Italy — Visas and Vaccinations
Italy is an EU and Schengen member country, with nationals of other EU countries, as well as US citizens able to enter visa-free with just a passport or ID card. Nationals of Australia, Canada, New Zealand and a list of other countries may also enter document-free for a stay of 90 days. Residents of countries not on the visa waiver list should contact their nearest Italian embassy for visa requirements or visit a Schengen visa service.
Health and Safety
Medical care in Italy is state-sponsored and free for EU citizens, and emergency treatment is given to non-EU travelers. For non-emergency care, non-EU nationals should make sure they have comprehensive health insurance. Tap water everywhere except southern Italy is safe to drink, and there’s little risk of food poisoning. As with most European countries, Italy is relatively safe to visit, although care must be taken in tourism hotspots as bag-snatchers and pickpockets do operate. Be on the lookout for street vendors who precariously put their goods on top of your wallet or phone while al fresco dining, as you may be in for a less than pleasant surprise when you go to retrieve it.
Car theft and break-ins are a problem in Rome and Milan, with visitors advised not to leave any belongings in their vehicle overnight. Italy’s daily flirtatious interplay and lack of personal space can be irritating to lone female travelers, but is rarely threatening, and groups of begging gypsies are also an annoyance. Common sense is the best weapon against minor crime, day or night.