5 things you probably didn’t know about Italy

Ask for this discount and you shall receive.
Image Copyright Rochelle Del Borrello 2014

1. Ask for a discount, cos you can!

Its normal to ask for a discount on expensive items particularly jewelry, designer items and white goods. Ask for it, demand it and you will get it!

2. Be careful with technology

GPS off the main roads and the autostrada has a tendency to take you off the beaten track onto old tracks and very much on the scenic route. So if you decide to trust a GPS have plenty of time on your hands and a full tank of gas.

Where you could end up if you follow your GPS in Sicily … (San Pier Niceto,Messina)
Image copyright Rochelle Del Borrello

3. If you ask for a coffee (caffe) you will get an espresso.

If you want a long black ask for a caffe Americano or stick to cappuccinos, who will be mildly warm and are strictly considered a breakfast drink and not usually ordered after eleven a.m. You will get a strange looks if you ask for a cappuccino in the afternoon!

4. Have a beer in the park

Alcohol laws are less stringent in Italy so you will be able to buy wine, beer and spirits in the local supermarkets and local cafes will also sell whatever your heart desires.

In restaurants you usually order wine in 1/4 liter, 1/2 liter or 1 liter jugs or bottles. House wines or ‘vino della casa’ are usually locally made, which is very economical and highly recommended.

5. Follow the rules of food.

If you are ordering in a restaurant Italians usually start with an antipasto plus a first course (primi) of pasta or a first course of pasta followed by a second course (secondi) of either meat/chicken or fish.

Any sides will have to be ordered separately.

Or if you are starving you can go the full hog: antipasti – primi – secondi followed by coffee or digestive liquors which will help you burn through all the calories.