perfume and 250ml of eau de toilette.
Embassies and Consulates: The UK Embassy in Rome is located at Via XX Settembre 80a, I-00187. For consular emergencies call +(39) 06 4220 0001.
Money Matters: The Euro is the official currency in Rome, replacing the previous Lira. In recent years, credit cards have become more widely accepted in Italy, however many businesses will still not accept them and many food establishments will require that you pay cash. ATM machines are widely accessible 24 hours a day and banks are generally open from 08:00 - 13:00 on weekdays and then again for around an hour in the afternoon.
Medical: No vaccinations are required for Italy, however it would be wise to ensure that your tetanus injections are up to date. An EHIC card (formerly E111) entitles UK and EU citizens to free health care in Italy and these can be obtained free of charge prior to departure by applying at post offices or health centres. For minor health issues, advice can be sought at pharmacies across Rome, easily identifiable by a green cross. Pharmacies operate on a rotational basis, meaning that one will always be open. English speaking doctors can be around at Via Ludovisi 38, 00187 and for medical emergencies call 118.
Visitors with Disabilities: Wheelchair access in Rome is approving, but at a very slow pace. The city's narrow, cobbled streets and lack of pavements can prove difficult for people with mobility issues. Check with individual establishments to find out what their access is like. Almost half of public transport stations now offer wheelchair access and most new buses have ramps that can be lowered for disabled passengers. www.coinsociale.it is a useful website for information on accessible sights in Rome and minibuses available for tours and excursions.
Lost Property: The ATAC lost property office is located at Via Niccolo Bettoni 1, and is open Mon - Wed & Fri from 08:30 - 13:00 and Thursdays from 08:30 - 17:00. Telephone 06 581 6040. For anything lost on FS trains, go to the office on platform 24 at Termini station from 07:00 - 00:00 daily, or telephone 06 4782 5543. For stolen passports, report to your embassy and if your credit card or travellers' cheques are stolen, report them to the issuing company.
- 112 - Police, ambulance or fire brigade
- 116 - Italian Automobile Club (breakdowns)