Motoring in Italy

Motoring in Italy

Buying a car

    The following documents are required when purchasing a car in Italy:
  • Proof of residency (EU citizens) or Permesso di Soggiorno (non-EU citizens)
  • Italian ID card or some other proof of identity
  • Codice fiscale
  • Proof of insurance cover

Legally, it is possible for an EU citizen to buy a car in Italy, even if they are not resident there, provided they have reasonably close connections with the country, i.e. if they own a second home there. However, this is not very widely practised in Italy, so there may be some difficulties in trying to buy a car in certain areas without a residency document. Non-residents wishing to buy a car should go to their local Comune and request a 'Certificato di Domicilio' (probably best to explain why) which should be accepted instead of a residency document.

Having bought the car, the 'Passaggio di Proprietà' (transfer of ownership) must be completed within 60 days of the purchase. To do this, you go to an office of the 'Agenzia di Pratiche Automobilistiche'. You can find your nearest office by clicking here. You can also go to any 'Auotomobile Club D'Italia' (ACI) office or your local 'Motorizzazione Civile'.

If you buy the car from a dealer, they will complete the transfer for you. The following documents are required to transfer ownership of a second hand car:

  • Atto di Vendita (act of sale)
  • Certificato di Proprietà (vehicle documents)
  • Carta di Circolazione (registration certificate)
  • Proof of residency (EU citizens) or Permesso di Soggiorno (non-EU citizens)

Until the change of ownership has been registered, the former owner remains responsible for any taxes, accidents or motoring offences. It is possible to check that the registration has been completed by the 'Pubblico Registro Automobilistico' (PRA) by contacting the 'Auotomobile Club D'Italia' (ACI) and providing the licence plate details.

The cost of registering the car as a new owner is based on three elements:

  • Spese Motorizzazione - fixed cost: €99,.35
  • Spese Pubblico registro - calculated on the power of the car: €543,72 (on a car of 144 HP as an example)
  • Valori bollati - fixed cost: €14,62

Total: €657.69

This figure could be as little as €300 or more than €1,500, depending on the type of car.

Immatricolazione (transferring a UK plated car to Italian plates)

If a foreign-plated car is imported into Italy, it must be re-registered in Italy within 6 months. This must be arranged through your local Immatriculation Centre. The process is somewhat complicated, so you should allow plenty of time. The cost will be about the same as registering the change of ownership on an Italian plated car.

Bollo (car tax)

In Italy, car tax must be paid on every car whether it is being used or not. Failure to produce a valid receipt of car tax may result in a fine. You can find out the amount due by clicking here and entering your car licence number. Overdue tax still has to be paid regardless of any changed ownership of the car. The amount charged is a complicated calculation based on the EU emission grades, type of fuel and the kw power of the car. Payment can be made at your local 'Auotomobile Club D'Italia' (ACI) office or online by clicking here. Alternatively, it can be paid at a bar, tabaccheria, bank, or at the post office. you will need the 'Libretto' (logbook) and the usual ID card and 'Codice Fiscale'.

Revisione (MOT)

In Italy, it is now a legal requirement for all cars that are more than 4 years old cars to have a 'Revisione' (the equivalent of an MOT in the UK) every 2 years. You will need to find your local 'Centro Revisioni Auto'. Once you have the 'Revisione' it is entered into the 'Libretto'. If stopped by the police and found to be out of date, you will incur a fine.


Mechanical repairs are carried out in an 'Officina' and bodywork repairs are carried out in a 'Carrozzeria'.


Breakdown services are coordinated in Italy by the 'Auotomobile Club D'Italia' (ACI), who provide emergency breakdown services as well as a number of pre-paid breakdown plans similar to the 'AA' in the UK. They can be contacted throughout Italy on the emergency number 116. Alternatively they can be contacted at a national level on the ACI website.

Car insurance

Car insurance in Italy is very expensive and can be quite restricted at times. For instance, some companies are unwilling to offer fully comprehensive insurance to cars over four years old. In Italy it is the car that is insured and not the driver. Consequently, they don't have a 'no-claims bonus' as such, although there may be some discount that amounts to the same thing. You also do not need to add any named drivers to the policy.

The main options are:


This is similar to comprehensive insurance in the UK, but Italian insurance companies do not provide the same kind of comprehensive cover as companies in the UK, so BEWARE!

Responsabilità civile:

Third party


Fire & theft

Infortuni dei conducente:

Cover to the driver in the case of an accident where the driver is responsible

Servizio assistenza:

Roadside assistance

Driving Licence

Italians can drive mopeds after the age of 14 and cars after the age of 18. The Italian driving licence is valid for 10 years up to the age of 50. After that, it must be renewed every 5 years and after age 70, every 3 years.

EU citizens who are resident in Italy, and who have the new style, credit card licences, may continue to use them in Italy as in their country of issue.

EU citizens who are resident in Italy and who have the old style licence, must get them authenticated within 12 months, or convert to an Italian licence.

Non EU citizens who are resident in Italy must take a driving test and obtain an Italian licence within 12 months. This includes citizens from the US, Canada and Australia as there is no reciprical agreement between Italy and these countries.

Driving without a valid licence can result in a large fine or worse still, can invalidate your car insurance in the case of an accident.

If in any doubt, visit your local 'Auotomobile Club D'Italia' (ACI) for details.

Rules & Regs

There are frequent roadside checks in Italy. If stopped, the police will expect you to be carrying the following documents:

  • Italian ID card or some other proof of identity
  • Valid driving licence or a receipt showing that it is currently in the process of conversion
  • Bollo' receipt (car tax)
  • Valid insurance disc displayed in car windscreen
  • 'Libretto' (logbook) with an up to date 'Revisione' if car is over 4years old

In addition it is necessary to carry bright yellow luminous jackets which are available from any petrol station. If you have an accident or need to stop on an autostrada, you must wear them if you leave the car.

Your dipped headlights should be used on all major roads and autostrada. As there is considerable confusion as to when you need them most Italians have their lights on all the time.

Your driving licence, ID card, and libretto should all show your current address and you can be fined if they are not correct.

In some areas it is necessary to carry snow chains during the winter months. Signs at the side of the road will advise you if this is required.

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Speed Limits
Type of road Speed limit dry km/h Speed limit wet km/h
Autostrada (motorway) 130 110
Dual carriageway 110 90
Open roads 90 80
Built up areas 50 50
Main Motorway Section Toll Charges
Section Road Cars € Cars towing €
Bologna - Florence A1 6.50 8.30
Rome - Naples A1 11.60 15.00
Milan - Bologna A1 12.00 15.50
Florence - Rome A1 14.60 18.80
Milan - Naples A1 45.10 58.30
Genoa - Savona A10 2.40 3.00
Savona - Ventimiglia A10 11.50 21.70
Florence - Pisa A11 5.90 7.80
La Spezia - Livorno A12 6.60 9.30
Livorno - Rome A12 8.30 11.00
Genoa - La Spezia A12 9.20 12.40
Genoa - Viareggio A12 11.40 15.60
Genoa - Livorno A12 14.00 19.30
Bologna - Ferrara A13 1.90 2.40
Ferrara - Pádova A13 4.50 5.80
Bologna - Pádova A13 5.60 7.20
Bari - Taranto A14 3.80 5.00
Ancona - Pescara A14 8.70 11.20
Bologna - Ancona A14 11.40 14.70
Pescara - Bari A14 17.80 23.00
Pescara - Taranto A14 21.60 23.20
Bologna - Taranto A14 42.50 54.90
Bologna - Ravenna A14 4.10 5.30
Parma - La Spezia A15 10.90 15.20
Naples - Bari A16 15.70 20.20
Messina - Catania A18 3.30 14.80
Messina - Caccamo A20 10.40 30.60
Piacenza - Brescia A21 3.80 5.00
Alessandria - Piacenza A21 4.90 6.40
Turin - Alessandria A21 5.90 7.70
Turin - Piacenza A21 11.30 14.80
Verona - Modena A22 5.30 6.90
Trento - Verona A22 5.50 7.10
Brenner Pass - Trento A22 8.00 10.30
Brenner Pass - Modena A22 18.80 24.20
Udine - Tarvisio A23 6.00 7.70
Rome - Teramo A24 11.60 14.80
Rome - Pescara A25 13.60 17.60
Genoa - Alessandria A26 4.30 5.50
Genoa - Iselle A26 12.60 15.00
Venice - Belluno A27 6.60 8.40
Naples - Salerno A3 1.60 3.50
Caserta - Salerno A30 3.30 4.30
Vicenza - Trento A31 1.50 2.00
Turin - Tunnel du Frejus A32 9.80 17.60
Padova - Venice A4 2.70 3.60
Brescia - Verona A4 2.90 3.80
Verona - Padova A4 3.70 4.90
Milan - Brescia A4 5.60 7.10
Venice - Trieste A4 7.00 9.20
Turin - Milan A4 9.60 12.10
Milan - Venice A4 15.70 20.40
Santhia - Aosta A5 11.30 17.00
Turin - Aosta A5 12.90 19.30
Turin - Savona A6 10.90 14.70
Milan - Tortona A7 3.60 4.70
Milan - Genoa A7 7.50 9.80
Milan - Varese A8 2.60 3.40
Milan - Chiasso A8/A9 3.20 4.10

Calculate accurate toll charges for your journey here

Section Road Cars € Cars towing €
Frejus Tunnel A32 / E70 35.10 46.40
Grand St Bernard Tunnel T2 23.60 36.50
Mont Blanc Tunnel A5 / E25 35.10 46.40
Munt La Schera Tunnel Livigno 10.00 20.00
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