24 Pros And Cons Of Living In Italy (The ESSENTIALS You Should Know)

Italy is one of the most enjoyable, cultural, and fascinating countries in the world. 

Thinking of living there?

You’ve made a wise choice. 

We’ve put together the important pros and cons if you’re thinking about moving. 

Have a read of the guide below and work out if living there is the best thing for you. 

List of the Pros of Living in Italy

We’re starting with the good stuff.

There are plenty of pros for living in Italy and are some of the best ones!

The Italian Lifestyle

Italians tend to live at a slower, more relaxed pace.

Italians also have a large focus on community and helping their neighbors. 

This is a wonderful environment if you’re looking for a stress-free place to settle down or raise a family. 

The Amazing Food and Wine

Italy is famous for its food and wine, and there’s a good reason. 

Italy is the birthplace of many of our culinary favorites and by living there you can sample the best pizza, pasta, and wine that the local nonnas are cooking up!

Living in Italy will not only introduce you to some great dishes, but it will also encourage you to cook some of your own. 

Italian Healthcare

Healthcare in Italy is much more affordable than in the United States. 

It is highly regarded and is ranked among the top 10 healthcare services in the world. 

You will need to be an Italian resident to access it, but private healthcare options are extremely affordable. 

The Locals

Italian are some of the friendliest people you will find, and easily one of the joys of living in their country.

They are also very social people, so there’s no need to fear making new friends.

Italians are big on family and community, both are major elements of an Italian lifestyle.

The Costs of Living

Living costs in Italy tend to be a lot cheaper than in the US. 

Housing, transport and cultural amenities are some of the affordable factors. 

Touristy cities will be more expensive than other areas. However, you can try house sitting in Italy if you want to visit those expensive cities

But places like Rome and Florence still come out much cheaper than New York or LA. 

Cheap Property

It seems to be the thing nowadays to relocate to Italy, buy a cheap property and restore it to its former glory days… 

You may have to search around, but it’s definitely a possibility if you’re interested. 

Buying property in Italy is cheap (particularly in rural areas) and absolutely worth it! 

Dual Citizenship

It is much easier to obtain Italian citizenship than in other countries. 

If you have a parent or grandparent who is Italian you might be eligible for citizenship. 

Having Italian citizenship will make it much easier to work and travel around Europe. 

The Nightlife

Italians love to stay up and dance the night away.

Because Italians eat much later, bars and restaurants will often stay open late. 

Don’t worry if you don’t live in the city, there is plenty of exciting nightlife in rural and regional areas too. 

Location, Location, Location

Right around the corner from other European nations, Italy is in a prime location if you want to travel. 

Your neighbours include France, Switzerland, Austria and Slovenia.

Flights in and out of Italy are relatively cheap or you can travel by train or bus to see the sights. 

They Love Their Pets

Italians love their pets and they take them everywhere with them.

So if you’re an animal lover, you’ll be in good company. 

Living in Italy you will often find people bringing their dogs into shops or malls. 

The Beautiful Surroundings

From old buildings to art galleries to national parks and everything in between. 

Italy is full of stunning sites and many of them will be in your local neighbourhood.

Touristy places like Florence or Venice are beautiful, but there are spots in rural areas that are also worth seeing. 

The Rich History

Italy has a rich and diverse history that stems back thousands of years. 

Living in Italy you’re be in one of the oldest Western civilisations in the world.

There are plenty of cultural icons to enjoy, as well as UNESCO world heritage sites to see. 

The view from our house sit in Greece

List of the Cons of Living in Italy

There are cons to living in every country.

Here are some important ones you should consider for Italy. 

Reckless Driving

They may be relaxed at lunch, but Italians are not the most relaxed drivers. 

When Italians drive they can be impatient, speed and often tailgate other drivers. 

Thankfully, they drive on the same side as us, but even still, drive safely

Public Transport

Public transport in Italy can be unreliable and outdated. 

For major cities, there will be several modes of transport, but for other areas, there are fewer options. 

Announcements for trains are unreliable and English translations are only used occasionally. 

Issues With Rubbish Collection

While no city is entirely spotless, there are certain parts of Italy that do have a problem with grime. 

This tends to be common in overcrowded areas and cities.

Lack of proper rubbish collection can contribute to the dirtiness.

Expensive Cities

Unlike regional and rural areas, living in Italian cities can be expensive. The cost of living will often be higher, particularly in the city center. If your are just looking for cheaper accommodation if your visiting Italy we also have some ideas for you.

While you might be able to get a mansion in the Italian countryside, in the city you could be stuck with a small apartment. 

Want to Try House Sitting in Retirement?

If you can’t afford to move to Italy full time why not house sit there?

There are thousands of people house sitting in retirement. It’s the perfect way to travel comfortably as well as eliminate all accommodation costs!

Income Tax

One of our least favorite parts of living in Italy is the income tax.

If you are living in Italy as an American ex-pat and you make money, you will still need to pay income tax in the United States.

An alternative is to renounce US citizenship, but most people tend to pay taxes in both countries. 


In certain areas of Italy, you can be severely affected by Earthquakes. 

Almost the entirety of the country is in an Earthquake zone and prone to natural disasters. 

In Italy, the areas that tend to be most affected are Sicily, the eastern Alps and the southern Apenni

Rental Leases Last a Lifetime

While longer leases can be a great thing if you want to stay put, if you intend to move around Italy they are not ideal. 

Short-term leases are around 18 months.

Long-term leases are a minimum of three years. 

Employment Can Be A Challenge

For non-Italian speakers, finding employment can be a challenge. 

Most jobs will require you to have a basic grasp of the local language in order to work.

However, if you’re moving to Italy to retire this will not be an issue. 

Italy is a beautiful country that promises a nice lifestyle, Italian food and plenty of culture!

However, moving countries can be a big decision, no matter where it is. 

It is vitally important to weigh up the pros and cons and see if Italy is the place for you.

That being said, we think Italy is a fantastic place to live and is full of fun possibilities. 

What are your favorite aspects of Italy? 

Author: Brittnay

Brittnay is one of the Travelling House Sitters. She has cared for 25 dogs, 35 cats 1 turtle, and 1 rabbit over 40+ houses in 15 countries over 5 years.

She is ready to teach you exactly how to become a house sitter! She wants everyone to enjoy this incredible lifestyle as well!

You can read more about Brittnay and Jay on their about page.

Or connect with Brittnay on Facebook or in their house sitting community on Facebook

House Sitting in Salon-de-Provence
Brittnay House Sitting in Salon-de-Provence

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