How is life in the south

What you need to know if you want to retire in Italy

Would you like to retire in Italy but don't know what to do? Many dream of moving to Italy to spend their old age there. Everyone loves the continental climate, the immense food and wine culture, the exciting history and the proximity to the sea and the mountains. Italy is one of the most popular travel destinations in the world, but how can you get your pension in Italy?

Cost of living in Italy

Is It expensive to live in Italy? Answering this question is not easy as it obviously depends on the goods and services you are buying. Anyone considering moving to Italy, especially retirees, shouldn't underestimate the cost of living in Italy as it has increased significantly over the past decade. Still remains Italy is a cheap country compared to Germany. In addition, there are considerable differences between the regions of northern and central Italy and the very poor south.

If you don't live in the south of Italy or in a small inland town like Marche, you have to expect high prices in popular metropolises like Rome and Milan. Luxury products like cars are quite expensive, but food, wine and spirits are a little cheaper.

Health care in Italy

The Italian health care system is managed by the World Health Organization among the top 10 of the highest quality health systems. As an EU citizen, you are entitled to free medical care. Nevertheless, it is advisable to always have the European Health Insurance Card (EHIC) with you.

Living in Italy as a pensioner

EU citizens who want to live in Italy for more than three months need one residence permit. To do this, you will need to show that you have sufficient income, which may come from one of the following sources:

  • State pension
  • Other social security benefits
  • Real estate investment
  • Other types of investments

The Taxing Your Income may differ from the regulations in your home country, so it is best to consult a tax advisor in Italy. Since 2019 there are some tax breaks for pensioners in Italy.

If you want to apply for a state pension in Italy, you need to contact the Italian Pension Insurance (Istituto Nazionale Previdenza Sociale - INPS).

The best places to retire in Italy

Apart from big cities like Rome, Florence or Milan, which are good choices due to their quality of life, architecture, history and transport connections, the following regions are very popular with retirees:

  • Abruzzo: Abruzzo is one of the cheapest regions in Italy. Here you will find breathtaking mountains, the Adriatic Sea, numerous national parks and lots of nature.
  • Apulia: This large region of the Adriatic Sea is the ideal choice for retirees with a laid-back lifestyle and a love for seafood, the beach and the waves. The cost of living is lower here than in the rest of the country.