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Breathtaking view of the Amalfi Coast, Italy

An expat's guide to Italy

Rooted firmly in the past, though with its eyes on the present and future, Italy is a fantastic mix of the very, very old co-existing alongside the ultra-modern. You can admire the 2,000-year-old Coliseum in Rome one moment and then marvel at the fast, contemporary Italian brand Ferrari and Maserati cars on the nearby road, the Celio Vibenna, the next.

Trade between Italy and the rest of the world has flourished for centuries - just think of Venice and the travels of Marco Polo in the 13th century, or the prodigious banking wealth of the Medici family that led to the founding of the Renaissance, also in the 13th century. You can go even further back and be amazed at the might and extent of the Roman empire. Today Italy is ranked as the 8th leading export economy in the world, and it’s the 3rd largest economy in the Eurozone. And the Italian currency is the Euro, US$ 1 (February 2018) is the equivalent of €0.82.

Italy is a peninsular bordered by the Mediterranean and Adriatic seas. It’s geographical position, bordering France, Switzerland, Austria and Slovenia, has helped its international trading reputation. But its slow bureaucracy is something that all expats will have to come to terms with.

With a population of 59.3 million (February 2018), and 65 governments since 1945, Italy is a country of passion, debate, and contrast. The country was only united in 1861. Up until that date the provinces were ruled by France or Austria, and provincial pride is still very strong in the 21st century. At the time of unification only 2.6% of the population could speak Italian, most of them spoke in their regional dialect, which, though similar to today’s national Italian language, was mainly a spoken rather than written form of communication. You’ll still find dialect spoken in the provinces as you travel around the country.

Italy also boasts some of the most beautiful towns and cities on the planet. You don’t have to stick to world famous tourist sites to find beauty, for the Italian countryside is stunning. Just wander into a little village off the beaten track and you’ll be able to marvel at the architecture of a country church, or admire some of the ancient houses or examples of startling modern sculpture. With its excellent health and education systems, as well as its wonderful climate, it’s no wonder that Italy is so popular among expats.

A guide to well-being in Italy

Partly surrounded by the sea, with a terrain that comprises hills, mountains, as well as some beautiful wooded landscapes, there are some fantastic options for exercise in Italy.

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Health and health care in Italy

Find out what the quality of health care is like in Italy and how easy it is to access care whether you’re in an urban or rural area.

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Visas for relocating to Italy

Before you start your new life in Italy, you need to read up on visas, tax codes and residency permits. Find out all you need to know here.

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Italy's culture and lifestyle

There’s no doubt Italy is a country that’s easy to love. Find out more about the culture and lifestyle you’ll experience if you make the move.

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Cost of living in Italy

It’s useful to get a good understanding of the costs of daily living in Italy before you make the move.

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Business etiquette in Italy

Understanding how to navigate a new culture and business environment could help you make a good impression and support day-to-day interactions.

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Finding work in Italy

Before you consider making the move to Italy, read up on the economy, health of the employment market and how to find work in the country.

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Finding a home in Italy

Approximately 70% of Italians own their own property. Find out how to navigate the system, whether you’re planning to buy or rent in the country.

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Italy: Where to live

Coastal or inland, rural or urban? With so many stunning backdrops in Italy, deciding where to begin your expat life won’t be easy.

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Getting around Italy

Wherever you’re planning to live, make sure your familiar with the transport options available and their associated costs.

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