Capital City: Rome
Population: 61 Million
GDP per capita: USD 30,600 (2016)
Drives on the: Right
Time: GMT +1
Internet domain: .It
International dialling code: +39
We are pleased to provide you with our guide on moving to Italy from Dubai, UAE. Please make note of the special links at the foot of this page.
Located in southern Europe, the boot shaped peninsular of Italy reaches far south into the center of the Mediterranean sea. With the exception of land borders to the north, the rest of Italy is surrounded by water, including the islands of Sardinia and Sicily.
Italy is divided into 20 regions, comprising over 100 provinces. The capital city Rome is steeped in history and for over 2 millennia has been the political and religious heart of the Western hemisphere. It was the centre of the Roman Empire and is home to the Vatican, the Catholic Church, and the official seat of the Pope.
Italy’s climate is very diverse with north central regions enjoying mild winters and warm summers with the exception of the Po valley where winters tend to be harsher. In general the south and coastal areas are subject to a Mediterranean climate with mild winters and dry summers. Low-lying valleys can be very hot during summer and conversely mountainous areas are colder and wetter leaving snow during the winter months.
Expats in Italy
Italy is a very popular European destination, which is not surprising when you consider the high standards of living (regularly appearing in the top ten countries in various quality of life reports), the romantic scenery, delicious cuisine and vibrant culture. Rome and Milan are home to many professional expats, but Turin, Naples and the beautiful city of Florence are also popular.
Unemployment in Italy is relatively high, so it is highly advisable that you have secured employment before arriving in the country.
Italians are very patriotic and proud of their history and ancestry. They have strong family values, which often extends to family run businesses. In business and socially in general, seniority and older people are revered and respected.
First impressions are important in Italian society; the way you dress and conduct yourself speaks volumes. Couples and families can often be found strolling through piazzas in the old parts of towns and cities in an early evening ritual known as passegiata. Food (and wine) is a very important part of life and Italians do need much of an excuse to get together with family and friends.
Bureaucracy is a problem in Italy. Most people acknowledge the inefficiencies in the system, but patience and paperwork is a fact of life in Italy. It is advisable to have a bi-lingual lawyer available especially when you sign any documents.
Italy is culturally very rich with a huge number of UNESCO World Heritage sites. With the excellent public transport system, expats can explore to their hearts content.
Cost of living
A meal at the standard restaurant is likely to cost roughly Euro 15-20 per person with a beer priced around Euro 4 and soft drinks around Euro 2 per can. A reasonable bottle of wine costs approximately Euro 7 and a coffee typically sets you back around Euro 1.90. At the local supermarkets a loaf of bread is priced around Euro 1.50, a liter of milk approximately Euro 1,20 and a dozen eggs roughly Euro 2.50.
Public transport in Italy, in general is good. A monthly pass in a major city is likely to cost around Euro 40-55. Taxis start around is Euro 5 and then around Euro 1.50 per kilometer thereafter. Petrol is relatively expensive at around Euro 1.45 per liter.
Accommodation is reasonable, although a little higher in Madrid. A typical 1-2 bedroom apartment in a prestigious area of a major city would be approximately Euro 600-900 per month. Less desirable areas would reduce monthly rent to around Euro 450-650. A typical house would cost around Euro 1,100-1,500 per month.
Basic utilities for an average two-bedroom apartment will be around Euro 175. Prepaid mobile phone charges are approximately Euro .20 per minutes and broadband Internet us roughly Euro 30 per month.
Children in Italy are eligible for free education irrespective of their nationality. Public schools are generally considered to be of a high standard.
Education is compulsory once a child reaches the age of six, although preschool and kindergarten is also available and optional.
Primary school (Scuola primaria) last 5 years and generally operates from 8am – 1pm.
Between 11-14 children attend a lower secondary school, (similar to a middle school) which is generally known as Scuola media, and then at 14 they move to upper secondary school, broadly referred to as Scuola superior. This education can run up to the age of 19, after which university is available. Education is mostly conducted in Italian with English commonly taught as a second language.
Private schools are available, but can be quite expensive. The main reason to send an expat child would be language, where Italian would not be the first language, and also class sizes tend to be smaller with the tutors being able to focus more attention on individuals.
Italy has a large number of universities and colleges, many of which are very old and established.
In the late 70s the Italian government established a reformed national health service called SSN (Servizio Sanitario Nationale). All citizens and residents are provided with healthcare which is administered regionally.
Over 9% of Italy’s GDP is spent on healthcare and with above average life expectancy, most global bodies including the World Health Organization regard Italy’s healthcare among the best in the world.
Prescription drugs are generally subsidized and require a prescription from a doctor, though in some regions prescription drugs are made available for free to the poor.
Visits to specialists which are well catered for in public hospitals, normal take place with a referral from a doctor or GP. Waiting times can take weeks or even months especially in larger cities, however your doctor may be able to fast-track this depending upon availability.
Accident and emergency services are free to all citizens.
The main advantage of private medical insurance/care would be reduced waiting times especially for non-life threatening surgery.
Moving Documents Required
When moving to Italy from Dubai, importation of Household Goods and Personal Effects
- Copy of passport
- Detailed Packing list (stamped and signed by the Italian embassy/consulate at origin).
- Copy of tax code number
- Permit to stay released by the Questura Police Office
- Copy of residence cert. / receipt from Italian City Hall stating the owner of the goods has requested residence registration
- Bill of lading / AWB
- Customs Dichiarazione Sostitutiva di Certificazione, completed and signed by owner of the goods
For more information on documentation requirements, especially the Dichiarazione Sostitutiva di Certificazione click HERE
Note: This document is provided as a guide for people moving to Italy from Dubai, UAE and for information purposes only. Customs regulations can and do change at any time, usually without notice. Your mover will provide you with more information.