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FocusMM - Mediterranean Guide



Public telephones are available throughout Italy. A local call from a public telephone requires the use of a 200 lire token (gettone) or coins. Gettoni may be purchased at any newsstand, tobacco shop or bar (coffee shop). For 10,000 Lire you can purchase a pre-paid phone card. Italian telephone numbers can include 4 to 8 digits, so don't automatically assume you have the wrong number if it looks strange. Also, a great many Italian phone exchanges have added a digit during the past few years, so you may get a message advising you of this or, more likely, the number simply won't work. If you're lucky, the new number will be listed with information (dial 12).

Emergency calls. The Italian equivalent of 911 is 113. Theoretically, there should be an English-speaking person available whenever you dial this number. But remember, it's for emergencies, not for information.

Long distance calls (Interurbano) between major cities can be dialed directly on the public telephone by using the proper area code number. Buy a number of tokens sufficient to cover the call, or better yet, get a pre-paid card (and then find a phone that accepts them!). Unused tokens will not always be refunded. Calls from Italy to the U.S. can be dialed directly (dial 001 + area code + phone number).

Area Code (Prefisso Telefonico): Following are the area code numbers for some of the principal cities in Italy. When dialing direct, the 0 should be left out. Example: A call from New York to Rome would be dialed as follows: 011 + 39 + 6 + phone number.

Ancona 071 - Cagliari 070 - Messina 090 - Rome 06 - Aosta 0165 - Campobasso 0874 - Milan 02 Siena 0577 - Bari 080 - Catania 095 - Naples 081 - Turin 011 - Bergamo 035 - Catanzaro 0961 - Palermo 091 - Trento 0461 - Bologna 051 - Florence 055 - Perugia 075 - Trieste 040 - Bolzano 0471 - Genoa 010 - Pisa 050 - Venice 041 - Brescia 030 - L'Aquila 0862 - Potenza 0971 - Verona 045 - Brindisi 0831 - Livorno 0586 - Reggio C. 0965

Country Direct Service by Italcable. By dialing 172-1011 via AT&T or 172-1022 via MCI or 172-1877 via US SPRINT from any phone in Rome - Milan - Florence - Naples - Venezia - Torino - Catania - Vicenza - Livorno - Olbia - Bologna - Brindisi - Cosenza - Formia - Genova - Latina - Padova - Palermo - Perugia - Pescara - Pordenone - Pisa - Trieste you can place a direct call to the U.S. by reversing the charges or using your phone credit card number. When calling from pay telephones, just insert a token (gettone) or 200-lire coin which will be returned upon completion of the call. You automatically reach an operator in the country of destination, thus avoiding all language difficulty. Canada can be reached by dialing 172-1001.

Mobile phones are widely used in Italy. Whole country, including remote areas are covered by the mobile network. It is recommended to verify the access options to the Italian network, with your own mobile phone, from your local service supplier before you leave your country.


Stamps may be purchased only at tobacco shops and at the post office. Airmail with insufficient postage is not returned to sender, but is sent via surface mail, which can take weeks or even months.

We highly recommend you send your postcards and letters from the post office and, even though it can be irritating, take the time to confirm that you have affixed the correct postage.

Post offices are open from 8:30 A.M. - 2:00 P.M. On Saturdays and on the last day of the month they close at 12:00 P.M. Post offices at airports and main post offfices in large cities are open 24 hours a day for registered mail and telegram services.