2018-01-17 / Front Page

On the Road in Italy: Exchange Currency

By Catherine Tsounis

Via Pellicceria 3 Post office.Via Pellicceria 3 Post office.Where can you exchange dollars to euros in Italy? Don’t go to the bank. They will refuse. The Currency Exchange Offices charge exorbitant fees. A family member was persistent in finding an alternative. In Aquileia, a bank refused to exchange dollars. They said, “go to a post office.” Ravenna had a post office close to our Bed and breakfast. We received $.80 per dollar. The travel books on Italy and few internet sites give this information. A tourist must discover this information through trial and error.

In Florence, we entered the main post office at Via Pellicceria 3, located in an impressive Via Pellicceria 3 Post office.
Via Pellicceria 3 Post office. palace with gothic arches. A gracious teller converted our dollars with a smile. We went back several times during our 4 days stay. The Post Office is located in the Piazza Della Repubblica. one of the main squares in Florence and marks the center of the city since Roman times.

The Colonna Della Dovizia or also known as the Column of Abundance marks the point where the Cardus and decumanus maxima met and where the Roman forum stood. The present column dates to 1431 but the statue on top is a copy and the original is visible at the bank Cassa di Risparmio in via dell'Oriuolo.1

Piazza Della Republica.Piazza Della Republica.I reverted to using a free fee credit card from Chase Bank. I went to Italy with several credit cards and no debit cards. Why? In Sicily, ten years ago, the ATM card machine did not give a fellow tourist his change of fifty euros. The machine was rigged, we later discovered. The moral of the story: only go to the post office for currency exchange or use credit cards.

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