Electricity in Italy is 220 volts, 50 cycles alternating current (AC). For comparison, in the United States it is 110 volts, 60 cycle AC current.
If you plan on using your own 110-volt appliances, you will need a voltage converter, unless your appliance is designed to also work with 220 volts electricity (dual voltage). For example, most laptops and some electric shavers are designed to work both at 110 and 220 volts. Plugging in an appliance that is not designed to run on 220 volts electricity without using voltage converter will most likely kill it.
Voltage converters might not be always easy to find in Italy, and definitely, you don't want to bother with looking for one while you should be sightseeing or relaxing. If you think you will need one, it is a good idea to get it before you leave home.
Regardless of voltage, if your appliance has flat prongs, you will need a plug adapter: Italian sockets are designed to accept round prongs. Do get one before your leave!
As a matter of fact, Italian plugs can be of two different sizes. Some socket will take in the plugs with large prongs only, some other will take in the ones with small prongs (more common for small appliances; large prongs are used for demanding appliances such as refrigerators and washing machines). And then there are sockets, like the one pictured at the top of this page, designed to take in any kind of plug.
Well, almost any kind... nowadays more and more demanding Italian appliances have "Shuko", or German-style plugs, which need to be plugged in an a special socket, or require a special converter. They are quickly replacing the "large prongs" appliances. However, you don't have to worry about this. It is really a detail. German-style sockets (which are not as common as German-style plugs) will allow you to plug in your small-prong plug adapter just like any regular small-prong socket.
Even though you will not need international calling skills to contact Summer In Italy (we provide a USA/Canada toll-free number for your convenience, and a toll-free fax number as well), there is still a good chance that as you plan your vacation you find yourself in need to place a few phone calls to bella Italia (to book a tour, a private transfer, or maybe a table at a restaurant).
If you are looking to buy airfare from North America to Italy, there might be times when you would start thinking that airlines have gone crazy with the price of flight tickets, and that there are no cheap flights or discount offers available.
If you are planning to hire a rental car for your stay in the Amalfi/Sorrento/Cilento area, chances are that you might be wondering whether we have special advice on local agencies that offer good rates.
Rome, from a tour guide's perspective: Relax, have your first cappuccino, walk around via Condotti, Spagna, Navona, Trevi, Pantheon, Corso Visit the Roman forum, Palatine hill, Colosseo Spend all day at the Vatican museums The above is the standard itinerary that pre-occupies all visitors to Rome-"Can we do it all in two days?
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