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10 things you should never do in Italy

When you come to another country, you notice a lot of little things that are different. Often these different habits, customs, traditions and behaviors appear strange and incomprehensible. We have put together this list so that you immediately feel at home in Italy and do not stumble from one faux pas to the next when dealing with Italians: 10 things you shouldn't do in Italy.

1. Tip

It is not compulsory to tip in Italy. Waiters in Italy usually earn decent salaries so they don't expect big tips from their customers. This does not mean that these will not be appreciated. But the tip is not based on an exact calculation, but usually depends on the total price, the restaurant, the service and the food.

2. Drink cappuccino after 11 am

The cappuccino is one of the most famous Italian drinks for breakfast. It is often drunk in the morning with a croissant or a sweet pastry. That is why it is absolutely taboo to order a cappuccino with pasta. The taste of the coffee would trump all other taste stimuli in the food. If you really want to have a coffee for lunch and would like to have a shot of milk in your coffee, it is better to order a macchiato.

3. Sprinkle pasta with fish or seafood with cheese

In Italy this is comparable to high treason. Italians have a very strong relationship with food and very precise ideas about what can and cannot be done. This is one of the better things to avoid.

4. Cut the spaghetti into small pieces

Just don't cut your spaghetti! Not in Italy! More spaghetti is eaten here than anywhere else in the world and there is a real “pasta etiquette”. One of the worst faux pas to commit in the land of the boot is eating spaghetti with a knife and fork. The long pasta is correct by wrapping it around the fork.

5. Order Fettuccine Alfredo

Something curious: in most Italian restaurants outside Italy you can find this dish made of pasta, butter and parmesan, sometimes with roasted chicken or sour cream, on the menu. In Italy, however, this food is largely unknown. The real Fettuccine "Alfredo" are only served in the restaurant ll Vero Alfredo, also known as the "Fettuccine Emperor", in Rome. Here you can try the original recipe passed down from generation to generation.

6. Tanktop and flip-flops when visiting the church

You must be appropriately dressed in holy places in Italy. If you are out and about in the summer and you wear short clothes, be sure to put a handkerchief in your pocket so as not to wear too much skin. Men must of course take off their headgear.

7. You can always get on with English

Unfortunately, English isn't spoken very much in Italy so don't get your hopes up high. In the tourist cities you won't have any problems communicating in English with the Italians. In the rest of the country, however, it looks very different. It is best to always have a small pocket dictionary with you with the most important phrases.

8. Punctuality

The concept of time is quite flexible in Italy. A tour planned for 11 a.m. can easily begin at 11:30 a.m. This also applies to the opening times of many places and to public transport. Many shops and establishments close at lunchtime and at least two days a week. Always make sure that the place you want to visit is actually open.

9. All Italians are mafiosis

The majority of Italians have no problem talking about the mafia. But it is quite insulting to assume that everyone is involved in murder and corruption.

10. Call a taxi like in New York with a show of hands

In Italy you can't stop taxis on the street, as we are often used to from American films. Here the taxis have to be requested either by phone or app, or you have to go to a taxi stop.