You can’t control everything that happens on your trip. Maybe your plane gets delayed by weather, and you miss your Tuscan bike tour – incurring a cancellation fee. However, travel insurance may cover these kinds of costs, depending on what type of policy you have.
You’ll require an international driver’s permit (IDP) to drive on Italian roads, but it’s worth it – you’ll experience some of the finest landscapes Italy has to offer while you’re driving. Your insurance policy will insist you obey the law at all times; being mindful to drive on the right side of the road, not drink and drive, wear a helmet on motorbikes, etc. Travel insurance can also cover your insurance excess if your rental vehicle gets damaged. Check out the PDS for the policy you are interested in.
Here are just a few ways you can be ‘relieved’ of your belongings in Italy:
As a precaution, lock your doors as you drive, keep money and passports well concealed, and don’t take any unnecessary risks. However, it’s comforting to know that travel insurance could help cover the cost of stolen goods. It also looks after lost luggage expenses, although exclusions apply if your belongings are left unattended or you do not take steps to protect your possessions.
Australia and Italy share a Reciprocal Health Care Agreement (RHCA), which allows you to seek public medical treatment while on your trip (as well as several other European nations).[i] In good news, there are a little more than four doctors per 1,000 people in Italy, which is slightly more than most OECD (Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development) countries.
However, if you require medical evacuation or prescription medication, you may have to cover these costs yourself, as the RHCA only covers certain treatments.
For surprise expenses such as these, travel insurance is a must if you’re uncomfortable with the idea of owing large amounts of money. Not only can costs for medical evacuation and medications be covered by a policy, but some policies reimburse you for out-of-pocket private hospital expenses.
Trekking, climbing, water activities and more may be excluded from some travel insurance policies, or only covered as optional extras.
Generally speaking, travel insurance won’t cover you in instances where:
For a more detailed list of travel insurance exclusions, visit the travel insurance FAQs. If you’re unsure of what your policy covers, read the Product Disclosure Statement (PDS).
The peak tourism season in Italy is generally between June and August (summer), so if you’re looking to visit around this time, plan everything well in advance, as bookings for certain activities and events may be in high demand. Otherwise, it might be worth heading over during a shoulder season like spring (March to May) or autumn (September to November), when the crowds may not be as large.
Take part in the common courtesies when in Italy, such as dressing appropriately in church areas (particularly the Vatican), not calling people after midday until 3-4pm (that’s riposo time) and following polite dining etiquette.
Italy lies in the Schengen Area, meaning it has very open borders and little VISA restrictions for Aussies. That said, you should always check government websites like Smartraveller to ensure there aren’t any additional conditions for your entry into the country.
In the event of an emergency, call 112 for ambulance, police or fire brigade – anywhere in the EU.
Heading off to Italy soon? Why not see what we have to offer through our free travel insurance service? Through Compare the Market, you can receive quotes from several providers on one page in just minutes.
If you’re travelling through more of Europe than just Italy, you should check that your insurance policy covers multiple regions. This can be quite handy, given Italy borders France, Switzerland, Austria and Slovenia, and is just a ferry ride away from Croatia and Greece.
N.B. Please refer to or speak with your insurer about limits, sub-limits, restrictions, limitations and additional cover options.
Department of Human Services. Medical care when you travel to another country.
World Health Organisation. Global Health Observatory data repository.