Common tourist mistakes you must avoid in Italy
When we think about Italy, pizza, pasta, and Roman architecture strike our minds. However, there is much more to the beautiful and culturally rich country. Like other countries, Italy too has its own customs and traditions, and a list of socially unacceptable behaviors. Here are some common mistakes you should avoid as a tourist when in Italy.
Don't ignore table manners
In Italy, seating yourself at a table without being directed to a seat by the host or waiter is considered impolite. So, you'll have to wait for the waiter or host to seat you. Also, avoid eating on the go. Italians take their time when it comes to eating, and they prefer to enjoy their meals slowly and in a relaxed setting.
Not speaking any Italian
While English is widely spoken in tourist areas, you will always be appreciated if you try to speak Italian, even if it is just a few basic phrases. It is also important to avoid speaking loudly in public places or on public transport. It is polite to learn basic greetings and phrases in Italian, like "hello," "good morning," "goodbye," "please," thank you," etc.
Don't stand too close to other passengers
Italians value personal space. When using public transportation, avoid standing or sitting too close to other passengers, unless there is limited space. Give people their own space while standing in line, waiting for a bus or train, and when walking on the streets. Also, keep your belongings close to you to avoid taking up extra space or accidentally touching other passengers.
Don't give a tip
Tipping is not always expected in Italy, as service charges are often included in the bill. All servers are paid a regular living wage so they do not rely on tips to survive. However, if you found the service excellent, you can round up a couple of Euros on the bill to show your appreciation, but it is neither expected nor necessary.
Don't dress inappropriately when visiting Church
Italy is still a very Catholic country and follows the rules of dressing modestly when it comes to going to church. When visiting religious sites, it is important to dress modestly, covering shoulders and knees, and avoiding revealing clothing. The least you can do at the last moment is use a scarf to wrap around, but the best is to dress accordingly and appropriately.