Frequently Asked Questions

We are specialists in tailor-made vacations to Italy and, as specialists, we often get the same questions coming up from our customers. Here are some of our frequently asked questions – if you have booked a holiday with us and you don’t find the answer you’re looking for here, you can always contact your travel adviser or give us a call on (UK) 01223 637331 or (US) 1-347-594-5500.


Why do we ask for your holiday budget?

This is one of the most common questions that we receive and, for a more in-depth answer, please refer to this blog. In short, we create personalized vacations and that means that we personalize every aspect of the holiday to suit your needs and requirements. If you have a tighter budget, we can suggest the best hotels to suit your needs and we can recommend economical ways to travel between cities and enjoy the best sights. Meanwhile, if you have a generous budget, we can suggest room upgrades, little luxuries and VIP tours.


What is the luggage allowance?

This varies with the airline that you are flying with so, for the most up-to-date information, we recommend that you check the airline’s website. You will find the name of the airline you are travelling with on your itinerary, which will have been sent to you via email when you made your booking.


When does check-in open?

In most instances, check-in opens at least 2 hours before the scheduled flight time. However, even if you have already been checked in online, we advise all our customers to arrive at the airport 2 hours prior to the flight so that there is time to clear security.


Can you travel to Italy with only 6 months left on your passport?

If you are travelling with us from the USA, then (currently) you need at least 3 months left on your passport from the date of departure to travel to Italy, which is in the Schengen area. However, we follow the Government’s advice and recommend that you have at least 6 months’ validity.

If you are travelling to Italy or elsewhere in Europe from the UK then, currently, you do not need 6 months’ validity left on your passport. More information on this can be found here.

All that said, we do recommend that you check the travel advice for your country prior to departure.


Are private transfers to/from the train station included?

For the major cities, such as Rome, Florence and Venice, we don’t include private transfers to or from the train station as standard. This is because the train stations in these cities are centrally located, meaning it’s usually just a short walk to/from your hotel. In addition, these train stations have taxi points, where you can catch a licensed cab (or water taxi) and this is usually more economical for our customers than a private transfer. However, we do include private transfers as standard to/from Naples Station for hotels in Sorrento and to/from Garda Station for hotels around the lake.

That said, we are more than happy to include train station transfers if you require them so do just ask your travel adviser about this option if you would prefer private transfers.


When will you receive your holiday documents?

We will send your final holiday documents at least 2 weeks prior to your vacation, including your boarding passes/flight itineraries, service vouchers, and tour and train tickets (if applicable). However, please note that the date that we send your documents is dependent on when online check-in opens, which varies with each airline. That said, rest assured that you will receive all your documents in good time!


What’s the city tax?

On the 28th July 2010 major tourist cities in Italy introduced a city tax, which is to be paid by all tourists staying in the city overnight. The fee is compulsory, but note that children under the age of 10 years are exempt from payment. It is usually payable in cash at the end of your stay in each city and should be paid directly to the hotel when you check out. The charge varies with the city and star of accommodation, and is calculated on a per person, per night basis (see this blog on the current rates but note that the charge does change frequently).

It may seem annoying, but it’s a great way to get rid of left-over small change!


Should you tip in Italy?

The short answer to this question is that you are not obliged to tip – not even in restaurants. In general, Italians simply round-up the bill, effectively leaving the change as a tip. So, for example, if the bill came to €49, an Italian may leave a €50 note and not wait for the €1 change, instead saying “tenga il resto” or “keep the change”. To find out more about the tipping etiquette in Italy, read our blog.


Can you find gluten-free food in Italy?

The answer to this question is really simple: yes! Not only are there some great Italian dishes that are naturally gluten-free, such as risotto and polenta, the Italians are also very knowledgeable when it comes to coeliac disease. Most pharmacies carry gluten-free snacks and many restaurants are sensitive to the condition and offer gluten-free options. Read our recent blog for more on this, as well as helpful phrases to learn before your travel.

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