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Lerici in the Liguria Region of Italy

Living in Italy

By Betsy Burlingame

Last updated on Feb 08, 2024

Summary: The approximate population of Italy is 60 million people. The largest cities in Italy are Rome, Milan, Naples, Turin, Palermo, Genoa, Bologna, Florence, Bari, and Catania. Expats love living in Italy for its rich culture, beautiful scenery, delicious food, and friendly people. Life in Italy is often described as relaxed and laid-back, with a strong emphasis on family and community. Popular foods in Italy include pizza, pasta, risotto, gelato, and focaccia. The cons of living in Italy include the high cost of living, bureaucracy, and the language barrier. The average cost of living for an expat is around $2,000 to $3,000 per month, depending on the city and lifestyle. This includes rent, utilities, food, transportation, and entertainment.

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What do I need to know about living in Italy?

When we asked people what advice they would give someone preparing to move to Italy, they said:

"It is important to research the cost of living in the area you are looking to retire. Italy is generally a more expensive country to live and certain locations have higher property taxes than other areas. It is also important to research the healthcare system and see if you would need international or private healthcare. It is beneficial to learn some Italian before moving, as English may not be as widely spoken as in other parts of Europe. It is also worth researching the pension and tax system to ensure that the money you receive from home can be used to supplement your income. Consider banking and money transfers, as well as sources of legal advice that may be available for you access. Lastly, researching potential locations for retirement and the amenities and activities in the area can help you make the best decision for you," remarked one expat living in Italy.

"I found the Milanese reserved, but after a while when they see you want to really integrate yourself in their society, they became really friendly. As far as shopkeepers and medical personnel, they are super. Although I spend most of my time in Suditalia, I really love Milano," wrote one member in Italy.

"Just come and look around. I never, ever tell someone that "this is the place" for you. I've lived all over Italy and have dozens of "favorite" places to live, work or visit," remarked one expat who made the move to Fiesole.

"Unless you have connections or otherwise know people here, Arona is a tough place to move to. Prepare to be lonely for a while, and you probably need a car," explained one expat living in Arona, Italy.

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William Russell's private medical insurance will cover you and your family wherever you may be. Whether you need primary care or complex surgery, you'll have access to the best hospitals & doctors available. Unlike some insurers, we also include medical evacuation and mental health cover in our plans (except SilverLite). Get a quote from our partner, William Russell.
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How do I meet people in Italy?

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About the Author

Betsy Burlingame Betsy Burlingame is the Founder and President of Expat Exchange and is one of the Founders of Digital Nomad Exchange. She launched Expat Exchange in 1997 as her Master's thesis project at NYU. Prior to Expat Exchange, Betsy worked at AT&T in International and Mass Market Marketing. She graduated from Ohio Wesleyan University with a BA in International Business and German.

Some of Betsy's articles include 12 Best Places to Live in Portugal, 7 Best Places to Live in Panama and 12 Things to Know Before Moving to the Dominican Republic. Betsy loves to travel and spend time with her family. Connect with Betsy on LinkedIn.

Lerici in the Liguria Region of Italy

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Get a quote for international health insurance from our partner, William Russell.
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Get a quote for international health insurance from our partner, William Russell.
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Help others in Italy by answering questions about the challenges and adventures of living in Italy.

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