Milan is the socio-economic capital of Italy and traveling to this wonderful city will always be a welcoming experience as the locals are friendly and helpful. As expected, good manners, politeness and learning some Italian words and realizing that you are in a foreign land will always aid you in exploring the city in a more extravagant manner.
There is a saying in English; ‘When in Rome, do as the Romans do’. So learning a little bit of Italian to guide you in daily transactions and conversations would be of great help. Italian is pronounced exactly the way it is written and often weight is given on the last letter. A little bit of understanding of Latin is great for reading inscriptions on ancient monuments in museums. It is not a fixed rule that nobody will converse in English. Most of the Milanese can speak English to some extent especially in areas that cater to tourists e.g. restaurants, tourist attractions, etc.
Smoking in Milan
Smoking in public is prohibited in Milan and this is indicated by the no-smoking symbols. However, you are free to drink and smoke in pubs and bars as most Italian are heavy smokers.
Exercise discretion about the place while smoking and do so when you are confident that the people around you are also doing so.
Tipping in Milan
Tipping is quite flexible in Milan as the ‘coperto’ (cover charge)/service charge is automatically added in the bill. However, if you are happy with the service then tipping the staff is acceptable.
Taxi drivers, theatre and cinema usherettes, luggage handlers are also given a token amount as a tip for their services, but you are not compelled to do so.
Tourist Offices in Milan
After arriving in Milan, if you need any information about the local tourist guides, accommodations, cultural events, and attractions then there are several tourist information offices spread across the city. Informazione e Accoglienza Turistica (IAT) and Azienda di Promozione Turistica (APT) are the official tourist offices sponsored by the Italian tourist board.
Milan suffers from bag snatchers and pickpockets who operate on two-wheelers and you will never know what hit you. So take care of your hand luggage, camera and other precious items. Hide expensive items in a manner that they are not easily recognizable from a distance. Also, beware from people offering free services at parking slots or for finding hotels.
When to go
Milan is an all-year round tourist destination. Depending upon which climate zone you originate you may prefer the summer months to the colder winters and for some, any time is fun time.
Winters are not freezing in Milan. So they can be enjoyed by tourists from colder temperate zones with people from warmer zone even this temperature unbearable. Carrying sweaters and jackets during winter travel is a good idea in case you are not accustomed to European winters.
Milan does not experience extreme temperature change with only the summers that the numbers can tilt a little. If rain does not make you feel like sitting at home, then spring is also a perfect time to travel as this is also the rainy season. Otherwise, the best options are to wait for the summers to start.
|Carabinieri Police Force||112|
|Polizia Italian State Police||113|
|Automobile Club d'Italia||803 116 (Toll-Free)|
|Europ Assistance VAI||803 803 (Toll-Free)|
|Car Breakdown Assistance||116|
|Parla Inglese?||Do you speak English?|
|Prego||You are welcome|
|Per favore - Per Piacere||Please|
|Buon Giorno||Good Morning - Good Afternoon|
|Buona Sera||Good Evening|
|Buona notte||Good Night|
|Come sta? (singular)||How are you?|
|Come state? (plural)||How are you?|
|Mi scusi||Excuse me|
|Ciao||Hello / Goodbye|
|Quanto costa?||How much does it cost?|
|Dov'è ....?||Where is ...?|
|Mangiare||To eat (verb)|