8933662200ba49198e4a764d606f64a4_italy_119_70_1075_809 venice-italy

Do not mix cheese with seafood, do not order take away cafe, get homeowners’ permissions before entering … be aware that the country pays attention to the shape of the boots.  Italy is a superb location for travelers, but also like many other places, it has its own customs. Here are 10 things that you should keep in mind while visiting Italy if you do not want to end your trip early.

1. Cover bare shoulders and knees when entering a church.

2. Don’t expect things to happen according to schedule. Italian time is elastic and so are business hours. Many businesses—even, bafflingly, restaurants—shut down for lunch and may also be closed two days a week, days which vary from business to business. Public transportation is also often “out of order” or delayed. Please give yourself ample padding between travel connections.

3. Riding a gondola may be romantic but it can rip off your wallet. If a $65-$130 boat ride isn’t in your budget, start touring the city by walking and you can get to appreciate it at your own pace.

4.  Get yourself psyched for authentic Italian cruise. Do yourself a favor and stick to local foods on your Italian trip. For example: Rome for spaghetti alla carbonara, Nepals for pizza and Bologna for bolognese sauce and filled pastas like ravioli, tortellini and lasagna.

5. Unlike U.S., tip is not obligatory in Italy. Don’t tip them unless they give you the best service in the world. Remember that tipping a service may be insulting.

6. Mixing cheese and seafood? Unless you want to see a grown adult cry. Regardless of your age or social level, mixing parmesan cheese with seafood remains a cardinal sin.

7. Learn to keep silent. Remember an Italian word originated from Sicily: Omerta – code of silence. If you encounter a crime, a dead body in the alley, or whatever are Mafia-related, the best thing to do is remaining silent, as not to hear, not see and not to care.

8. The fun part of dinning in Italy is to enjoy the food and coffee, not take away, except for pizza. So do not step into a store and order to go. Usually you will be turned away and considered as crazy.

9. Don’t plan on conducting your entire trip to Italy in English. Italy consistently earns moderate to low proficiency rankings on English proficiency indexes—among the lowest-rated in Europe. Step outside of your comfort zone and  enjoy the exotic stay.

10. The last thing is to ask owner’s permission before entering someone’s house, even when invited. Or stand at the door and say “Permesso” to get owners’ permission.