French, Belgian and Swiss citizens must have a valid national identity card or passport to travel to Italy. If you are travelling with your children, it is important to note that minors, regardless of age, must now be in possession of an individual passport.
Since January 1, 2014, French secure national identity cards issued to adults between January 2, 2004, and December 31, 2013, automatically have a validity period extended by 5 years, without any material change to the document. For example, an identity card issued to an adult with an expiry date of April 23, 2014, will in fact be valid until April 23, 2019.
However, in order to avoid any inconvenience during your trip to Italy (the Italian authorities have not specified their position regarding this measure), it is strongly recommended that you use a valid passport rather than a national identity card with an expired date, even if it is considered by the French authorities to be still valid.
If you are travelling with only your national ID card, you can download and print a multilingual notice explaining these new rules by going to the following address: http://media.interieur.gouv.fr/interieur/cni-15ans/document-a-telecharger-italie.pdf
Enhanced security measures have been put in place at airports. For all flights to or through the U.S. and London, electronic devices such as smartphones, tablets and laptops must be charged and in working order. Screening officers must be able to turn them on to verify that they are not dangerous items. It is therefore recommended that you have your charger on hand in case you need it. If your device is discharged or does not work properly, it may be confiscated.
This measure can be extended to other airports, so it is advisable to charge your electronic devices before your flight, regardless of your destination, to prevent any eventuality.
French, Belgian and Swiss nationals do not require a visa to travel to Italy. However, it is recommended to check the visa requirements for other nationalities by contacting the relevant embassies.
Italy is located at GMT+1 in winter and GMT+2 in summer, which means that there is no time difference from France.
Money and Currency
In Italy, banks are generally open from Monday to Friday, from 8:30 am to 1:00 or 1:30 pm, then from 2:30 or 3:00 pm to 4:00 or 5:00 pm. Some branches may also open on Saturday mornings. Credit cards are widely accepted in most restaurants and hotels, as well as in many gas stations. However, some merchants may still refuse them.
There are ATMs throughout Italy to facilitate cash withdrawals. The currency used in Italy is the Euro.
220 volts; European plugs. No need for an adapter (even on the catamaran)
To call Italy from France or Belgium, dial 00 + 39 + the number of your correspondent, adding the initial 0. To call France from Italy, dial 00 + 33 + the 9-digit number of your correspondent without adding the initial 0. To call Belgium from Italy, dial 00 + 32 + the area code without the 0 (Antwerp, 03; Blegny Trembleur and Liège, 04; Brussels, 02; Bruges, 050; Ghent, 09; Namur, 081; Ostend, 059) + the number of your correspondent.
There are many Internet cafes in the city in Italy, which are often open every day and late at night.