Essential contact information for landline telephones, mobile cellular phones and Internet connections for private, domestic or business use in Italy, as provided by national telecommunications supplier, Telecom Italia and other suppliers.
Handy Tips and NumbersEssential contact information for landline telephones, mobile cellular phones and Internet connections for private, domestic or business use in Italy, as provided by national telecommunications supplier, Telecom Italia and other suppliers.
|To call internationally from Italy: dial the exit code followed by country code and number||exit: 00 +|
|To call an Italian landline from outside Italy: dial the entry code followed by Italian number including the “0”||39 + 0 number|
|To call an Italian mobile cellular telephone from outside Italy: dial the entry code followed by Italian number excluding “0”||39 + number|
|Operator for collect calls||170|
|International directory enquiries (English-speaking)||176|
|Telecom Italia’s customer service||187|
- When calling within Italy, always include the full area code (starts with “0” and may be two or three digits: eg: Rome “06”)
- When calling Italy from outside Italy dial the country code (39) and full area code including the “0” (0 plus two or three digits: eg: Rome “06”)
Coloured telephone numbers
Some public-service telephone numbers are referred to by colour; the colour corresponds to the type of service provider to which they connect the caller.
- Green numbers (numeri verdi): freephone/toll-free numbers start with 800 or 147 (from inside Italy only; may not be available from mobile phones)
- Blue numbers (numeri azzurri): to report child abuse
- Pink numbers (numeri rosa): to report abuse of women
- Violet numbers (numeri viola): to report any sort of abuse
- Red numbers (numeri rossi): pregnancy/prenatal advice
- Orange numbers (numeri arancioni): psychiatric help
Land Line Telephones
Land line telephone numbers in Italy are between eight and eleven numbers long and begin with a “0”. The “0” must be dialed when calling the number both from within Italy and from abroad.
The national Italian telephone company, Telecom Italia is responsible for providing the land line telephone service in Italy. Telecom Italia offers telephone and Internet services for private individuals and small companies as well as medium and large entities.
The law assigns to Telecom Italia the responsibility to guarantee to users, nationwide, the supply of telephone services (local, national and international calls, transmission of data via fax as well as connection to the Internet) at a reasonable price and at non-discriminatory rates. However, with a deregulated telecommunications market, users are entitled to choose another provider, either as a substitute for Telecom Italia, or in addition to the services offered by Telecom Italia.
To get a land line telephone service with Telecom Italia
- Contact their service centre on 187
- Apply via the Telecom Italia website (in Italian)
The following information is required to initiate telephone service:
- Tax number (codice fiscale)
- Address where the line needs to be installed
- Phone number at which the applicant may be contacted
- Type of service required (basic analogue, ISDN or ADSL)
- Number of extensions required
- Additional telephone service required, such as a special tariff package
- Model (name, colour) of telephone, if applicable
- Whether the applicant would like their number to be included in the local phone book
Telecom Italia will then assign a new telephone number, and an appointment will be set up with a technician to come and connect the telephone (this may take from a couple of days to a couple of weeks).
Other land line telephone service providers
Besides Telecom Italia, some other service providers in Italy are:
Refer to their websites for details on how to request service. They will require the same information as Telecom Italia to initiate service.
Italian mobile phone numbers are ten numbers long and begin with “3”.
Phone models available are much the same as in any other country, as are the brands: Nokia, Siemens, Blackberry, etc. Phones purchased in another European country can be used in Italy, though roaming charges may be payable.
GSM cellular phones from North America must be tri-band in order to work in Italy; they must be able to function on the 900 MHz and 1800 MHz frequencies.
There are four major service providers for cell phones in Italy:
- TIM (Telecom Italia Mobile)
- Omnitel Vodafone (comprehensive site in English)
Each company offers a broad range of voice and data services and packages, and it is always recommended to compare prices and conditions carefully before entering into a contract.
The following information is required to initiate mobile telephone service:
- A document indicating the applicant’s address
- Tax number (codice fiscale)
International roaming (which allows a phone on an Italian contract to work outside the country) is available but must be requested and may cost extra.
Choose from either a permanent contract at a fixed monthly rate, or a rechargeable/pay as you go one where the phone card must be regularly recharged with additional credit. Additional credit vouchers (richariche) can be purchased from grocery stores, tobacconists and magazine shops; sometimes they are in the form of scratch-off cards. Credit can also be purchased through ATMs, the service provider’s website, customer service phone line or in their phone shops.
Lost or stolen mobile phones
All mobile phones have a unique identification code, the IMEI (International Mobile Equipment Identity) code. This belongs to the handset and is associated with a card, the SIM (Subscriber Identification Module) card, which holds the telephone number assigned to a customer. Access to the SIM card can be protected by personalising the card with a 4 digit PIN number
The IMEI number provides protection if a phone is lost or stolen. The IMEI code is clearly shown on the paperwork at time of purchase. Make a note of it and keep it separate from the mobile in case the phone is lost or stolen. If the purchase paperwork is not available, it is possible to find the IMEI number by entering: *#06# on the keypad.
The loss (smarrimento) or theft (furto) of a mobile cell phone should be reported to the service provider immediately. They will need the IMEI number or details of the SIM card. The service will be suspended and the telephone blocked making it impossible for anyone else to use it, and the phone may be traced. The owner is responsible for payment of any calls made until the SIM is blocked unless they have taken out insurance with the supplier.
If the phone is stolen, a declaration can also be made at the nearest police station; the police must be supplied with the IMEI number.
Widespread and reliable internet access is slowly developing in Italy and access very much depends on location. Broadband is available mainly in urban areas and big cities. Smaller villages may only have dial-up or ISDN access available.
The Internet service market in Italy remains dominated by the operator Telecom Italia (Alice), however the providers are numerous. Among them are:
(This list is not exhaustive)
In areas that do not have access to broadband ADSL Alice provide a flat rate connection fee called Teleconomy Internet, which offers connection via dial-up or ISDN (faster than dial-up, but still fairly slow). All other providers also offer a dial-up service.
Some companies, such as TIM and Vodafone, also offer connection via a mobile phone (which means connection can only be made if a signal can be obtained). A dedicated mobile phone is suggested for users who plan to use the internet heavily.
It is also possible to connect to the Internet at cafés and Internet bars.