Here are a few tips to help you rent apartments from local agencies and still get what you want. Learning about assumptions locals will make will help you avoid confusion, and make the whole process less stressful for you and your potential landlords.
First, remember that unlike vacation apartments in many countries, these are likely to be more like a standard apartment or condo. That means that while they’re furnished and linens are provided, you won’t get hotel-style service unless you ask (and pay) for it, and your refrigerator and pantry probably won’t be stocked.
Another thing to pay attention to is the fact that the amenities and services listed for the apartment are the ones you’ll likely be getting. That means that if you don’t see air conditioning listed in the description for the apartment you’re interested in renting, it’s probably not included.
Remember that you may be required to show your passport to the rental agency. This is not to question your identity, but is because travelers in Italy are required to carry their passports at all times – your rental agency just wants to make sure you have yours with you.
Beds may be of different sizes than you’re accustomed to, as well. Italian twin beds are narrower and longer than those in Australia, the UK, and the US. Double beds are also longer, but are a bit wider than in any of those countries, and queen beds are also a few inches wider. You’ll find a king sized bed isn’t as large as you expect, however – it’s about the same as two twin beds side by side.
It’s also a good idea to remember that the pipes under most Italian streets are much narrower and older than those in most other parts of the world. That means that you’ll have lower water pressure and may need to husband your hot water.
Italian cities, including Rome, also have narrow streets that date back to their early days in the ancient period. These streets mean that you may hear more echoes and other noises than you’d expect – this is normal, and you should be ready for it.
Of course, dealing with a good rental agency that understands your needs and what you’re accustomed to can help a lot. Look for one that provides staff with a good knowledge of English to assist you.
Good local rental agencies will also be aware of what travelers from Australia, North America and the UK are used to when it comes to accommodations, and they’ll be willing to help you find it and to try to avoid misunderstandings. However, if you’ve taken the time to educate yourself in advance, the process will be much easier for everyone.
Renting apartments for your vacation in Rome is a smart idea that’ll give you a lot more space, freedom, and savings than a hotel. Just know what to expect, and you’ll be sure to have a great time on your trip.