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Near the Uffizi in Florence

Moving to Florence, Italy

By Betsy Burlingame

Last updated on Dec 23, 2022

Summary: Moving to Florence, Italy? Expats talk about what you need to know before moving to Florence.

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What do I need to know before moving to Florence?

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

"Join the expat groups online and read or connect with anyone who has lived in the area you choose. I visited Italy two years prior to find the city that suited my needs and personality. You have to narrow down what is important to you, city or country life. Also find a place you can easily catch a train from and has bus service," added another expat who made the move to Florence.

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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 find a place to live in Florence?

We asked expats how they chose their neighborhood and found a place to live. They answered:

"I researched a year before moving on the Internet and found apartmentsflorence.com who skyped with me from Florence. Lorenzo the owner described many different options and I felt very comfortable making the decision which apartment to rent before I moved. Took care of the first months rent online, very efficient," remarked another expat who made the move to Florence.

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What is a typical expat home or apartment like in Florence?

"I chose a two bedroom apartment because my 28 year old daughter came with and we wanted our own bedrooms. Plus, we knew we would have relatives and friends come. There was an elevator that maybe half of the apartments have with washer in the unit. Not many houses to rent except maybe in the country," explained one expat living in Florence, Italy.

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What is the average cost of housing in Florence?

If you are thinking about moving to Florence, cost of living in probably a key consideration. Expats commented about the cost of housing:

"The euro was high in 2013 when I moved there at 1.47 so my first apartment was 1200 euro a month. I moved closer to the city center by the Ponte Vecchio and I paid 1600 euro which is much higher than Minneapolis. You can stay within 1000 for a two bedroom if you don't mind being out of the center of town or in a lower neighborhood," remarked another expat in Florence, 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.
William Russell Health InsuranceExpat Health Insurance in Italy

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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What should I pack when moving to Florence?

We asked people living in Florence to list three things they wish they had brought and three they wish they had left behind. They responded:

"When I moved to Florence, I actually brought five suitcases, way too much of everything. It cost me so much more in fees so would recommend two suitcases at the most. My luggage was too heavy so I wish I would have chosen lighter suitcases, less heavy clothes and less shoes. They have better and less expensive shoes as well as clothes," remarked another expat who made the move to Florence.

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What cultural faux pas should I try to avoid making in Florence?

We asked people in Florence if they could share any humorous cultural blunders they commited. For new expats, keep in mind that these incidents are an inevitable part of expat life. Learning to laugh about them is the key!:

"Italians eat with knife and fork in each hand and do not switch forks after cutting meat to the other hand to eat. Also, do not drive or park in Restricted Zones within cities - you will be ticketed or booted," said another expat in Florence.

"Yes. A man pushed my daughter out of the way to get by to take cuts in line at the Poste Italiane and I grabbed him by his jacket collar and pulled him to the floor. I laughed when he his pissed his pants. He did not," remarked another expat who made the move to Florence.

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What are medical services in Florence like?

When we asked expats and global nomads about the quality of medical care in Florence, they replied:

"I have experienced both the private and public healthcare systems in Florence and the level of care is very similar to what I used to have in Canada. The private system is pay for treatment, but the costs are reasonable," said another expat.

"The cost and quality of healthcare options in Italy is a primary reason why I will likely obtain residency and retire," said one expat living in Florence, 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.

Near the Uffizi in Florence

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