Passports and Customs for Italy Travel

Passports and Visas

Only a passport is needed to enter Italy from the U.S., Canada, the U.K. and other European countries. No visas, no vaccinations (unless you’re traveling from a known infected area). Getting through customs is typically a lax affair, with the customs officers barely taking notice of your presence. These, of course, should be taken as famous last words. In other words, don’t attempt anything inadvisable, for the Italian justice system, while typically slow to get up to speed, comes down heavy in the end.

If you do not currently have a passport, you can go to your Post Office to fill out the application forms. Be sure to give yourself at least two months before you travel in order to receive your passport.


For U.S. citizens, the basic rule of thumb is that each member of your party is allowed to bring back up to a few hundred dollars worth of goods duty-free.  The exact amount varies according to arcane rules which are outlined here. For complete details on customs rules, you might want to check out the U.S. Customs site at “Know Before You Go“, complete with videos and sample declaration forms.

In regards to art objects and antiques that you might wish to ship home from Italy, these can only be brought back under license, and an application must be made to the Italian Chamber of Art. The dealer you buy from will likely be well versed in these protocols.  If not, then buyer beware!