Crafting Your Perfect Italian Getaway: Tips & Itineraries

If you’re one of the lucky ones planning a European getaway this summer, it’s inevitable that you’ll find yourself drawn to Italy. The ethereal setting to famous movies like “Call My By Your Name” and “Under the Tuscan Sun” – the incredible country boasts both unimaginable natural landscapes and centuries-old historical cities. Whether you’re looking forward to laying on a cobblestone beach – listening to classical music and enjoying gelato – or maybe walking around a city center to soak up the beauty of museums, monuments, and the incredible Romance language, you’ll surely enjoy your time.

Crafting Your Perfect Italian Getaway: Tips & Itineraries

While all great vacations are defined by moments of spontaneity – impulsive trips, missed alarms, and even unexpected connections – there’s something to be said for intentionality. Planning trips, researching culture, and reading about travel tips – whether you use them or not – can make all the difference for a stress-free getaway. From locals to frequent travelers – here’s some quick tips for enjoying your Italian getaway, while still giving grace for spontaneity.

Tips For Safe, Easy, & Comfortable International Travel

1.Invest in comfortable walking shoes.

Whether it’s New Balance “dad shoes,” a new pair of Adidas Gazelles, or a cushioned ballet flat, one of the most popular Italian travel tips consistently is investing in a comfortable shoe. Italian landmarks and historical views are some of the most sought after in the world – preserved by centuries of empathetic travelers, considerate locals, and passionate historical preservers. On that same note, they were never constructed or redesigned for transportation in vehicles – making the roads narrow, often unkempt, and stoney.

If you’re planning on enjoying incredible cities like Palermo or Florence, you’re inevitably going to be spending hours on end walking around. It’s a gift – incredible sights, casual exercise, and an excuse to overindulge in world famous cuisines (and gelato, of course) – but also a curse, if you’re getting blisters and constantly complaining about how badly your feet hurt.

2. Pack lightly & start prepping early.

If you’ve ever felt overwhelmed traveling domestically with more than one suitcase, going to Italy as an overpacker is practically a nightmare. The number one tip from Italian locals, tourists, and expert travelers alike: pack early and pack lightly. Not only is Italian architecture beautiful, it’s also stoney, uneven, and inherently impossible to navigate with suitcases. Consider packing a duffel, carry-on, or better yet a backpack with all your traveling essentials – you’ll thank yourself later, while in the heat of an Italian summer trying to find the front door to your AirBnb or playing tetris in the back of a small taxi car.

Don’t forget – in addition to packing early, with only essentials – to also prepare plans early. Look at the calendar days you’re going to be in different cities and plan time to sit down with other travelers – or just by yourself, if you’re the courageous & adventurous solo traveler we all aspire to be. Consider what you want to prioritize seeing, doing, and experiencing and make sure you’re prepped and ready for it.

Of course, when it comes to prepping, it’s important to also plan time to just enjoy the country – you should make time to see the famous landmarks and cities the country boasts like Matero, the Amalfi Coast, or Rome, but don’t feel guilty about enjoying a day to yourself basking on a beach or sipping a Spritz at a lively restaurant. Your vacation is just that – your vacation. Don’t let expectations about an adventurous and lively summer abroad shame you into spending your time anywhere that’s not going to fulfill you.

Book all your activities or tourist destinations in advance.

Whether it’s booking a train seat, purchasing a museum ticket, or penciling in a popular reservation in a touristy city on Lake Como – booking ahead of time can save you the hassle of worrying about all your plans once you’re on vacation. Of course, another upside to planning ahead, is that once you’re on vacation – with pre-booked activities and tickets – everything is essentially free (or at the very least, already paid for)!

Sites like Get Your Guide can provide accessible day-trips and hour-long excursions that are easy to book if you’re looking for a historical guide, a transportation-included trip to a new city, or a last-minute activity to fill your time. Complete with information about language barriers, all-inclusive costs, and specific time intervals – they can be an easier alternative to planning a day full of excursions by yourself.

However, don’t forget – it’s essential to enjoy a couple days to yourself. Whether it’s simply wandering around aimlessly or getting lost in a local piazza – there’s excitement to be had in having absolutely no plans at all.

Stay connected worldwide.

Get an eSIM prior to departing.

The last thing that you want to worry about when you touch down on vacation is the “SOS” sign on your phone – preventing you from ordering a taxi, texting friends from home, or even posting that Instagram picture boasting the start of your European summer trip. What’s even worse than that? Coming to terms with your international plan phone bill when you get home. Whether it’s a $10 per day travel plan or sneaky incurrent charges racking up behind the scenes – sometimes traveling abroad, outside of your carrier’s domestic network, can build up some hefty charges.

So if you’re looking forward to scrolling socials on the beach, boasting about your trip on socials, or connecting with family and friends at home while abroad – consider an easier, more cost-effective route to fast browsing: an eSIM. With free apps like USIMS, you can easily get an eSIM, international plan, and immediate browsing for when you’re traveling abroad – keeping the guessing and stressing of contacting your carrier for an international plan at bay.

Do your research!

Whether you’re researching some new Italian words or simply investing time into understanding basic cultural differences, this kind of preparation can save you some discomfort or embarrassment when you finally arrive. Just because things like flip flops, public restrooms, and ice-cold beverages are hallmarks of our American culture – and oftentimes, what tourists miss most when they start traveling abroad – doesn’t mean they’re as easily accessible in European countries like Italy.

You’re traveling to a new country – it’s important to know what you’re walking into, whether that’s achieved by watching a few movies or reading a few articles about the culture. The more you respect the people, culture, and space, the better time you’ll have.

Despite language differences, many American tourists admit that most “touristy” towns – and even those just outside – still speak English and can help you navigate, give great recommendations, or simply spark up a conversation. Don’t let a fear of embarrassment or ignorance keep you from soaking up these connections and experiences – just be kind and respectful! Of course, everyone has their own motivations for travel – whether it be a glimpse at historical landmarks, meeting new people, or simply basking in the warm weather an Italian summer often boasts. Research these attractions and plans ahead of time – and of course, don’t forget to check out some of the local recommendations you get once you’re there.

If you remember anything, amid the excitement of planning a European trip, remember these tips – pack lightly, buy some comfy shoes, and set up an eSIM ahead of your trip. Not only will these save you time and money down the road, they’ll give you a chance to explore and experience stress-free!

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