Friday, June 10

Moving to Italy? How (not) to get connected!

I received this mournful lament of our modern era - the era that's being dubbed (much to the chagrin of Weiner, Shwarzy & Co.) "The Era of Communications."  But if you're planning a move to Italy from abroad, here's an eye-witness report on how to obtain a telephone line.  I recall that a friend working at the Embassy waited months for her hookup...Both had something else going for them...they both know Italian -- always a plus.  One might think that we live in the Error of Communications instead.  In any case, Benvenuti in Italia!

It was my ambition to have a phone and internet connection already set up for when we got to Italy - I can virtually see you rolling your eyes ;)    
I encountered a few rather Kafkaesque situations: On the forms, you have to fill in the province - but all they give you is abbreviations. How should any foreigner know that the abbreviation for the Provincia di Roma is RM?? Thank God for Google!!  Telecom Italia asked for my codice fiscale (Italian social security number).  I was so proud to be so well- prepared to already have one for months (after all, I'm German! and I came prior to set this up).  Unfortunately, they informed me that my codice does not match my (new) address in Rome.  No surprise, I do not live there yet.  A bit scary too, because it makes you wonder if the codice fiscale of every person in Italy is linked to their residence…(it is).
At Vodafone, I was more lucky.  No abbreviations, no codice, but I needed an Italian mobile phone number…Are there no foreigners moving to Italy???  Finally, they did accept that there are potential customers who are not Italian, and they eventually accepted my passport number.
I guess you get the direction.  In my distress, I gave them your cell phone number.  Forgive me. It happened in the heat of the moment! 
All I can say to our demoralized writer and readers is, wait til you try for the ADSL line! Maybe I should start a service of hosting cellphone numbers to potential visitors to Italy...In any case, I feel your pain. You are forgiven.


Bettina said...

I swear it is all true -

mammaamericana said...

Don't you know fixed lines are out....?

Irreverent Italy said...

The biggest scam in the universe (after they sold us on that cds would never skip like records)...We don't pay to calls for fixed lines!!! They charge $1 a sec for calls to do the math...

La Vita Saporita said...

Gack. Vero! Vero! Nothing can be done in Italy until you are actually IN Italy - only then can one hope for it to improve from being virtually impossible to bloody-friggin-infuriatingly-inefficient.