Italy is quite a very beautiful country. It is a place of olive oil, pasta, wine, mafia and the sunshine, roman ruins and many beautiful palaces. Italy tourists get a run for their money when they come to Italy. Some places are really amazing and interesting, that is only possible if you are coming here to have mad fun. Italy is full of many interesting casual tourists who can never feel bored here.
But, if you happen to find yourself in Italy and you have no cash, it’s really going to be difficult, because Italy is a place of cash.
Nevertheless, here are some interesting tips which can help you utilise the little cash you have on you to the best way possible.
When you’re in Italy eat in a restaurant very much around the locals
The farther away from a tourist site, you eat, the less likely you are to be ripped off.
This view of Rome’s Piazza Navona is lovely — but eating at a restaurant while appreciating it will cost your wallet and possibly your dignity.
As in any country, it’s a sad truth that in some less-than-honest Italian establishments, and tourists can be seen as easy prey. Restaurants and cafes right near the big tourist sites are the most likely candidates. It’s not always the case of course, but well-located eateries that don’t cater to a local market are more likely to charge inflated prices.
For the record, high-risk establishments includes those on popular piazzas, like Rome’s Piazza Navona or Venice’s St. Mark’s Square which are some of the culprits. In general, whenever you see as many non-Italians as Italians please be on your guard, or better still carefully ask for a very local restaurant where you are sure the prices would be quite modest.
Don’t sit down in an Italian cafe. No, really.
Don’t, even if your feet are killing you, avoid sitting down in the kind of place that Italians call a “bar” and every other person calls a “cafe.” Why? Because as soon as you sit down, the price of whatever you’re eating doubles, triples… or worse. That’s why you see Italians usually taking their coffee and cornetti standing up. It is hereby advised that one has no cash on them should simply forget about sitting and taking coffee.
At restaurants, know what you do and don’t have to pay for
Yes, you do have to pay for water. (You can ask for “aqua dal Rubi Netto,” tap water, but it’s often seen as a bit rude. Plus, those glasses of tap water will take ages to get refilled by your waiter if they’re refilled at all!). At moderately-priced places, a large bottle of mineral water for the table should cost no more than 2 euros, maybe 3 in more expensive cities like Venice, but if one is cashless and is really thirsty, one can ask for tap water and it doesn’t cost a dime, but you should prepare your mind for any act of rudeness that may accompany it.
How not to get ripped off if you really have to sit down at a cafe
If you do decide to sit down, before you order anything or make yourself comfortable at the table, always walk in and look at the prices usually listed above the counter. In most cases, there is one column for “banco” and one for “tavolo.” “Banco” is the price if you stand at the bar; “tavolo” is if you’re sitting. If it’s still worth it to you, then by all means, sit — but keep in mind roughly what those prices were and be sure to double-check the receipt to make sure they match up.
This are some of the tips one could survive with, but you should have to have some cash with you in a foreign country, especially one like Italy where credit cards are not even a normal thing yet.
There’s really, no way to dribble around that.